To calm my worried head, the other night I did what I often do when I need a boost of joy: I listened to salsa. (Specifically, Marc Anthony's concert in Chile. More on that for you people later.)
As the music brushed over me, I began to ponder upon the nature of this music I love so much.
It is a mongrel music. It was invented in New York City in the 1960s by Puerto Ricans, who took the scaffolding of the music from Cuban son. It has spread to all of Latin America and the world. One of the best salseras in Los Angeles is the very white woman Susie Hansen. You go to Japan and you can listen to the most amazing salsa bands, all made up of Japanese who fell so in love with the mongrel music that they learned Spanish and a foreign musical culture to play it.
I left off this essay to deal with other matters. Then events overtook me.
Whether by idiocy or by guile, Mike Pence attended a performance of "Hamilton" on Friday night. He was booed mercilessly. Now, you have to remember: a fair number of the theater-goers were out-of-towners. So the boos weren't just from New York elites, but from a cross-section of America. Reading of the boos made my hear sing. Afterwards, the cast of Hamilton made this declaration to Pence:
What do we work with? With this: We're a nation of mongrels.
Hitler, before America entered the war, said that his generals needn't worry about our possible participation. America was a mongrel nation, he said, and wouldn't be a match for pure Aryans. Four years later he was dead, his Reich in ruins, and America was one of the world's two superpowers.
We're a nation of mongrels. We're a nation of taco trucks and pho restaurants. We're a nation of Basque shepherds and German au pairs. We're a nation which, from its diversity, derives strength.
Donald Trump won't be able to undo that. It's too far gone. Yes, bitter whites have had one last explosion. But that's what it is. A last, dying gasp.
I'm a Californian. And as a Californian I can say this: we're pissed. The country's backwaters have slapped us. But beware of a sleeping giant. California by itself is worth $2.5 trillion of GDP. Add the Northwest and Northeast, and that's most of the country's GDP. We won't go back. We won't be steamrolled by red states which take more from us than they give.
We're a mongrel nation. If a proportion of that nation has forgotten that, that is its problem. We know it, and we revel in it. Despite this setback, we are the future. The spics, the niggers, the gooks, the towelheads, the kikes, the fags. Without us, this country would have died long ago. Without us, the red states will descend into penury. And if it has to come down to it, we'll leave. We'll dissolve this no longer functioning union, and let the red states try to make their way on their own.
We are a mongrel nation, and we're going nowhere. We are not weathering the storm; we are the storm, and we're about to blow everything apart.
For your Sunday, and to end this essay, the concert which got me writing. El gran salsero, el Nuyoriqueño magnifico, Marc Anthony. Have a blessed Sunday.