Mr. American History


Dear Mr. American History:


Your tie: red white and blue,

representing the noose of oppression you pledge yourself to.

American history is your profession,

but I wonder at your discretion,

when you announce to a class half comprised of Mexican immigrants-

that their parents steal jobs from “Real Americans.”


You wear that tie on test days:

your uniform to inspire fear.

Regarding dress codes,

you decree they create unity.

Ignoring my protests of “Freedom of expression,”

you reveal your true motive: “Piercings disgust me.”


We’re studying the 20s.

I’m pleasantly surprised that our focus is on oppression,

yet I receive the expected suppression,

when I mention that Langston Hughes was gay.

Bar raids, police brutality and rape, laws forbidding lovers from holding hands.

Somehow history’s red tape doesn’t encourage education about this ongoing aggression.


We must present a project on the

history and geography of the Great Plains.

America: The Breadbasket of the World,

providing food for those poor hungry WWII soldiers

yet no mention of the starvation

and genocide which occurred in this fertile nation.


Excitement lights up your eyes

as you describe Reagan’s “Star Wars” promise.

Ignoring my argument that democracy cannot exist through governmental lies,

you proclaim him “the best president America has ever seen.”

Condemning propaganda of USSR and North Korea as communist-motivated,

your blatant blindness to America’s redactions cannot be overstated.


You claim yourself an environmentalist

while promoting the big businesses of oil and steel.

Flying the confederate flag is not white supremacist

since your hometown in the south now holds different ideals.

All this you say and then follow up with a refusal to reveal

your political orientation “for fear of potentially promoting a political persuasion.”


But, Mr. American History,

rest assured that your political viewpoint is no mystery.

Though to me neither is the notion

of a connection between bigotry and a polluted ocean.

You should try to remember that we don’t exist in isolation

and there are much worse situations than taxation.


And always remember that

you do not direct my beliefs.

your words don’t design my life’s motif.

And your procapitalist garbage,

                will not my utopian wishes tarnish.


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