Time to Make Our Nation True to its Colors

by on May 19, 2020 · 6 comments

in From the Soul

by Ernie McCray

Oh, these hair-raising
waving their
red, white, and blue flags
and wearing their red, white, and blue
caps and hats,
and red, white and blue
tennis shoes,
on the news,
unmasked and
confused and unglued,
packing heat,
singing the blues
because they can’t
do whatever
they want to do,

like they’re some

superior race

of people

who need not

follow rules,

locking me into

fits of déjà vu

because I’ve seen

this scenario

a time or two:

mobs of white folks

taking the law

into their own hands

which inevitably

leads to a bit of misery

for us dark-skinned folks

us “minorities.”

It’s deeply embedded in our history,

the lynching and tarring and feathering

and battering

and, in this chapter capturing

these moments in time,

these terrorists of our time

are making us even more vulnerable

when we were already the most vulnerable

to the ravishes of a deadly disease

that they, and their Commander-in-Chief

in the West Wing of a big White House

in DC,

dismiss as a common flu –

they’re truly people

who wouldn’t care

if he shot someone

in the middle of Fifth Avenue.


They call themselves patriots
as they wrap themselves
in their flags
and don their caps and hats
and their sneakers,
creating a vision

of red, white, and blue

but such behavior can’t

continue to exist

as we rise out of our distancing

and isolation,

needing, if we must

continue honoring the colors

of our nation,

to best go about it

with fresh pairs of eyes

that can see our collective needs

clearly and earnestly,

with ears

that can hear our conjoining cries

at deeper and keener


with heartfelt intentions

that can enhance

human relations

across social

and political lines

and enable us to survive

as a species

down the line,

making our colors


with a glow

that commits our souls

to embracing the color red

for the passion and desire and love

we’ll need

as agents of refashioning humankind;

to proceeding with the implied

qualities of the color white’s

goodness and purity;

to honoring the virtues

of trust, loyalty, and truth,

embodied in the color blue;

to sensing cosmically

how our blue skies

and blue seas

connect us internationally

which is a coming together that is vital

to the wellbeing

of the world’s wide-ranging

mixtures of societies.


Our red, white, and blue

colors so celebrated

and appreciated

would be an alluring

hope inspiring

sight to see.

A sight we

need to see

and must see.



{ 6 comments… read them below or add one }

scott andrews May 19, 2020 at 11:00 am

The unintended consequence of the shutdown is the unprecedented and incalculable human trauma caused by lost family members, lost jobs, failed small and large businesses, lost savings, stress, depression, delayed medical diagnosis and treatment, psychological stress, suicide, school closures, and substance, child, and spousal abuse. The State just denied the citizens the right to work, school, drive, walk, shop, play, seek medical treatment, and travel. These are the citizens being demonized for having the temerity to exercise their right under the flag of the Bill or Rights to free speech and assembly – just to restore their right to provide for their family.
Just calculate the additional human cost for rural Americans of the predicted permanent closure of 60,000 general practitioner practices in the heartland.


Frank Gormlie May 19, 2020 at 11:07 am

Scott Andrews – I’m saddened by your acceptance of Trump’s talking points. Ever heard of necessary measures to protect the public health? By far most Americans accept the social and physical distancing and wearing masks, and fear of reopening society prematurely, but your advocacy of the same crap that the protesters erroneously assert is a real let down and for those of us who worked with you on environmental concerns, it’s a slap in the face. You have lost your credibility – which hurts any cause that you might have taken up. You are a trumpist, Scott – and are no longer welcome on these pages.


scott andrews May 19, 2020 at 11:19 am

I did not address safety protocols, so your response is presumptive as triggered.
I only spoke to the right to reopen businesses. Of course i support doing so under safety measures, in fact called the VA to increase their mask use and hand sanitation on entry.


Frank Gormlie May 19, 2020 at 11:27 am

Here’s your quote, right out of the Trump playbook: “The State just denied the citizens the right to work, school, drive, walk, shop, play, seek medical treatment, and travel.” That’s bullshit, Scott – and your darling Trump has been shredding the Constitution for the last 3 1/2 years. What about that???


Angie May 19, 2020 at 7:09 pm

Thank you Ernie, for a beautiful poem. I’d love to be proud of our flag and our country again. There are SO many good people that are misrepresented by the “leadership” of many of the “public officials”.
It’s time to take back our government and make it work FOR us!


Thomas Gayton May 20, 2020 at 7:53 pm



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