Harrison Bergeron: The Prequel

If unfamiliar first read “Harrison Bergeron”, by Kurt Vonnegut, 1961, here

The year was 2081. And everybody was finally equal. They were equal in every which way. Nobody was smarter than anybody else. Nobody was better looking than anybody else. Nobody was stronger or quicker than anybody else. Nobody was more privileged than anybody else. All this equality was due to the 211th, 212th, and 213th Amendments to the Constitution. But it wasn’t until now, after reading blog posts he found hidden in his cell that Harrison knew all of this equality began in the year 2017.

You see, in 2017 everything became racist.

Wearing hoop earrings became racist. Not being able to get french fries at a Taco Bell became racist. The solar eclipse became racist. Cotton became racist. Math became racist. Red hats became racist. The National Anthem lyrics became racist. Dr. Suess became racist. The American Flag became racist. The Electoral College became racist. Halloween costumes became racist. Western Civilization became racist. The Constitution became racist. Body lotion became racist. Borders became racist. Yoga became racist. Not believing you were racist became racist. Being white became racist. And although the need for $12 soy lattes had always been questionable, building coffee shops became racist.

Since everything was racist, everything had to change. Everything had to be banned. Everything had to be equal.

So Harrison paced around his cell every night despite the weights draped over him, fascinated, reading, learning from the documents the author and former prisoner Nick hid in a crack by the ceiling in the year 2045. The same year that Supreme Court Justice Ruth Ginsberg, by then known as the conservative, finally retired. The same year that Germany, a Muslim nation, started World War 3 with their invasion of Israel.

Some revelations were minor; Harrison did not know “Havana” by Camila Cabello was not always National Anthem. But mainly he thought about how easy it had been to destroy the United States. That the US once was prosperous. And had freedoms. And individuality. And more than 1 political party.

Harrison was impressed that America once had opinions and facts – and people who understood the difference between the two.

He paced and read every night for weeks, pausing from his studies only to adjust his Gender Neutralizing Equalizer gear.

You see, gender had been banned in 2070.

Americans had long been free to choose their own gender. There were hundreds: transsexual, genderqueer, gender fluid, agendered, cisgender, gender expansiveness, gender expression, gender nonconforming, gender atypical, questioning, intersex, asexual, pansexual, polyamouros. And so on, and so forth.

And nobody particularly cared.

America was very accepting. Nick was clear in his writings he accepted everybody. And anybody. And their rights. But eventually it wasn’t enough to accept differences. Politicians needed issues to campaign on. They needed to create conflict and division. And new words and new laws.

It became unacceptable not to be different. Everyone had to be different so everyone could be the same.

Gender pronouns “he” and “she” were banned in favor of “ze”and “zei.” The words “they” and “their” were used for gender neutral singular pronouns – “He went to the store” became “They went to the store.” The English language was changed but still, it wasn’t enough. Everyone had to be made equal.

And then it changed. It wasn’t about giving more rights to reach equality, but taking the right’s of others to reach equality.

Straight men, who did not want to have sex with women who used to be men were criticized. They were not being equal enough. The terms cissexist and transphobic were created and they were immediately embraced and accepted as being unacceptable.

Some people did not know their gender while others did. The term gender privilege was created and immediately embraced and accepted as being unacceptable.

Gender was just one issue, but this pattern repeated again and again. Issue after issue. And all of this equalizing caused more divisions.

Americans ceased to exist. Nobody was simply called “American.” Everyone needed a qualifier. Everyone became a “__________ American.” Black, white, gay. Pro this position. Anti that position. America would never be united again in face of so many divisions. The Handicapper General’s office gleefully capitalized on the hate, on the divisions, to gain power under the guise of equality.

President Elizabeth Warren and Vice President Kamala Harris gained power in 2020 by exploiting this same strategy of outraged equality without a regard to how it would impact America.

They granted citizenship to all illegal immigrants in the US. These 15 million people immediately brought their families to the US. After all, it was racist to keep families separated. Refugee quotas were lifted. The slogan “No Ban, No Wall, Sanctuary for All” became policy. Within 3 years of open borders 100 million of the known 150 million people waiting to come to America arrived.

Public schools became overcrowded. Budgets burst. “More taxes!” the Party called. It was racist to resist.

The Party leaders, in order to alleviate the crowding, graciously sent their children to private schools.

Welfare spending skyrocketed. Budgets burst. “More taxes!” the Party called. It was racist to resist.

Fossil fuel drilling was banned. Gasoline prices skyrocketed to $27 per gallon. Long lines formed at the few remaining gas stations.

The Party leaders, in order to lessen wait times, graciously flew overhead in their private jets.

But still, the politicians needed more laws. They needed more issues to campaign on.

The Venezuelan Michael Moore Bernie Sanders Act was passed. Its name honored the multiple times both men praised the Venezuelan government and their dedication to installing a similar system in the US.

The Moore BS Act provided immediate US citizenship to all 32 million Venezuelans. They all came to the US. And despite fleeing a nation destroyed by socialism, they voted for more socialism, guaranteeing 1 party rule.

Finally, to great cheers, all guns were banned and confiscated after the Humane Intellectuals Together Legally Eliminating Rifles Act was passed. The HITLER Act was controversial over its use of the word humane, which many found offensive due to its similarity to the word man.

But all these changes weren’t enough. There was still outrage. People became triggered. Microagression was so prevalent it became renamed macroagression. California became the first Safe Place state but still, even there people would protest and would march for the sake of it – nobody could articulate any actual slights against them. But still they marched. And somehow remained outraged.

In response, the FEELINGS Act was passed.

The Finally Everyone Engaging Like-minded Individuals Needing Group Similarities Act was crafted to ban hate speech. Harkening back to the demands of Howard Dean and Keith Ellison all the way back in 2017.

Feelings were now more important than facts. Emotions were more valued than logic. Opinions were unassailable. Being exposed to contrary ideas would no longer be a concern.

Hate speech was banned. And since everything could be construed as hate speech, everything had to be banned.

And this lack of freedom, the inability to express one’s point of view was the most profound, and most detrimental change America underwent.

Despite 213 amendments to the Constitution, the loss of the 1st was the saddest.

Reading about and realizing the lack of freedoms made Harrison pledge that one day he would escape his cell – both the literal and figurative prison that controlled his life. He needed to know what he could fully become.

Harrison learned that The FEELINGS Act is what caused Nick to be beaten and imprisoned in 2040. His last blog post, titled “Seriously, You’re Going To Destroy Mt. Rushmore?” included the line “FDR supported the KKK, placed on the Supreme Court an avowed racist, and imprisoned Americans solely for their Japanese heritage but nobody has taken down his statues.”

That, however, was exactly the type of fact-based hate speech the FEELINGS Act was meant to eradicate. Facts had no place in America.

The 9th Circuit Court sentenced him to 10 years.

Unfortunately for Nick, he turned 65 in 2045. By then, socialist policies combined with open borders, debt and hyperinflation had already caused America’s economic collapse; there was just not enough money. This caused the trustees of Medicare for All to issue new regulations: all people 65 and older had to be euthanized. They were just too expensive.

They were mostly white, so it was racist to resist.

The party’s slogan: “It’s like abortion. For old people.”

Thank you for reading. Be sure to read “Harrison Bergeron” which is linked at the top.

My homepage can be found here. Everything in the “became racist” paragraph occurred.

Feel free to share, or tell me I’m crazy – Nick

1 Comment

  1. Oh my friend you do clearly see and can articulate perfectly what the future holds if we sit back and do nothing…. “The greatest form of evil to plague mankind is for Good men who can stop evil to do nothing”

    Liked by 1 person

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