Manifesto, A Poem

Some people believe so strongly

in the ideologies they were either raised with,

or found in some other way

but they believe so strongly

that they’re willing to lay down their life

for their ideology

even if they can start to see it’s flaws,

they believe so much in the cause

that they’re willing to die,

that they’re willing to kill

that they’re willing to spill

as much blood as needed

for the cause

they never pause to think.


Trauma and oppression

can lead some people to an ideology

that they’re willing to kill for

but pledging allegiance every day

is another way

to groom someone

to die in a war

for something they know

little to nothing about

believing so much

in what they’ve been taught,

in what they’ve been told,

their mind was molded

to lay down their life for their cause,

to kill the people they’ve been trained to see

as their enemy

because they believe so much

that it will keep their loved ones free.

This ideology is their religion

and violence is their prayer

they don’t dare question

any aspect of it,

that shit’s above their pay grade

they made up their mind

when they signed up

as a soldier in the fight

but what if their ideology

is white supremacy

and they were born into a family

that raised them to see

people of color as the enemy

and they hear their commander-in-chief

barking orders about closing borders

about making America great again

and they listen to their God

and they say ‘amen’

and they know that great means white

so they’re ready to lace up their boots

grab their rifle and fight

for everything they’ve been taught to hold dear,

a racist, hateful ideology

overflowing with fear.

Some of these brainwashed,

ignorant, hate-filled men

grabbed a pen and scribbled their manifesto

before going off to take innocent life.

Then the president and his wife

appeared on the TV

and told America that they can see the problem:

Mental health.


It wasn’t mental health issues

that led me into the US military at 18

it was the naive beliefs

of an ignorant teenage boy

who was raised with an American flag

flying in the yard,

raised with toy guns

and real ones

raised idolizing the old vets

marching along Main Street

in the parade

I had made up my mind early on

that I would wear

the American flag on my shoulder

when I got older,

the flag I pledged allegiance to

since I was far too young to know

what pledging allegiance meant.

It was not mental health issues,

it was an unwavering belief in an ideology

that sent me to war

and if we blame mental health issues

rather than an ideology of white supremacy

there will be countless more terrorist attacks

in which people target those

they truly believe are their enemy.


Sure, the problem is white supremacy.

Sure, the problem is more guns than people.

The problem is also an ignorant society that glorifies violence,

and an apathetic country that has been stuck in silence for decades

as the blood of innocent people of color

has been shed overseas

and from sea to shining sea

in the name of an ideology

that pretty fucking closely resembles white supremacy.

An ideology I grew up naively believing in.

An ideology I was willing to die for.

An ideology I was willing to kill for.


Did a whole bunch of Germans in the 1930’s

have mental health issues?

No. They believed in an ideology.

Oh, some of them didn’t believe in it

but those ones still paid for the Zyklon B.


No ideology

yesterday, today,

or tomorrow

is worth killing for.

The truth is the only thing

worth dying for

and remember

that your dollar bills kill

once in the hands of Uncle Sam.



About soitgoes1984

I live on a small island in the middle of the Pacific ocean in the Hawaiian Kingdom which is currently illegally occupied by the American government. This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.
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