Pity the nation

Published 6:41 pm Monday, July 22, 2019

To the Editor:

The statements of Donald J. Trump and the chanting that erupted at the campaign rally in Greenville last week were deeply disturbing. It brought to mind the words of an American author, Lawrence Ferlinghetti.

“Pity the nation whose people are sheep
And whose shepherds mislead them.
Pity the nation whose leaders are liars
Whose sages are silenced
And whose bigots haunt the airwaves.
Pity the nation that raises not its voice
Except to praise conquerers
And acclaim the bully as hero
And aims to rule the world
By force and by torture.
Pity the nation that knows
No other language but its own
And no other culture but its own.
Pity the nation whose breath is money
And sleeps the sleep of the too well fed.
Pity the nation oh pity the people
who allow their rights to erode
and their freedoms to be washed away.
My country, tears of thee
Sweet land of liberty!”

— Lawrence Ferlinghetti, January, 2006

Mr. Ferlinghetti’s words are both searing and prophetic. Pity our nation.


Barbara Stone