I just read the press release for Loyalty Day and almost threw up. LOYALTY DAY? Is W SERIOUS? I read it and thought it was a spoof piece being distributed due to the many immigrant marches and rights protests happening today. But it’s not. It’s real.
Mayday is the organization in Atwood’s The Handmaiden’s Tale which helps women caught in the theocracy of Gilead. It’s the password that gets a woman into the Underground Femaleroad to Canada. To me, having W take May Day, a traditional worker’s holiday and make it a “loyalty day” – that’s blasphemous enough. “Loyalty” to the establishment, as it is now, definitely doesn’t include socialism or worker’s rights. But to take May Day, a symbol of freedom in Atwood’s version of Orwell, and make it, instead, into something out of NIN’s Year Zero makes me want to scream.
And it scares me. Loyalty Day? Next year, does that mean that it will be “disloyal” for the protests to take place in the name of worker’s rights?
I’m waiting now for the Daily Show/Colbert Report to defuse this, to make me less anxious, to give me faith. I want hope that my generation is going to just laugh this off. More than that – we’ll stand up, and laugh, and then strike it down. This isn’t right. We can’t wait for the next election, folks. It’s time to start reminding the federal government that enforced loyalty isn’t healthy.