Guest Column — “Freedumb Isn’t Free:” Otep Shamaya Explores Donald Trump’s Future Imperial Reign Over America
You wake up with a gun in your hand. A knife at your throat. A wound in your side.
The room is on fire and the roof is caving in.
You can’t move.
In the distance, there’s the sound of screaming.
Thus begins the sixteenth term of our Lord and Ruler, Sovereign of the Cosmos, Grand Vizier of the New Yuuuge Great-Again States, Exalted Commander of the Orange Shirts & Supreme Leader of all 52 branches of the New Yuuuge Great-Again Military, Builder of the Greater Wall, Keeper of the Law, Purger of the Land, King Scientist of All Sciences, The All-Seeing, All-Knowing, most incredible, amazing, Winningest Leader of All Time (you won’t even believe it) his Holiness… Immortan Don.
We praise his yuuugeness (yuuuugest ever) with every shallow breath we take for losing the wretched territories to the west. Death be upon them. For it is HE, Immortan Don, who saved us from them! Them, with their treachery of democracy. Them, with their evil idolatry of the sun, and wind, and water and the land. Them, with their false prophets who speak with curses on their tongue about equality for all and individual rights.
We praise Immortan Don for the Great War of Nation-States that saw our first, second, and third Great Walls destroyed by traitors and betrayers who fled our great republic to join the evil empire of the West. We praise Immortan Don for banishing them to the feral lands where forests are thick with life, scary life, uncontrollable life, where the oceans are terrifyingly blue, where the soil is rich and dark, and the wind remains invisible.
He has condemned the wicked Wretched West, beyond our fourth and final Greater Wall, to live every day of their wretched lives without ever witnessing the daily prayer briefings that our glorious Immortan Don beams from his ivory tower into every home, into every building, inside every room, on the streets, on the trains, everywhere, seriously, he is everywhere. All the time.
Nay, we thank Immortan Don (who is so yuuuuuge you won’t even believe it) for the sooty air, for the yellow sky, for the rusty oceans, for the barren hills. We thank Him for protecting us so we’d never be slaves under the iron heel of “common” sense. Nay, Immortan Don (who is so yuuuuuge) blesses us with uncommon sense, the rarest sense, a sense so amazing you won’t even believe it, a sense only HE can provide. For the Great Roundup of Year 3 where He purged our republic of any mutations, for creating a monochromatic citizenry that has eliminated the terrors of diversity.
We thank Immortan Don, yuuugest of the yuge, for keeping us safe from the perils of free will. “I know something about will and it isn’t free,” he says. And rightfully so. For it was HE, Immortan Don, (seriously, he’s just so terrific and amazing, you won’t even believe it) who WILLED our WILL into existence and loaned it to us with a meager 25% interest rate.
Indeed, we owe him everything. For it is HE, Immortan Don, (who gets standing ovations, seriously, people love him) that allows us to manufacture all our goods, anything and everything we need (deemed necessary by his Holiness) in the Great Corporation. His enemies, those liars and criminals, will say the Great Corporation TAKES from us but this is false. The Great Corporation GIVES to us because it was created FOR us by HIM. And thus we are paid in corporate credits that can only be used in the corporate stores of the Great Corporation and thus we can only live in housing owned by the Great Corporation, buy goods made by the Great Corporation. It’s great. It’s terrific. Not to mention how fantastic it is that WE pay HIM, Immortan Don, (seriously, he wins at everything) for the blessing of sacrificing our labor, 18 hours a day at the Great Corporation, even though we, the happy, healthy elated children of the New Yuuuge Great-Again States (trademark Immortan Don all rights reserved), would eagerly work 36 hours a day and 17 days a week if only given the chance. We also thank His Holiness, Immortan Don, for creating a smarter, more talented calendar built around a 39 hour day and 164 weeks a year. Because math is for suckers. Oh, he’s just so terrific.
We praise Immortan Don (just the smartest and brightest, I mean, seriously, manliest man ever, you wouldn’t believe it) for keeping the horrors of space hidden in the awesome, sterilizing smog belched from the iron towers of the Great Corporation (registered trademark Immortan Don, he’s so terrific). We praise Him for the healthy holy fluorescent lights that constantly illuminate our great republic, for the rusty water that springs forth from the belly of the Great Corporation, for keeping our air visibly gray so we remain grateful for every breath we take. For the Orange Shirts (His chosen private security) for keeping the bread lines orderly. We praise Him for our two, and only two, National Hospitals that do it better without competition. We praise Him for the decades of war he’s initiated because “fuck them” that’s why. For making pregnancy mandatory so every child can proudly serve in one of the 52 branches of our supremely invincible Military and work off their parents debts. We honor Him for rewriting every religious text so that it begins with his immaculate birth out of the side of his own ass. It is also our great honor for his selfless service to Medicine by personally selecting and providing monthly pelvic exams to some of our young women. How yuuuugely lucky they are, the chosen ones, may we see them again someday.
We thank Him, Immortan Don, (seriously more yuuuuge than you could possibly ever imagine) for relieving us from vaccines so that we can spot the weaker ones quicker. We praise Him for his daring vacations into the exotic wilds of the Wretched West every holiday and during our bleak winters so He can remind us just how terrible it is over there, where the liars and criminals grow soft and fat and stupid for believing that health is wealth.
And we thank Him, Immortan Don, (he’s just done an amazing job, seriously, you won’t even believe it) for making everything, and we mean everything, so great again, for being a winner and for helping US to keep on winning. We thank Him for removing doubt, for challenging us with double-talk and divine confusion. For reminding us who our enemies are, the Wretched THEM (wherever THEY may lurk), for assaulting our unnatural sense of decency and dignity because He knows better than anyone because He says so. We thank Him for being so yuuuge we cant even believe it, for his eloquent declarations that he does more before breakfast than most of us will do in a lifetime. We thank Him, endlessly, for telling us what’s true and what’s not. We thank Immortan Don for liberating our fears and nightmares into reality so we don’t have to endure them alone.
We wake up with a fright. A choice to be made. A moment to seize. A future to build.
The room is smoldering. The roof is bowing.
Do you move or lay still?
In the distance, there’s the sound of cheering.