L&T Publisher Earl Watt
EDITOR’S NOTE — The following describes a recent dream, but could have been a prophetic vision. Only time will tell.
“We have to go,” the man said to me as he tugged my arm. “They want us inside.”
He lifted me off the ground, and we headed inside the shelter, or at least it looked like a shelter. The troops outside were well armed and everywhere. As we approached the building we were told to stand still, and we put our arms in the air. Then straight out, and then back to our sides.
I tried to make out who these soldiers were, but they were mixed. Some were Russian. Others were Chinese, and some were Mideastern.
They ushered us inside while others outside tried to get in. As we made our way inside I saw a woman with tattered clothing and tangled hair pleading to get inside at a window near the entry.
Once inside we were directed down a maze of hallways and into a large area that resembled on old grade school gym, only it was dark, and men huddled in groups throughout the area.
“Why are we here?” I asked the man who tugged me earlier.
“You were a journalist,” he said. “They think they can use you.”
“Who are they?” I asked.
“The socialists,” he replied. “They are in control now.”
“We’re prisoners,” I thought. And then I said, “But the Army will get us out, right?”
“Army?” the man replied. “We did away with the Army. We cut the budget down and left only 100,000 men. And most of them were only allowed in if they supported the socialists. The army never came. Those that were left now work for them.”
“But the people have guns,” I said. “They will fight back.”
“We took their guns years ago,” the man said. “Every time a person was killed, they blamed a gun owner until they were all taken away. The last few with registered guns were visited right before the takeover. They were either killed or imprisoned. But the guns are gone.”
I couldn’t believe what the man was telling me, and as I looked up I saw an American general at the door talking to some of the guards.
I knew it. They were coming to get us out.
I approached the door and asked the general, “Are you coming to get us out?”
He looked at me with contempt and said, “Get back inside.”
He continued his discussion with the other international military people, and I was stunned as I fumbled my way back into the gymnasium. As I walked by the small huddles I noticed the separated groups. Some were Jews from the holocaust. Others were Afghanis, Hebrews, Somalis — every enslaved people throughout time had someone in the room.
A few more men were led into the gym, but they were being forced inside. I recognized some of the faces as teachers.
“We don’t belong here,” one of the teachers exclaimed. “We taught them about socialism. We renounced capitalism. We are one of you.”
“We are all the same,” the bureaucrat with a notebook and clean pressed clothing replied. “You should be proud. You led this revolution. And there was not one shot fired thanks to you. You saved millions from a life of anguish with the false hopes of democracy. You now get to live your lives as you wanted here with everyone else.”
“But who will teach the children?” the educator replied.
“We will teach them what they need to know,” the bureaucrat replied. “We will teach them how to clean the restrooms, how to grow and serve the food, how to serve their fellow man. We are all here to serve one another. You will be reassigned to a role where you can serve as well. It would be a waste of resources to have you in a classroom. You can work a shovel or a rake. We will be responsible for the education of the children now.”
This couldn’t be. There has to be a way out.
There was always a way out.
But the people of faith were no longer allowed to pray. There would be no Moses.
There was no upcoming election.
For the others, it was America who rescued them from bondage, from the gas chambers.
Until we walked away. Until we abandoned the world by abandoning liberty for the belief in socialism.
We had to escape. We had to find a place where freedom still existed.
“There is no such place,” the man who led me in said. “We were the last hope for freedom. The last point of light.”
Just then a shout came from the doorway.
“You!” the man said while looking at me. “They want to talk to you.”
I made my way to the door and was led to one of the old classrooms of the former school building.
Three or four men came in, well armed, and one was carrying copies of papers, and they sat down at the table across from me. They were my columns from years gone by, columns pushing for freedom and liberty.
“You seem to enjoy writing,” one of the men said. I didn’t reply, fully expecting the bullet to the head that was soon to follow.
“Now we want you to write for us,” he continued. “Some of the people believed what you said. They still believe it. And now you know it is false. And they can be good workers. We are all workers.”
“I still believe what I wrote,” I said.
“We know,” the man replied. “And that is why you will tell them this is what you believed. This is their new freedom. You will tell them they were enslaved by corporations and marketing schemes. You will tell them they were slaves to jobs that did nothing to serve humanity, only to serve themselves, and now they will be able to be true equals without these needless distractions. They will believe you and live. And your family is in the next room eagerly waiting for your answer.”
“If they believed what I wrote this never would have happened,” I said.
“You didn’t have a chance,” the man said. “We controlled the airwaves, the television screens, the classrooms, the military leadership and the White House. While you were trying to win elections, we were working to control the inside. You thought you were simply losing the votes when the votes were never relevant. It was an exercise, an illusion of democracy, and the people believed this is what they chose. It made it much easier for us and for them.”
“Why are you telling me this?” I asked. “You know what you are doing is wrong.”
“What we are doing is righteous,” he replied. “To be honest, it really wasn’t that hard. Freedom worked against itself. Our message rang out while yours was suppressed. It only took a handful of people, what you call influencers. From Hollywood actors and athletes to social media control, it happened much quicker than we anticipated. You divided yourselves better than we ever could have. The outcome is no longer in question. The only question left is if you will make the transition easier on the few remaining loyalists to the dangers of individuality or if you will be merciful and tell them what they need to hear. And we need your answer. Now, please.”
That’s when my eyes opened Sunday morning, and I was still lying in my bed. I looked at my watch. It was 2:25 a.m. In the matter of a couple of hours I had spent what felt like a week in the United Socialist State of America.
Much like I never believed America could be attacked before 9/11 20 years ago, I now clearly saw the fallacy in believing socialism would never come to the United States. The plan was not some far-off fairy tale.
What is the difference between a dream, a nightmare and a vision? Had my mind already put together the situation we face?
Only time will tell. I can only hope it was a nightmare.