Daugters of the American Revolution

Two women recently described my grandfather in the following stark language:
“He was a monster.”
My mother drapes herself in a denial she thinks is wisdom.
My mother told me to see the good–see the full person.

Well I see the whole person.
And I see the man who shook my aunt until she dropped limp to the ground.
And I see the man who beat my mother with a belt in front of her boyfriend’s house.
And I see the man who twisted my grandmother’s arm until she dropped to her knees.
And I see the man who punched my great aunt in the spine until she bruised.

I asked my partner how this could have gone on. How my aunt was demonized–tried to kill herself due to the abuse, finally died alone in section 8 housing from a drug overdose in her 40s–but my grandfather?
My mother spoon-fed him ice cream until the day he died peacefully and he got facebook adulations and a full memorial service. He was “humble and kind” they said.

“He was a monster.”

How did this happen?
My partner said it’s easy–
“Of course he got away with it.
He’s a middle-class-white-chrisitan-male.”

He was america.

See the whole person, my mother said.

I see the daughters of the american revolution.
I see the family that fought for the north.
I see the family that built churches in Salem.
They burned witches but history reveals the real monsters.

Well, alan. I see you.
You loved america so much, congratulations, you are america, alan.
Even in death,
I see you.
And you know what, alan?
Fuck you.

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