It's too much (and too publicly demoralizing) to post this on social media, so I'm going to write it here. But I feel like something in me has died over the past 47 days, watching the Israeli + Western governments' genocide of the Palestinian people unfolding in real time.
There is a part of me that is so shaken that it just cannot shut up. Because I am unable to stop grieving for the political system that I thought I lived in - and now know for certain that I have never, ever lived in, not even for one second in all my life thus far. I'm grieving for a fantasy that I had, basically, about how power distributes itself and circulates in the world. Maybe this fantasy came from growing up in Singapore, an authoritarian state where the prevailing ideology is that leaders are, by definition, benevolent and competent. Or maybe it came from the structure of my family, and my role within that structure. I don't know.
But something fundamental has shifted now, in my understanding of what lies within the realm of possibility. Because I have seen with my own two eyes how easily a people - any people, anyone deemed the enemy of the powers of the moment, an arbitrary people, even my own people, potentially - can be wiped out by a tiny group of leaders who don't see others as equal beings. Even as the majority of humanity agitates with all their might against it.
That's all I want to write. I don't have anything smart to say about this, but I want to make it known that I feel it. I will probably feel it until the day I die, and it will probably live inside every piece of art or writing that I make from now on. That's all.