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September 25, 2023

The Impossibility of Neutrality

By JD DeHart

The Impossibility of Neutrality

Some issues, some ideas, require
the solid step of a sure foot.
When I talk with the author, there are
wounds in their eyes. When your book
is banned – so are you.

Or, at least it seems.

The straying light of afternoon decorates
a classroom where a student mumbles
the question: Why do we have to learn this?

A moment’s not, not really, time for
an apology. There’s more to know, humans
do not come in plush portraits,

flat, pristine,

on the highly esteemed wall.
Humans come with dimensions, choices.
To be or not to be, as the bard wrote.
To be decent, or not. To be a truthteller

or to wrap difficult questions in a veneer
of uncomfortable smiles. The eye shifts,
the mouth opens, the textbook is closed.

This happened, a brave voice says.
Another says, this is still happening.

Another voice joins the conversation.

Article © JD DeHart. All rights reserved.
Published on 2022-12-05
Image(s) are public domain.
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