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a peaceful protest

I was 16, and the thought of being forced to mention God as part of the pledge of allegiance was too hypocritical an act for me to play along with. Each day of high school began with this mundane recitation, as most people just stood with their hand jutting from a hip, the other dangling across their chest as they counted out the seconds until they could sit back down. They leaned against desks, and talked through it about what party and where it would be, if there would be a keg or a bonfire in the woods. I recited the words, omitting the "under God" part as a sort of half-baked protest. I was raised to flaunt my family's ramshackle atheism, as a choice of smug pride. We knew better, was the prevailing logic.

But one day, I could not stand and say any of it. It felt so rote, so hollow, so devoid of choice. There was no law that said I was required to say it. I knew this was my right, a form of free speech. My homeroom teacher was a legendary drinker, a trash-talking re…

the forbidden zone


I cannot tell you, and you must not ask. There are words that cannot be said, even quietly. To be speak freely, so many still take this for granted. I do not.

There are vast expanses of life I cannot discuss anywhere. All too much like the forbidden zone in the original planet of the apes. Too many secrets are buried there, beneath the sand.

No hero will come on a dark horse, bucking convention, flaunting the warnings. because this is not a movie.


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