Unplanned pregnancies, justices of the peace, sans shoes
The instructions that came with this incarnation aren’t easy to decipher. One sentence can take years, even decades, to figure out — and even then I can’t be certain I’ve got it right.
The illegal we do immediately. The unconstitutional takes a little longer.
One Patriot Acts
Daniel Ellsberg’s Crusade Against The Abuse Of Presidential Power, From Nixon To Bush
There were times during the Vietnam War when I feared that if the escalation went on and domestic resistance grew, our system of government would move toward a totalitarian state. The FBI was abusing its power. The CIA was illegally spying against domestic “enemies.” There was a tremendous amount of wiretapping going on.
At Hell’s Gate
A Soldier’s Journey From War To Peace
I remember the day I left for my military service. My father drove me to the bus station in Erie, Pennsylvania. I had a Boy Scout suitcase with my name written on it in black Magic Marker. My father bought me a ticket and left me there to wait for the bus. No goodbye hug, no handshake, no parting words.
When I was fifteen, my father nailed my bedroom window shut to keep me from running off in the night. Almost forty years later, my sisters and I had to put him in a home with door alarms and special window locks to keep him in. Like me, he took off anyway.
The Beauty Of Second Avenue
The foyer was home to my mother’s books but a place of exile for my brother and me. Around the time I was eleven and he seven, my mother began banishing us, singly, to the foyer without dinner in fits of unpredictable, unfathomable rage.
I first smoked in the spring of 1970, when I was sixteen years old. I found a pack of cigarettes in the hallway of my high school, the Bronx High School of Science. It was a box of Marlboros. I hesitated for a moment, then reached for it. The pack was more than half full.
What The Dead Know
It began in the hospitals with what seemed to be an epidemic of miracles. The most recently dead came back first. People whose heartbeats had just flat-lined a second earlier suddenly sat upright on their gurneys and beds and looked into the confused faces of those around them.