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<nettime> an american activist
Cary Peppermint on Fri, 30 Apr 1999 11:46:29 +0200 (CEST)


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<nettime> an american activist


during the first 24 hours of the nato bombing of yugoslavia, i was sick and
vomiting in my small bathroom in new york.  the diagnosis was food
poisoning.

i am sure there must be gods but, these gods are sleeping and or dead.  i am
sure there must be someone to look up to but, these beings are in the fabric
of memory or entombed within the myth of the dead who can no longer hold
physical agency for their actions.  now is too much "right here".  now is
too much "right now".  now is an hyper-extended orgasm of immediacy that
turns the body inward and onto itself.  america is the grand perpetuator of
such orgasm "right now".   i am an american, thus i have begun to turn
inward and disappear.  i hate myself because i am of this country.  i hate
myself mostly because i cannot find me anywhere.

i cannot attempt to even consider active resistance.  my voice was lost to
the mono-tone of capital and exchange long before i was born.  i think of
the word god and its hebrew translation into "i am".  i think of  "i am" as
"being" and "being" as art.  i think of the christian idea of the fall of
man from paradise as a metaphor of "being" cast into symbol and or object.
i think of heidegger and the "world is darkening".  america is not to blame
for this darkening, only america is the contemporary world re-renowned
professional sycophant of this darkness.

for an american to speak of activism is an american who still dreams.  i
sometimes doubt the sincerity of the american activist.  i have always been
highly sensitive to the political and for better or worse i internalize the
political as personal.

i am a symbolic expression of america.  i have begun to un-dream.

my un-dreaming manifest itself in attempts at validating my presence or in
confirming my last vestiges of power.  while my country  distributes global
insincerity by use of violence as a solution for peace, i attempt to locate
art.  just as each nato bomb is testament to the vain symbolics of a
superpower uncontested and violently seeking confirmation via the crass
binary of war so is it more and more difficult for me to locate art.

when i think people dying "real" deaths (as opposed to my symbolic american
death) under nato bombs or any nationalist mythologies, i become cynical and
at my worst consider these "real deaths" as the last sincere acts of
liberation.  my message to those who are "survivors" would be: "i am an
un-willing model and soon you will become as me; a living death fixed with
paradoxical precision within a system of so many convoluted referentials
each in their monumental fragmentary contributing toward a well culled
exhibit of capitalist hegemony; a mad juncture where noise is perceived as
tone."

[i have been working really hard to make sense of my life and times.  i know
my work means something or rather i know i must be meaningful.  i  have to
be meaningful or else i am nothing and nothing is what is the matter with me
and i am afraid of nothing and when my mom calls and asks whats wrong with
me, i answer (honestly and with a precision which her mind refuses to
calculate), "nothing is wrong with me." ]-  from a conversation with
christina mohammed

cary peppermint
new york 1999


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