On the (Double) Death of Modern America & Hopes for its Future

4 min readMay 18, 2023

Modern America’s first death, its symbolic death, was Nov. 9, 2016, when Trump was elected President. This was when the American system’s terrifying truth, its inherent transgression, exposed and killed itself. Ever since then, America has been slogging along like a zombie (see: Biden).

Indeed, Trump truly “tells it like it is!” and it is his very telling-it-like-it-is, publicly, to the whole World, which put the nail in America’s coffin. Because prior to Trump’s public truth-telling, it was America’s secrets which kept it alive.

Before, there were many secret Trumps, scheming and conniving from the swamp below, not only to control the country, but to keep it afloat. These politicians needed to stay below the surface — if they rose to the top, no one could be blamed for disregarding American Law, and the whole boat would upend. Above the surface, they needed to claim that they were following the Law, that they were beacons of human rights. As long as they claimed such a thing, the people could not be faulted for believing them, even as we — with eyes wide shut — saw the many ways our politicians dove below the surface, schemed and connived and terrorized the World, in order to keep this enterprise going (see: Bush’s furious claim that the USA “does not torture people” while in the same week, he shot down a bill which would enshrine such a statement in Law).

Trump’s election is when the inherent transgression of the modern American system exposed itself (see: Zizek). No Society can survive such a thing. On that day, America “showed its ass” to the World, and in doing so, slashed its own smiling-face image. Ever since then, America — and its zombie-like existence since — has been a terrifying laughing stock for the World.

Ever since then, America has been the living undead, running on air like the cartoon Wile E. Coyote who does not that he has run over the cliff — who only falls when he looks down. Modern America’s second, real death, will be when he looks down.

For its own sake, this cannot come soon enough. The World will suffer until it does. America will be in a state of foolishness, a

“carnivalesque underworld of life ‘between two deaths,’ [where] all rules and responsibilities are suspended, the undead can cast aside all shame, act insanely, and laugh at honesty and justice” (Zizek).

On second thought, perhaps modern America’s first death has yet to come, for Prince Duryodhana’s first death did not come when he ordered the public molestation of his sister-in-law, Draupadi (and thus, made his perversities known to all), but when Draupadi — during her molestation — looked up, and prayed publicly to the Divine Sri Krishna, and thus, supplanted Prince Duryodhana’s Symbolic, worldly Power, by re-opening the space (which Price Duryodhana attempted to claim) for the Ultimate (Divine) Power (see: the Mahabharat).

Rihanna — American Oxygen

So, contrary to popular belief, modern America does not need only to “look up” but after our desperate women have done so in prayer, the rest of us need to look down (perhaps in shame?), and to the sides (see: Adorno), where all the people of the World live and breathe, and touch grass, so that we can finally join the general people as equal partners, rather than as domineering, evil, and self-righteous priests. Modern America’s second death must be real, but it need not be bloody — our Constitution can be the very instrument for our controlled death and beautiful rebirth, for it is truly exceptional, in that it has ‘constitutionalized revolution’ (see: Bruce Ackerman). And indeed, America already has died and reborn three times, all through the Constitution. It is high time for a Fourth Founding (and, be really aware, this won’t happen through the ALEC-Republican’s ploy for a “Convention of the States” — because this Convention seeks to toss out the Constitution, rather than use it).

So, to eat (some of) my words, modern America’s first death may still be yet to come: it will come when the women of America (raped, groomed, and controlled by the politicians of this post-Roe America) pray for salvation publicly, to God rather than the US President or any of his men or allies. These women will guide us to create a New World in which they are protected from the barbarities of men and shielded by God Himself. And hopefully (once we come to our senses), transgender women who know these barbarities all too well, will do our part to usher in this new America (see: my post On the M/F Divide).




@badgaltranny is an artist and lawyer working to wage Art upon Law, so as to transform theatres of law into theatres of the oppressed.