USE SEXISTAN: Letter from Uzbekistan: Democracy and How Islam Karimov Tamed his Daughter

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Guess what Rick: That’s not me! Arslan L

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Dear Rick,

 

I can write you freely now and am perhaps too anxious, but Rick, though I apologize to you for my disconcertainties and contradictions in the past few mails I am sure you understand. But now this is me, the real me, again, your Arslan Levantinov. Let me quickly explain. You see, the succex you brought me brought me (that does not seem the write words) to the great man himself. Yes, that is right, HIS EXCELLENCY Islam Karimov. Islam Karimov. Islam Karimov. (I’m trying to make it bigger, but I’m lost on my new computer.) No jokes. At that point, when I received the invitation to his presidence, I felt myself in conflict. Elation at my elevated status, for he had already as you know promoted me, but this was together with my fear I have no fear of admitting of being boiled alive. Yesterday, much like flesh soup boiling my affairs came to ahead. Called to an audience with the great man himself. Imagine my trepudiation. I stepped baldly into his office. Imagine this greeting: ‘Arslan, what’s the matter with you? Your letter to the American have turned to shit. You aren’t yourself anymore. It’s as if you’re afraid of being discovered writing subversive letters. Are you, Arslan Levantinovich, aftraid of being accused of writing subversive letters?’ How could I lie? ‘Yes. Yes, Excellency, for I have in fact been writing subversive letters. That is the only reason, I swear.’ He laughed—he actually laughed. ‘But, my son, for you are like a son to me, it is impossible. For you to be subversive there must be something to subvert, am I wrong?’ No Excellency. You are right. Interluckily.’ ‘Then listen to me carefully: Only death can subvert my rule. Are you an assassin, Willard? ‘No…(should I tell him I am not even Willard?)’ ‘Then. You see? You are innocent, my son. Permit me to explain something to you. I have modernized my regime. We are now a democracy very closely allied to the most powerful country in the world.’ Here i made the mistake of interrupting. It was involuntary, a subversive—no, a…well, a belch. ‘A democracy, Sir?’ He slammed his hand onto the desk. I was grateful it was not a fist for in such small details a man does decipher the coded signs that dictate life or death. ‘Yes, a democracy!’ He shouted. We hold elections, don’t we? Precisely on the American model. Two parties: may the one with the most money and best voter suppression techniques win. And judging by the results, either party in the United States could take lessons from me. Imagine what it must be like on election day not actually knowing if you will win or not. I can’t imagine. There are many other direct parallels. Take embarrassing family members, like the Bush boys. They all have them. This last one with a wife who has arms like a Greco-Roman wrestler. Who do you think runs the show? And me with my goddamned daughter, my avaricious beauty who had inherited from me everything but tact, subtlety. Hah! Here is something for your friend, that American exile in the land of Melania: Do you know how I finally tamed her? You notice she has behaved properly for nearly two years now? You want to know my secret? They will. And it will help tourism, too. Or have you heard?’ ‘No, Excellency, nothing.’ ‘No? No word on the street? You know now that you can be frank with me, Arslan Levantinovich.’ ‘But it is true, Sir, I have heard nothing.’ ‘All the better: it shall be a revelation. You have of course read the iranian satirist Obeyd e Zakani from the thriteenth century.’ ‘No Excellency.’ ‘Never mind. He was a Persian satirist.’ ‘From the thirteenth century (I wanted to let him know I was paying attention).’ ‘Yes. And he advised Muslims to have anal intercourse with the daughters of their neighbors that the girls’ hymens remain intact, and they thusly remain good and just Muslims. Satire, Arslan Levy, is the recourse of a troubled state. So I called that little bitch, my daughter, into my office, locked the door, pulled up her gown, tore off her thousand euro panties from France, and fucked her right in her ass. Yes, Arslan Levantinovich, it is true. I gave it to her good and long until she promised to behave properly. I remained a good and proper father. And as I said, she has caused no trouble since. So you write that to your friend, for we prosper as a democracy that is also a cauldron of hot and limitless sex, available to any tourist from anywhere in the world.’ No doubt His Excellency has read and approved this sincere and entirely accurate letter by now. So thank you, Rick, and please forgive my injudasish retreat into smudgery. From now on you can expect nothing but but my frank and warm collaboration as first intended, as your people are want to say, going aheadward.

 

All the best,

Your friend,

 

Arslan

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I Have a Dream Speech, a fragment of the lost final draft

 

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Let us take heed of the valley of despair, I say to you today, my friends.

Facing the difficulties of today and tomorrow, I have a dream. It is a dream deeply rooted in the American dream.

I have a dream that one day this nation will rise up and live out the true meaning of its creed: “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all white men are created equal.”

I have a dream that one day on the red hills of Georgia, the sons of former slaves and the sons of former slave owners will be able to celebrate together a collegiate football championship.

I have a dream that one day even the state of Mississippi, a state sweltering with the heat of injustice, sweltering with the heat of oppression, will be transformed into an oasis of elite sport and television sitcoms.

I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character, perhaps it will be Uruguay.

I have a dream today!

I have a dream that one day, down in Alabama, with its vicious racists, with its governor having his lips dripping with the words of “interposition” and “nullification” — one day right there in Alabama little black boys and black girls will be grown and join hands with grown white boys and white girls as jailed and jailors.

I have a dream today!

I have a dream that one day every valley shall be exalted, and every hill and mountain shall be made low, the rough places will be made plain, and the crooked places will be made straight; »and the glory of the Lord shall be revealed and all flesh shall see it together,« whites who own it and blacks who work it for minimum wage.2

This is our best hope, and this is all I can go back to the South with.

With this faith, we will be able to hew out of the mountain of despair a pebble of hope. With this faith, we will be able to transform the jangling discords of our nation into a collection of Coltrane and Monk LPs as our only solace. With this faith, we will be able to work together, to pray together, to struggle together, to go to jail together, to stand up for freedom together, knowing at the last we will remain imprisoned together.

And this will be the day — this will be the day when all of God’s white children will be able to sing with sardonic meaning:

My country ’tis of thee, sweet land of liberty, of thee I sing.

Land where my fathers died, land of the Pilgrim’s pride,

From every mountainside, let freedom ring!

 

And if America is to be a great nation, much must remain true:

And so let freedom ring from the white communities of New Hampshire.

Let free verse songs ring from the black jail cells of New York.

Leave the freaks alone in the blighted Alleghenies of Pennsylvania.

Let free tuition remain for whites only in the universities of Colorado.

Let clubs rain down freely in the hands of the racist cops of California.

 

But not only that:

Let free whites range unbotherd by black folk up that mountain in Georgia.

Let free whites gaze at neoliberal separate ain’t equal in Tennessee.

Let free blacks search every hill and molehill of Mississippi looking for work.

From every mountainside I see the same shit in different caption.

 

And since this is what happens, and when we allow change for the worse, when we imbue every village and every hamlet with yet deeper hatred, in every city’s every black ghetto, we will be able to speed up that day when all of God’s black children, men and women, young and old, will be able to join hands and if we escape this dystopian and doomed nation—because you know the whites ain’t leavin–we may finally sing in the words of the old Negro spiritual:

Free at last! Free at last!

                Thank God Almighty, we are free at last!3