Tuesday, May 9, 2017

Sleepers


            No, the world did not end. The world did not perish by some nuclear catastrophe. Aliens never invaded to enslave us or to liberate us from ourselves. The world did not run out of its natural resources. There were no chain reactions that sparked world wide lootings. The world did not die. It kept spinning, thriving, striving to some future that was just around the corner. No, the world did not end; it became omnipotent.
            Change started small. Little by little, laws began to restrict basic rights. Freedom became regulated, freedom to bare arms and of speech were sought as weapons against the nation. We were to be governed under the watchful eye of the government as a means to combat terrorist. To keep us safe from future attacks that still caused fatal casualties. The media never mentioned any objections towards the restrictions, they praised them. We were to abide, no questions asked.
            And why ask? Such an inquiry can and will get you blacklisted. No one dare to question the authority, no one. If they say jump, we say how high. We don’t ask, we just do as we are told. How is that not the norm? Is it not the authority that keep us protected? Do they not keep supply and demand in rotation? Without the government, how are we to remain civilized? These were just a few questions I never cared to speak out loud or get answered.
            I did not care for much, nor needed much or said much. I, like many before me, live a simple life in a simple home and work a simple job. I have never met someone with less than me or more than me. We, as a collective consciousness, have everything the other has. No one is special, gifted or talented. We are one of the same, masters of all trade. We wake, we work, we sleep. That is our cycle, our scheduled way of life.
            “Rise!” The sirens banged as the clock tower struck six. Thousands emerged from their beds, half dead asleep. Hoards of bicyclists and motorists polluted the roads as they scurried to their work stations. Everyone had a duty, everyone had a purpose. How else would one expect to get by? At eight in the morning, everyone had clocked in. Obediently, they sat in their cubical and did as they were told.
            Work kept everyone busy, occupied. Management shepherded the assembly line. If anyone skipped a beat or slacked off, they would know. Work prevented people from questioning. Work numbed us to submission. If everyone is too busy working, no one would revolt. No one would ask the right question or form a militia to overthrow the corrupted. We were too entertained with work that we did not notice our freedom be stripped away, little by little. Our only freedom was thinking we had it in the first place.
            With taxes soaring, work was our only savior from debt. Without work, the government would enlist you to their FEMMA camps. We are told the camps are for those unable to work but others tell a different story. Others say the camps are unholy. The camps shelter the undesirables, the criminals and the disable. Some say you are never heard from again once you get enlisted. Torture doesn’t even begin to describe the kinds of acts that have occurred within the camps. One would be so lucky never to fully know.
            Personally, I have never seen the camps. I have only heard of stories and rumors but never witnessed the place first hand. It is they though, the people who spread such a conspiracy, who are never seen from again. No one question where they went or what caused them to disappear in such a manner. No one files them as missing or ask their family or inner circle of their whereabouts. No one really care to ask or wonder. We simply do as we are told. You have to if you want to live. We wake, we work, we sleep. Simple.
            Simple gets you by. Being ordinary is considered dangerous. Simple, on the other hand, lets you survive. You live without fear, without a target on your back. You live without a constant reminder that you are being watched. You get to make it to 60 and if you are lucky maybe even more. If you strive for plain you get more out of life. Most aim for simple because simple doesn’t raise suspicion.
            The only way to get by in life is to keep your head down, work, sleep and do as you are told. If you start to ask why, if the thought just so much as crosses your mind for a split second, they will know. You will be reported and you will be accommodated. That is the law that keep us loyal to one another. We, as a collective consciousness, rely on every citizen to maintain the law and keep order. Only enemies question the law.
            That is why they are a threat to our constitution. They seek to weaken our allegiance to our nation. To restrict basic rights our founding fathers fought to establish. Because of them, millions get deported. Hard working innocent laborers, an asset to our dollar, burn out because we focus on targeting people instead. But you will never hear me say that to anyone. Not even to myself.
            Yes, our system is flawed. As an active Law Enforcement agent, I do my best to not ask questions. No questions that will get me blacklisted that is. Detaining people of interest is one thing but people who simply came here for what little opportunities Merka has to offer is another. Either way, I don’t ask nor care to. Only the criminals get punished, the rest get lost in the system. That is how things go.
            Detaining people felt more like a chore than a duty. Normally, my squad detain about half a dozen people every three hours. Today, we only caught about a hand full. Delta Unit took our detainees to get searched and interrogated. Today’s litter were a textbook profile case, undocumented workers. Most would find themselves back in their country, the good ones would get passed around for a while. It wasn’t my job to know.
            “You sitting alone again during Orientation Hour, Wiccans?” I heard someone ask me while I changed. “You can always join us at our table. It is not allowed but it is also not enforced.” I politely declined hoping to fly under the radar. “Suit yourself comrade.” Kuh patted me on the shoulder as he left. Alone, I changed back into my civilian uniform and clocked out. I was greeted by the same people on my way out.
            They never seem to show any sign of life behind their eyes. They just stare at me with blank expressions and a dough-eyed gaze. They are almost robotic in nature. They don’t think on their own. They don’t act on their own. They are perfect in every way. They don’t ask questions or do as they please. They strive to please others, to please the law. That is all one lives for above all. There is a name for people like them, sheeple.
            “Bye,” I called to the receptionist as I made my way outside, “See you first thing in the morning.” She waved instinctively with an almost forced smile. Her eyes read panic but her smile read content. She held her blank expression until she was the last to leave. Everyone wore the same almost forced smile with a slight of panic in their eyes. Most of the time they seemed to be not all there.
            I skipped Orientation Hour because they preach nothing we already know. It is important to make an appearance every week to stay low key. Today, I made an exception. I just wanted to be left alone. To pour out all my thoughts into paper before I get them electrocuted out of me. I wanted to not think for a second. To forget where I am and the position we as a society have found ourselves in. I just wanted to be left alone where things always seem to be right.
            A knock brought me back to reality as I lay flat on my bed. My one bedroom apartment was plain and simple. I did not give my home life with color or murals. I simply hung the picture of me in my uniform, a picture of my family and nothing else. It is what everyone does when you live alone. I recycle paper, keep my home decent but above all I keep my head down. On occasion, I would mingle with the neighbors but nothing special. No one did anything special unless they were permitted to.
            Kuh and his friends stood outside my apartment, extending an invitation to Orientation. “As a friend, I wouldn’t want people to get the wrong idea.” He began as I let them in. “People talk, it is what we have to do. I heard someone down in Records speak ill of you.” Kuh made his way around the living room, examining the books I have acquired. “But I straightened things out. You don’t want to get blacklisted, especially in our field of work.”
            Regretfully, he was right. I had no choice but to attend Orientation Hour. Fortunately for me, I had someone to back me up. Once people start to talk about you, the government starts to listen. The slightest suspicion of originality or look can get you in the blacklist radar. Anything you do that seems out of the ordinary can make you a target, a person of interest. There is no going back once you have been listed.
            Kuh was friends with everyone. He knew everything that went on behind closed doors because his grandfather nearly became Merka’s 50th president. That kind of recognition will get you a permanent seat with world leaders. A position his family have kept for generations now. Kuh was never a politician, that was his brother. Kuh was more of a jar head, a soldier. He enjoyed, craved, raiding places; anything to fire and shoot. He was my backup.
            “Heard some kid was planning on hacking every news station and proclaim some kind of brainwashing conspiracy.” Kuh stated once we made it to the gathering. Orientation Hour is where we are told what to think. There, we are told who the enemy is and what we must do to protect ourselves. They all end with handing your life over to the government. “Thought he was going to execute this today. Which is why I wanted you here, Wiccans.”
            Thirty minutes in and still the screen before us blabbered on about how weak we, the people, are without the government. “The thing is almost done and nothing.” Kuh exhaled. “What a shame. I was expecting some kind of exhilarating judgment. I don’t know, something different. These conspiracies all sound the same to me.” Kuh turned to me once we were alone, “I wanted you here because I wanted to tell you something.” His proclamation startled me.
            “I’m all ears brother.” I replied, unsure of what to expect.
            “The thing is,” Kuh hesitated, “I can tell you bite your tongue in fear of raising suspicion.” He was right. “I can tell it is easy for you to not ask questions because you know what happens to people who ask questions. You may not have witnessed it yourself but you have heard of such a thing.” Its almost as if he were reading my mind. “I can tell this about you, Wiccans, because I myself struggle to speak up. How can anyone speak up?”
            I remained silent. I did not know if he were leading me to a trap or to reassure me that I am not alone. “People have spoken up, that is the thing Wiccans. People have been objecting since our government began to regulate our rights. Only, they were never stopped. People protested, people gathered and marched. They called their representatives, they made inquiries. They signed petitions, people played by the book. They did everything but prevent their officials from getting away with it.”
            “We find ourselves in this predicament because the people did everything but raid their capital.” Kuh looked around to see if anyone was near. “Anyone who protested, who raised awareness, who made inquiries were targeted. They were sought out and silenced. They were sent to the FEMMA camps. I know because I read the files. When my father’s father ran for president, we were given access to information kept suppressed to the people.”
            “The government is the terrorist.” Kuh stated, “My family knew this and did nothing but what was instructed them to do. We were told from the beginning if we went public no one would believe us. No one would believe because there are people who are told to spread false accusations to discredit anything you might say against the government. They even gave us a file of people who tried to go public before. They were all silenced.”
            “Why share this with me?” I questioned, puzzled.
            “Because you are the only I know who can be numb to this kind of oppression.” Kuh answered. “They can tell you that the president and his secret service raped and killed a little girl and you would simply bat an eye. It’s not as easy for me to turn the other cheek. It may be for you, but not for me. You are the only one I know who still think for themselve but somehow go undetected.”
            “How do you do it?” Kuh finished. “How do you allow yourself to be governed in such a way that you can’t even think for yourself?” I was interrupted before I could answer. Kuh was too stressed to even fathom such a reality. “Things can not go on like this. We can not be governed by restrictions, by terrorist. We can not be sleeping anymore, not when they have holocaust the world. We must wake-up, we must take action.” I was afraid he would say that.
            Like clockwork, Law Enforcement appeared out of thin air armed and loaded. Kuh protested his arrest as he ran throughout the park. I was in no obligation to detain him for I was not clocked in. I, like many before me, simply stopped and stared as we watched an enemy of the state be brought to justice. “You are all damned!” Kuh shouted as he was struck down. “You are all too late!”
            As loud as Kuh could shout, no one cared to listen. A swarm of agents silenced him as they took him away. In broad daylight, we were told the truth. We were told to give up for our cause was futile. They had won and we had to surrender. Kuh struggled to free himself as he plead for help. He screamed, he yelled until his lungs gave out. No one bothered to listen. No one bothered to care.

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