Danny Hausenfuss Smith saw someone on Facebook call the President of the United States a halfbreed the other day. Danny couldn’t believe his eyes. The guy sounded like something out of a B Rated Western, from a period of around a hundred and fifty years ago. Breeds? You breed horses, dogs, cats. Not human beings. Besides, he was talking about the President. He’s my President, right or wrong. I don’t care where he’s from or what his racial heritage is. He’s my President.
Seems to me like this guy’s doing a better job than the White Angelo-Saxon Protestant who used to have the job, awhile back. But there’s an awful lot of mud slinging going on in politics these days. He’s a Democrat, so all the Republicans are telling a lot of nasty little lies about him, trying to make the man sound like a monster. But I don’t buy it. I think the man’s alright, myself.
A hundred and fifty years ago, down in the Southwest of this country, there were some of the settlers, down around Texas and whatnot, who referred to mixtures of people between Apaches and Mexicans as being halfbreeds, because they were very dangerous people, who were not loyal to either the Apache or the Mexicans. But you probably wouldn’t hear much of it in a John Wayne movie. Maybe a little bit, but not much.
The other word that gets misused frequently, by the same sort of people is the word, kind. So and so is your kind. It’s a word commonly used in genetics. A kind is a type of creature. One kind is a horse, another is a cow. You can’t breed horses and cows together and get anything. They’re not the same kind. There’s only one mankind. There aren’t certain mankind’s, and other mankind’s on the other hand. That is not making sense in the way of genetics.
I happen to enjoy seeing blonde haired, blue eyed women, about as much as I enjoy seeing a natural redhead with green eyes, a lot of the time. It doesn’t mean that if a woman does not have those features they’re not my kind. Of course they’re my kind. All of mankind is my kind. All it means is that I enjoy seeing that sort of women more than some others. The others still have a right to be alive, though. So, I don’t enjoy seeing them as much. So, what?
This great country of ours has a lot of growing up to do about the racial differences within our population. The slavery economy was against the principles of the constitution in the first place. The slave states tried to secede from the Union in the mid-eighteen hundreds, but the rebellion was put down by Federal Troops. You remember. Abe Lincoln called it the Civil War, which is an oxymoron, in the first place. It’s impossible to be civil with someone and be at war with them, simultaneously.
Racial hatred is unconstitutional. There’s all this racial hatred around this country, and it’s not all coming from the Whites. It’s coming from a lot of the Blacks these days, too. It’s called reverse racism. Either way I look at it, it’s nothing more or less than a type of irrational thinking, and that never got anyone anywhere in life.
Danny Hausenfuss Smith walked down the street, minding his own business. He was a person who had made up his mind he was going places. Danny was a poor boy, who couldn’t afford a car. Heck, he could hardly afford the clothes on his back. Danny was told by some of the other folks in the state hospital, when he was there, that he was just as much a halfbreed as anyone ever is, in this melting pot, tossed salad country of ours. Smith thought about that, and realized it was so.
Sometimes, some of the other halfbreeds on the street would hold him up with a weapon, for the few dollars he happened to have in his pocket at any given time. It used to tick him off, but what could he do? He could make a police report, but then he’d have to go show his face in court to those people. His attackers could memorize what he looked like, and get out of jail to come looking for him later.
It didn’t seem like such a good idea to Danny Hausenfuss Smith.
Danny was no stranger to looking down the business end of a knife or a gun in some stranger’s hand, whenever he was on foot. Guys like that are only practicing a form of free enterprise, willing to buck the system to get whatever they can get, after all. They take the chance of getting caught, and getting taken to jail, and they know it. They aren’t stupid. Danny Hausenfuss Smith knows there are people like that, from being out on the streets, and from being in a state hospital. He knew plenty of them, and all they are is people. Hatred won’t solve the problem. It’ll only perpetuate it.
The only way to get away from the robbers on the streets altogether, is for Smith to be able to drive his own car. There are a lot of dangerous people in the public transportation system. Smith was always looking for some way to have enough means to buy a car. But he couldn’t handle a job in the great American tradition after his first breakdown. Danny wasn’t worthy of that.
He tried doing fast food, but the job only took away his government check. It wasn’t enough money do get anything noticeable done with the little bit of a paycheck he ended up with, either. Danny tried delivering various types of commodities, like flowers and pizza, but once again it was not enough income for him to get a car with it. Danny was a slave to the system.
He tried to break out of the minimum wage bracket, but didn’t have enough experience behind him on a job, by the time he got his Associates Degree when he was in his thirties. Employers don’t want to hear sob stories about what a man used to be, before he became a college grad. All they want is to see a good, strong resume, and Danny Hausenfuss Smith didn’t have one of those.
Danny Hausenfuss Smith was like any halfbreed, according to what the Yo’s, the Blood’s and the Bro’s told him down on the Inside. His mother was Irish and German-American, and his father, Czech and Italian-American. He was just another sort of halfbreed, a mongrel, a mutt. He was an American, like all the rest of them. There aren’t any thorough bred people in America. No royalty.
He had gone to his grandparents houses in his childhood, and was given the same amount of affection as any child ever received from his relatives in this great country of ours. Danny’s blind trust of the American system was clearly derived from his environment, from way back in his childhood. They had always given the kids lessons in freedom at all the schools Danny ever attended, while he was growing up. He learned all the old songs and all the old ways.
He lived in the land of the free and the home of the brave, and you couldn’t get Danny Hausenfuss Smith to listen to anything to the contrary of that. Smith was always interested in the social programs the government had to offer the people, because of his disability. It was his patriotic duty to get plugged into all the social programs of his day and time, when he was in the position he was in. He was unemployable, because of his disability.
But none of that ever added up to Danny Hausenfuss Smith being able to afford a car.
When Danny was young and foolish he had no illusions about the fact that he was different from others. Danny had grown up to learn how to play the system. He got a check from the government, along with public assistance and Medicare on a monthly basis. Danny could have been anyone, the way he was. Never mind his racial heritage. He was an American, do doubt about it.
He had all the usual preconceived notions about what an American is, and how he could never get along anywhere else but in the country of his birth. Smith had a lot of ideas that were passed out wholesale at the schools he attended when he was growing up. Those were the right ideas, too, or the school system couldn’t have taught them. Smith was that much of a patriot.
He’d been to the state hospitals often enough, as a stop-gap for getting his human needs met, in regards to where his disability was concerned. Danny had his various needs he just couldn’t get met any other way. Danny had played the whole system all his young, adult life. He was a player, and it took more than a little bit to get him to give up the game altogether and get sober.
It did happen, though.
The thing was that Danny owed it to the country to buck the system and get as many social services he could possibly manage to get. He listened to Rock ‘n Roll, and heavy metal. He drank American beer, and smoked grass. These things were his Patriotic Duties to perform. When he was out copping some reefer, he kept a watch out for the cops, too. Danny was a rebel, and proud of it.
He’d been diagnosed with schizophrenia when he was a young adult, which made him eligible for everything from food stamps to section eight housing, not to mention housing for the mentally ill. His mother kept him on her major medical insurance the whole way through till the time she passed away. It was a struggle for her, but she was determined to keep him covered. She succeeded as long as she lived. She’d been a Sargent in the military during the great war, and was just as wonderful a lady as any son could ever hope to have as a mother.
Danny’d understood what it was to be a halfbreed. It was an insult.
He was descended from successful people, as much as otherwise. He’d been addicted to enough chemicals in his day. Smith knew what it was to starve and to crave whatever it was he didn’t have at any given moment. He was addicted to what the Bro’s called fogs – cigarettes – for a long time. He was also firmly entrenched in his alcoholic addiction, as well as to his own form of reefer madness.
He was a man who knew what it was to not have enough of anything, and also knew what it was to have plenty. His grandfather Hausenfuss used to take the family to the country club when Danny was little. Danny loved that steamship roast beef at that country club. He figured his grandfather was a rich man, but could hardly believe that the fact had anything to do with him.
When Danny Hausenfuss Smith was at home, visiting his mother one day in his youth, he was told to call a certain bank up North, and ask for a certain man, by name. Smith made the call, told the banker his grandfather Hausenfuss had just died.
Fortunately, Smith was free from his drug use by this time. He was offered a mutual trust, allowing him to be co-trustee to the account. It sounded to Danny like he’d just won the lottery. The first thing he did was go out and buy himself a new car. Have car, will travel. But he found that he spent all of his inheritance on cars and dinners. His aunt noticed he came up broke after a time.
Danny got a girlfriend, whose pedigree was unknown, by the way. She was sorta White, and loved to dance. Danny thought she spent her college money on becoming a dancer. She would dance for Danny on the long term ward at the state hospital, when they’d been living there together.
Now, June was living in a psychiatric halfway house, getting the use of all the social services they had going for them when they were discharged from the state hospital. Danny had bought his way into a furnished, one bedroom apartment for himself. He and June used to go to his apartment and dress up like a couple of bears.
It was fun.
Danny and June used to go to restaurants on a regular basis in Danny’s new car. They’d go riding around everywhere and nowhere, just to be going. They had a good thing going between them. He even bought her a diamond ring once, but that didn’t stop her from doing anything she wanted. He would have married her, but she was unreliable.
He caught her making out with a Mexican guy once, and with a Black guy another time. It wasn’t worth the aggravation. She ended up giving the ring back and going her own way. Danny didn’t try to stop her from going, either. He didn’t want that kind of a mongrel around him, after all.