Thoughts after watching the film: Well, I didn't want to stop the tape. I wanted to let the words continue to seep into my skin, the meaning gradually becoming clearer as the events unfolded, slowly transforming into this realization, this realization that was so
real, so true, so right that I couldn't breathe - I was underwater choking, choking on all these facts that were hidden in politicians' back pockets, hidden in newscasters' microphones, hidden between the red and white stripes ... and I remember wishing for a breath of fresh air - the stale air I had gulped before - the stale air stained with lies, smelling of fast-food French fries all the while putting a postcard-perfect picture of middle-class suburbia in the back of my mind ... but that thought was only fleeting and diminished as I allowed my mind to empty everything, for this everything had no meaning now, and to absorb anything, anything, because I had embarked on a new journey, the journey of my life, my journey to find what I think is right - my mind deciding once and for all what to believe and what not to believe, for I was sick - SICK! - of being told what to do by stiffs in suits and I wanted out - OUT! - of this corporate America, this America that consumes and kills and has somehow made that a package deal by adding a bright red ribbon.
Laura Winnick, Hamden, CT
This piece has been published in Teen Ink’s monthly print magazine.