The children of Ronald Reagan raked the leaves off
Your front porch with a machine blowtorch
A memorable line from Section.80 that also is filled with striking imagery and glorious equivocalness.
“Children of Ronald Reagan” refers to Reagan’s policies that were responsible for the deterioration of today’s generation which Kendrick explains in Chapter Six.
A blowtorch is a tool that emits a continuous flame for welding metal. Use of the word machine gives the connotation of a firearm. This line implies the youth today are frail as leaves, easily blown away by gunfire inflicted by their peers.
Furthermore, you refers to all those who are NOT the children of Ronald Reagan, i.e. white America, the middle and upper class, and politicians particularly. The front porch refers to the area just outside the home of these people but still visible from inside.
Metaphorically speaking, this demonstrates the obliviousness of America to the plight of the children, now adults like Kendrick, and the choice of the government to ignore those who live and die in the streets like the leaves that fall from the trees. Their fate has already been sealed as dead leaves, as they have fallen and are left to the mercy of the wind however it should manifest itself.
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