When the dystopia comes, it will be so soft that we will barely even feel it. Soldiers on street corners. And then wearing masks, to preserve order. Riots in cities we do not live in. Explosions that happen every now and again. ID Cards. Great long highways from bedroom suburbs to central business districts that stretch over long endless slums to which there are no off-ramps to, and no on-ramps from. Raids against immigrants, that incarcerate and then imprison, and then deport. Stories of other immigrants, drowning off the coast of America while the Coast Guard stands by or maybe picks them up and interns them at the old base in Cuba where we once kept our terrorists, before those were sent somewhere else unknown, maybe Alaska. The demographic shift has been stopped.
As the years go by, it gets dark and darker. But still the touch is soft. The roll of Presidents blends into each other — boring men who tall of personal responsibility and the dignity of hardship and the still greatness of America. Landscaped walls now around their private enclaves.
The old are sent to hospitals, cheaper and older hospitals, where they are reviewed, and given pills and sent on their way. The lucky move in with their children. Others are taken in to nursing homes, where they are ill-cared for.
Jobs are scarce. The military is always hiring, and there will always be a war somewhere. Others make do where they can. Living with relatives or friends. Tinkers fixing old cars. Or temporary work answering phones from home, or offices lit by flickering old fluorescent lights and dusty yellowed white walls. Buses are crowded, and infrequently come. Cops are seen sometime when something has happened. But otherwise their presence is light. It is easy to to find drugs, though not inexpensive.
Health clinics are crowded, staffed by nurses, who give flu shots mostly. Most people avoid it, knowing that if they have some true illness, they will not be saved.