American Reactions to Revolution 2020
A good part of America is mad as hell and not going to take it anymore and a good part of America couldn’t care less.
That’s not accurate; let me rephrase. The other part of America is mad at hell at the part of America that thinks that America isn’t perfect like it is.
They think protesters are, at best, annoying snowflake leeches and, at worst, criminals who should be executed on the spot in the streets for stealing.
Then vs. Now
It’s amazing to think what the echo chamber of the Internet has done for shoring up people’s resolve in their own infallible opinions. As the article Roaming Charges: Mad Bull Lost Its Way by Jeffrey St. Clair (CounterPunch) points out, it used to be different:
“It’s enough to make one nostalgic for the accidental president himself, LBJ, who, despite his many other grotesque failings, could at least understand the incendiary rage that ignited the riots of ’68:”“What did you expect? I don’t know why we’re surprised. When you put your foot on a man’s neck and hold him down for 300 years, and then you let him up, what’s he going to do? He’s going to knock your block off.”
The level of understanding expressed by LBJ is no longer evident at most levels of government, to say nothing of much of the population. It’s not just compassion and empathy that have left the building, but also any logic, consistency or, God forbid, a need to avoid hypocrisy.
No matter how stupid or illogical or indefensible the viewpoint, it will be defended from all attack. You can no longer convince anyone of anything they don’t already believe. Attempting to do so leads to an ever-more deeply entrenched mindset, like a tick burrowing into its victim.
Police vs. Protesters
The same people who are absolutely comfortable absolving the police in general for the behavior of a “few bad apples” are also able to, in turn, condemn millions of protesters for the behavior of a few “bad apples”.
Those two things easily fit in one head. Those two opinions can easily be espoused nearly in one breath.
Should we not expect the protesters to control themselves? If we’re arguing that police should control their members, then why not expect the same of organizers of protests?
The police are an organized unit who can reasonably be expected to have hierarchy and procedures for responsibility. It is not unreasonable to call them a “system”. The protesters, on the other hand, are ad-hoc and very loosely organized. The individual groups have no control over who shows up or who is a member of any given protest.
It is far less reasonable to expect the protesters to control the actions of all members than to expect the police to have some accountability for its members. The police are a cohesive unit; the protesters are not.
There is another difference as well: police are trained and have the duty to uphold laws and protect citizens. They are exactly the people, however, of whom the least restraint is expected, who are quickly absolved for horrific behavior, often seeing no punishment at all for crimes for which non-police would spend years in jail.
On the other hand, everyday citizens, with no training, are expected to act cooly and calmly in the face of horrifying scenes of violence when they were just exercising their first-amendment right to peaceably assemble, which they almost all do. They are expected to avoid any sudden moves or panic or do anything else untoward that would then earn them a well-deserved shooting from a nervous, terrified, and trigger-happy (albeit ostensibly trained) police officer.
The police also exercise collective punishment, which is illegal in all other forms of combat in the world. If one protester mouths off, they’re all collected, kettled, and arrested. They’re all tear-gassed, they’re all hosed, they’re all shot with rubber bullets, the batons fly more-or-less indiscriminately.
We have overwhelming video evidence by now of how the law acts toward its citizens when push comes to shove. It is not flattering.
There is little to no anarchic or left-wing part of the protest. This is a mainstream protest. You don’t have to be left-wing or an anarchist to welcome change to the brutal, racist, unequal, and cruel system that rules the U.S. It might help to be one of those things, but a healthy, normal dose of compassion and common sense is more than enough to get you on the right side of history.
Fairness & Justice
There is no sense of fairness for some people. They ask why people can’t just protest peacefully when they disparaged peaceful protest on the handful of rare occasions when they acknowledged it at all—to viciously eviscerate Colin Kaepernick, for example.
These are the same people who hear about a prostitute being raped by a cop and wonder what the problem is. She obviously deserved it; she’s a whore.
They do not care about justice or morality. That is the great failing of American society, an utter disregard for ethics and morals. A breathtaking lack of philosophical underpinning. A virulent anti-intellectualism. They pay lip service to goodness, but it’s hollow—they really only look out for their own and fuck everyone else, when it comes right down to it.
It is so twisted that otherwise good people see literally no issue with asking whether George Floyd really was trying to pass off a fake $20. They don’t see that it doesn’t matter. No matter what he did that day, there is no (legal) death sentence for it. They don’t understand how stupid and mean and evil it is to think that way. They never will. Not until something happens directly to them.
And when it does happen directly to them, they’ll go on a jihad that burns undiminished thirty years later. Then they’ll definitely get it—because it’s happening to them. Then it matters more than anything else and anyone who doesn’t think so can go straight to hell.
But when it happens to someone else? Those losers deserved it. That girl who got killed? Wasn’t she on drugs? Wasn’t she a slut? The town mattress? That guy mouthed off to the cops before they beat all the teeth out of his mouth, no? I guess he shouldn’t have mouthed off. I guess he was in the wrong place at the wrong time. The cops sought him out because they were bored? Oh. I guess he should have kept his mouth shut, then.
An 18-year–old girl claims that two police officers raped her. The press coverage focuses nearly exclusively on whether they are legally allowed to obtain consent from a person in their custody in the state in which they work. This is madness. How can police legally have sexual congress with prisoners? How is that a thing? Why are we even discussing whether she gave consent?
Oh, because we don’t know her, so she was probably asking for it. Fuck her, anyway. She should have known better. Probably mouthed off to the cops.
People are passing this thing around on Facebook. I know these people. They would swear up and down that they are not racist, that they have black friends, that they … yada yada yada.
The title is horrific and the article is not fake news, so it easily passes Facebook’s new filters, which might have flagged it.
A cursory search showed the first few links from FOX and The Daily Mail, both obviously unimpeachable sources. There are other links but all of them contain the word “indicted” or “charged” or “alleged” in the title and initial content. I could find nothing about an actual conviction or trial.
Why would it be so far already? Oh, because the article is from October 2018. What was the point of posting it on June 7th, 2020? Why is it suddenly trending to the point that it ended up on even my pathetic Facebook page?
I cannot know, but can only strongly, and with much regret, suspect, that the people reposting this and upvoting it are doing so because it shows that black people are all the same—just irredeemably evil. Look at those two so-and-sos. The posters can’t quite bring themselves to write the n-word (yet), so they pass around a picture with baby rapists on it.
You know what I mean. Nudge. Nudge. Wink. Wink.
I must conclude that the point of posting this in June of 2020 is to say that the protests are bullshit because black people get what they deserve and everyone should just calm down and go home and let the cops do their jobs before more fucking babies get raped.
They can’t say this or write this, but they can post this picture, which more than adequately expresses their opinion that if you think that Black Lives Matter, then you are pro-baby-rape. Simple as that.
“Colin Kaepernick summed it up perfectly when he said, “when civility leads to death, revolting is the only logical reaction.””
Which reminds me that I just watched a documentary about Colin Kaepernick a few days ago. It was on TV. Did you not see it? I think I know why: it’s in German and it was broadcast on Arte in Switzerland. I wonder whether there is even a distribution in the States. It’s called Colin Kaepernick: Amerikanischer Held or “Colin Kaepernick: American Hero”. It’s quite telling that the movie had to be made in Europe.
“This murder seems like the last straw, but is there such a thing as the last straw with racism in America? No matter what we do we find ourselves back at square one, back in the same state of mourning and anger. Racism is a part of America’s identity and it’s impossible to shake it. Emmett Till should have been the last straw, Rodney King should have been the last straw, Amadou Diallo should have been the last straw, Trayvon Martin should have been the last straw, and George Floyd should be the last straw. In reality, this will continue to happen, it’s in America’s DNA.”
None of this is new. I hope something good comes out of the revolutionary attempt this time. It’s hard to imagine that simple reform will do any good, as it will almost certainly be subverted nearly immediately by whatever remains in power.↩
“My classmate was so bored that he’d punch pretty much anyone’s plate into the database. But he devoted special attention to beat-up cars or drivers who looked “out of place” — which typically meant black or brown drivers in predominantly white neighborhoods. […] for the most part, he spent the night driving around aimlessly.
“[…] a colleague of his had pulled over a car for some trivial reason […] and then discovered that the driver was, as I recall, an ex-convict driving with an expired license. The guy (who was white) had gotten out of prison earlier in the week and hadn’t had a chance to renew his license. When he got pulled over, he was driving around with his wife and young kids.
“Not content to leave this poor guy with a warning, the officer who initiated the traffic stop asked him to step out of his car for a conversation. As they were talking, more and more bored cops rolled up, including my classmate.
“Not surprising, the situation kept getting more intense. The guy who had been pulled over looked increasingly stressed as more cops materialized. And the cops responded to his stress with heightened levels of aggression. Eventually the scene came to a boil.
“[…] he wound up face down on the curb, his hands cuffed behind his back. His family looked on screaming and crying as the cops hauled him away. […] because this guy had violated his parole, he would likely do a multi-year stint in prison.
“And that was night: a full shift devoted to manufacturing crime — desperately searching for reasons to pull people over and then harassing people until they snapped.
“In short, nothing he did made anyone safer. He didn’t protect or defend a damn thing, except white supremacy and class domination. His entire shift had been devoted to profiling, harassing, and intimidating people.”
I haven’t even bothered to fact-check this gem from Facebook. It doesn’t matter if any or all of it’s technically true. As Dave Chappelle said: “We didn’t choose him; you did.”
What is the point of posting this? If all of this is true, does it mean that George Floyd got what he deserved? That he should have known better? That trash like him is bound to be taken out at some time? That it’s not a question of if, but when? What is the racist point of the idiots re-posting this? They don’t care. They just seem to be happy he’s dead. One fewer of “them”.