November 24, 2014

It’s not as though the lack of an indictment was any kind of surprise. It’s sad that Bob McCullough couldn’t reconcile his conflicting allegiances, but hardly surprising. Prosecutors & cops are two sides of the same coin.

I look forward to reading the book[s] that will emerge from the 4700 pages of grand jury testimony released tonight, though.

I have successfully insulated myself, social-media-wise, such that I don’t have any friends in any of my various timelines making racist remarks – instead I follow folks like @YesYoureRacist on Twitter, who takes care of injecting that stuff from any of an infinite number of highly racist strangers.

It’s sad to see Barack Obama’s limits exposed – the limits of his ability to speak out as president, even one in his second term. Or the limits of any black American who is part of the power structure to speak out. Or the limits of his own empathy, as someone who is no longer young, no longer poor, no longer close to the streets.

People (mostly people in power) want to call for calm, for peaceful non-violent protest. They choose to ignore the fact that it has consistently been the police bringing the violence to the people. 

As tragic and uncontrolled and, yes, short-sighted as they are, though, rioting, burning & looting have their place. They send the message to property owners that the mere fact of their property ownership aligns them with the police & the capitalist power structure, against the workers, against the people, particularly the people who have nothing.

Listen to the rhetoric in the mainstream news, or on White Twitter. The consistent underlying theme is that property trumps human life, and specifically that any threat to property is de facto justification for taking human life.

This is how it has always been, ever since private property was invented. It’s certainly the story of America from the very first moment any European set foot here.

So horribly apt, then, to be writing this a couple of days before Thanksgiving, that most American of holidays, when we ostensibly commemorate the native peoples’ willingness to share what they had with the Pilgrims. A favor that wasn’t exactly reciprocated.

November 24, 2014

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