The One Where I Rant For 5 Pages About an 8 Minute Video

header-cover no-hex

this image is to good to be cut off in the header. Its from @JuliaRendleman.

What have we accomplished?

  • Minneapolis is disbanding its incredibly racist police force and are going to be going with a community based model
  • George Floyd's murderer was very quickly arrested
  • George Floyd's murderers accomplices were eventually arrested
  • George Floyd's murderer's sentence was increased to match his crime
  • Michigan politicians have introduced and passed bi partisan legislation calling for additional training around implicit bias, the ban of chokeholds, and other reforms the movement has been calling for.

It's pretty exciting because change is slow, but after 7 years its finally starting to happen.

How are we protesting the death of just one man?

It's not just one man. Just this past couple of weeks its been 3 lives taken by police brutality and racism, and a 4th threatened. And those are just the instances we know of in the past little bit. In addition to the numerous black deaths that have been protested, the BLM movement and organization has also stood up and spoken out for white victims of police brutality, but its not just about race, its about systemic issues in policing.

Captain Dorn, the Pawn Shop Security Man

Holy shit -- I thought he was trying to make the case against BLM when he just perfectly described some of the biggest issues baked within the police force.

George Floyd should not have been killed by the police, full stop.

Captain Dorn should not have been killed by rioters, full stop.

But you can't ignore the fact that cops have been doing this and BLM has been calling it out for the past 7 years and the first time you seem to have a problem with it is when the shoe is on the other foot. The irony of this is insane.

9 people?!?!?

Where in the world is he pulling that stat from? 9 people? That's just bullshit.

Justification -- ~4:00

FUCK ANYONE WHO THINKS KILLING SOMEONE OVER A FAKE $20 BILL IS EVER JUSTIFIED! Figure out how to say this without using fuck. (On second thought... nope)

And lets talk about those shootings being "justified". We have an incredibly long history of cops getting away with this stuff. We keep learning that the cops who are killing unarmed black men and women should not be cops. Numerous violations and other issues have lead to them being fired from other departments, only to end up working at another one. I don't know that there's a large coverup like there was in the cases of the pedophile priests, but it definitely has that kind of feel where people aren't held accountable and instead get shipped off elsewhere to repeat their offenses all over again. Police constantly don't get charged due to police cover ups, bad actors in union leadership, prosecutors that have to work closely with police not wanting to jeopardize that relationship, and most importantly an us vs them mentality where the "good cops" refuse to step up and hold the "bad cops" responsible.

If you have any doubt of that fact, look no further than New York State police this week. Two officers that were a part of the emergency response team shoved a peaceful 75 year old man to the ground where they left him to bleed from the ears and just kept walking. The man was not a physical threat in any way and the police escalated to violence instantly. When those two officers were held accountable for their actions every other officer on that team resigned from that voluntary post. This is simply a culture were any accountability is not welcome, and any attempts are meat with the utmost resistance.

And even in the incredibly rare instances where justice is actually pursued, you quickly run into a justice system that seems to be designed to minimize black and brown voices at every turn, and is incredibly stacked in the police's favor to the detriment of the communities they are supposedly protecting and serving. But we're not even halfway through the video so instead of ranting further read the book The New Jim Crow.

Degranded and animalistic

Wow -- I did not expect such racist language from this guy. But I guess he is a former police officer after all.

But let's quickly dispel the blakc-on-black crime bull shit. First off, this has nothing to do with police brutality, so I'm not even sure why it's being brought up. Wait, yes I do, its a great distraction from people who don't want to actually address systemic racism. But what the hell, since he mentioned it I'll go for it.

Basically all crime is geographically based. Meaning, people aren't going very far to commit crimes. That plays out in a nation with an incredibly recent racist past of doing everything they can to keep black people contained to certain geographic areas, along with the incredibly real white flight, means our nation's housing is incredibly segregated. So, if crime is largely limited to your own geography, and our racist past and current means that we are segregated, then any crime committed by a black person is statistically going to be against a black person, just like crimes committed by a white person are statistically going to be against a white person.

Funny how an attempt to distract from systemic racism actually brings us back to more systemic racism, almost as if we've been deciding not to properly deal with this shit for hundreds of years...

WE AGREE! Hooray! ~4:30

If the only thing you've done is posted a black square, I hope you see that as an entry point, not the finish line.

Shortly Thereafter...

And back to hard disagree. Me recognizing my white privilege doesn't mean I haven't had a hard life, it means the color of my skin isn't one of the things making it hard.

But we do agree that there has been a lot of what's called "performative protesting" and selfies posted to instagram from everyone to see. So, let me say clearly -- ATTENTION FELLOW WHITE PEOPLE, if you are at a protest led by black organization, you are not in control, you are there as support for the black voices. If you are there to prove your "wokeness" with selfies, or to tell other people how to fight for equality, you are in the wrong spot. You are there as an ally, and you follow what the movements leaders tell you. You stay off the frontlines unless there's a call for allies to the front, and if you are not ok with being arrested or tear gassed or beaten or having the fire hoses and the dogs set on you too, then you need to check if you are ready to be an ally to people who are.

Even this post is a little borderline for me. But sometimes white folks need to "collect their own '' because it's not the job of oppressed people to educate their oppressors on their oppression, it's their job to demand justice.

And before you start in on the "but I'm not racist" trip in my mentions...

It's not enough to just be "not racist" when our nation's institutions, and really our entire nation, was founded on the idea of white supremacy and manifest destiny. We have indirectly benefited from systems that treat white as the gold standard and anything else as less than. It's shitty to realize that, and it takes time because it's hard work, but it's true. I, as a white male, have been given lots of benefits of doubt that my non-white brothers and sisters would not receive. And, since my voice at least holds some power (at least in part to that historical system) its up to me to be anti-racist, to speak up for injustice, and to fight for those that have been disadvantaged by the system that has unknowingly and undeservingly advantaged me. To remain silent only enforces an unjust status quo. And, if I am to take my call as a Christian seriously I have to be aware of the fact that the first answer to the question of "What does the Lord require of you" is "to act justly", and silence in the face of injustice isn't acting justly.

Footnote, that specific reference is from Micah 6:8, but I could easily make that argument from nearly any book in the Bible, it's pretty clear about this kind of stuff, and a handful of the numerous colleges I went to were Christian/Bible colleges and I (at least sometimes) paid attention.

Here We Go Again... ~5:48

Oh good lord, here we go again, the consistent berating of the dead. This happens every time. Respectability politics. That's a real thing, you should google it. But here's the thing NONE OF THAT MATTERS! THERE IS NO LAW IN AMERICA THAT IS PUNISHABLE BY PUBLIC EXECUTION WITHOUT DUE PROCESS. Read that again because I'm sick of having to type it every time someone is killed by police and they try to distract from the murder by a public smear campaign against the dead.


So the only way for a black man to succeed is to be the absolute best at what he does and move away from where he grew up? You seem to forget that Jay-Z sold crack and shot his own brother. How are you going to go from shitting on someone for a drug habit to praising someone who started off creating the drug habits? Mediocre white people rise all the time, especially on the backs of rich parents, but his own examples are showing that you have to be the absolute best at whatever it is you are doing to be able to rise up.

While I will fight a whole lot of what Ben Carson says as the head of Housing and Urban Development (how being one of the world's best neurosurgeons qualifies you to head HUD, a position with absolutely no crossover, is still beyond me) you should definitely read up on his story, it is super impressive. But to try and claim that the system wasn't against a black family during the 1950s seems more than just a little ridiculous.

AMEN! 7:53

Amen! We are not wrestling against flesh and blood! The verse mentioned is Ephesians 6:12 (NRSV):

For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.

Ephesian 6:12, NRSC

AMEN! The battle is not against individual people, but against the systems that uphold them, and the evils of racism and white supremacy that are still all to present in our world today. And it's not just about policing, it's about housing, and education, and jobs, and tackling these types of systemic evils wherever they might show their head. This is exactly what the BLM is arguing. It's time for us as one people to stand against the powers of this dark world and act and demand justice. Because it's not a struggle against individuals, but a struggle against rulers, and authorities, and powers that are against the Kingdom of God. A kingdom that we are called to usher in, that we are called to be the hands and feet for, because every week we pray that this kingdom come, and that it be on earth as it is in heaven!

And let's make damn sure that we attack those powers and principalities within the halls of power and authority because as citizens of God's kingdom we act justly! And we love mercy! And we walk humbly with God.

Amen, Amen, Amen! ~8:40ish

OOOOOOoooo I love this! He should have started with this! I'll close my rant response with the same question. What have you done to make this world better? What are you going to do to make it "on earth as it is in heaven"? How are you using your time and talents to address the rulers and authorities and forces that are against the kingdom of God and justice and peace? It's not enough to just be not for the forces of darkness that we see in our world, but we have to engage in the struggle and the wrestling and the hard work to address the systemic issues at work in our world!

header image from @JuliaRendleman, and man do I love it.

Aron Duby

Web Developer Bacon Specialist, Introvert, Zombie Maven, Professional Photo-Bomber, Like Neo from 'The Matrix', but less terrible.