Saturday, June 6, 2020

These Colors Run Dead

There is a style of flag in the U.S. that is pattered on the American flag, but is entirely black and while save to a blue band running in the middle were it should be white. A more extreme variant has it in a Punisher skull (like in the Marvel comics). This flag is called the "Blue Lives Matter" flag to most, and "The Thin Blue Line" flag to those who wave it. The idea is that the "thin blue line" is the barrier between "Order" (good, law-abiding citizens) and "Chaos" (deviant criminals and anarchists) and that law enforcement protects "Order" from "Chaos". But that is bullshit!

For one, law enforcement is the "Order"! They are its agents of enforcement. And for another, freedom — true freedom; the type Conservatives clam they want and Libertarians are more honest about — is inherently chaotic. More over, the Punisher skull variant undermines this, as it is naked display authority without justice. Cops who spot this would be less subtle with a Judge Dredd badge or if they pack Dirty Harry's Smith & Wesson .44 Magnum like they want the world to know that they are packing a baby-dick. Law enforcement idealizing a psycho who'll shoot a jaywalker is comically on the nose.

What that flag is about is just fascism, plan is simple. It is about the police-state. It is about subjugation of "The Other". It is about enabling corruption by those in power. It is about maintaining a system even when it is broken. It is the banner of the Evil Empire!

There is a reason why people are risking COVID-19 in protest. There is a reason why the burning of the Third Precinct police station in Minneapolis was a good thing. For too long, the police suffer from the "If Your Only Tool Is a Hammer Then Every Problem Looks Like a Nail" dilemma with their training. They are too reliant on firearm training and lack de-escalation skills. Are are also no better than a gang. The police culture — an informal wall of silence among members of law enforcement — is more in keeping to frat boys and organized crime, which puts the welfare of the so-called "bad apples" above any semblance of justice, with "bad apples" being a comical euphemism used by police agencies to dismiss individuals who were caught, despite them being the products of law enforcement training (no to mention the fact that the full statement is "one bad apple spoils the whole bunch", which is appropriate but always with a dumb sense of irony).

I grew-up knowing how useless the police are when you live in a "red-lined" neighborhood. I grew-up seeing how the police behave when they think know one is looking. I grew-up knowing the actions law enforcement takes when someone crosses them. I grew-up knowing that the wife and kids of a cop have no were to turn to if they are abused by him, nor can they ever escape. I grew-up hearing that the legal system dont give a damn about rape-victims how cops who rape can just get away with it. And due to all that, I grew-up with not respect for authority or the system.

Until they get their shit together the social contract is broken. Their badge — their authority — is meaningless. The scale and the gavel is broken. People should see them no better than another street gang (black people been doing that forever) and we should fight to keep our streets safe. This is nothing new in the US. In the '60s, The Black Panther Moment formed to deal with racist cops. People forget that the most successful insurrection in the United States was the Battle of Athens in 1946, and that involved a shootout with over two-hundred Sharif Deputies (who were in a prison house rigging a local election) loosing to scores of armed WWII veterans. (I don't think gun-rights activists ever bring this event up, ever. Even though is about good-guys-with-guns fighting tyranny and winning. Its like they don't want to alienate their blue-lives supporters.) I'm not saying that people should embrace mindless mayhem and lawlessness, nor am I saying that we should kill cops (I mean, outside of self-defense). No, we can do better! If there is going to be stability, there needs to be accountability as well as better methods of peacekeeping, and the only way to get there is to dismantle the system and makes something better, even it its from the ground-up.
Until then...

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