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Published by Pinal Central.
Dear Editor,

 

As the old saying goes two wrongs do not make a right. Nothing excuses the atrocity committed against George Floyd. However, this reprehensible action does not reflect law enforcement as a whole.  This as with all instances of police brutality is a shameful outlier. The situation should be handled with justice served through proper legal recourse.

 

The folks who are frustrated by these occurrences do have a right to express their opinion. The First Amendment of the United States Constitution protects the right to peaceful protest.  What the various protests across the county have devolved into is undefendable. Looting, vandalism, violence, and other varieties of wanton chaos. Most of these reactions are  fueled by visceral outrage. Such reactions are not responsible nor constructive avenues for enacting change.  Destructive actions can only make a bad situation worse. No amount of unfocused retaliation will bring about reform or justice for Mr. Floyd. It will only hurt more people.

 

Continuing this cycle of violence and destruction helps no one. I would urge all demonstrators to emulate the peaceful protests of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and Gandhi. Two of history’s most influential protesters never restored to violence. They both lead the way to genuine reform without compromising on civility . Measured and nonviolent communication carries more weight than reactionary rage.  Both Gandhi and Dr. King were living proof.

7 thoughts on “Letter to the Editor- Coast to Coast Riots

  1. This is a problem that has a LOT going on. Dr. King was murdered, just like John, Robert, to name a few. That’s how our government stops things from moving forward. They just kill the people in their way…send in hired goons to start violence and then blame it on the peace demonstrators, so that people are distracted and think about the violence of the demonstrators instead of the killer cops. I get what you’re saying but it’s unrealistic. Nothing is as it seems and everything is manipulated by the media. They lied about the autopsy report. They lie about everything. Justice does not exist. So when you talk about the justice system, I’m not sure what you mean. The lied about the autopsy report, I repeated it because it’s SO important. Fortunately, the family ordered an independent autopsy which proved he was murdered. So, justice doesn’t exist for an entire group of people. As I said, I’m not sure where you’re from.

    The media is one huge magic trick that plays on fear and is owned by the rich, who only show the masses what they want them to see. So, I’m sorry but Gandhi? India? I don’t think so. I know for sure that he wouldn’t last in Chicago. Times have changed. Nowadays, people like the Dalai Lama hide out in other countries, while his people take the bullets. I realize he represents all they believe in but hey, I thought the captain was supposed to go down with the ship.

    Maybe it’s just me, but then the Buddha deserted his wife and children to walked around collecting male followers, taking some of them away from their families, and pretty much leaving those families to starve to death. The Dalai Lama, a strict vegetarian, who now eats meat, because his doctor’s told him to do so. See, that doesn’t work. No one is perfect, but surely those who represent certain “truths,” shouldn’t do what our government does and that is, “Do as I say, not as I do.” They all cheated on their wives, including Gandhi and King, since they were just like everyone else.

    Chicago is a tough city. As I said, Gandhi wouldn’t last five minutes in certain neighborhoods. Probably because a cop would kill him.

    And no not all police are killers, the guy who murdered George Floyd had 17 black marks on his record. He still had a badge.

    I totally respect your right to dream and even believe that the peaceful demonstrators are actually to blame for what’s happening. It’s just not true. It’s a set up and there are also groups that loot and destroy and they have nothing at all to do with the issue at hand. But the government pays certain people to start violence as well.

    As for two wrongs, things have been wrong since the first white guy set foot on this country, a country that was already occupied by the people…who lived here. This entire country was founded on violence, hatred, murder and slavery. I think you’re just a nice person, who has never been arrested for demonstrating in the streets.

    And people are not “frustrated,” they are filled with RAGE. Another African American man was killed by a cop last night. Frustrated is when you can’t find your car keys. Enraged is when you can’t keep the people you love alive, even when they are just walking to school, or standing on the sidewalk.

    I’m just saying that there are more ways to look at this. The problem is that no one listens to the people who are watching their loved ones brutalized and murdered by the police. The reports lie and the police who kill are not punished for what they do. Everyone is angry that the cops who aided and abetted are still walking around free. They shouldn’t be.

    And one more thing. violence is the language of males. They kill, they rape, beat, and do all sorts of things. For many, it’s the only language they understand. No one has been listening to the cries for help. Maybe they’ll listen to a language more suited to them.

    They lied on the autopsy…I’m saying it again, so that you understand that all the autopsy reports the police filed in the past were probably lies as well. You have to see that. If they were dumb enough to lie on a case this big, you can only imagine how they have not been telling the truth all along. And there is no trust. How can there be?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. You do make a lot of valid points. You are right 200 words is enough to articulate all the intricacies of the situation. That would require an encyclopedia to extensively cover it.

      Yes, multi-faceted issues are not sufficiently answered in a couple of paragraphs. This essay was designed to be a quick appeal to the general public. Considering it was an op-ed piece for a local paper, it needed to be punchy. Which means to a certain extent you are going to have to sacrifice nuance and details.

      Overall, I wanted to persuade others to avoid violence. Why? Our system is corrupt. The institutional flaws in our legal system concentrates privileges towards certain groups. Do these shortcomings justify innocent parties being harmed by the action of rioters? I am talking about civilians! While I would suggest that not all police offices are bad.. even if someone personally has a problem with law enforcement personnel, leave others out of it. There is no reason to be smashing in store fronts. Attacking motorists, etc.

      Yes, the media does distort the facts. This is evident by the fact if you watch CNN and then watch Fox News you are getting two different narratives. To a degree, it is impossible to provide completely objective news accounts. Information operating as input always gets filter by our senses and cognitive processes. Always adding a layer of subjectivity to any description. The ideological incentives to completely skew the facts (on both sides of the aisle) is wrong. News at this point is merely editorializing at this point.

      I am not naive enough to blindly trust the government. I don’t doubt there have been cover-ups among a litany of transgressions. Despite the multitudes of inadequacies in the system. At least we have Due process. You and I can have this discourse without fear of being sent to federal prison. Both do not exist in an autocratic dictatorship without checks or balances.There is justice, it is a matter of degree. Does not mean everything is perfect! We live in surveillance state where our 4th Amendment right is nothing more than punchline. We as a society are still contending with police brutality among other civil liberty violations.

      If you have any inclinations as an activist, take on Qualified Immunity. Start a social media campaign to abolish it. The officer that brutally killed Mr. Floyd should at minimum been fired previous to his death. If not incarcerated. Due to the fact the department of the arresting officer did not detail notes on his previous incidents, we do not know the context. Based upon the video I would surmise that the officer has a proclivity for violence and other psychological issues that should disqualify him from being a law enforcement agent.

      Yes, the system is flawed. In some instances it is unfair. I personally strive for policies that emphasize equality under the law. If applied disproportionately or if used as weapon against minority communities, that needs to stop. I will acknowledged it has been happening for years. A vindictive mob channeling their rage into arson and other destructive activities will not bring about change. Especially, considering the “hardball” rhetoric coming from the White House pertaining to the riots.

      Call me out of touch, or naive. I live by principles and I like to adhere to them.

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  2. I definitely did not mean to call you anything. I was just saying that from here, that’s what I see. Your piece was well written and made valid points. I’m truly sorry if I rambled or insulted you in anyway. That was certainly not my intent. I was just trying to say that the issue is huge and multifaceted. Thank you.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Oh no my apologies. I didn’t think you called me naive. Meant more just in a general/ rhetorical sense. I appreciate your input. I need to stop writing how I speak. A lot of it doesn’t translate well to text.

      Like

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