Nothing encapsulates the government’s priorities in America right now like the supreme court’s two most recent decisions. They struck down tougher gun regs in the wake of multiple mass shootings (the worst of which involved yet another elementary school massacre) and in the same week overturned a woman’s right to choose whether or not to carry a pregnancy to term.
I’ve carried and born a child, (sick as hell the whole pregnancy, with my health in peril. I chose it then, but I wouldn’t again; it was that bad) and I’ve lost a pregnancy, and no one but me knows what that was like for me. One was my choice, the other wasn’t. And it should never be anyone’s decision but mine. Women are not brood mares and we shouldn’t be penalized for daring to have sex. Birth control fails. What happens after that is no one’s goddamn business but mine.
Let me also say, I am a gun owner. I believe in the basic right to bear arms, but I believe it should come with restrictions and responsibilities to our fellow citizens, especially our children.
Right. But that’s too much to ask the government, particularly the Republicans pandering to the 2A nuts. Interestingly enough, the venn diagram of people who believe women should be forced to carry a pregnancy to term and people who believe in unfettered access to whatever firearms their little brains desire is damn near a complete circle. So now they will force us to have babies because “life”, so we can send them to school to get shot, because “gun rights”. You can tell exactly where the sanctity of life ends for Republicans. Fuck each and every one of you that voted in a way that allowed this to happen. I don’t care if you’re family or friends. Don’t @ me. I don’t want to hear it.
I’m not possessed of all the information that the jurors will be possessed of regarding the Kyle Rittenhouse trial. That said, I still can’t believe that there are people that are supporting this kid. This is not about the right to bear arms. It’s already established by law that he does not have that right, being under 18. (1) The fact that the judge tossed it out over a loophole about barrel size (2) seems ridiculous given the circumstances, specifically his going out of his way to look for trouble across state lines. A person doesn’t open carry an AR-15 if they’re not trying to make some sort of statement. He wanted his gun to be seen, and he wanted to intimidate people.
A lot of people keep trying to say this isn’t about race because the victims were white. Firstly let’s be clear, they were victims (although the judge in his infinite wisdom made the obviously biased decision to not allow them to be referred to as such, but to allow them to be referred to by such inflammatory terms as “looters” and “rioters.” I guess innocent until proven guilty doesn’t apply to protesters.) Second of all, they were BLM protesters, gathering in the wake of the Jacob Blake shooting. So that automatically takes them out of “victim” status according to a lot of these gun nuts. You don’t have to take my word for it, all you have to do is find any social media page where there are “discussions” being held about Black Lives Matter. Make no mistake, a these people support Kyle Rittenhouse because they are against BLM. No other reason. A lot of the more vocal people on the right automatically paint all BLM protesters (the majority of which are actually peaceful,) as scum, regardless of what goes on at the rally. Seriously imagine this kid was at a Kenny Chesney concert, or for that matter if the roles were reversed and he had gone across state lines with a firearm he had no right to have in his possession, looking for trouble at a alt right or Trump rally. He’d be crucified by these same people tripping over themselves to defend Kyle Rittenhouse. JS.
I’m sick of the state of this country, I’m sick of all the hate, but most of all I’m sick of the deliberate ignorance, the deliberate refusal to see the casual and systemic racism in this country simply because it paints an ugly picture, or it doesn’t affect you personally. People like this juxtapose the “I don’t see race” card with things like “heritage not hate,” and then practically froth at the mouth to keep that “heritage” and its long reaching consequences from being taught as critical race theory in schools. Well, guess what, if you want to “celebrate” your heritage, you have to acknowledge the ugly side of it. You don’t get to have it both ways.
I need to write…but I can’t. Why is this so hard. My OCD is ratcheted way up; I’ve been struggling with resurgence of strength of symptoms for a few years now. I guess the Zoloft’s efficacy was waning so gradually I didn’t realize what was happening at first. I thought it was just like stress…namely Trump’s disastrous election to office, and all the accompanying fact deficient bullshit it’s emboldened. Existential stress over climate change and Congress’s inaction. And then the Covid pandemic that, much as some would like to pretend otherwise, is STILL going on, and is quite serious. Worries about my daughter’s safety in a red state, the majority of whose politicians and residents have bucked every safety, mask, and vaccine mandate, whenever possible, despite their relatives and friend dying in record numbers. Money woes, because it feels like one step forward, two steps back so much of the time. When I finally accepted that it wasn’t getting better, I started working with a new doctor to change medications and get me back to an “even” keel. Anyone who has been treated long term for anxiety is probably familiar with the ebbs and flows of these particular afflictions. And the rollercoaster that is “Med changes.”
See, this isn’t what I intended to write about. It just seemed worth mentioning that I’ve already been struggling a bit with my own personal demons. I’m not trying to whine, because I don’t need validation. I’m just setting up the background, so to speak. Because I’ve been feeling ill in one way or another for at least three months. UTI. Sinus infection. Something that feels like GERD or an ulcer, for the past month and a half that persists despite RX strength medical intervention. The chest pain was such that I would have thought it was my heart (heart issues are a family legacy and thus always in the back of my mind whenever I get chest pain) if not for the belching that accompanied it so frequently.
And then about three weeks ago my mother committed suicide. It’s hard to write about, and not just because it’s still fresh. There’s a stigma to suicide. It’s not something you tell everyone, and naturally people’s first response when you mention your mother has “passed” is condolences. Well meant and appreciated, but also uncomfortable, because you want to explain to them, yes it sucks, but it sucks even more than they realize, because of HOW she went…what she did to herself. But that’s not something you just blurt out to anybody. It’s “private.” Both because society says it’s “supposed” to be, and because you’re still trying to convince yourself it happened some days. Sometimes multiple times in the same day. You say it in your head over and over again, trying to wrap your mind around it. “My mother killed herself.” And then when you do tell someone the quiet part, the “taboo” secret, the next predictable reaction is an uncomfortable sympathy that comes with an implicit idea that she was just another victim of suicidal depression. And she was. But…but they don’t know about the manipulation and the lashing out, the years and years you’ve suffered as a result of her mental issues, all while still trying to manage your own shit. They don’t know that her final act seemed not just one of desperation but one of vindictiveness, and it breaks your heart. And you feel guilty telling them anything about that, because it feels like badmouthing. It feels like “speaking ill of the dead.” But it’s just the truth.
“Were you close?” What difference does it make? My mother killed herself. Besides, how do I answer that. We talked all the time. We also argued all the time. I worried about her. I needed “breaks” from her. I tried to help her, but she couldn’t help herself. “Why?” Why does anybody do this sort of thing? Why are you asking me???
“It’s not your fault.” No it’s not. Intellectually I know it. Emotionally I’m still not sure how much that matters.
How much information is too much? What’s mine to keep and mine to give away (because I have to have respect for my sister’s privacy as well as mine?) Then there’s the constant push and pull of me grilling myself over what my motivations are for talking about this. I don’t want to be one of those people that talks about things for attention. And I don’t want to be the gossipy topic of other people’s discussions either, but still that mantra in my head “My mother killed herself” and some times it feels like it’s screaming to get out.
And when it’s complicated with family drama and bad feelings, then you get to hear other people (namely other family members) opinions about “why” they think it happened, and who they blame. I try to remind myself they are also grieving, but then I get pissed. She was MY MOTHER. I lived with her for almost twenty years before moving out. And even when they manage not to piss me off, I feel like I have to console their grief as well. And it’s exhausting. I want to be selfish. The only person I don’t seem to mind “consoling” and commiserating with is my sister. And she’s the only relative whose opinion I care to hear about Mom’s death, because she’s been through the shit with me. We aren’t close, but she knows all the facts leading up to Mom’s death, the good, bad, and the ugly. And some of it was really ugly. But I can’t talk about that yet.
We still haven’t had a memorial, because the funeral home is so backed up with COVID deaths that her ashes will take some time to process. And when I do have to go “home” for the service, it’s entirely possible I’ll lose my shit on the next relative that gives me an unsolicited opinion about my mother’s death.
Aside from any attending guilt over my mothers suicide, I also have this guilt about not doing things. Not using my talents. Not writing. Not drawing. But the anxiety I feel when I think about starting a new writing or art project is immobilizing. I have even stopped taking clients (dog training) for an indefinite period of time. Sometimes I feel immobilized by choices, caught between two choices. Even simple ones. Which show to watch. Should I write about this? What to title it. Sometimes I just force myself to make a choice. That’s why the title of this post is “I Don’t Know”. Because I fucking don’t, but I know if I just sit here worrying over a title, I’ll never write the post. I know some of this is a symptom of my anxiety disorder. The indecision. The anxiety about decisions. That’s normal, but lately I’m in a fairly constant state of low grade anxiety. It’s always there, thrumming in my body like a low note plucked on a string instrument, or an electric current through powerlines. Sometimes I just force myself to make a choice and I tell myself it doesn’t matter which choice I make, as long as I make one. I can’t sit here immobilized forever.
Apparently the right’s big strategy for the 2024 election is going to be Dr Seuss, Mr Potato Head, and voter suppression. The worst part is, lately people are simple and petty enough that it might work.Now I’m seeing conservatives post things about Aunt Jemima and how “liberal bedwetters” are taking away her legacy or something because product packaging is changing. Tell me a single conservative knew a god DAMNED thing about this woman or gave a damn about her until, the company decided to take her face off the product. The story about the Aunt Jemima character is mostly fiction, by the way. Now that they can use it as something to piss and moan and blame liberals about, suddenly they care about this long dead, black woman’s legacy? All the while still making excuses for why it’s not a problem black people are still getting shot by cops every other week. This whole thing is getting ridiculous, but the WORST part of this whole thing is watching these whiny ass Republicans that have been canceling people who didn’t toe their line for years, but suddenly have a problem with cancel culture when it suits their need to fire up their base. Remember when Sinead O’Connor got canceled because she ripped up a Bible on stage? Remember the Dixie Chicks got a little too political and the Republicans made sure they got canceled too.But apparently canceling people for making racist remarks or getting caught having been sexually inappropriate to somebody is too much for them. Remember Kaepernick? I know you remember him because half of you were bitching and moaning about it yourselves, like him kneeling for the national anthem was the literal end of the world, and worth ruining his whole career over. But now y’all are butt hurt about cancel culture? I say this with every fiber of my soul, and without a shred of doubt…go fuck yourself.
These two cats are roughly the same age. The only difference I know of is that the big 15 pound hoss on the left was found when he was about eight weeks old, (a month after the little 9 pound guy on the right, who was an itty bitty four or so weeks old when we found him in our bushes.) So when we found Walnut, Momo was already eight weeks old and they were roughly the same size. There are a lot of unfixed cats, with new litters every year. I can think of two homes right now the road that seem to have new kittens every year, so it’s not even out of the realm of possibility that they are related, since I found them both in spitting distance from my home.
I suspect despite my best efforts with the kitten replacement milk, that those four weeks are a huge part of the reason for their size difference. 💜 I just hope Momo didn’t suffer any developmental issues with his organs. Heart problems are already very common in cats, and is what took at least two of my last the kitties. As any cat lover can attest to, loving cats is a crapshoot. You never know how long you have with them. Not three months before we found the first of the kittens, we had adopted Newt from our local shelter, through Petsense. Initially she was sweet but very…bitey. Easily overstimulated. My poor kid was in tears because she got mauled every time she tried to love the cat. But when Momo came to live with us, that changed a lot. Newt took to “motherhood” with gusto, alternately grooming the little guy and kicking the crap out of him, and Walnut fit right into the little family when he came along. It was like suddenly, she had a place for all her…excess energy. They all love one another.
And the really cool thing about these cats is they each seen to have at least part of the personality of our last three. Walnut is the most like my beloved Methos. He’s big and pushy, super loveable, and delightfully weird. He’s figured out how to work the ice dispenser on the fridge and he plays fetch with the ice. Momo is my standoffish, skittish little puker, like our Bengal, Chloe, was. We had her nine years, from the time she was 3 years old, and she only really started to chill out enough to seek out our company in the last 3 years of her life (she’d had a rough start to life, passing between several owners, one of which had declawed her, to my horror). And much to my constant irritation, she was forever looking for the most inconvenient place to puke…like the Playstation for example. And Newt, the oldest, the one adopted from our local Petsense, is the most like Evangeline, my first cat as an adult living on my own. I lovingly refer to her as “my old lady cat.” You know, grouchy but dignified and generally loveable. Each of these new cats have brought joy to our lives, and having then around has been like having a little bit of our dearly departed kitties still in our daily lives. Sometimes I say it’s like we got the same three cats, only reincarnated. I’m half joking but it’s a comforting thought. Either way, I love them for both who they are and who they might be.
So I just came off a three day ban for this post. Facebook called it “hate speech”. oh the irony, that one of the very people that I was talking about in the post, privileged people that complain about cancel culture whenever other people are caught being racist or sexist or otherwise inappropriate,( you know the same ones that call everyone else snowflakes) was probably who reported me for this post. So they were trying to cancel my post about cancel culture? 🤣 That part’s kind of funny, but what really pisses me off is that for the last four and a half years Facebook has made money off of allowing White supremacists and ALT right news to proliferate on their site. They’ve done fuck all to curb it, or the blatant racism feed lies these groups espouse, and in the past have allowed that outright violent rape threats did NOT violate their TOS (I know this from personal experience, and I know other women who have experienced the same) and they’re part of the reason we ended up with Trump in office. Now-NOW -they’re trying to shut the Barn door after the horses are already out, and they’re censoring people for mild shit like this if some butthurt snowflake reports it. Convenient FB should cover their asses now by stifling people like me, who actually demand culpability for hate speech from those who defend it by making excuses like ” cancel culture.” My best guess is because my post said “white” people, although I don’t consider holding a demographic responsible for their privilege the same as hate speech; it’s just a fact that Cis white people have privilege in America that people of color and other minorities don’t, so what others view as consequences, people of privilege view as “political correctness” or “cancel culture.” It’s a refrain that I, as a privileged white person myself, I’m tired of hearing, so I know that other people born with less privilege have to be tired of hearing it too. For my part, I’m going to keep trying to be an ally to the marginalized and use my own privilege for any good I can, and I’m thinking to try to be humble when someone calls me on my own unintended slights. In sorry, I am going to keep being my loud, outspoken, pain in the ass self, Facebook mods be damned.
Edit: 3/23 My friend had an anti- Nazi post banned because it drew uncomfortable parallels to modern white supremacy. Let that sink in. An ANTI Nazi / white supremacy post got him in trouble with fb mods
TW: This article refers to discussions and allegations of sexual abuse
Given my love of Marilyn Manson, which I’m sure I’ve expressed at some point on this blog over the years, I thought I’d make a short statement, forever whoever cares to read it. An open letter, if you will. I don’t intend to speak on the specific allegations themselves. The details are out there for anyone who wants to dig them up, but I did want to briefly address my own feelings on the topic.
I used to LOVE Manson when I was younger. Still love his older music. Portrait of an American family and Antichrist Superstar were a huge part of the soundtrack of my formative years. So I can’t tell you how disappointed I am since I learned of all these allegations. He definitely has had his “extreme” moments in the past, some of which you might have seen if you had ever watched the video from the Dead to the World tour, or read his supposed biography The Long Hard Road out of Hell. Reading that, it was clear he himself had endured his own trauma and abuse as a kid. Once he broke into more mainstream notice, his music was raw and angry, his persona seemingly carefully cultivated to antagonize the status quo. But I always defended him to my parents, and his other detractors, as an intelligent, evocative, but generally misunderstood artist. Maybe he used to be. Now it seems he’s just the garden variety dirtbag everyone always thought he was, and that fucking sucks.
Obviously most of my sympathies are saved for the women that had to endure any abuse at his hands, but I’d be lying if I said I didn’t feel sorry for fans like myself, because his music meant a lot to us. After all, how can you identify with someone railing against the status quo, when they just end up being another abuser and oppressor themselves? Some of us are completely able to compartmentalize and separate an artist from their art, but for many of us, we feel like we get to know a piece of that person and we identify not just with their message, but with the feeling that they’re saying it out of a sense of genuineness. In short, we have someone to commiserate with, someone with a real voice, whom we feel understands what we’re feeling inside as well. This news and these allegations chip away at that feeling of genuineness that Manson had.
I’ve also read interviews with Trent Reznor regarding Manson. Reznor produced/worked on some of Manson’s earlier albums, Portrait of an American Family, and Antichrist Superstar. He said that at the time Manson was not like this, but was rather very driven, and once described Manson as “the smartest person in the room”, but that later on he became a “malicious guy who would step on anyone’s face” to get ahead, and that drugs and alcohol had turned him into a ” dopey clown.” Reznor himself cut ties with Manson some 20 years ago. Given the conflicting stories of people that have dated him and worked with him, I’m inclined to think that the fame that he worked so hard for, coupled with the drug and alcohol abuse, corrupted him and brought out his darker tendencies. It’s really a shame, honestly. But it’s even more sad for the women that had the unfortunate luck to be in his path of destruction.
Some of Manson’s exes, most notably Dita Von Teese and Rose McGowan, have come out with statements in support of the victims, but have also denied that Manson was ever abusive during their relationships. They acknowledge that has no bearing on the abuse allegations, but rather were attempting to assuage their own fans’ concerns for their well-being.
My hope for the people that have been affected by his behavior is that they find peace and healing and that Manson faces some accountability, whether it’s personal or legal. My hope for Manson himself is that he has a personal reckoning, and not only realizes that his behavior in the past decade has cheapened his once important message, but that he needs counseling to find himself again. I further hope he does the right thing, sacks up, and take responsibility for whatever he’s done, and that he finds it in himself to seek forgiveness and make amends to those people that he hurt.
And just in case it’s still not clear throughout this whole article, I stand with Evan Rachel Wood. I believe women. I just wanted to address my own personal feelings on the matter, as irrelevant as they may in the grand scheme of things, because I know that there’s got to be other people feeling the same thing- the disappointment- and acknowledge the fact that scandals like this by influential celebrities and artists have far-reaching consequences, as Manson’s finding out now after losing all of his contracts and gigs.
Since the writing of this post I have read further accounts of alleged misconduct; that’s really not even strong enough a word, but again, I don’t intend to go into details here, because the allegations themselves aren’t really what I’m trying to convey. What I read dated back to incidents in 1995 and potentially occurred with minors. I am so disappointed and so disgusted. He has apparently always been a damaged person, which is really not so surprising given his lyrical content, however, I used to believe his turmoil was expressed THROUGH his music. Obviously given the breadth and variety of types of music, I would never say you could judge a musician solely by lyrical content. I have heard people make remarks regarding Manson’s victims like, “What did they expect, if they ever listened to his music?” Aside from being a particularly shitty example of victim blaming, it’s a ridiculous fallacy. Lyrics are expressive, sometimes literal, but more often hyperbolic. Manson’s lyrics were often very evocative and definitely hyperbolic, but they also betrayed truths about him. More than once, he made not so oblique references to childhood trauma he had suffered.
“Toys all smell like children And the scab-knees will obey I’ll have to kneel on broomsticks Just to make it go away,” Kinderfeld, Marilyn Manson
These lyrics were a direct reference to the punishment he often incurred from his grandparents if he broke any rules.
I don’t bring this up to defend him or in any way excuse what he did. My only point is there is often symbolism in music and listeners can never be sure whether they are hearing a evocative symbol used to express a theme (heartache, betrayal, pain, etc) or an actual event.
Regardless, I feel silly saying this but I’ll say it anyway because I know in my heart I am not the only person who feels this way. I am mourning my loss of who I thought he was, of the extremely nostalgic emotions his music evokes for me, of his decency. Mostly I am afraid I will never be able to fully enjoy his music again. Maybe that sounds selfish in light of what his victims have gone through but I’m not the kind of person who feels like painful experiences are a competition. I don’t see anything wrong with acknowledging the effect music, and by extension musicians, have on some people. People have long mourned deeply the loss of musicians that meant a lot to them, even the flawed ones (and some were more flawed than a lot of people realized.) John Lennon, Patsy Cline, Janis Joplin, Kurt Cobain, David Bowie, and far far too many more to mention. Obviously I’m not mourning a literal death, but it’s still a loss. Even if it’s just the loss of enjoyment of the music of one artist, it feels a little like I lost a piece of my past.
I feel lighter than I have in…four years. And I’m trying to be ready to just dismiss all the conspiracy theorist, Cult 45 nutbags, and stop allowing them to bait me, to stop trying engage them with logic they clearly don’t care about. Because for the next four years at least, I no longer HAVE to acknowledge them. They can scream their displeasure into the void for all I care. That said…
I keep seeing comments and posts from conservatives, Trumpers specifically, talking about all the awful hateful things they hope for Biden voters now, how they hope we lose our pensions or our homes, or whatever, now that Biden’s in office. These are the same people that expected us to accept Trump as president. They spent four years calling us snowflakes, libtards, and saying fuck our feelings. But as shortly as a few days, ago after the attack at the Capitol, many of them were calling for unity, and yet now I’ve already seen the phrase “not my president” in regards to Biden. The thing about Biden is, you don’t have to like him, but he’s not going to waste 4 years of his presidency trying to only help himself, trying to rile up his base, or pad his pockets and the pockets of his lobbyist friends. Biden’s going to implement programs that are going to benefit the environment, education, international policy, and everybody, Democrat and Republican alike, and try to undo some of the damage Trump has done to our country and its reputation in the world stage. But the fact that there is so many supposedly grown ass self-proclaimed Christian adults walking around telling people that they wish bad things for them is disgusting, and it’s ubiquitous. I’ll admit, I initially felt that way when Trump got elected. I was angry, but NOT because he was a Republican. It was his character, or lack thereof, because I knew what it would mean for the US, specifically minorities, if he got elected. And here four years later we’re ALL reaping what Trump voters sowed.
But honestly, I’m just glad that he’s finally gone, and I want all of us to move forward and benefit from Biden’s tenure. The worst part is no matter what good Biden does in office, these people will never see it, because they’ve never been capable of admitting the damage that Trump did. You know what I wish? Now the only people I wish to suffer for what happened the last four years are Trump and his predatory enablers in Congress. And what I want for them is ACCOUNTABILITY with the law, in full view of the public. I want accountability for the media that fed lies that encouraged and resulted in the capital insurrection. Finally I suggest if you have any friends that are saying hateful things like this that you reevaluate your friendship with them, because clearly they’re bitter and mean spirited. It’s highly probable that after they cool off in a few weeks or months they might go back to being the semi-normal people you thought you knew and they’ll try to downplay their role in this divisiveness. I can’t speak for you but while I won’t say I wish them hardship, I sure as shit am not going to forget how they acted, and what they allowed to happen.
*Edit: I have nothing but respect for people who can grow and learn and realize when they’ve made a mistake. For anybody looking to leave hate and extremism behind, here’s a resource a friend shared with me.
Sorry I’ve been AFK for so long. The past four years with President Dumpster Fire, and all the increased loud mouth, fact-denying bullshit that has come with it has been pretty overwhelming for me, and being a clinically anxious person already, sometimes my thoughts are just too chaotic to try to sift through. But I do want to put this out there. I do want to be one more person who says that, unequivocally, black lives matter.
￼ Or we get justifications and excuses that protesters were in a gated community, or on private streets. I even had one person defend these numbskulls by claiming “they didn’t know their (the protesters) ‘intentions.'” Well, shit. I don’t know the intentions of half the people who walk down my street, but I don’t wave my gun at them. (And if I feared for my safety, the first thing I’d do is get my ass inside and call the police. )
When POC are involved, the same apologists and defenders of crazy white people usually offer something like, “he should have followed rules.” And “blue lives” don’t seem to matter as much when angry white men are being categorically disrespectful and aggressive to police. Let’s be real. You’re lying to me and yourself if you claim black men could have gotten away with a display such as the one seen in the Michigan capitol.
Now, before anyone gets pissy, let me state, in case it is ambiguous for some, or you are tempted to build a strawman argument, I am NOT saying Blue Lives don’t matter. But no one is BORN “blue.” Conversely, black people, especially men, are unfairly profiled and targeted for simply being the color they were born. Citing such tidbits as “more white people are killed by police than black people,” is simply a diversion, a statistic without context*, when you consider two facts;
1) Police are using lethal force in situations where it is not called for, nor necessary. I don’t give a shit if he stole something, or has outstanding warrants. That man was not threatening him, he was fleeing, and aside from the fact that bystanders also were in peril, no one deserves to be shot at for shoplifting. If you think that’s okay, you need Jesus or therapy or something, and you are part of the problem.
2) It is clear to anyone paying attention to multiple news sources (not just Faux news or even one single left -leaning media outlet,) that different unspoken rules seem to apply to whites and POC, not only in how they are approached by police, but how they are reported in the media. Often black victims of police violence are shown in mugshots to engender mistrust and a feeling that “he deserved it” because he was a “criminal.” Again, I ask, when did it become the police’s job to execute suspects without benefit of trial for petty shit?
Again refer back to the couple who waved their guns around outside their home in St. Louis. This was after the mayor doxxed BLM protesters online. So we can’t overlook the media’s role, particluarly right wing media, in attempting to paint all protesters as terrorists. In point of fact, the male lawyer in the above video link, seen clutching his rifle like a security blankie, claimed he was the victim here (naturally), having been harassed and “assaulted,” although I have seen zero footage to corroborate an assault, and the couple didn’t seem fearful to me, so much as belligerent. To be clear, I don’t care that the protesters were in a gated community. Civil disobedience has always been a party of peaceful protest. The lawyers could have called the police for trespassers, and had the protesters come into their yard or attempted to damage their home, then I would say they had every right to try to scare them off. But in the videos and photos I* saw, it was the home owners who looked combative and aggressive. I don’t even care that according to the Missouri law, these people may have been within their “rights.” (And nevermind neither of them look like they know how to handle their firearms, which is a whole different mess of bullshit in America).When did it become okay for citizens or police resort to resort to lethal force FIRST?!
Now let me drop some context for those aforementioned stats on you.*
Government officials, academic researchers and media outlets launched data-collection projects around that time to better understand the frequency of police violence and the risk factors that contribute to it. From these growing data sets come some disturbing findings. About 1,000 civilians are killed each year by law-enforcement officers in the United States. By one estimate, Black men are 2.5 times more likely than white men to be killed by police during their lifetime1. And in another study, Black people who were fatally shot by police seemed to be twice as likely as white people to be unarmed2. (source) <—–(additional sources in the article)
Don’t worry, I’m just about done here. AT this point, many people have dug in their heels, and no amount of facts will dissuade or persuade them. And that’s unfortunate…and frustrating. Because much like Covid -19 is surging here in the US because we can’t all get on the same page about, you know, demonstrable science, and reasonable precautions, (not to mention the value of individual lives when balanced with our economy-and I can’t believe I even have to type that shit,) people will keep dying until we institute change.
If you want to help but don’t know how, even something as simple as using your own privilege to speak out. Call out your friends and family when they try to lay the usual bullshit excuses on you. Having privilege does NOT make us, as white people, bad. That’s not what privilege means, nor does it mean we’ve had an easy life. It just means our lives haven’t been made harder by our skin color. Use your privilege to help instead of hinder.
“We get dirty looks for wearing our red hats in public…waahhhhh!” (originally a typo had that saying “red hates,” instead of hats, and maybe I should have left it because it was ALSO accurate.)
“Liberals are so judgmental! Waaaaaahhh!”
“No one wants to be our friend! Waaaah”
In essence, the people who coined the term “snowflake” are, not surprisingly, the worst snowflakes of all. They want, demand, their “freedom” to refuse service to gays, refuse help to refugees, force prayer in schools, deny certain healthcare to women, and the list goes on. But then, when people don’t want to associate with them, because these things, these “opinions,” are abhorrent to us, they cry about how judgmental liberals are.
Here’s another common claim that gets bandied about:
Because they believe they have the right to vote YOUR rights away and still call you “friend.” After all, they are “entitled” to their opinion.
But thankfully, there are plenty of people with common sense who realize, yes, you ARE entitled to your opinion…and we’re entitled to think your opinion makes you look like an asshole. Now reap the consequences. And they fixed the meme for us.
Before I go, because this could get extensive if I let it, let me just say one more thing. Before the rise of Trumpism, never have I EVER cut ties with someone over who they voted for. I hated Mitt Romney (who would have guessed he’d be the only Republican with sack enough to vote FOR conviction in Trumps’s impeachment, and I’m sure he had his reasons,) but I never argued with friends or family who voted for him. I never “unfriended” Bush supporters. But this is NOT politics as usual. This is hate and lies allowed to permeate our daily existence. Support of Trump IS support of belligerent defense of ignorance and hate, of bullying, of corruption and obstruction, and deliberate attempts to grind minorities under a white jack boot. And if you support that, I don’t support you. IF that hurts your feelings, own it. You chose it, and by refusing to speak out for what’s right, you choose it every day. Don’t give me some bullshit about Obama or Hillary. Nothing excuses what is happening now. Whether you are full on drinking the kool-aid and support racist policies and OBVIOUS, pathological lying, or are simply okay with these things “because the economy,” own your choice and own its consequences.
To break it down as simply as I know how, if you supported a President Puppy Kicker, liberals would be perfectly within our rights to say, “That’s fucked up. Go play in traffic,” and probably no one would bat an eye. But refugees and the poor are accorded less grace by Trumpers than furry animals, so there’s that. I wonder now though if Trump claimed to kick puppies, how many of his supporters would say “But the economy is so ‘good’ and it serves the puppy right for coming here anyhow.”
Stop deluding yourself that he cares about farmers, the working class, the veterans. He doesn’t. Because even IF Trump were boosting the economy, (and when all things are considered, he is most definitely not helping anyone but the already rich and powerful, while his supporters cheer him on like THEY won the lottery) NOTHING excuses how he behaves. And NOTHING excuses lying, cheating, and stealing, and hurting others to get what you want. I thought that was something all our parents taught us as children. I’ll even bet most of us teach THEIR kids this, (Republicans included, while voting out the other side of their mouths.) It’s a shame so many people have chosen to forget.
But some of us remember, and if we don’t want to be your friend because you don’t, go cry to someone else. And die mad about it.