NROP: The Pointy Edge of Protests.

I have written about all sorts of protests in the past.

Just to name a few, in case you felt like checking them out.

So, what prompted me to write yet another one of these posts?

Yet another protest.

Last weekend, a man was shot by the police, which led to protests and riots around Minneapolis.

“No doubt that will transform into nation-wide protests and there will be more than just peaceful marching with signs involved. Am I a pessimist? No, I just observe the past and draw conclusions.”

– Me.

When I first read about the shooting in Minnesota and the protest that followed, I knew I had to write about it. However, since I already had a fully written NROP for last Monday, I decided to keep this draft for the following week. The quote above was written by me in that initial draft, a week ago. Some might think that I am some sort of a prophet, because this weekend, Chicago joined in, after the release of a video of a local police-involved shooting. Some might say that, since it was a different shooting, it does not count. Fine. How about the protest in New York, then? Even Maxine Waters (California’s U.S. Representative) joined in and suggested that people stay on the streets for as long as it took.

“I just observe the past and draw conclusions,” I wrote. I wonder why those who protest do not do the same. They are said to march for what they believe in. (“Said to” because the reality can be a bit muddled.) Kudos to them! Me not joining them does not mean that I am against their agenda. But, wait… What IS their agenda?

Is it to stop Blacks from being shot by the Police?

Or is it to stop cops from being able to kill/ use guns?

Or is it maybe to stop people from dying?

Am I ignorant or are these protesters not the best at communicating their mission and vision statement? You see, depending on what the answer is, there are different solutions that should be implemented in order to actually move things in the right direction.

When we struggle with issues in our personal life, we allow ourselves to whine and wallow in self-pity only for a little bit of time, before being told to suck it up and move on. Sometimes it is appropriate to just leave the past behind and walk into the future, but other times, a solution is needed in order to move forward. You cannot move on without defining the root of the problem and then coming up with a plan on how to fix it/ avoid it in the future. The same is true for bigger issues. So, let us try and tackle the above problems here together.

  1. I am sorry to say that, but, for the time being, people are going to continue on dying. It is not my favorite thing, either. Trust me, I have lost enough people in my life to hate death. Unfortunately, currently, we can only make peace with this and try to live our lives to the fullest before our time comes.
  2. If we disallow cops from using lethal force (like in one of the demilitarized zones in Minneapolis), we will find ourselves among a wild crowd and a lot of chaos. No, humans are not to be trusted. They will not do what is right 100% of the time. More often than not, they will choose something that serves them, rather than what is good for others. What does that mean? It means that we need someone to police us. Kids have parents to keep them in check. Adults have police (and the law, etc.) If we try to remove guns, we risk disarming the good guys and giving an advantage to the bad guys. The black market will always exist. Even more so when something is banned and forbidden. Plus, keep in mind that there are plenty of other things that can be used to harm others.
  3. Finally, if we are trying to keep Black people from being shot by the police, we should ask ourselves why that is. Is that the only race that dies from cops? No? Well, then, why do we not protest when a Latino or a white man gets killed? How is THAT fair?

I do not deny the fact that educating everyone is a good idea. However, I believe that the way we are going about it is extremely backwards. During one of my recent lectures, I heard that if someone says they do not see color they are: a) lying (well, I guess that is true, but it is a figure of speech!) and b) hurtful because they deny the other person’s experience. What? We are said to treat everyone equally but then we also need to recognize everyone’s diversity. Alright… Do you see how complicated that can get?

Would it not be simpler to just treat people as people? Yes, we are all different. Of course! You and I grew up in different households. We were shaped by different generations. Naturally, we all have different points of view based on that.

Yes, I see color (because I am not color blind) but it is a lens that I do not use to look at a picture of you. It is not like you had a choice when selecting your skin color. It does not define you, unless you want it to. What I do judge you on is based on your actions.

Whenever I hear about those protests, I alternate between rolling my eyes and getting angry because I know that this will not lead to a working solution. Time is being wasted, property is being damaged, and people are getting injured. For what? We are numbed to protests. The goal is muddy.

I have said it before and I will say it again – treat people as people. Fighting for a specific group will only deepen the inequity and hate.

P.S. Maxine Waters and her fellow protesters demand justice (i.e. guilty verdict for Chauvin). Since when has the crowd become the judge, jury, and executioner? It reminds me of Biblical times when it was up to the crowd to pick who was going to go free and who was going to be crucified. Thoughts?

Stay golden,

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51 thoughts on “NROP: The Pointy Edge of Protests.

Add yours

  1. If guns weren’t everywhere, the cops wouldn’t have to be so terrified of everyone they stop being armed. It’s really the solution to the problem of cops shooting so many people AND people shooting each other. Only cops should have guns imo. Too impractical to confiscate guns? Then make selling bullets illegal with a mandatory 20 year prison sentence. I think people are protesting because it’s just so horrible that every week we see mass shootings and shootings by cops. Sure, the protests are chaotic and disorganized because people don’t know what to do, but they know this is a horrible situation and they want to speak out but how? It’s easy to walk outside and join a crowd… they also need to vote! Vote to get rid of guns/bullets in the hands of non-LEOs.

    Liked by 5 people

    1. “If guns weren’t everywhere…” I’m all about taking guns away from criminals. How do you propose we do that? If drugs weren’t everywhere… Last time I checked they were banned/ illegal/ only under a prescription and yet so many people fall victim to them.

      Confiscating guns is not impractical. It just won’t solve anything. It might create bigger problems.

      Why are the protesters focusing on cops shooting instead of the criminals having illegal weapons? Why aren’t the crowds insisting on disbanding gangs?

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I suggested it would be more practical to ban bullets. But that won’t happen either. Americans are too obsessed with their guns to allow any of it. Even the mildest restrictions, such as background checks and keeping guns from the mentally ill, are met with huge objections. If you can’t understand why people are protesting police violence toward Blacks, I can’t help you.

        Liked by 2 people

        1. Yes, you did. My reply was in response to a different part of your comment.

          Banning bullets is one a bizarre one. Again – I repeat – how are you going to ban those from criminals? Also, some people manufacture their own, so banning sales wouldn’t change much.

          Some call it obsession, others call it logic and rights.

          Background checks are already in play and mentally ill are not allowed a gun!

          I laid out the reasoning in my post in regards to protests. When interviewed, some of them really have no idea what they are there for other than spewing slogans they are fed. So, one might say that I am trying to help them find their purpose.

          Liked by 1 person

  2. I have read the article many times, but I am still confused.
    1. Does this have anything to do with the Floyd case, or did it just happen in the same neighborhood?

    2. Why did the female police officer even felt the need to use a taser on him?

    3. I saw the speech of his aunt and she made it look like a hate crime. But was it really?

    I don’t think any European will ever understand the US gun culture, so needless to say, I am against guns. I would never feel comfortable knowing my neighbor had a gun.

    And on that note, in Europe we all have more or less the same skintone but not every nationality is treated equally. So if anyone wants to shout “white priveledge”, please make very clear that it excludes Europe.

    Liked by 4 people

    1. 1) No, this is another case that happened in the same state (in/ near Minneapolis).
      2) The guy was stopped because his registration/ license plate was expired. Then, the cops found out that there was an outstanding warrant for his arrest after failing to appear in court on charges that he fled from officers and possessed a gun without a permit during an encounter with Minneapolis police in June.” Then, as they tried to arrest him, the guy got back into his car and tried to flee. The guy was also arrested in December of last year for choking a woman and holding her at gunpoint as he tried to rob her. There’s more. That’s just the basics.
      3) That’s the agenda now, which is sad on a variety of different levels.

      Why would you not feel comfortable with your neighbor having a gun? Would you be worried that it would be discharged by accident or do you associate guns with bad guys?

      Ha! Good point about the European whites.

      Like

      1. I think people can be unpredictable when angry, even those who seem sane.
        Also in moments of despair, I can imagine people using it on themselves.

        In my adult life I have never felt unsafe. So if my neighbors would suddenly purchase a gun, I’d be worried yes.

        I am not sure why criminality is lower in some places than in others.
        Poverty? High tax payment? Race? Density of population? Mindset?

        Liked by 1 person

        1. You bring up some valid arguments.

          But, if your neighbors had a gun and you wouldn’t know about it… you’d still feel safe.

          I think it’s a mix of all of the factors you mentioned and more.

          Like

  3. What would you do, if they kept shooting yours?

    Setting aside the reality that is observable over and over that white people are treated very differently by the police in the US and in other countries (we have similar problems in Canada) than BIPOC, my thoughts:

    1. We aren’t talking about natural death so I don’t get “que sera sera” about it. Yes, people die. But you should be able to go to the store and come home without being terrified that it will lead to violence. White people don’t have to teach their children the same things about the police BIPOC do.

    2. You are extrapolating the US to the world. It isn’t. Your police are trained less and use lethal force more. Your police are more equipped as paramilitary than police. This is shocking for country not in a civil war and not really in an external war. It has a lot to do with money. Defund the police is also the correct solution. This does NOT mean disarm. It means the police are forced to do things they aren’t trained to do because of a lack of funding. Spend the money better.

    3. This statement is really difficult. I don’t want to address it, and isn’t that just screaming white privilege? The answer is institutional racism. Racism is baked into every level in the US. It doesn’t mean all people are racist. It means the system is skewed to the advantage of white people on every level.

    Only white people say they are tired of the fight against racism. It’s like men saying they’re tired about fighting for women’s equality. It’s a luxury women don’t have. It’s a luxury BIPOC have.

    Is it really so shocking that people who aren’t getting justice anywhere else start to call for justice on the street?

    I cannot imagine what it’s like living in the US right now with this hanging over your head all the time. I’m sorry.

    Liked by 4 people

    1. “Shooting yours” I cannot have but stop at this phrase… Mine? Mine what? Sure, I would do plenty of things for those I love but, honestly, I have no particular affection towards people I’ve never met and don’t know. The same applies to all of the races. I don’t think it’s good to think in terms of us vs. them. It segregates people even more. Also, I would like to add that more whites are shot by the police than blacks every year (about double the number.)

      1. Yes, my usage of people dying was a bit out of place but it was simply because I really do care about solving this issue. That’s how I approach any problem – I define it at first and then come up with a plan. It was just me thinking out loud. We should absolutely be able to go to the store and not fear for our lives. Agreed. However, the reality is quite different. Unfortunately, plenty of things can go wrong; including a car crash. I hear this argument a lot about Black kids having to be educated about things that White ones are presumably not. But I think that is highly subjective and depends on the parents and their parenting style a lot. Many whites will attest to being taught to respect authority and do exactly what is asked of them. Hence, when they get stopped by a cop, they respectfully follow orders. (Of course that is not 100% of the time.) It does not matter what your skin color is – cops don’t like it when you are aggressive and don’t cooperate. Also, just because you should be able to walk outside and not have to worry does not mean that girls are not taught to carry keys in their hands, safety alarms, etc. Boys are taught how to fight in case of an altercation. We all prepare for the things that we think might become an issue for us.

      2. I definitely don’t mean to generalize. The US definitely does not equal the rest of the world. However, what makes you say that our police force is trained less than others? Ok, what should they spend more money on and what to spend less money on? I’m a strong believer that most places have room to improve their efficiency optimization. However, I also know what happens when the budget is limited all of a sudden. It leads to panic, detachment, and more.

      3. If we are trying to be inclusive, why are we prioritizing Blacks over Latino and other ethnicities? I wish we would get more of those voices out there. I’ve spoken to some Asian-Americans who felt totally sidelines for ages, learned to adapt to it, and now feel either as not seen/ or abused for a foreign agenda. It’s a difficult topic, no doubt.

      I think the people who are frustrated about this (“fight” against racism) the most are those who truly believe that they themselves work hard every day on seeing people as equals (I can’t even say this in today’s world!).

      Thank you for your participation in this discussion. Stay golden!

      Like

  4. People who grew up in the USA and remember what the Constitution and bill of rights mean, I have to say that I’m more comfortable with everyone in the neighborhood armed. People used to have ethics and taught their children to respect their neighbors and the concept of self-control.

    I wish people would understand that criminals are not going to give up their weapons. When someone breaks into your house and they’re going to kill you, it might take police/sheriff 5 to 15 minutes or more to get to your house. You’re it. You’re all you’ve got to save your entire family.

    People don’t ask what entities will rule our country once it is run into the ground. They don’t asked the glaring question; If there is a one-world government, who will be running the world? When I ask these questions, people’s eyes glaze over and they say, “It will be so much better.”

    I could say more, but you understand.

    Liked by 4 people

    1. “People used to have ethics and taught their children to respect their neighbors and the concept of self-control.” This sentence almost brought me to tears because it is so true. Our values have shifted and I believe that is the root of many problems in today’s world.

      I understand not everyone is comfortable with guns. That’s normal. But to think that by banning guns we won’t have people killed really boggles my mind. Are those people REALLY thinking that or just saying what they think they should?

      Hah. Yes, I understand…

      Liked by 1 person

  5. I’ve maintained for a very long time now that it is impossible to find solutions without first determining what the problem is. Here, you appear to be defending the carrying of guns on the grounds that if you limit them, you restrict the ability of the ‘peace enforcers’ to do their duty. I would argue that the problem is clearly one of poor training of said ‘peace enforcers’, who, while swearing an oath to ‘serve and protect’ seem on far too many occasions to do anything but that.

    I would recommend that you read Filosofa’s recent post on the subject, in which she makes what I believe to be very potent arguments.

    … if we are trying to keep Black people from being shot by the police, we should ask ourselves why that is. Is that the only race that dies from cops? No? Well, then, why do we not protest when a Latino or a white man gets killed?

    In one comment response on that post, she says:

    … while Blacks comprise only 13.4% of the population, 30% of all police killings this year so far have been of Blacks.

    To my mind, that should suffice to answer your question.

    … demand justice (i.e. guilty verdict for Chauvin). Since when has the crowd become the judge, jury, and executioner?

    I fully agree with the maxim that ‘anyone should be innocent until proven guilty,. Video evidence proves that Chauvin is guilty as sin. If he escapes justice, it is just more proof that the system is corrupt and urgently needs to be changed!

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Training is of utmost importance. I cannot stress that enough. You have to train, train some more, and keep training. Absolutely. I did not say that simply having a gun will end the situation in the best way possible. All I am saying is that if a cop is faced with an aggressive person resisting arrest and with a gun, they should be able to protect themselves. They should also be able to protect someone else who is being threatened by lethal force.

      People often use the “protect” part of a cop’s job in a shooting situation in a twisted way. Yes, they are to serve and protect the community they work in. That does not mean they cannot harm anymore. They need to do what they can to protect those who might be in danger from a predator, who forfeits their right to being served and protected.

      When I read your comment about Blacks being being killed at a higher rate, I have admit that it amused me. Not the fact that they are but that this argument is being used. So, you (and the person you quote and many others) are trying to put equity in deaths by police? Of course, I could go into a debate about the criminal world and how racially equal it is, but I choose not to. Instead, I ask that you look at another statistic that tells us that more than half of police shootings involve a white person (the person getting shot, not the cop). It si reported that almost twice as many white people get shot than blacks. (An example source: https://www.washingtonpost.com/graphics/investigations/police-shootings-database/) So, how about that?

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I followed your link. I saw nothing to back up your assertion that ‘almost twice as many white people get shot than blacks’ there. Instead, I saw:

        The rate at which black Americans are killed by police is more than twice as high as the rate for white Americans.

        … which is exactly what Jill Dennison said. Maybe I missed it the statistic to which you refer; if I did, can you point me to exactly where in the article you link to it says what you say it says, please?

        I also saw a telling quote:

        […] reporting by police departments is voluntary and many departments fail to do so.

        It is difficult to make sense of numbers when one doesn’t have the full story.

        Liked by 3 people

        1. Really? Selective reading much? “Although half of the people shot and killed by police are White” is the sentence before the one you quoted and the graph with the numbers (2,886 white vs. 1,507 black) is right underneath…

          Like

          1. I think the one suffering from ‘selective reading’ is yourself. Of course more whites are killed than blacks, because there are more of them. You quote “Although half of the people shot and killed by police are White”… while, earlier, you said “It si [sic] reported that almost twice as many white people get shot than blacks” — which is the same thing, but it reveals that you’re interpreting the data to fit your world view.

            The important point is the one I quoted, and quote again:

            The rate at which black Americans are killed by police is more than twice as high as the rate for white Americans.

            You also said, earlier,

            When I read your comment about Blacks being being killed at a higher rate, I have admit that it amused me.

            I’m saddened that you find this amusing. This is clear evidence of systemic racism, which is the whole point. If you refuse to comprehend the importance of that, we’re at an impasse here.

            Liked by 2 people

            1. The reason why I used “selective reading” is because I shared a website pointing to the fact that more whites are killed than black and you said you did not see that in the article… Glad we got that straightened out.

              So, just because there’s more of something that’s permission for more killing? I didn’t think conservational hunting applied to humans….

              I never denied the “rate” argument. You say that more whites get killed because there’s more of them. If there are more doctors among a certain ethnic group, chances are that that ethnic group will be known for saving lives more than any other group.

              And please don’t take things out of context. Right after I said that I explained that it didn’t amuse me for the reason you think. “Not the fact that they are but that this argument is being used. ”

              I will acknowledge your (yours and others) arguments all day but it rather ticks me off when my arguments are being dismissed. Why? Because it just shows that not everyone is open to reasoning. I ask you – Why don’t we care that twice as many whites are being killed? Why aren’t we taking to the streets when those people die? Why doesn’t the press write about them?

              Like

                    1. “Sad”? Me, too. You seem to think that the fact that more white folks are shot and killed by police in America overrides the fact that the rate at which black Americans are killed by police is more than twice as high as the rate for white Americans.

                      If you can’t distinguish the difference, I feel sorry for you.

                      Liked by 1 person

                    2. No. It does not “override” it. I just wonder why certain people don’t care to even acknowledge the fact that “more white folks are shot and killed!”

                      You basically acknowledged the fact in this comment, but refused to in the previous one. I never refused to see either side. That’s the issue.

                      Like

                    3. No. What’s ‘cold-hearted’ is an entire nation that steadfastly refuses to do anything about implementing what anyone in their right minds would consider sensible gun controls, which is even more peculiar given the incidence of regular assaults on innocent people by insane lunatics who are allowed access to arsenals on the grounds of an archaic ‘right’ to ‘bear arms’ — which was, itself, implemented primarily as a means to protect the (white) people from potential attack by former (black) slaves.

                      … which is, again, another distraction from the original thread here: so, congratulations on achieving that. You have again sidestepped the issue: you refuse to acknowledge the blatantly obvious evidence of endemic racism in US society.

                      Liked by 1 person

                    4. Another issue that we definitely disagree on. You know that not anyone can own a gun, right? There are already laws in place to stop “lunatics.” But, “surprisingly” these folks don’t follow the law. I’m sure one of these days they will change their minds. NOT.

                      Like

                    5. I’m sorry, Goldie. I’ve known you long enough to know you’re not stupid. Unfortunately, the only other option left open to me is to conclude that you’re a racist bigot. Nice knowing you.

                      Liked by 1 person

  6. I’ve always thought that protests were too vague and uncoordinated to achieve whatever they want to achieve. Too often is racial profiling mixed up with police brutality when both aren’t necessarily caused by each other or related, for example. Then again, protests don’t always have a leader who does speeches nowadays either. Maybe they need a new Malcolm X or something…

    Liked by 4 people

    1. You might be onto something here. I think there are many people who are hoping to become the next MLK Jr. but it seems that they command the entire group. I wonder if it’s because too many people want to be in the limelight instead of focusing on the goals of the group.

      Liked by 3 people

      1. Five years ago the Twin Cities Democratic Party machine threw this guy under the bus. This was immediately after he led the most visible BLM protests in the country after the shooting of Philando Castille.

        Maybe this movement doesn’t has leaders because anyone who doesn’t tow the party line is shoved aside?

        https://www.the74million.org/article/in-depth-black-lives-matters-rashad-turner-on-why-hes-quitting-over-charter-school-attacks/

        Liked by 2 people

  7. 1) Well, I’m glad Chauvin was found guilty. I hope that the verdict doesn’t get thrown out due to the political posturing that has occurred ( as the judge has indicated is a distinct possibility.) That doesn’t mean that I approve of the posturing, it just means that I am against murder. 2) The best case scenario from this is that people will begin to trust the fairness of the system a little more, the worst case is that a guilty verdict will act as negative reinforcement, and teach people that if they burn down enough buildings they will get their way. 3) Any politician who supports BLM riots, but voted to impeach Trump over the January 6th riots is full of shit. As I wrote to my Senator, “I will support your efforts to impeach the President if you also vote to impeach yourself.

    Liked by 3 people

  8. I’m against the protests. They use destruction of life and property as a way to register their moral disgust. It’s never okay to kill and loot and burn. Sexual assault is way up, too.

    Defund the police? No, thanks. I’d rather face the cops than armed marauders.

    Liked by 3 people

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