Digby's Hullabaloo
2801 Ocean Park Blvd.
Box 157
Santa Monica, Ca 90405

Facebook: Digby Parton

@BloggersRUs (Tom Sullivan)

thedigbyblog at gmail
satniteflix at gmail
publius.gaius at gmail
tpostsully at gmail
Spockosbrain at gmail
Richardein at me.com


Mother Jones
Raw Story
Huffington Post
Crooks and Liars
American Prospect
New Republic

Denofcinema.com: Saturday Night at the Movies by Dennis Hartley review archive

January 2003 February 2003 March 2003 April 2003 May 2003 June 2003 July 2003 August 2003 September 2003 October 2003 November 2003 December 2003 January 2004 February 2004 March 2004 April 2004 May 2004 June 2004 July 2004 August 2004 September 2004 October 2004 November 2004 December 2004 January 2005 February 2005 March 2005 April 2005 May 2005 June 2005 July 2005 August 2005 September 2005 October 2005 November 2005 December 2005 January 2006 February 2006 March 2006 April 2006 May 2006 June 2006 July 2006 August 2006 September 2006 October 2006 November 2006 December 2006 January 2007 February 2007 March 2007 April 2007 May 2007 June 2007 July 2007 August 2007 September 2007 October 2007 November 2007 December 2007 January 2008 February 2008 March 2008 April 2008 May 2008 June 2008 July 2008 August 2008 September 2008 October 2008 November 2008 December 2008 January 2009 February 2009 March 2009 April 2009 May 2009 June 2009 July 2009 August 2009 September 2009 October 2009 November 2009 December 2009 January 2010 February 2010 March 2010 April 2010 May 2010 June 2010 July 2010 August 2010 September 2010 October 2010 November 2010 December 2010 January 2011 February 2011 March 2011 April 2011 May 2011 June 2011 July 2011 August 2011 September 2011 October 2011 November 2011 December 2011 January 2012 February 2012 March 2012 April 2012 May 2012 June 2012 July 2012 August 2012 September 2012 October 2012 November 2012 December 2012 January 2013 February 2013 March 2013 April 2013 May 2013 June 2013 July 2013 August 2013 September 2013 October 2013 November 2013 December 2013 January 2014 February 2014 March 2014 April 2014 May 2014 June 2014 July 2014 August 2014 September 2014 October 2014 November 2014 December 2014 January 2015 February 2015 March 2015 April 2015 May 2015 June 2015 July 2015 August 2015 September 2015 October 2015 November 2015 December 2015 January 2016 February 2016 March 2016 April 2016 May 2016 June 2016 July 2016 August 2016 September 2016 October 2016 November 2016 December 2016 January 2017 February 2017 March 2017 April 2017 May 2017 June 2017 July 2017 August 2017 September 2017 October 2017 November 2017 December 2017 January 2018 February 2018 March 2018 April 2018 May 2018 June 2018 July 2018 August 2018 September 2018 October 2018 November 2018 December 2018 January 2019 February 2019 March 2019 April 2019 May 2019 June 2019 July 2019 August 2019


This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?


Sunday, July 14, 2013

The lessons learned

by digby

There’s fear that the verdict will embolden vigilantes but that need not be the concern: History has already done that. You need not recall specifics of everything that has transpired in Florida over the past two hundred years to recognize this. The details of Rosewood, the black town terrorized and burned to the ground in 1923, and of Groveland and the black men falsely accused of rape and murdered there in 1949, can remain obscure and retain sway over our present concerns. Names—like Claude Neal, lynched in 1934, and Harry and Harriette Moore, N.A.A.C.P. organizers in Mims County, killed by a firebomb in 1951—can be overlooked. What cannot be forgotten, however, is that there were no consequences for those actions.

Perhaps history does not repeat itself exactly, but it is certainly prone to extended paraphrases. Long before the jury announced its decision, many people had seen what the outcome would be, had known it would be a strange echo of the words Zimmerman uttered that rainy night in central Florida: they always get away.
And this:
Tonight a Florida man’s acquittal for hunting and killing a black teenager who was armed with only a bag of candy serves as a Rorschach test for the American public. For conservatives, it’s a triumph of permissive gun laws and a victory over the liberal media, which had been unfairly rooting for the dead kid all along. For liberals, it's a tragic and glaring example of the gaps that plague our criminal justice system. For people of color, it’s a vivid reminder that we must always be deferential to white people, or face the very real chance of getting killed...
Those are lessons learned long ago by African Americans and their racist white fellow citizens. I guess it's the rest of us who are continuously under the misapprehension that it has ever changed.

From reading the right wing commentators and bloggers this morning I see the lesson learned is that it's perfectly reasonable to conceal a loaded gun on their person, stalk/provoke/fight someone and then kill them with impunity if the state cannot prove that the person did not "look suspicious" and that the perpetrator didn't feel scared because of it. They aren't granting that this is only operative if the dead person isn't white. (Otherwise, one would have to keep an open mind about those circumstances.) But it's obvious.

This is filed under our new American credo --- "Protect Us At All Costs!" Americans are so frightened of everything, even 17 year old kids with nothing more than skittles and tea in their hands,  that they must "protect" themselves from all threats by any means necessary. The government police apparatus may be vast, extremely powerful and growing exponentially, but even that is not enough. In places like Florida they empower citizens to carry concealed weapons to "protect" us as well.

For me, the lesson (aside from the deeply depressing racial one) is that this culture is deteriorating at the hands of a small group of gun fetishists who insist that we must have a society where certain people are allowed to carry guns everywhere and use them at their discretion. And that means that for all this talk of being "protected" from the boogeyman of the moment, we cannot ever feel safe.

Or free. If a young black man is stalked by a stranger he is not free to confront him. He must keep his head down, be obsequious, be prepared to be questioned not just by police, but by anyone. Because anyone could be concealing a weapon loaded with hollow point bullets and yesterday they were given permission to shoot if this young man does anything else.

But it's not just him. In various parts of the country someone like George Zimmerman, a wannabe cop, a wannabe macho dude, is legally allowed to carry a concealed gun loaded with hollow point bullets. What if I did something to startle or frighten someone like him? Indeed, how can any of us know who's carrying a loaded gun and who isn't? So, I'll keep my head down too and be obsequious and subservient to every person I come across in public. I won't make any smart remarks. I won't express myself at all. I'll just hurry along in the hopes that I haven't drawn any undue attention. It's less likely that a white woman like me will be shot than it is a young black male, but it's foolish to take any chances in a world like this. Standing up for your principles or the constitution is really hard to do when you're dead.

This is already happening:
A member of Moms Demand Action said that she felt unsettled by the presence of [armed counter-protesters] and said that the organizers would have to think twice before holding another event, particularly one where children could be present.

This is what the gun fetishists characterize as a "polite society" brought about by the fact that guns are everywhere.

They also like to talk about liberty.