There is a lot of injustice going on in America. The death of Freddie Gray is just the latest in a long line of acts by supposed authority figures against people of differing race.
But I’m not going to talk about that.
Why? Because it has been talked to death. Everyone knows there’s a problem. There has always been a problem. I’ve never been a statistics type of guy, but they are out there if you look. So go, this blog will still be here when you’re done.
There have been a lot of protests about the injustices that have been happening. People gathering together, showing their unity against something that has been wrong for a long time.
But I’m not going to talk about that either.
Why? Because, thankfully, we (when I say “we” I include Canada in this as well, because we share the right and freedom to protest against things we don’t agree with) live in a place where we can voice our opinions, whether as an individual or a group.
What I am going to talk about are the people who turn a peaceful protest into something violent and destructive.
These people are assholes.
Thankfully, these assholes are not restricted to one particular race. Anyone can be an asshole.
What these assholes do is turn something that was used to voice people’s shock, grief, and anger into something destructive. What’s even more disgusting is that they destroy places that are in their own neighbourhoods! Now how does the destruction of your own neighbourhood help you cause? What does that show to the world? That you don’t really care about what the protest was originally about. You don’t care about Freddie Gray, or what happened to him. All you care about is wrecking anything around you. Wrecking your own neighbourhood. Even if they originally actually cared about what they were protesting against, or voicing their opinions for, once they’ve turned into vandals, that’s all they are, is vandals. Opportunistic criminals. Assholes.
Some people blame the media for not covering the events in Baltimore sooner, saying the celebrity-filled White House gala was more important than the violence and destruction on behalf, one might assume, of Freddie Gray.
Maybe the media didn’t switch over sooner because this is happening so often, they don’t feel the need to jump right on it. That’s not true, the media love live violence and destruction. With cameras in helicopters, and now in drones, they can get great bird’s-eye-view of all the things that keep the sheep glued to the TV; violence and destruction.
The media also likes to get their talking heads in, who talk about what sparked this, speculating about what happened, the timeline it happened in, and how this kind of thing continues to happen.
That is the sad fact of it all. That this thing will continue to happen, like school/ mass shootings and the over-emphasis of celebrities. It’s a sad fact that more people care about what happens to some rich tart than someone killed in police custody.
Then you have people retweeting condolences about the earthquake in Nepal. Unless there’s a donation link in your tweet, its pretty useless. The majority of the people in Kathmandu don’t give a shit about your retweet when they are fighting for survival, digging through rubble with their bare hands, hoping they will have fresh food, water, and shelter when the sun goes down.
Maybe that’s my point.
In a nation where we have access to so much, have the freedom to do almost anything, and an infrastructure of a (theoretically) working government and economic system, yet so many of us are continually ruled by our base emotions, like greed, vanity, and ignorance.
Greed seems to drive those in power to gain more wealth and power, while keeping it from everyone else. Many of these wealthy people and/or some celebrities use greed to maintain their vanity. The majority of society live in blissful ignorance, dreaming of the life afforded to the greedy and vain.
Those in power want to keep it, and use whatever means to maintain the status quo. But when an injustice occurs and things turn ugly, they use the media to show that ugliness, glossing over the original purpose of the outrage.
I’m using generalities, of course. Not all of the wealthy and powerful are so greedy. Not all celebrities are vain. Not all of us John and Jane Q. Public are ignorant. But I think there are enough of the greedy, vain, and ignorant to continue the cycle of injustice until something changes.
The thing is, change can be very difficult, even if from worse to better. If those who are greedy, vain, or ignorant don’t want to change, then injustices will continue. Those among us, the socially and economically vulnerable, the ones that can easily be identified and singled-out, will be the ones who suffer the most.
But what do I know. I’m just some white guy.