words about things

What follows is my subtle attempt at honesty.

July 11th

What a week. My $200 investment in Smith & Wesson is now worth $1700+ That's tax, title, & license on a new car!

Why? Well, two black guys got shot dead by two white cops in two cities over two days while being filmed by other black people which apparently caused another black guy to shot 12 cops in yet a different city (he managed to kill 5 of them before the cops blew him up with a robot). If I could make this stuff up I'd be writing for a living.

The point is racism + firearms + police + dead people + viral videos = majority panic

Have you ever seen one of those nature shows where the wildebeest are all trying to get across the river and the crocodiles are waiting? The wildebeest can't help themselves. They simply MUST cross that river and the crocodiles are going to eat some of them.

Be the crocodile! Trust that people will over react and charge into the river because they think they must!

I watched my S&W stock go up and down over the last 8 years. There were 3 times this year that I could have dumped my life savings into that one stock and made enough to buy a brand new car with the profits. Why didn't I? That's a different discussion.

Speaking of different discussions, if i told you I work with cop, have friends who are cops and have family who are cops would you assume that I am very pro-law-enforcement? Well, I am actually quite jaded with law enforcement. Obviously, if things go bad I'll call the cops but mostly because that's what you are supposed to do and you can be imprisoned if you don't. It's why we don't need deep families or friendships, we have mandatory institutional order. We've abandoned the intense tribal bond for the broader faith in rule-of-law. Except faith is the part that doesn't count. The law isn't about virtue or right & wrong it's about procedure, precedent and proof. You could make the argument that law enforcement is the absolute dissolution of the individual's rights. (This is where I get very Libertarian) I was able to get my cop-boss to admit that under the current rules, any police officer can stop anyone at any time for no reason and there is absolutely nothing legal the person can do about it. As soon as the cop addresses you, you are a stray dog subject to his decision of what happens next. Yes, you will get your day in court. Yes, the judge can set you free. Yes, you can sue the cop, his boss, his mom and everyone who watched you be stopped. That does not change the fact that there is nothing you can do, legally, for which that he cannot shoot you. That's a medieval system we accept because of all the bad people we fear. We want the cops to have this power so they can snatch the bad guy off the streets. (Who puts him back on the streets is another topic.)

This understanding of the contrast between authority and rights bring up the problem of racism. Luckily for me, I am white. (Can I say that?) I spent several years as a young man being constantly harassed by police. Local cops, county cops, state cops, etc. I was pulled over dozens of times per year. I was often told I "fit the description" if I pressed the question of why I was stopped. I was searched, questioned and eventually released every time. Often it was minor inconvenience sometimes it was very frightening.  My crime was traveling the 70 miles round trip per day to college while having long hair and driving an old car. I was poor and worked my way as far through college as I could, being constantly pulled over and "run through the system" didn't make things easier. I didn't do drugs (even pot). I didn't speed (mostly because I was getting pulled over all the time). I didn't steal. I had no warrants. I was never ticketed or arrested, just harassed. Looking back, thank God I was white. I could have been shot. Eventually, I "got my shit together". I cut my hair, put on plain t-shirts, bought a newer pick-up truck, and quite using big words when speaking in public. I got a job that involved welding and grinding. Suddenly I became invisible to law enforcement. I remain so to this day. When the deputy sheriff passes me on the road, I'm just another white guy in a pick up truck. Having said all this I understand that none of what happened to me counts because I'm white and I made my self look like I fit in. It was really hard to learn to make small talk about the weather and sports. It makes me sick to have to pretend to accept their wink-and-a-nod "we all believe in Jesus" comments but they very well might kill me if I don't. Thank God I'm white.

Wow. That was melodramatic. As I stated I can't understand what it means to be black because I was able to get the target off my back. Maybe if it had lasted my whole life I'd be able to speak with authority.

I also can't understand what it means to be a cop but that's another topic, too.