Many of you know my history as a pacifist. I was a member (founder in some cases) of war protests for most of my late teen's and early 20's. I was dedicated too. Twice a week for an hour and a half. Around age 24 I stopped. Mostly because I moved to D.C. and protests here are quotidian and much larger than they were in Phoenix and San Diego or Colorado. Here, there's a protest every week by some politico, or some organization or another over some cause that we all should give a shit about. Like the environment. AIDS. Civil rights. Gay marriage. War.
I suppose it's the inverse of what I faced before I left. Before departing for DC I would often be the only one standing on the street corners. People were so unaccustomed to seeing a protestor that they'd appear confused or amused by my presence. It was typically a pleasant experience because of the attention I received. In Washington, we're so conditioned to seeing solicitors and/or protestors that we overlook them and simply walk right past most of the time. Myself included. Sigh. Loses its luster so to speak.
In the household I live in now with my wife (and dog) we are very anti-authority, anti-cop, and anti-military. So in essence, not much has changed haha. What has changed, or waned more accurately, is our brio for discussing it or expressing our discontent. We do a nice job of commiserating over the daily political shitstorms on our dog walks at night. But that's generally the full extent. It's a play of solidarity and a salute to those who still do fight the good fight day in and day out (which my wife does to be fair). But life has a funny way of getting in the way and distracting you just enough to diminish your hope for revolution or change.
I'd prefer to just eavesdrop and occassionaly chime in on one of the many brilliant minds I follow on Twitter and call it a night. Maybe watch a documentary or read a book. But for the most part I have become a casualty of society. I'm not complaining. At least, I don't think I am.
I maintain a high quality lifestyle. I have a great little family and a nice ol' job and basically lead a fairly hedonistic life. In fact, that hedonism is itself a rejection of the Protestant-ethic our country was founded on. Suppose that's arguable, but in my acquiescence there remains some fire and nihilism. If that makes sense.
Sort of (as always) taking a circuitous route to get to the point which is...you guessed it...Ferguson!
My wife and I are both fairly heartened by the media coverage and disobedience we are seeing. The fight. The tweets. It seems that the hoi polloi are waking up a bit to what is a fairly mundane conversation in our household. People in authority (ab)use their power. The behavior of the cops and national guard is not surprising. At least it shouldn't be. They are trained in a certain method that is mechanical which intentionally separates the humanity that (hypothetically at least) unites us. It's a black/white world and that can be literal for some.
That is not to say that all cops are bad people. Like most of us, they're just doing their job the best way they know how. They just picked a despicable line of work. And by executing the orders they're given they are often confined to react in a certain manner that forces them to bully/coerce/intimidate/murder etc.. A boxer is forced to punch. A dancer is forced to dance. And cops are forced to 'police'.
Police are loved and feared because they control the weaponry and hold all the power. We are powerless in front of them and we know it. That's why these sustained protests and brazen defiance is so magnificent to watch. We're both sitting at home cheering, (hoping no more citizens get murdered). Some of them are fools and some are brave but they all seem to be outraged at the militarization of our nation and the reckless use of power and weaponry against others.
It definitely brings back some nostalgia of college-era self and it feels pretty satisfying.