I guess we’re supposed to talk about the Buffalo tragedy but I just don’t know how to discuss this anymore. How many times can we reveal our Black humanity in an appeal to whiteness? How many times can we spell out our quantifiable worth to all things cultural, spiritual, and economic to this country? An infinite amount of times, really, and we should never expect anything to ever change by doing so.
Nothing fits anymore.
Even the most liberal think pieces are pointing fingers at 45 and Tucker Carlson. I gotta tell you, that’s some real pre-George Floyd bullshit that I’m just not buying anymore. Yeah, sure, it used to be pretty easy to lay the blame at the feet of the most obvious hate-filled right-wing monsters. But we’ve been well past that for a minute.
May 25 will mark two years since George Floyd was murdered. We all watched millions of people take to the streets in protest on an entirely unprecedented global scale. Politicians promised to defund the police and corporations pledged tens of billions of dollars in the name of racial equity. Then those promises were all broken. The money never showed up; support in general quickly became less than before George Floyd was murdered. Then the new president funded police more than the previous one which led to the very obvious result of police killing more Americans that year than any other year on record.
And there’s no end in sight.
Just last week our democrat president urged cities to redirect their COVID funding to the police. And since COVID disproportionately kills Black people, as do police, the likely outcomes are again obvious if not guaranteed.
But, sure: The future of Black lives is entirely dependent on America’s most hate-watched pundit and a failure-defining ex-president.
The truth is that if my rights can be legislated according to my identity, then my identity is a political one. If I face violence based on that identity, then that violence is political regardless of its source—state agent, terrorist, or other. The maniac that killed those people in Buffalo is a political terrorist.
Political terrorists don’t exist in a vacuum and political problems have political solutions. Tomorrow democrats could address gerrymandering, voting rights, the filibuster, the senate, the electoral college, any and every other part of institutionalized racism within our political system. They could virtually rid the institution of racism in one presidential term. Really. And while that wouldn’t necessarily shrink the amounts of maniacs in this country, it would certainly draw lines around what is and isn’t politically viable.
Think of it like forest fires. Sometimes they’re deliberate, but you rarely have to hear about some dumbshit pyromaniac’s manifesto. This is because pro-woodland arson is not a politically viable stance.
But democrats will not act. Instead they’ll send out fundraising emails on the heels of tragedy explaining that they need just enough votes to outdo the republicans or Kyrsten Sinema or Joe Manchin or eventually the endless amount of right-wing democrats hiding right behind them.
In the days and weeks ahead we will hear democrats talk about everything but the very clear and obvious things they could do to stop this kind of political terrorism. They will talk about gun legislation and internet censorship and how all these poor little hapless and helpless white boys are being brainwashed by the evil of evildoers doing evil. And then they’ll turn to you and explain that come November it will be your civic, moral, and holy duty to walk into that voting booth and piously Vote Blue Lives Matter No Matter Who.
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