I can’t really focus on Thanksgiving right now because of all the violence that is going on. Which really sucks because Thanksgiving is my absolute favorite holiday. We get to hang out and stuff our faces without the pressure of Christmas and out-spending each other. When did it become a competition for best gift?
But I digress……..
What I really wanted to talk about was the Ferguson incident. And yeah I know it will be talked about to death but I just need to get some things off my chest. (hold on let me just get my soapbox)
First of all I HATE the news! I don’t watch it unless is is something that directly effects me. Plus, it’s chocked full of a bunch of negativity and I am all about moving on and up. Not focusing on the crap.
So if Ferguson is half a country away why do I want to talk about it since it doesn’t directly effect me?
Well, it does actually.
I work in Oakland CA off Broadway. Last night my boss told me to leave early because the Grand Jury verdict was being released and they didn’t want me to walk to BART in the dark. I am rolling my eyes on the inside thinking it can’t be that bad right? He offers me a ride and I think ‘this is too much’ and decline it.
So I think to myself ‘well, better safe than sorry’ and off I go. It’s still light out and I stop by De Lauer’s to pick up a pack of smokes. (yes I smoke, we will save that for another day) Cops are all over the place and the people with the orange blazers are walking around too. Broadway is teeming with people of all different ethinicities and that’s what I love about working here. The diversity. It’s getting darker and I notice that on the corner is a growing group of people shouting and someone with a blowhorn yelling into it stiring up the crowd. It’s at this point that I realize ‘maybe it’s time for me to leave’.
So I do.
I went home and watched how the Grand Jury decided there was no probable cause to charge this white cop for shooting a black man. (how I feel about this has no bearing on this blog so I will respectfully keep my opinion to myself) I would be lying if I said I didn’t give it another thought because any situation in which a cop shoots someone is bound to spark a reaction from the populace.
At any rate as my husband was dropping me off at the BART the next morning he told me he wanted me to leave early again. Again I rolled my eyes inwardly and ease his fears by agreeing. Marriage is about comprimise no? It’s a small price to pay to ease his mind.
No delays on BART and I am thinking ‘did I overreact?’ That is untill I got to Oakland.
It will never cease to amaze me that when people are in a mob that they think destroying others possessions (which they worked just as hard for) is the correct response to dealing with their rage.
Over 1,000 people took to the streets and vandalized multiple buildings, set trash cans on fire and graffiti’d. They shut down the freeway for hours! They pelted rocks and batteries at police officers (who didn’ have a damn thing to do with MO) I walked down Broadway on my way to work like I always do and damn near cried at the amount of damage that was done. Windows were busted out of grocery stores and coffee shops. Giant plywood boards covered the nonexistent glass and shards of it were still scattered all over the ground. As my co-worker said to me this morning, “What the hell did starbucks ever do to them?” Now those people are not working and helping to pay bills during the holiday season because you got mad?
We have been here before.
The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and hoping for a different outcome.
You know what that makes you?
There are plenty of other ways to deal with this outcome that you so violently disagree with. But you don’t want to. You would rather take the easy way out and destroy.
I was afraid last night. Afraid that I would be singled out and hurt. Why should I be afraid? I didn’t do anything. It didn’t even happen in this damn state for crying out loud!
You want justice. I get it. You deserve justice as much as the next person.
You are going about it the wrong way. What is the right way? I couldn’t tell you, I can only say that violence begets violence. Two wrongs don’t make a right. An eye for an eye and the world goes blind.
You feelin’ me yet?
Focus your anger in a non-lethal way and maybe someone will actually listen to you. After what I seen today, my ears are closed to your cries.
It’s hard but nothing worth doing is easy, right?
I suppose you could raise money for the family. Start a petition. Stage a non-violent protest. Contact news stations to change the way this is being covered. These things take time that you clearly don’t want to give. Yeah, violence will draw the biggest attention but all I will see is waste.
I think I have beat this dead horse enough, getting off my soapbox now. The people I would want to see this probabaly won’t read it anyway.
Thank you and good day.