Black Lives Don’t Matter

Karen is an archetype symbolic of all the things folk hate about some women. She knows that you are entitled to her opinion. Second, she also knows that you are the problem. Last, she knows with scientific certainty that the answer is the manager. He’ll fix it so we can be happy. The manager can make us all stop saying that Black Lives Don’t Matter.

The Karen spoken of in this piece is deeply concerned about the fate of downtrodden black men who are prey to evil white cops. She is sure that there are secret meetings in the basement of local pizza places where they choose their young buck to hunt and kill. Karen, here is the thing. Black Lives Don’t Matter to you.

Karen and her friends while chanting “Black Lives Matter” express a hidden message that on some level, black lives don’t matter. There can’t be successful, contented African Americans. The only Black people they acknowledge are oppressed and downtrodden. Karen and her friends spend hours at Cafe Strada fretting over the desperate lives of those living in the Alcatraz Apartments. It’s exciting to fill the street outside the cafe with a cloud of smoke from Gitanes and sip doppio espresso while bemoaning the tragic lives of those living in Peralta Village. They love to show how much they worship Mao and are down for the cause of battling whiteness.

Karen Cares and You Don’t

Karen is all about her brand. She cares and wants to make sure that you know she cares. Her house is a temple to the things you can buy at Whole Foods. She can’t offer you lunch without a 30 minute PowerPoint deck on the work that went into the PBJ stuck to the roof of your mouth. I mean, the cows from Humbolt County on a farm owned by a friend of hers and are fed the trimmings from hemp plants so the milk has a little CBD in it and it’s raw milk, of course. The peanut butter is hand ground by women who live on a collective farm in Santa Cruz. And the jam she gets from a chef retired from Chez Panisse who makes it from wild blackberries collected from briars still growing on Native American land on Albany Hill.

This is how Karen connects to the “Black Lives Matter” slogan. Karen cares about the downtrodden with a high intersectionality score. She believes her words when she screams, “Black Lives Matter” into the face of a white cop. It’s important to Karen that you know this. It’s also important that you know she was on Harrison Street near Fourth in Berkeley painting “Black Lives Matter” on the sidewalk outside Bette’s Diner. She even got a selfie with one of the cooks.

Karen, here is the thing—you can’t chant, “Black Lives Matter” loudly enough, with enough emotion, to gain the approval of CHAZ/CHOP. I know you have a good heart and mean well. I get it that you hate having anything in your nest that isn’t right. None of that matters, baby.

Fight the Whiteness

Baby, you are white. That makes you the reason The Social Justice Party, Sendero Luminoso, Black Lives Matter, and Antifa are miserable. Eliminating you is their answer to ending their misery. You still live because they need you so that they can keep a veneer of being diverse. Soon enough they won’t need the veneer and your whiteness and bougie ways will be what kills you.

I understand, sweetie. You think that the problem is the statues staining the visual landscape. They are a bitter reminder of our ugly past as slave owners and traders. The statues hurt your eyes and trigger you. So getting rid of them will solve it. Your nest will be made safe.

No Safe Nest

It will not, babe. Your nest will not be made safe once the statues are gone. The Social Justice Party is invested in a long game where the only allowed art is work that celebrates Islam and Mao. I saw you seated outside Bette’s Diner. You won’t be able to wear the Martins, fishnets, hot pants and sheer tank top. The pink hair will get shaved off. All that hotness is offensive to the revolutionaries you believe are your friends. There is a burka in your future.

Everything that isn’t Muslim or Mao is offensive to these revolutionaries. Lately, we were told that soap is racist. Soap. You take pride in showing up to work on time, saving and investing wisely, working hard, and planning for the future. All of these are symbols of your white privilege and consequent deep racism.

Girl, listen, I understand. You want to make the world a better place. You want to feel safe. The Social Justice Party spoke sweet words in your ear and promised you an end to your fear and poverty. Your whiteness and love of the cause is the very thing that puts you high on the target list.

Twitter Said, “Orange Man Bad”

I stopped following you on FB and twitter. There is no point. You are drunk on blue Kool-Aid. I get blue team platitudes and slogans anytime I comment or engage with you. It didn’t take many memes in your feed to understand that you hate Trump. BTW—those basement meetings you worry about are not plans to murder young black men. They are plans to seduce you into becoming a prisoner on a train headed for Manzanar. Your BLM friends are the people behind this, not the Orange Shitweasel named Trump.

Maybe you don’t know why you hate Trump, tbh. And you want to like Biden but he keeps doing stupid shit. It can’t be that the evil orange man could be the answer. He is, though. He is, tbh. Biden and the Democrats don’t want an election. They want a revolution that destroys this country and replaces it with a totalitarian, National Socialist Government. Biden won’t be president. He’s too far gone. There is a cadre of revolutionaries behind Biden that see this as their Great Tribulation. This is their path to the post-apocalyptic paradise with a god-king at the head of a new empire.

Yeah, I’m nuts. The Social Justice Party just wants to create a fairer, more just society where no one suffers from lack. I wish this were so. Marx and Mao created a way of life that only knows strife. They can’t win because success would make them bougie and thus evil. It would also end the strife that is central to being a disciple on the Shining Path.

It’s Your Fault, Cracker

You carry the collective guilt of everyone who isn’t black by your whiteness and privileged upbringing. It is because of you and everyone like you that there is so much misery and oppression. Nothing you say or do is enough to redeem yourself. Your racism is in your blood by your ancestry. No amount of graffiti on Harrison Street changes your innate, deep racism. You were born this way and no amount of encounter sessions to cure you of your whiteness will ever be enough. Karen, these people hate you.

They hate your whiteness. They hate your cute little flat on Northside just up the hill from Euclid. The psuedo-goth leather and lace gear offends their souls. Your good fairy card at Whole Foods makes their hair hurt. It’s a sin that you volunteer at a pet rescue for cats. Your Prius pisses them off. These people hate you just because you are you. Welcome to the cause.

By your incessant shouting that “Black Lives Matter” you expose yourself as a racist. That chant is a tacit admission that you accept the lie that black lives don’t matter. You agree with your Social Justice friends that white folk carry an indelible stain on their lives. Far from being someone who foments love, your fight for the cause is primary evidence that you hate yourself and your kin.

Angerier

I was angrier. My name is Alan Webb and I am a recovering wife beater. I know anger as a drug that is as powerfully addicting as meth. It took me years to recover from a lifelong addiction to anger. Staying sober is still a core spiritual discipline for me. You feel your anger as righteous indignation. The list of things wrong with the world is longer than anyone can recite. The answer is a liturgy of slogans shouted with gusto by the Social Justice warriors in your circles of influence. Never uttered is a solution that could be implemented.

Rock bottom is a thing. Anger has long term health risks. It cycles our bodies through destructive explosive events followed by depression and illness. Anger addicts eventually suffer from heart disease, gastrointestinal problems, and insomnia. Anger destroys relationships. It leaves the addict abandoned and desperate. Anger eats your soul. Life at rock bottom.

I got sober through giving grace. I never asked for grace or mercy from anyone. God asked me to start forgiving, to give grace first. Later on he asked me to serve others through small acts of kindness done with great love. The third element of this trinity is to desire only Christ.

Peace Be With You

I’m just sharing. I’ll never ask you if you are saved. I’m not the guy who will badger you into uttering the prayer. This is a holy fight happening in your heart and the heart of many others. It is God’s fight and I have faith that he will win in the end.

I’ll end here. We all die. Some of us may go to heaven. That’s not important to me. What’s important to me is today, how we live and impact each other today. Choose the Social Justice way and its perpetual unrest or choose life as another lamp lighting the way of mercy and peace. Peace be with you. تصحبك السلامة

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CHOPAZ

I need a break from the insanity. The world is full-on cray-cray. Extremists have taken over a police precinct in Seattle and declared themselves to be an autonomous zone. It’s a move for a caliphate on our soil. Because our rules suck the CHOPAZ folk are going to make their own rules. The mob in control of the Capital Hill Autonomous Zone had a moment and decided that they wanted to be called CHOP. Autonomy has so much responsibility. And I mean, Starbucks on Pine Street is out of coconut milk.

Maybe this is the normal that I’ve been pretending isn’t normal. Maybe the world always was this cray-cray and I’ve just been in denial. Whatever. I need a timeout.

I know why they decided that they wanted to be called Capitol Hill Organized Protest (CHOP). The utopian scorched earth, start over from nothing idea feels so awesome. Clearly everybody else in history was a complete idiot who was fucking clueless when it comes to running utopia. Nobody got it right so the best move is to start from nothing and build it properly.

Nats CHOPAZ

Clerical Nats for CHOPAZ

Once you do it there is a cloud of concerns buzzing about your head that demands attention. Suddenly stuff like a noise complaint becomes a huge thing because you kicked out the cops. You are bombarded with stupid shit you don’t normally worry about because somebody else takes care of that. Who the hell cares that CHOPAZ is out of baby formula!? Breastfeed! Seriously. So annoying!

These novel lefties who feel so good about themselves are making a classic yungin mistake. They forget that they/we are a node in a vast network of interrelated support. The world is profoundly relational. We need each other to make this shit show work. Throw everything out and decide to rebuild from nothing and you also lose the relationships that make your first world life possible. It’s not fair.

The vanguard of the new age isn’t just making the mistake that they don’t need anyone else. The other mistake is that history is bougie and bougie is evil. They don’t need no stinking history. What they need is to start from nothing and build their utopia the right way. Besides, those other Utopian Revolutions didn’t do it right. I mean, that thing about insanity being a rinse repeat of the past and expecting different results–that’s bullshit, right? Those other guys just didn’t try hard enough. They didn’t do the real Shining Path. These guys will get it right this time.

Next, some of these problems are timeless. God’s Eden before the fall wasn’t complete. His first couple was unable to understand the consequences of their actions. Everything was confusing. Adam couldn’t understand why shitting in the nest he slept in last night would piss off Eve. So, maybe what Eve did was evil. Maybe it disrupted an untenable life.

Free Will CHOPAZ

Free Will is Hard for CHOPAZ

We have had free will and the knowledge of good and evil since then. Did this obviate the possibility of evil? No. Two black men were shot by cops recently. Riots broke out worldwide in response,. Most of our news headlines tell the story of one more evil done. Yet CHOPAZ is led by folk who believe they can get it right this time.

Already in the short life of CHOPAZ the homeless folk they invited in as pets stole their food. A local gang leader assaulted them when one of the CHOPAZ residents decided to paint graffiti on a local business. CHOPAZ kicked out the cops so no help there.

CHOPAZ will not survive. These kids in charge don’t want the ugly work of running a village. Already they decided to change their name to CHOP. This way they can try to get municipal services while mugging evangelists. Village admin and ops work is ugly. This work will go unattended. The backlog of ugly work will become overwhelming.

CHOPAZ Wants to Have Fun

Once the misery gets bad enough CHOPAZ will collapse. It’s not fun being autonomous. CHOPAZ just wants to have fun.

So . . . yeah. I need a break from CHOPAZ, Black Lives S’matter, AntiFa(ke), Angry Creamsicle, Sleepy Joe, Mama Pelosi, Chuck You Schoomer, and all the rest. I need a vacation in Paradise.

There is an IRL Paradise Valley, NV. My Paradise isn’t that. It is, but like the Wizarding World of Harry Potter, it exists in a kind of augmented reality only possible if you have a key to it. Inger has a key. I have one. There are others in the hands of people loyal to its crime lord, Saito Genji (Gene).

‘Cuz I Need a Break

Gene in Paradise

The town is too small to need much in the way of municipal services. Most of the buildings run on wells and septic tanks. The most common internet connection is a jailbroken Hughes Satellite. Nobody pays for cable tv. They steal it. The town is too far from Winnemucca to make laying copper lines cost-effective. Cell service connects by a microwave tower to Winnemucca. One of Gene’s grandkids moderates the cell phone and internet connections.

No, you don’t have a right to free speech in Paradise Valley. Not for free. Gene’s friends enforce the law as they see fit. There is a magistrate that comes from Winnemucca once a month. Gene sees to it that the magistrate’s biggest decision is the size of the steak he’ll eat while in town and which girl will take care of him.

Gene is simple. Behave, pay him a bribe, or die. His definition of criminal assault is hurting any of his people at all. His sentence usually results in a 90-minute ride to Winnemucca to get patched up. Or the same ride in a body bag. Criminal assault for anyone else is decided on whether you are bleeding or ambulatory. If you are not bleeding and you are ambulatory then it may have been assault but it isn’t criminal. He doesn’t care about the seven deadly sins as long as he can make money on it. With no real municipal authority, there are no local taxes. Gene does extort protection money from independent businesses. He keeps that fee down so it’s affordable. Unless you piss him off. Then the move is to fold your business and leave town–walking as a first choice but on a stretcher otherwise.

Paradise Valley, Nevada CHOPAZ

We Don’t Need Cops

There is a volunteer fire company. Gene likes American Fire trucks so the town’s equipment is always less than 3 years old and top-notch. Ditto the ambulance. One of Saito’s friends has a cop car he uses to scare outsiders into paying a fine for “speeding” on the town’s only road. The friend is a lifelong BJJ and Hyoho Niten Ichi-Ryu disciple. This friend isn’t a cop. But this friend is also someone you want to respect and comply with.

Tsuba

The magical realist aspect of Paradise Valley comes in how you get there. If you take a road trip to the IRL Paradise Valley you won’t find Gene and his friends. To get to my Paradise Valley you need a special tsuba. This tsuba is a key that opens a portal to Paradise Valley. There is a portal in my living room closet and other places around the country and Japan. These tsubas are closely guarded by Gene. Thieves that steal one are hunted down and killed.

Paradise Valley is a refuge for outliers, criminals, adventurers, addicts, and crazies who just want to be left alone. Most everyone there has some sort of scarlet letter past that got them jail time and/or shunning. There is a Father Thomas, who is one of the priests accused of having sex with underage boys. He lives in a manse on the property of a former Baptist church. Father Thomas is guilty of publishing apologetics that ran cross to his cardinal. The cardinal was the one with a taste for young dick. No matter, Father Thomas needed to be gone so . . .

Would CHOPAZ folk be allowed in? Saito-san sells tsuba to tourists so they can come to get high, drink, gamble, fuck, and eat. These tsubas are tracked and once the money is gone or the reservation expires they go dark. Gene’s staff sees to it that the tourists make it home safe. Those that resist get a ride in the ambulance—sometimes in a body bag. So as long as CHOPAZ can pay and behave they would be allowed to visit.

By Chensiyuan - Own work, CC BY-SA 4.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=70662680
Shangri La

Viva Paradise Valley

Paradise Valley is like a magical realism Yakuza Las Vegas. It exists to empty your wallet by offering you a walk on the wild side. There is no pretense of utopia in Paradise Valley. Saito-san cares about cleaning out your bank account. He needs the things that locating himself in Nevada brings him. He’d shoot anyone who suggested seceding from ‘merica. Saito-san has no problem sourcing coconut milk.

One more thing. Genji Saito (斉藤源次) is a graduate of Kyoto University. He is an accomplished calligrapher and bonsai (盆栽) practitioner. Paradise Valley is staffed by Japanese trained in hospitality and hotel management. If you have ever been to Japan you understand the level of obsession with artful attention to detail. Paradise Valley is gorgeous and runs like a beautiful Seiko watch. As long as you stick to your lane you’ll have an incredible vacation.

Paradise Valley is the setting for part of the murder story I’ve had in my head for about five years. It’s the one that is launched by the discovery of a human finger on the back seat of a Cadillac Escalade abandoned in front of my house. One of these days . . .

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Fake Virtue

Fucking hell. Facebook is full of angsty posts from well-meaning friends trying to say something that proves they are not white privileged racists. I can’t do Facebook with all the fake virtue signaling showing up in my feed.

Two things. First, I am a white privileged racist. Why? I was born this way. My hateful adjectives: white, Anglo-Saxon, Protestant, from upper-middle-class parents, boomer, old & bougie. My intersectionality score is 5. So eight adjectives that make me hateful. Next, Black Lives Don’t Matter to BLM.

My son has joined the fake virtue crowd and started posting helpful suggestions for the rioters on ways they can protect themselves from evil police. He’s decided he needs to belong to the cool kids. This means he worries about his halo. It has to be the right shade of blue and have the right flair pins on it so his personal brand makes the right signals.

Iron Sights Matter

Black lives don’t matter to the organization that titled their organization, Black Lives Matter. Why? Because the goals of BLM don’t include advancing the enfranchisement and freedom of blacks. Instead, BLM seeks a Cultural Revolution that destroys the country to rebuild it in their Sendero Luminoso image. African American enfranchisement and freedom are collateral damage. The “What We Believe” page of Black Lives matter is a laundry list of utopian ideas straight from Sendero Luminosa.

To achieve this utopia, Constitutional Republicanism and Capitalism must be destroyed. All the troubles experienced by the peasantry can be traced to the bourgeoisie. Bougie folk are anyone who isn’t black. Also, blacks who oppose Black Lives Matter. And black folk who have jobs, pay their bills on time, and a net worth that will mean a comfortable retirement. All that and anyone else in the iron sights of BLM.

You are either 100% devoted to the Shining Path or you are dead. Central to the Shining Path is a core belief that people are divided into peasantry (good) and bourgeoisie (bad). White people are bourgeoisie on their face. I’m white, so I’m bad. I was born this way, get used to it.

My Original Sin

Because I am a WASP, BLM will tell me that I have subconscious racism. These people don’t know me and yet they claim that I hate black people. What do I say? If you agree that I am racist simply because of a few adjectives that describe me, fuck you.

Too many on social media are trying to placate a small, abusive minority intent on destroying Washington D.C., destroying our government, and initiating a Maoist Dynasty. These well-meaning sheeple are busy polishing their online brand with fake virtue so BLM leaves them alone. This isn’t about George Floyd’s death. This is civil war by people bent on revolution. My son thinks he’s being compassionate by suggesting ways for his friends to protect themselves from the cops during a protest. He is a fucking idiot.

The easiest way to stay safe in a riot is don’t riot. My son could volunteer at United Way. There is also the Greater Boston Food Bank. Third, the Boston Rescue Mission. Volunteering doesn’t properly show your support for Black Lives. It’s hard work and nobody cares that you do it. So he won’t do it. Because selfless, chosen misery doesn’t fit the narrative.

Sendero Luminoso dice: “Practicamos la aniquilación selectiva de alcaldes y funcionarios gubernamentales, por ejemplo, para crear un vacío, luego lo llenamos. A medida que avanza la guerra popular, la paz está más cerca”.

The Narrative Matters

Son, you have been taught a narrative that foments hate. Your schools and peers tell you that the reason you are oppressed is me. Fat, old, white bastard father. I have privilege I don’t deserve. If I was a good father I’d steal a shopping cart and put a few clothes in it then ship to you everything I own. Matthew 19:21, Jesus said to him, “If you would be perfect, go, sell what you possess and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven; and come, follow me.”

The problem is evil in the hearts of those who follow Sendero Luminosa. For the proletariat to be victorious the bourgeoisie must be vanquished. Funny, though, as the bodies fill mass graves the supply of bourgeoisie doesn’t diminish. There is always one more who has a bit more ability than the proletariat.

The cops are not the enemy. The enemy is within anyone that has chosen Sendero Luminosa as their way of life. They are their own enemy because they live a story that foments hate. My son believes he is doing the right thing telling his friends how to be safe while protesting.

Jesus Is the Way

I’m not a Sendero. I am a Christian. The Way of Christ is a splinter group of dissident Jews that worship a martyred carpenter from Nazareth. We are a revolution that has changed the world for 2,000 years. Add being Presbyterian to the prior list of eight reasons why I am worth of hate. Christ told us that we are in this world but we are not of this world. We are judged by God, not by a social credit score that rises and falls with the changing news speak each hour.

Fake Virtue Broken Halo

I owe no one an obligation to prove that my halo is proper. TBH, my halo is in a pawn shop in Hades. I hocked it to pay for gas so I could go to work. The pawnbroker gave me $5.00 for it out of sympathy then sold it to a gym owner. You won’t see me writing long, passionate apologies to Sendero Luminosa who insists that I say something to ameliorate their fury.

I don’t want my son to experience jail for the first time because a senderista told him he could be more popular if he’d throw a brick. Posting ideas for body armor on Facebook is tantamount to throwing that brick. There is no middle with Sendero Luminosa. Dithering around the edges just gets you a punch in the face from a senderista you thought was your friend. So my son must find a brick to throw or accept a punch in the face.

Sheeple Way to Fake Virtue

His way to thread the needle is to post memes on social media signaling his support for the cause. This just makes him sheeple. He says I am sheeple because I won’t genuflect before a home temple to Abimael Guzmán. I signal Christ and that’s just wrong. I’m supposed to signal the orthodox virtue of the day after watching CNN’s, “New Day”. Not gonna happen.

My son is a good guy. He’s got a job at a credit union as a teller. He’s building an adult life after a childhood with some fucked up parents. His Mom was abusive. His Dad was absent. He’s half white and half Taiwanese. So he’s stuck in the middle with no clear racial identity. Is he peasantry or bougie?

My son the prince was born in Oakland, CA. He spent his first seven years living in Oakland and San Pablo, CA. We moved to Richmond, VA in 2001. He finished his youth living in Richmond, VA. This is important because he has a classic public education. He was taught that American History is a history of bitterness and racism. He went to church with his Mom. So he’s had an education in Christian basics from a Chinese Baptist Church.

Fake Virtue PuYi

Prince Egg

雞蛋王子 is thrice screwed. His father is a WASP and therefore innately racist. His mother is Taiwanese. Not even Chinese Chinese, but Nationalist Chinese. The Taiwanese government is Democratic and Nationalist–two hateful things for the Sendero Luminosa. Third, he’s so bougie. 雞蛋王子, thus, is showing support for a Sendero Luminosa affiliate group that hates him.

He works at a credit union as a bank teller. In addition to being the wrong kind of Chinese and his original sin inherited from his father, he sold out to a bank. His idea of being oppressed is discovering that Starbucks is out coconut milk for their Iced Pineapple Matcha frappe. tbh, the struggle is real.

Yet he would be wounded if he was told this truth: BLM hates him because he isn’t a peasant. He’s got no virtue-signal from his Mom to help this. She’s a food chemist with a Bachelor’s of Science from a prominent Taiwanese University. That’s bougie. Not good for my son.

Fake Virtue Riot Gear

The protestors in Hong Kong were fighting against a Maoist government for democracy. The Seattle protesters are Sendero Luminosa affiliates fighting against our constitutional republic and capitalism. Their end game is a 革命勝利之光 (Sendero Luminosa Revolutionary Victory). The Seattle protesters are fighting for what the Hong Kong protesters oppose. The prince is on the side of the Sendero Luminosa. Woo.

Fake Virtue Black Lives Matter

BLM Hates Bougie Blacks

Black lives don’t matter for BLM because their goals are the destruction of anything in the way of their revolutionary victory, blacks included. They believe that the extant government and culture must be destroyed before a Sendero Luminosa Revolution can replace it. Everything must go. Including music, dance, theater, sculpture, story, any evidence of something prior to the Revolution. You better not get in the way of this. If you do you’ll learn exactly how much you matter to BLM.

Black Lives Matter started from a lie about the death of Trayvon Martin. Since then they have traded in hate for every death by cop experienced by a black man. The claim is that black men are being killed disproportionately by white cops. Another lovely, emotional generality that has some exceptions.

耶穌基督的道路

The Jesus thing. You can’t be a disciple of Jesus of Nazareth and be a racist. We’ll start with the beatitudes in Matthew 5-6. Next is Luke 6:31 (ESV), “And as you wish that others would do to you, do so to them.” Or, for the youngins, treat others as you wish to be treated. BLM and similar Shining Path organizations want us to treat them as they wish to be treated. There is no obligation on their part to treat bougie folk as they wish to be treated. Bougie folk are fair game.

I am a disciple of Jesus of Nazareth. Yet because I am a WASP my racism is endemic. It’s in my birth to my father and his ancestors. Never mind that I have followed Christ to one degree or another my whole life. My story doesn’t matter because I am bougie. I have to somehow live in a manner pleasing to BLM because of my heritage.

We have to defeat this. Sendero Luminosa and BLM are evil. They are founded on hate that burns within the souls of their disciples. This isn’t something that can be reasoned with or placated. It has to be defeated. I pray my son lives long enough to learn this. He’s allied himself with haters.

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Let’s Do the Numbers Again

We are a nation of roughly 324 million people. We are the third most populous country in the world. African Americans are about 13% of the population, or almost 39 million people. One article in the Huffington Post says that at least 136 African American Men were shot by cops this year. We have this down to a script now. Cop shoots Black Man. The drumbeat starts. CNN goes 247365 repeating ceaselessly the headline, which is about 15 seconds long. The usual suspects say the usual things. There is SnapChat video. Riots, protests, and yet again the vigilantes want the cop’s head on a spear and a law demanding that no cop can ever shoot another black man. A black man can shoot a cop, that’s fine. Hell, we need more people shooting cops just so they understand that you can’t shoot black people. Just never the other way.

08shooting5-master315You are more likely to die of a heart attack than you are to be shot by a cop. Cardiovascular disease killed 46,000 black men in 2016. From 2010 to 2011 4,906 black men were murdered by other black men. A measly 0.00035% of African American men are shot by cops based on the Huffington Post story. But, so says the talking heads on the TV, it’s an epidemic and every African American is in danger.

Ways to Die for a Black Man

Death by Cop 1 in 236,000
Death Black Man 1 in 7,950
Death by Heart Attack
1 in 848

It was an epidemic in the 1980’s when the claim was made that you could not drive while black and complete your trip without being pulled over by the cops.

Here we are again taking the narrow specific case and making the claim that it is general. A tiny percent of African American men are shot by cops. The odds that no Black Man will ever be shot by a cop again are very bad for those who insist it cannot ever, ever, ever happen again. Odds are, it will. The script will get pulled out of its filing cabinet and we’ll do the thing again.

I have a friend who is a prominent physician. His daughter has gotten caught up in the hype and so is going to unfriend some of us because she believes we don’t care. Has she read my blog lately? The answer is, “Do it. Delete me from your friends list.” The risk of this daughter impacting my life by unfriending me is even smaller than the risk of another black man being shot by a cop. The daughter, though, has taken to heart the propaganda and by inference, decided that she too is fated to die at the hands of a white cop. It’s just a matter of time.

As I listened to the radio this morning I was reminded that about twenty years ago the talking heads were accusing the cops of profiling, of assuming that a car full of young black men must be up to know good. I can remember driving to pick up a fare near Market & 62nd Street on the Oakland/Berkeley border. It was in the wee hours between bar closing and Saturday morning weed-whacker reveille. Ray Taliaferro was humiliating yet another hapless conservative who had called in to say that we are overstating the case that all cops always arrest every driver who is black.

Then, like now, there was no talk of owning the reasons a cop might stop somebody. No, it was the cops who were unfairly arresting and ticketing black folks. Back then, it was just assumed that a white man could piss on a cop’s shoes and he’d get a laugh and a hearty handshake. A black man would get his dick shot off. Cray cray is old.

As I made my left on to 62nd street to pick up my fare a car flashed by me, music blasting, a passenger half-out of the window laughing and hollering at a woman on the sidewalk. The car accelerated and as I made my turn I heard screeching tires and a couple bangs.

The fare turned out to be an airport run to SFO for a couple headed to New York for the week. That night as I listened to KGO there was a report of an accident on Market Street that triggered a road rage incident in which several people had been shot. One of the victims was in critical condition. The car was being driven by a star football player for a local college. He escaped serious injury but his friend riding shotgun was the one in intensive care. As usual, though there were bullet holes in people, nobody knew nothing.

Don’t go digging through the Internet to find the above story. I wrote it. Don’t forget that truth suffers in service to story in this space. The paragraph is there because several trigger words will set off images of the boys in the car. Ditto the shooting, the road rage and the football players. I haven’t named their ethnicity because I know the phrases I used will build an image in your head of a presumed ethnicity.

Nothing? No back story growing in your mind? Ok, a little more help. On the news that night was a helpful blonde talking head holding a microphone in the face of the football player’s mother. She decried the treatment of her son by the police because they left him there bleeding in the street for a long time. No first aid for the boy. The kicker? The race card. Mom said her boy didn’t get prompt medical attention because he was black and dressed like M.C. Hammer.

The police were asked about this. The Berkeley Fire Department was on-scene within 3 minutes of the first call, which was estimated to be about 20 minutes after the incident occurred. No, kiddies, nobody had smartphones then. Telephones were in houses and had cords. It took a while for the neighbors to call an ambulance. Paramedics got the football player to Alta Bates inside the golden hour. So, he was alive, a good thing.

We can’t help reading a narrative and having images evoked in our imagination by what we read. My craft is joyous because I get to live rent free in your head through the way I tell my stories and write my essays. Our mental picture of the car and its passengers is built out of our own story up to the moment when we read a story. It matters, though, what that picture is and what our own imagination says and how all that influences our behavior. We can change if we change the way we tell the story.

Cops have been accused of high crimes and misdemeanors committed against African Americans since at least the 1980’s. Just on what I’ve found online and posted here it is again a narrative that is resonating for some folks on a deeply emotional level. They feel this to be true so it is. It becomes self-perpetuating. Black folks ‘spose to get shot by cops because, well, they are black folks. It’s what they do. Instead of an examined life and perhaps a different story, the story pushed on black folks is taken on as fate and enough do what they feel they have been told to keep the narrative alive.

I chatted with that doctor’s daughter last night. She’s fully committed to the pop-culture animus toward cops. Her friend list on FB is smaller as a result. It’s sad that she’s heard the drumbeat and started tapping her feet to a rhythm that is a lie. Yes, cops shoot people. Cops shoot black people. Every death is a tragedy. The lie is that cops shoot black people in high enough numbers that the usual tropes are affirmed. I’m surprised the number of deaths of black men by cops isn’t higher. What would the press say if 46,000 black men died at the hands of cops in 2016?

What would Obama say if on his watch more black men died at the hands of cops than died of heart disease? I’ll spare you my usual blather about owning your shit, living an examined life, shedding yourself of the things that keep you from God, loving all, enemies especially. That’s always there to do. This time, before you jump into the street to protest, to punch a cop, to believe the hype, ask yourself, “who wins because I was suckered into believing the propaganda?”

We won’t stop the killing by killing. More riots and violent protest feeds the narrative and makes Charlie Rose get all gushy and happy. There are plenty who have crossed the divide and engaged those they fear. We need more of that instead of more SnapChat video of yet another protest because there is another body.

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