Since the movement’s inception in the wake of the murder of Trayvon Martin, the Black Lives Matter campaign has taken its share of criticism. As the number of unarmed black men killed by the police has mounted over the past years, so have the responses from- and towards- the movement. So much so that they’ve become cliche at this point. Still not so cliche that we won’t try to respond to ’em, however.
Let’s imagine, if you will, a world where white folks are also the victims of police brutality. Where white folks have been arbitrarily discriminated against on the basis of their ethnic, national, and religious background. Where exploitation and oppression have left enormous swathes of white folks in abject poverty.
Imagining that world should be pretty easy, because it’s the one we live in now. But let’s say that a movement existed to argue that maybe- just maybe- random violence inflicted by the state on white citizens isn’t something that should just be suffered silently. I’m betting we would still have people who sound like this:
I’m white and I hate white lives matter.
And because I’m white I can say that and it somehow feels more justified. Like “well, he’s white– so you know he’s got more authority to speak on what is and isn’t acceptable behavior for other white people.” Like with clothes.
We all know that sagging your pants is an offense that should allow cops and
scared white folks who embarrass self-respecting gun-owners vigilantes to kill you on sight, so what about these guys?
I mean, this guy’s wearing a wife beater, a gold chain, and he’s got slicked back hair. You know who else wears clothes like that? That’s right- the mafia.
I mean, I assume so.
Truth be told, I’m not a criminologist and I can’t really claim to know what all criminals wear, but I’m going to assume it looks like this because having to think for extended periods of time makes brain go hurt-hurt. But I see someone who fits the image that the media has created for me and I just go “well if TV says a thug looks like this, then this guy must be a gangster. When has TV ever lied?”
Sure, you could argue that people dress however they want to dress and that maybe we should just mind our own ****ing business, but how else would we be able to justify our anger at seeing anyone even remotely different? Wouldn’t it be much easier and more considerate of my feelings and fears if everyone just dressed, spoke, and behaved in a manner which I was familiar with and didn’t feel intimated by? I think white people’s problems would all magically go away if they all stopped wearing trench coats, khakis, cargo shorts, gauges, tattoos, dyed hair, or whatever nonsense I feel threatened by at the time. And while praising mindless conformity, could we talk for a second about white music?
If white people want to stop being treated like thugs, maybe they need to stop glorifying violence, sexism, and drugs in their music. White culture’s been poisoned by songs about breaking the speed limit (Sammy Hagar’s I Can’t Drive 55), robbery and murder (Steve Miller’s Take the Money and Run), treating women like the property of men (Taylor Swift’s career), promoting violence (Cannibal Corpse’s Meat Hook Sodomy). I’m not saying that listening to songs like this mean that you should be killed, I’m just saying that if you listen to music with messages like this then you should be labeled as an irredeemable thug who was just going to do something worth being killed over anyways.
Again, I want to emphasize the the problem here is exclusively with white people. How is it that white people have the nerve to complain about police brutality when white people are destroying their on communities? Just look at the Stanley Cup riots in Vancouver in 2011. Windows were smashed, cars were set on fire, people were hurt.
And is it not fair to argue that the statements of a few nutjobs discredit the whole of hockey fans?
You might say “No, of course not, that would be ****ing stupid”, but I find it much, much easier to view other people as faceless hive-minds rather than unique individuals, so I say “yes”.
Now some folks might saying “but what about our civil servants? What about the people specifically trained and entrusted to protect and serve us? ”
Now rather than have a conversation about why cops are shooting people without any justification, let’s instead try to completely derail the conversation with some irrelevant rant about white-on-white violence. I mean, there is more white-on-white violence than cop-on-white violence, right? So obviously that excuses the police from any accountability because of…
Well, I’m not really sure how, but the point is that it’s white people’s fault. I mean, look at the way they live:
Now any reasonable person can point out that not all white people live in trailer parks, but let assume they do because it takes infinitely less effort on my part. These places are notorious for poverty, filth, poor education, drugs, and violence. And because of that, every single person who lives there is guilty until proven otherwise don’t have any right to complain when they got shot, beaten, or harassed. That might sound harsh, but hey- it’s them that are living there. If they’re really upset about poverty and suffering, then why don’t they do something about it at their weekly white people meetings? They have those, right?
Because if they did, I would still be whining about ’em.
Like, what’s up with people marching in the streets? Sure, I just argued that white people shouldn’t expected to be protected by our government and should be left to their own devices, but I wasn’t serious about ’em actually doing it. Now I’m confronted with a broad range of protests which I find to be threatening for some reason. If you’re going to protest, do it in a place where you’re not going to be blocking traffic or being disruptive or forcing me to acknowledge your discontent or issues. I mean, look at these women-
How dare they slow up traffic! It’s almost like the convenience of my commute isn’t as important as their fundamental rights! And what if an ambulance tried to get through? I mean, sure, that wouldn’t be an issue if we just gave ’em their rights to start with, but that would mean change, and I find change of any kind to be terrifying- so much so that I would gladly sell out my fellow Americans and spit on our most cherished freedoms and values if it meant just being left alone.
Is that too much to ask?
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