Now it’s not that surprising that Fox News somehow could not figure out the “possible motive” for the man who threatened to set off an alleged bomb that would destroy two city blocks unless Joe Biden immediately resigned.
His motive was terrorism. He was threatening to set off a bomb in DC unless the President resigned. It’s not that complicated, it’s not that strange. He wanted Trump to become President again and then to pardon him for his crime.
It’s not off that Fox failed at this, but then you have the case where CNN announced that the suspect was “dealing with personal burdens” in his life.
Uh, he was what now?
I’m sorry, but did Muhummad Atta have a bad day on September 11th? Was he dealing with some personal issues? Was he struggling with some trauma? Did he need a trip to Burger King?
The blatant White Privilege here is obvious. This guy somehow gets the complete benefit of the doubt, he gets the benefit of sympathy and empathy that was never afforded to Trayvon Martin who we were told was a “violent sizzurp addict”, or Michael Brown who we were told was a “violent strong-arm robber” or Philando Castille who was shot down as soon as he admitted that he had a concealed carry permit, or Brianna Taylor was blamed for being at fault after she was shot to death
in her sleep after being woken up, and Tamir Rice who obviously shouldn’t have been playing with a toy gun on a playground, Jonathon Crawford III who shouldn’t have picked up and played with a toy gun in the middle of Walmart in an open carry state, or George Floyd who really shouldn’t have passed that bad $20 bill before he was slowly asphyxiated in the middle of the street.
How was it that police politely and patiently negotiated with this guy for an hour and a half and he didn’t end up with a bullet in the back of his head as soon as they got there? What, did he forget to nimbly drive between and not hit a single one of them or something? [Ok, he claimed to have a sound sensitive alarm on the bomb that could detect the window breaking — sure, but he left his driver’s side window open and repeatedly stuck his head out the window, are you kidding me?]
It is very strange how our minds work isn’t it? It’s strange what we think of as soon as we see the race of the person in question.
I have to admit, I’m a black guy and when I see a pack of black guys laughing out in front of a local liquor store — I get nervous. I get worried. I don’t know who these guys are, I don’t know what they’re up to.
And I’m not just saying that. Last week I saw some of these guys trying to jump-start a car with a dead battery and apparently I stared at the fact that the car doing the charging having its lights on a little bit too long and this guy comes running up to me in the store asking me what my problem is. Things escalated — strangely — and then suddenly they’re threatening me, telling to me to leave or I’ll get beaten. I did leave, but I really don’t know what all that was about, I don’t know how I got under their skin just by asking “what’s the problem?”
So it’s not like my concern comes from nowhere, but I find that I have to fight myself to get past it. I have to gather up my courage just to say “Hi” or “Hey man, I like your shirt!” (Which I did yesterday with another black guy and it turned out well, his wife gave him the shirt for Father’s day.)
How is it this is the way we think? How is this the go-to reaction? What in the world is it ever going to take for us all to treat each other as human? To give each other the benefit of the doubt? No matter our race, no matter our religion, no matter our gender orientation?
Why is it that we can automatically see a blonde, blue-eyed white-skinned domestic fucking terrorist as a fully realized human being with agency and compassion and foibles — but we can’t do that for almost anyone else?
This guy openly admitted what he was doing and why he was doing it on Facebook Live — and still some of us just can’t believe it. We can’t believe he’s a terrorist.
This is why Kyle Rittenhouse was able to walk away from murdering two people in Kenosha Wisconsin with his assault rifle still in his hands. He walked toward the police, holding up his weapon — and they ignored him.
This is why the McCloskey’s could brandish their weapons in the street, waving them at peaceful BLM protestors and then get pardoned.
The governor of Missouri has pardoned a couple who were famously recorded pointing guns from the front of their luxury home at a group of passing Black Lives Matter protestors last summer.
On Tuesday, governor Mike Parson, a Republican, announced the pardon of Mark and Patricia McCloskey, who pled guilty, respectively, to misdemeanor assault and harassment in June. The couple brandished an assault rifle and a semi-automatic pistol as a group of racial justice protestors walked by their home on their way to a protest last summer.
“Mark McCloskey has publicly stated that if he were involved in the same situation, he would have the exact same conduct,” Joel Schwartz, the couple’s attorney, said on Tuesday. “He believes that the pardon vindicates that conduct.”
Just like some of us refuse to believe that Insurrectionists who assaulted police and invaded that Capitol on a mission to kill Speaker Nancy Pelosi are also — terrorists.
Among the messages prosecutors found in the inspection of Oath Keepers’ phones was an Election Night chat that discussed a “shooting spree,” beginning with ” [Nancy] Pelosi first.”
He’s not the first one, as the New York Times documented several months ago. A Proud Boys supporter in New York was accused in Feb. 2021 of posting violent threats on the conservative social networking site Parler. A Colorado man was charged with sending a text about “putting a bullet” in Pelosi. A man living near Chicago left an alleged voicemail message about killing Democrats on Inauguration Day.
And remember Capitol rioter Jenna Ryan who took a private plane to the Insurrection and proclaimed she is a “white woman” who wouldn’t spend a single night in jail?
Back in March, Ryan boasted that she was “Definitely not going to jail.”
“Sorry I have blonde hair white skin a great job a great future and I’m not going to jail. Sorry to rain on your hater parade. I did nothing wrong,” Ryan wrote on Twitter.
Turns out she wasn’t wrong — she just plead guilty and received a $500 fine but no jail time [yet].
Aint Justice blind?
This is a sickness. It’s an infection. it’s a plague.
We desperately need the cure — which unfortunately is the hardest thing to achieve, because it’s courage. Courage to challenge our own deepest and darkest fears and worries. Courage to take the risk that the person that scares you — might not be all that bad. That even though we’ve had previous bad experiences, even though we know nothing about them, even though we’ve been systematically taught by the media — through decades of mostly white, mostly male representation on screen — that even if we have an atavistic terror that non-white and/or other gendered people are scary and dangerous we have to swallow that nervous ball in the pit of our stomach and treat them like a human being anyway.
We have to be willing to accept that even things we think we generally “know” about each other — things we’ve been methodically trained and indoctrinated with — just might be completely wrong in any specific case.
We have to live without fear. We have to forget what we think we know and learn what we don’t. We have to live with courage — and grace.
We have to treat everyone as if they’re Ray Roseberry and Jenna Ryan.
Heaven help us.
If you like you can join me and help fight back against BS right-wing memes in the belly of the beast — on my new Facebook Group Army for Truth. It’s time we took the Internet back from these crazed mooks who’ve misused it.
Here, I’m just saying… this treatment isn’t typical but the violence, and most importantly the lying by officers after the fact, is still far too common.
As the host states, this violates the rules but then the rules don’t seem to be enforced. Incidents like this, and those which are more deadly, need to be independently reviewed. Yes, officers who lie on their reports need to be charged with a felony. I would argue that Federal Law needs to be adjusted to allow investigation and charging of any incident where unnecessary and unauthorized force is used. Further, the standard established by Tennesee v Garner — where probable cause that the suspect is a deadly threat needs to be established before deadly force is applied — needs to be a national standard.
This is a Creative Commons article. The original version of this article appeared here.