Thursday, November 27, 2014

Turkey Times

"(I)t's not pigmentation: it's a mentality and it's either going to work for you or it's going to work against you" 
[italics added] - Pharrell Williams

On Monday night, the week of Thanksgiving 2014, America was praying to be thankful for justice in Ferguson, Missouri.  With the fair and legally rendered decision not to indict Michael Brown's killer, a police officer reacting to public nuisance, if not threat, but then tragically incited to kill in that line of duty ... justice was rendered.

Fairly.  Legally.

The Grand Jury assembled in Clayton, Missouri -- to its immense credit and credit to all law-abiding communities of St. Loius County (and everywhere, for that matter) -- was able to separate fact from folklore ... actual circumstances from a breathless and toxic (social) media-whipped frenzy ... real life from hysterics and virulent fear(mongering).

Truth from hatred ... legal from racial ... common sense, in the end, from flawed logic and threats.
Here we go again in America!  Black against ... oh.
The truth is, this issue was never "racial".  It was intrinsically a matter of law and order, as endeavored to be enforced throughout the world:  Someone was causing trouble, someone called the police, the police showed up.

That the alleged troublemaker in this case happened to be black and his killer, the police officer, white, became relevant only when Michael Brown became killed by Darren Wilson.  Officer Wilson did not put on his badge that morning looking to kill someone (of any color).  He did not fire nervously, blindly without provocation.  This was no tragic "accident".  But it was also not an intended outcome.

As supported by evidence duly considered, Officer Wilson was doing his job:  first responding to a community's call ... then sidetracked by a threat, purportedly escalating beyond "perceived".

In America, the ability to see things as they are is no more.  It has been annilihated by an overreliance on lazy voyeurism and a nasty, judgmental susceptibility to (social) media manipulation.

Too often in America -- the Ferguson Grand Jury being a recent, and fortunately high profile, exception -- guilt, liability, blame and every worst-case scenario or behavioral motive is what's presumed ... not innocence first.

No, never that.

Bill Cosby, for example ... is a rapist now.  He IS a rapist, according to the prevailing winds of America's consciousness.  And whether or not the individuals, all pointedly with "nothing to gain" (except headlines and bylines, of course, and their names online, and/or a little more fame squeezed out of quarter hours) are corroborating in "exposing" a new flavor of Cosby ... A new "truth" wills out:  "Bill Cosby" no longer associated with Fat Albert, Temple University, Philadelphia, Jell-O, Dad sweaters, the '70s, the '80s, Saturday morning cartoons or Cliff Huxtable.

No, the New Cos is a "serial rapist" in the minds of millions ... likely now to be remembered that way, and associated these days with Spanish Fly.

... And bizarrely, curry.
'Man, I don't even like curry … ‘
Today, something like this gets taken seriously, at face value, with not even one person pointing out the context ... and that maybe, just maybe, a story about female David Letterman interns being "forced" to watch Bill Cosby eat curry backstage (lol?), no one saying a word ...

just might be a put-on.

Just saying.

Of course, rape is not funny.  The allegations against Bill Cosby are serious ... and may in fact not be just another day in the bullying internet's mob mentality.

Racism is also not a joke.  Nor killing.  Nor racial (incitement to) violence ... nor the perpetuation of inequality through misinformation, opinion overriding fact and loud and "viral" calls to arms.

"A riot is the language of the unheard.  Riots are self-defeating and socially destructive." 
- Martin Luther King, Jr.

Jeff Glovsky: the appropriate quote from MLK