In light of the week we’ve had, I thought it would be nice to have a little retrospective:
If you are looking for a no-nonesense account of what’s going on in Ferguson, MO, look no farther. This LA Times Article is a really good who/what/when/where/why and how. Although fairly impassionate, it does have this bit: “they also have said that they want respect from police and that they don’t want to be shot the way Brown was,” which kind of gives a person the chills.
If you are looking for my guide on how to talk to cops so they (probably) won’t kill you, you can find that here. Although it has been proven at least half wrong wrong, as one witness states that Michael Brown had his hands in the air when he was fatally shot by a Ferguson police officer.
If you are looking for a more serious article about what to do when the the police show up, you can find that here. The short version is just to not be near the police when they show up. I realize sometimes it can’t be helped, but interacting with the cops is the first step in getting shot by the cops. Just keep that in mind.
If you are looking for my first ever article on why police scare the ever-living tar out of me, you can find that here. All I can say about that article is that my improvement as a writer has never been more apparent.
If you are looking for an answer as to what we’re going to do about the military industrial complex hemorrhaging all over our law enforcement, encouraging public servants to treat the public like we are their servants, I have no fucking clue. I keep thinking that something will represent a turning point, but this won’t be the last one of us that’s killed. This won’t be the last time they fire on the crowd.
We’ve ushered all the low earning people into the ghetto, we staff that ghetto with white pensioners (in this case, pensioner means people who still have pensions), who we then arm to the teeth. Then we teach each faction to fear, distrust, and hate the other.
When I lived in Hawthorne, I was regularly caught in papers checks trying to get to work on the other side of the city. We lived packed like animals into blocks with almost no city services. Mail came late, if it came at all, the road was filled with holes, and trash lined the streets. I’d try to drive to my job and get caught up in an illegal stop and search, white police blocking the only major street in and out of the barrio, wanting to know if my neighbors and I qualified to be driving our Mexican* cars on their white-people streets.
It’s not a coincidence that our prisons are overpopulated. We’ve crushed the lower class to death, and we’re grinding our way through the middle class from the bottom up. Working age men, especially men of color, but also men of disadvantage, can make more money for their country sitting in a jail cell than they could building infrastructure, or supporting an export economy. Nobody builds anything anymore.
We’re all just jailers and prisoners. Go into any ghetto and ask yourself what if feels like there. It’s the prison waiting room anymore. It’s just an American purgatory for the people the upper crust forgot. We didn’t get mail in Hawthorne, because what would anybody mail to us? We didn’t get 911 response because 911 doesn’t respond for ghetto people. They respond to ghetto people.
What can you do to stop police brutality? Move to a white neighborhood. Stay the fuck inside. That’s the only solution I’ve found. Sorry. It’s a shitty one.
— Lucas Neff (@RealLucasNeff) August 14, 2014
*Literally, my 1999 Ford Escort was made in Mexico. It had a sticker inside the driver’s side door that said as much.