Each day of protest over the death of George Floyd has been more disturbing and shocking than the last. The first night was powerfully emotional and devastating as earnest anger and sadness was peacefully displayed. However, as the nights went on, a very different and disgusting story emerged.
White nationalists including Boogaloo Boys and even police officers acted as opportunists and infiltrated the protests, instigating violence, fires, vandalism and looting. The purpose of some of them was to turn the protests despicable so the public would condemn the black community as “thugs” (as Donald Trump explicitly stated) who are just animals and thus the murder of George Floyd was justifiable and the racist cop, Derek Chauvin, their ally, would appear righteous.
Another motive especially for the even more extremist racists like the Boogaloo Boys, was the dream mission that is their organizing core…starting a race war, a new Civil War. In their fantasy, it would lead to America becoming a white ethnostate where black people and those of other ethnicities would be either eliminated from citizenship and residence in America or be servile, 2nd class citizens with no right to power or the vote, essentially slaves.
Yes, the latter is raving insanity but since current and ex-policemen and military are accompanying the gun nuts and mindlessly hateful people in these groups, they can strategize more professionally. Part of what we’re seeing in each subsequent night is the execution of that plan to instigate the kind of fear, hatred and social chaos that historically creates an opening for an authoritarian dictatorship to seize power…or retain and increase it.
Here is some video evidence of the white nationalist presence in yesterday’s protest. One very noticeable aspect of most of these types is that they are garbed in all-black, wearing black on their heads as well as masks, to hide their identities. Again, the legitimate black protesters there in earnest are not dressed like this at all.
In the first instance, you’ll see a security guard rush and disarm a white militia type carrying an AR-15 with a similarly armed accomplice nearby (have you seen a single black protester with an AR-15?):
There are so many more videos showing that the majority of those causing the protests to become dangerous and violent are white people. What is curious is that some of these white people include young white men and women who look early 20s and not buff or militant looking, they look like Bernie-type supporters though no way to know if that is who they really are. A suspicion is that these may be the ones on social media who claim to want to burn down the whole system now that Bernie Sanders will not be president and are jumping on this opportunity to commit violence and chaos then melt away from the black protesters to let them be blamed.
We have also seen evidence that cops may be among the agent provocateurs.
To be clear, the accusation above about Pederson is not confirmed by any authorities and may be incorrect. But the agent provocateur in the video is clearly white and acting with a premeditation and authority that lends itself to this accusation.
While white supremacists are engaged in igniting a race war and nihlist young white men and women are excitedly committing violence side-by-side with them, possibly even joined by rogue law enforcement elements, there is another devastating layer to this hate cake that we’ve seen before.
Think back to the Occupy Wall Street protests. As they grew from being ignored and ridiculed by mainstream media, once they finally became big enough to frighten the power structure in the U.S., recall what happened. There was a militarized and violent assault on them all across the country with remarkable coordination and timing. Like a national military operation.
It was more sophisticated than we had imagined: new documents show that the violent crackdown on Occupy last fall – so mystifying at the time – was not just coordinated at the level of the FBI, the Department of Homeland Security, and local police. The crackdown, which involved, as you may recall, violent arrests, group disruption, canister missiles to the skulls of protesters, people held in handcuffs so tight they were injured, people held in bondage till they were forced to wet or soil themselves –was coordinated with the big banks themselves.
Consider what happened last night across the country. Police acted as if they were in the midst of roid rage, dehumanizing ALL protesters, including the peaceful ones who are Constitutionally entitled to protest and assaulting them. The attacks on media people were just as frightening, the police would clearly hear and even acknowledge that someone was a member of the press…then attack them with teargas, rubber bullets, pepper spray or physical assaults. Intentionally assaulting the press.
Last night we saw a glimpse of a police state where Americans were all seen as the enemy. Where the press was seen as an enemy of the state, the very thing Trump has been pushing and that is also the sign of authoritarian domination. When all people and the press are treated as threats to be crushed in the name of “security”, when the police and military dehumanize the public and press, democracy hangs by a thread.
That said and displayed, there were some instances of police and law enforcement displaying their support of the black community, kneeling and even marching with them. Absolutes are dangerous so it is very important to balance all that is being said here with the truth that there are many conscientious policemen and law enforcement officers out there who genuinely work hard and put their lives on the line to protect and serve the people. However, the issue focused on here is that it seems to be that a majority of officers may not share those sensibilities.
The immediate, steel-hard truth is that the violent actions of the police last night and likely continuing, in treating Americans and especially black Americans as the enemy, is sadly what led to these protests in the first place. It is reflective of a skin of fascism that lies beneath the surface of our society.
The racist elements in our police forces, that would murder a helpless black man, assist in the murder and cover it up make clear that they are deeply embedded and they don’t intend to stop protecting the status quo of the racist, white and wealthy power structure in this country.
If anything, this experience is teaching many white Americans what black Americans know far too well, what it feels like to be threatened by and afraid of a militant, hostile and oppressive police force.
One possible consolation of all of this horribleness may be a building of resolve and unity between white and black Americans to make it urgent to wholly remake our police forces and root out the far-too-prevalent racist, white supremacist elements that infect it.
It’s also important to remember who they are serving right now, when they assault any and all Americans at will…the one set of Americans they would never attack (or arrest in most cases) and in fact, unleash unjustified violence to protect.
The white wealthy class.
When the protest yesterday in Beverly Hills moved towards where the wealthy live, that is when the police launched its violent attack on peaceful protesters.
The police and federal law enforcement are a wall against social change. They have the literal power to try and smother it every time it dares to peek its head up. On the flip side, there are the white nationalists in police and law enforcement who see people of color as threats, just by their existence, and use their authority to “keep them in their place”.
There are many factors at play here, very powerful forces that are both crude and sophisticated. Base racism and elitist racism, nihlism and anarchy. What is clarifying is to see that they are all, in the end, about destruction. Of black people, of a fair and compassionate society and the rule of democracy.
And it is also a potential salvation in these terrible times to remember that there will always be one thing that can triumph over all of them, as incredibly difficult as it is to achieve. And that is unity. No matter how many tear gas canisters and rubber bullets the police may have, no matter how devious and destructive racists are, no matter how wealthy and politically powerful the 1% is…none can stand in the way of hundreds of millions of Americans who say, “Enough!”
They work hard to divide us into red and blue, black and white, north and south because they know that as long as we are divided, we can’t use that ultimate power of unity to tear down their selfish and oppressive structures.
We have a very long road to continue down but eyes are being opened. As the impact of this current test drive of fascism hits most Americans, as the attempts continue to pervert the constitutional and moral rights to protest, to influence desperately needed changes in our society, the opportunity for unity increases.
Add to the current conflicts, the growing infections and deaths from COVID-19 because of a brutal and inhuman president who cares only about what is best for retaining power and gaining re-election. And over 40 million Americans unemployed with Trump and Republican politicians conniving to take away their unemployment benefits. And the renewed efforts by Trump and the GOP to slash economic and food programs for those in poverty as well as the push to slash Social Security and Medicare. And the ongoing Trump/Republican lawsuit to kill the ACA.
As profound an impact that the murder of George Floyd has made in crystallizing the racism, brutality and dehumanizing in our police forces and society, as empowered as this hatred has been by Trump, there could end up being a lot more people marching against the cruelty of the status quo.
There are predictions that evictions and foreclosures will begin to spike as early as this month, as the $1,200 government payment and $600 unemployment supplements from the Cares Act no longer buffer those who are struggling.
The social upheavals clearly could get worse in the upcoming months, something to be mentally prepared for. But what can rise from this is a unity of purpose. When there are emergencies, like natural disasters, communities often become their best selves and help each other. Hopefully, that will turn out to be the case and people will do their part to contribute to that kind of path forward.
Aside from just being compassionate with each other, the most profound change Americans can make to stop the momentum of this corrupt and oppressive system is to from take the power out of the hands of this racist regime. Voting out Trump and cutting off his feeding power to racism using the most powerful position in the world needs to be a primary goal. That’s a big change we can make in a matter of months. If Trump was to continue for four more years with this racist empowerment agenda, not only would change and equality become a fairy tale but we would enter a much more dangerous and deadly time for our communities of color and all of America.
If successful, we must then hold a President Biden’s feet to the fire to immediately take on this cancer of racism and injustice in our society and police forces across the country. Immediately and in a tough, undeniable way. Racists must be purged from police forces, checks and balances must be installed to prevent and harshly punish future abuse of power. And in concert with that, economic injustice will need to be aggressively uprooted.
This is a huge moment in history. There will be more suffering and death in the near term, more racism and inhumanity. The way to gain the power to stop it and overcome it is simply…unity. We are all in this together, the oppression of our brothers and sisters is just a preview of our own. It is time to step up and embrace the role we need to play. Despite the bleakness out there today, there is always a tomorrow and we need to march together towards it, in unity.