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OpEdNews Op Eds    H3'ed 7/10/16

No, President Obama: "That's EXACTLY Who We Are"

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Guns. Americans are addicted to them. It's not about the fabled Second Amendment crafted at a time when there were no cops on the streets and America was a relatively young nation with a small population. And it sure as hell is not about the so-called "right to bear arms," as patently stupid as that sounds in a modern, presumably "civilized nation." America today, in 2016, is an armed camp with over 340 million guns in private hands, a nation dotted with military camps, anti-government militias armed to the teeth, criminals with all kinds of military style hardware, and street punks with illegal handguns. There is also the police, the group that's supposed to "protect and serve" the public but who routinely dish out brutal and often fatal violence against the very citizens that they supposedly protect.

So when President Obama told the world in the bloody aftermath of five cops gunned down in Dallas, Texas by a former army reservist, that "that's not who we are," I beg to respectfully differ. It's EXACTLY who we are. The president should know that when he was reelected for a second term national gun sales soared out of the ballpark because his haters felt that a race war was eminent. Stoked and jacked up on the National Rifle Association's Armageddon gun hyperbole and fear-mongering, a people addicted to firearms could not wait to get their next gun fix. They genuinely think that a race war is coming. That's EXACTLY what former congressman Joe Walsh tweeted as the carnage unfolded in Texas -- "race war. Bring it on. We're coming for you Obama." You'd think that he was talking about "Gunfight At The OK Corral." It's the way many among us think -- they need guns to "defend" themselves from the "others" and the government.

And why that's EXACTLY who we are as Americans? Well, we LOVE violence. This nation was founded on violence and children are fed a steady, sustained diet of violence EVEN BEFORE they can talk or walk. From Bugs Bunny cartoons that send out subliminal messages of violence, and the gory details of other cartoons, children, at an early age, see violence as fun and play. When they get older they're exposed to wrestling, violent trash talk, and video games that are built on violence. They play games that simulate real life combat further reinforcing this addiction to guns and violence.

By the time children reach their teens, especially boys, they are hooked on violence and guns. In school they play ultra-violent games like football (not to be confused with soccer) and ice hockey where violence is not only a feature of the games but is expected and anticipated by adoring fans. The best part of baseball is when there is a free-for-all dust up and even in games like basketball there are many, many violent incidents that get fans - and the opportunistic media -excitedly talking for days on end. You hear language like "he took down so and so" for saying something; he or she: "kicked his ass" for so and so etc. etc. The United States government routinely says on TV that they will "kill or capture" some enemy. We've become desensitized to violence, death and killing. It's the new normal.

Then there is the romanticizing of "our men and women in uniform." Many are the flowers of youth taken from their homes, trained to kill, and packed off to fight wars that presumably "defend our interests." They are supposed to have "served our country well " fighting in wars that they do not understand but are fed a diet rich in self-righteous rhetoric, deceptiveness, and hypocrisy. Sun Tzu said in the Art of War "ALL war is deception." He was right -- the deception goes two ways: from those making, conducting and waging war and their enemies.

And the sad thing is that after they've killed for America in her wars, these "broken vessels," and traumatized "wounded warriors," are discarded, kicked to the curb, as so much useless garbage. You can find them selling used books or hot dogs on street corners in New York or begging for pittances in subways, many still proudly displaying their medals, tokens of their "service" to their country. These discarded former soldiers possess no other marketable skill that's of use in the civilian economy. So they become low wage security guards and others still end up homeless, broken, disillusioned and the frequent guests at soup kitchens and food pantries. They are one day away from snapping and killing.

So you're wondering why people are angry? And why anger is so prevalent today in American society?

But let's talk about how police violence is an integral part of American society. Every time a white cop guns down an unarmed Black man the narrative is the same: the whorish mainstream media jazz up the story and then start telling viewers that the Black man "had a record." He smoked marijuana, was arrested for not paying child support, he was accused of domestic violence, he was a petty thief. This demonizing of the victim sends a loud dog whistle to white America that "he got what he deserved" and we should support the cops. This narrative further enhances the belief that "Black lives do not matter."

Don't get enraged and incensed when the Black community says that for police and law enforcement "Black lives do not matter" -- they don't. There are no Black person's rights that a white cop is bound to respect. That's why you hear the cops say in the wake of a shooting that the Black man or woman "disrespected him." That real or perceived disrespect coming from a person that he consciously or unconsciously "see as a sub-human" was therefore the justification for gunning down this Black sub-human, this slave prodigy, this rude n***er, this criminal in Black skin. Most white cops (not all) see Black skin and they think "criminal," "lazy, raper of white women" and "talking monkeys." To them Blacks should "know their place" and don't get uppity, especially when speaking to them at a traffic stop or any other minor encounter. There are two American justice systems: one privileged, tolerant, fair, sometimes benign, white and exclusive; the other black, bigoted, unjust, racist and violent.

It is this culture of violence and its historic targeting of Black people that's at issue here. No amount of prayers, church vigils, marches, songs, platitudes from politicians, calls for calm by Black sellouts doing their masters' biddings will cause things to change between cops and the Black community. Power concedes NOTHING without a fight. Racism and violence go hand in hand because racism sees the "other" as inferior and of no value; expendable and not worthy of respect. And America, still living in, and experiencing the Peter Pan syndrome, has NEVER grown up and matured enough to accept responsibility for 400 years of state-sanctioned violence, brutality and mayhem, visited on a defenseless Black community, the end-result of which we're reaping and experiencing today.

To fix this problem and find answers we must go back to the origin's of America's police and why its fundamental nature and behavior are driven by age-old prejudices and inculcated violence. The oft cited "To protect and serve" begs the question: but whom? That's where a history lesson offered by Professor Sam Mitrani of the College of Dupage comes in. Let's start with a time in the U.S. before we had organized city-run police forces.

The True History of the Origins of Police -- Protecting and Serving the Masters of Society By Professor Sam Mitrani.

The liberal way of viewing the problem rests on a misunderstanding of the origins of the police.

"... Before the 19th century, there were no police forces that we would recognize as such anywhere in the world. In the northern United States, there was a system of elected constables and sheriffs, much more responsible to the population in a very direct way than the police are today. In the South, the closest thing to a police force was the slave patrols." [Underline mine]

Exactly what happened to change this? United States capitalism and its dependence on the low-paid physical labor of immigrants, and later of Blacks moving north after the Civil War -- up the Mississippi through St. Louis to Kansas City and Chicago, and up the eastern seaboard to Washington, New York and Boston, among other places.

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MICHAEL DERK ROBERTS Small Business Consultant, Editor, and Social Media & Communications Expert, New York Over the past 20 years I've been a top SMALL BUSINESS CONSULTANT and POLITICAL CAMPAIGN STRATEGIST in Brooklyn, New York, running (more...)

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