Trump World Grab-Bag--A Collection

Saturday, December 20, 2014

I blame Ismaayil Brinsley.

The deaths of two NY police officers by one assailant who started his spree with the shooting of a former girlfriend and ended it by shooting himself are tragic and grotesque. These officers in no way deserved what befell them, and my condolences are offered to the families and associates of the fallen. There is no good that comes of unreasoning and deadly actions such as this, and the pain of what has happened will doubtless last.

But blame has to be laid where it is due. I think it's revolting that Ismaayil Brinsley tied his actions to the protests against police brutality, as if his personal drama assumed meaning by it. No. He didn't shoot his girlfriend because he thought "black lives matter", and he didn't shoot those officers because he believed an unarmed man shouldn't be killed by police. It looks like this person had a criminal record of some size and a reason to have feelings about law enforcement well before the events in Fergusen, New York or Cleveland went down. He doesn't seem to have given a shit about it before the day he shot his ex-girlfriend. (Now, someone may dig up that he protested somewhere--but I doubt it. He wasn't a New Yorker--he drove up from Baltimore. I don't care what he posted on Instagram at the last moment--and if he's dropping 50 Cent lyrics with his ex-girlfriend's blood on his leg he was a huge posing useless waste of space.)

So when former NY Governor Pataki (and others) wants to lay this tragedy at NYC mayor DiBlasio or the protesters as if somehow, the existence of a protest against police brutality is necessarily a protest against all police officers, I have to shake my head. It isn't. It's a protest about some activity by some officers sometimes. Just like this was an activity of one guy against two people who didn't deserve it, which should by no means be generalized to be about all protesters.

It's one thing to pick a side. It's quite another to let that choice blind one to the details. This guy wasn't representative of a nonviolent protest against violence. He was all about violence. His actions were heinous, but that can't reflect on whether it is right for Eric Garner to have been choked to death, for Mike Brown to have been shot numerous times, and so on.  Letting this grotesque act change the subject is expecting too much of tragedy, and expecting too little of our ability to reason things out.

1 comment:

Formerly Amherst said...

Hi Vixen, so it has all been reduced to this. Well, I don't imagine anyone is very surprised. Regrettably, this was all predictable.

My hope is that it ends here, but it is still possible that some of the fervency that has been exacerbated by activists will result in more attacks on police officers.

Thank God I live in a state where citizens and police officers largely have mutual respect.

Ironically, the ultimate outcome of all this is to elect Republicans and hurt blacks.

Politics is like a see-saw – if you push down hard on one side, it energizes the other side, and the other side rises. In this case the party on the ascendancy is the Republican Party. The gracious and lovely Alicia and I have noticed that since all of this started, black citizens that we encounter in restaurants and other venues are now acting like “Hey, don't lump me in with this group of activists. I'm just a brother working for a living and don't want people to see me as some kind of an anti-social character.”

I'll have to discuss this with some of my black friends.