Dear America (a polemic)

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Octopus Messiah

Dear America:

First, thank you for never arresting me for the felonious things I totally didn't do in the 90's. I'd like to think I made the most of that ten-year mandatory minimum sentence of freedom from a federal penitentiary. For totally not growing/trafficking what is now de-facto legal in California.

Second: this right here is some sorry ass bullshit.

You have become a police state.

This police state is, at best, biased against the rights of minorities and at worst, shoots unarmed black people in the head. Often.

Since the Reagan/Bush era, you have been setting up SWAT and paramilitary forces in little towns all across the country. We are told they are there to fight terrorism and protect against school shootings like Columbine (where SWAT teams, plural, were actually held back as the situation was deemed too dangerous for police).

While they wait for these statistically microscopic terrorist events in, say, Pork Chop, Iowa, these SWAT teams are used for small time drug busts in order to fund themselves through asset forfeiture (read: breaking into people's homes on no-knock warrants and taking all their stuff-- who's the looter now?) All under the jolly umbrella of the War on Drugs. War on Terror. War on Christmas-- the point is War. Against the very population you're sworn to protect.

As far as I can tell-- and lately I've been keeping you at ocean's distance-- you have spread a massive and institutionally racist standing army across the land like peanut butter..

This army's most dangerous weapon is not its ruthless tactics , intimidating uniforms or military hardware. This army's most dangerous weapon is its Us versus Them mentality. And by them, you know exactly who I mean, nudge-nudge, wink-wink.

This army arrests and imprisons disproportionately more blacks than whites for exactly the same crime-- crack/coke, tomato/to-mah-to.

Worse, this army-- and its courts most especially-- give lighter (or no!) penalties for helping bankrupt an entire economy than for looting the local liquor store. Unless they're drunken frat boys "blowing off steam." Kids, eh?

Did I mention the head shootings?

Your police kill more Americans on a daily basis than the Taliban could ever dream.

Finally, you have a political right wing, newly empowered, in both houses of government (congratulations almosteverybody% white male Republicans!) that rails against "Big Government coming to take our guns" while at the same time militarizing, funding and empowering the very people who would, if it came to it, actually come to take your guns.

I've been living in Europe for 13 years all told and have travelled quite a bit since I left your shores for good in 2003. And while I haven't been to *every* country, I feel obliged to state what has increasingly become your motto:

Look out for Number One, baby!

And I mean over your shoulder because right now it sure as hell ain't you.


Unarmed White Guy. I'd put my hands up but hey, I'm probably good.

ps. please excuse the statement of the obvious-- living the UK with this accent can make a person tired of explaining. Oh, and here's an obligatory pic of the dog doing the Heisman (American Football! Yay!) because this is social media. Rant over.
I shall admit to no such thing.
Especially in this country.
You people are cra-- oop, no, wait...
Dear charming American in our midst.

Sad events.

If the US has gone bonkers paranoid, we won't hold you to blame, well, I won't, but yes, we perceive there may be a wee bitty problem, there.

As for us people here, Mr Octopus, yes, we are.....?

Not averse to a bit of stuffing?

Nice stuffing :)

In the last ten years:

Number of people killed by police: 5,000.

Number of soldiers killed in Iraq: 4,489.

Number of non-military US citizens killed by terrorism worldwide: 17.

You have a better chance of being killed by a bee sting than you do by a terrorist.

And you are 29 times more likely to be killed by a cop than a terrorist.
More cost effective to home-kill our own civilians too. What's the goal of all this? Who's winning?
And when the National Guard does open fire on one of these (completely legitimate) protests, what then? Who are we?
(Don't answer, I'll cry)
If the US has gone bonkers paranoid
Reminded me of this: This could pretty much be done for every country and show how ridiculous people can act, but since we're on the topic of America.

I know so little about what's going on over there but I think one of the hardest hitting videos was the shooting of the black guy at the petrol station. The one where he was asked for his license, went for his license, and was shot. :confused:

I hope a solution is found soon because the latest news with Eric Garner isn't putting much faith in cameras on cops changing a thing.
There's an ill wind, this year. Bad things every year, as well as good things, but there's just been something about this year. May the Octopi prevail, and not the red necks.
This wind has been blowing for some time now. As a typical American Kid, from the typical American town, this feels much like the proverbial frog in the pot set to a slow boil. We won't be aware until we're cooked. The mechanism seems to be pretty simple: make hanging onto what you've managed to acquire, take precedence over any other motivating thoughts. the divide and conquer part is classic. In fact, the rise of neo-feudalism here is moving forward so fast, I'm surprised and encouraged to see there are any aware souls left to take to the streets and voice anger and dissent. Poverty has returned to being a crime, the fault of those so afflicted. Loss of jobs and inability to keep food on the table is due to laziness. Being unlucky when the bankers decide to play it fast and loose is just... well, unlucky. George RR Martin has the closest handle on it all and where we'll be in a few short years. I hope I carry the right House Sigil.
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