Okay, so quite a few of my "white progressive" friends along with some people I had never heard of before today, have been on my case, pretty much all day, for my last blog post.
I took it in stride for several hours, but really, can you not realize when you've got a complex situation to deal with? Life isn't all neat and clean. It's messy, even on good days.
So, I took the #nn15townhall protesters to task for being unwilling or unable to recognize that they were being heard. On principle, I cannot take it back.
I said their cause was and is righteous. I don't take that back, even though some of the people I respect the most don't get that point and cannot even discuss it without shutting down with, at best, "we'll just have to agree to disagree." That would be fine but what part of my message that the protesters' cause was justified do these people not get?
The protesters ranted. They got worldwide attention. But they did NOT get any tangible promises that morning about what will be done to solve the underlying problems about which they protested.
Because they didn't 1) ask for any tangible response and 2) they didn't listen to figure out that they were heard.
They were frikkin HEARD. Goddam it. What part of that do these intelligent, compassionate liberals not understand?
When or if they can get past those points, then we can bitch about whether Bernie committed a mortal sin by being miffed that THEY DIDN'T WANT A CONVERSATION.
Smart people are claiming that holders of White Privilege are to blame for the entire incident now. That is nothing but absurd. One person even dared to say I was showing callous evidence of MY White Privilege.
I'm a short fat guy. I have NEVER gotten any advantage in employment that regular tall white guys for decades have gotten.
I've been subject to deprivation of civil rights in Family Court because I was the husband and courts take accusations by women seriously, without examining evidence sometimes, but they do not the generally validate denials by the husbands. That may save lives. For which I'm thankful.
I came out the other side of that divorce litigation with my soul intact. I endured it. But it was NOT White Privilege in any way, shape, form, fashion or manner. I was subject to unreasonably harsh treatment -- just because. I can surmise that it's because the courts are overwhelmed (which they are and have been because nobody likes to pay taxes) and they have to take shortcuts. Even still, some people die. Thankfully, not me.
But it was still hell. It still took an immense toll on my life.
A dear (Anglo) friend of mine has a(n Anglo) son who was brutalized by police for daring to try to intervene to help a person of color in a tense situation where police were trying to control a crowd. It was genuinely physically and emotionally traumatic for both my friend and her son. How many others???? Who knows. Is it White Privilege because that young man is still alive?
Don't freakin' lecture me about White Privilege. You have no clue.
Why do you think I write with attitude, aiming at injustice anywhere I see it?
In the best of situations, (and Saturday morning's town hall was an artificial situation, not one where police were going to brutalize anyone, so it was essentially an ideal situation for that protest to occur without any personal repercussions) solving problems is stressful.
Don't lecture me about that town hall. I was there. Yeah, some people in the audience were inconvenienced. I already stated that unequivocally AND I said that the protesters' cause was worthy.
These intelligent, compassionate friends of mine who couldn't allow themselves to rationally analyze the situation they sat through should be ashamed.
The protesters -- IF they want or wanted anything other than attention -- had and still have a responsibility to listen.
Tia Oso's op-ed yesterday was about her, not about her cause. Read it and count how many descriptions of the problems of racism she mentioned or described. Then count how many times she talked about herself.
Yeah, after nearly 12 hours of taking shit from people who should know better, I'm irritated. But you know what? All I'm going to do with that anger is what I'm doing now. And if Tia Oso has the least bit of sense, or maturity, she'll take my message to heart and REACH OUT to Bernie's campaign, thanking them for Bernie responding and demonstrating that he has heard her message. And she should hope that Bernie is then willing to sit one on one with her, which I bet he'll do, as long as she commits to listening as well as she can excitedly rant.
White privilege my ass.
Not only have I been badgered today (I can take it. I'll be fine), but a presidential candidate with a half century record of fighting for racial justice has been severely criticized by people who DO enjoy White Privilege for "being noticeably irritated" after traveling all the way across the country to answer questions, including theirs.
That's chutzpah, my friends. A LOT of people owe a lot to Bernie Sanders for coming to #nn15. Watch this video... a couple of times if necessary. Then tell me whether he heard Tia Oso?
Today it is a case of the grasshopper pitted against the elephant. But tomorrow the elephant will have its guts ripped out. Le Loi, Vietnamese emperor, 15th Century.
Make sure it's the political elephant that gets its guts ripped out, NOT the only candidate willing to advocate without reservation for racial and economic justice for ALL Americans.