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What Appears Versus What Is – Religion and Politics

I think it vey likely some swords are about to leave their sheaths shortly. When that happens, I have a feeling some folks who currently think they’re on top of the world are in for a rude awakening. Getting up each morning and going to a j-o-b, serving in armed forces in times of conflict, digging ditches, even writing software, these things make one tougher than a lot of folks realize. Want to find out how tough? Keep up the clamor and observe the outcome.

If you haven’t been hiding under a rock, you’re probably aware of a great deal of demonstration going on in certain parts of the United States at present. You may also have noted that there are people out there, taking advantage of the legal, peaceful protests to perform more radical, none too peaceful activities—to the point of literal riots and looting by some.

As would be expected in a repressive regime like the one we have here in the U.S., law enforcement officers are cracking down hard on the peaceful protesters, as well as the rioters and looters.

Wait, you mean to say you hadn’t noticed this trend? That would—of course—be because it isn’t occurring.

The reality is, the folks in uniform have not only been quite careful to not harm or even infringe upon the rights of peaceful protesters (even the ones who are running interference for the rioters and and looters), but have done their best not to harm the abusive, lawless folks (and have also made it their business to not infringe on their rights).

As bad an idea as that may seem—and I kind of agree that it is—the truth is, it’s beginning to look like a prudent move. Why?

Before I answer that question, let me be clear on a couple of personal perspectives in the interest of full disclosure.

To begin with, I don’t generally think even peaceful protests are a good idea. Don’t misunderstand, people demonstrating peacefully with the intent of engaging others, and getting them to think about that which they support—people choosing to be friendly, helpful, and to distribute or disperse information on something—can bolster or aid their cause. That being said, if something is severe enough to cause widespread protest, it probably needs more action within the system than outside it.

The other problem with protesting, is that there are invariably people out there who think they understand the situation, but really don’t. By way of example, anyone having taken any time to review the statistics with regard to black folks being killed by police officers, should be aware the numbers are exceptionally low. In fact, to the great credit of those enforcing law, that’s true for all kinds of people, not just black individuals.

There are arguments to the effect that the numbers are unreasonably high by percentage, but those arguments can be identified as almost entirely statistically anomalous on review for multiple reasons that I won’t get into here. As well, the “raw” numbers are so small, that even if they were inaccurate (say, by a factor of ten), they would still barely be worth consideration when looking at other ways in which it’s more common for black folks (most especially young men) to meet their ends through violence. It should not need said, but I’ll do so in any case, that I’m not indicating that real issues that occur need not be addressed—of course they should.

Secondly, considering the sheer populations of the areas in which protests are happening, the number of folks currently out on the streets supposedly for various causes is really quite small. I’m by no means saying that they’re not causing huge and expensive damage to various buildings, people and other resources that will take a large amount of time, effort, money and other resources to remedy. And to be clear, I believe I am akin the majority of residents in the United States in that I support the idea “black lives matter,” but don’t support the Marxist movement that goes by that same name—nor do I support Antifa (who interestingly enough, I consider to be using tactics taken directly from the Fascist playbook). And by the way, I don’t believe most Americans support Antifa any more than do I.

As far as this little essay is concerned though, all of this is secondary. I mentioned that I believe various authorities are doing something I wouldn’t have initially thought to be prudent in being so easy on those who choose to act illegally and hide among those behaving lawfully in the doing of it.

The interesting thing is, I’m pretty sure a bunch of folks are beginning to wake up to what’s going on—not so much in terms of what most government entities are doing, but in terms of what’s happening otherwise.

This is important because I don’t think they disagree only with those who commit any number of infractions at various levels of criminality, but with those currently non-violently expressing their views.

Put simply, the average U.S. citizen doesn’t even stand with the peaceful protesters.

Let’s face it, most of us hold more in common than we do in contrast with our fellows. This is true in this case as much as in any other. To say it plainly, I’m not trying to insinuate that the average American doesn’t believe black lives matter (and that strong action should be taken when police officers murder black folks, for example). I’m not trying to say either, that people in this country think there’s “nothing wrong with” the political status quo.

Frankly, I think the reason we have the president we do at present is precisely because they don’t believe that.

With all of this though, it doesn’t take very long before individuals get positively fed up with, others trying to cram their sometimes-horribly-radical beliefs down our collective throats.

To the folks currently doing the protesting, you may not believe it at this moment in time, but I’m pretty well certain there are far more folks who disagree with you, than those that agree.

Here’s the thing though. Even if folks agree with you in terms of ideology, that doesn’t mean they agree with the idea of making your dogma into an odious noise in the nostrils of all those who don’t agree.

There’s a reason for expressions like, “You catch more flies with honey than vinegar.” People will already be resistant if you’re the proverbial honey. You can often be assured they’ll draw their swords if you’re vinegar.

I think it vey likely some swords are about to leave their sheaths shortly. When that happens, I have a feeling some folks who currently think they’re on top of the world are in for a rude awakening. Getting up each morning and going to a j-o-b, serving in armed forces in times of conflict, digging ditches, even writing software, these things make one tougher than a lot of folks realize. Want to find out how tough? Keep up the clamor and observe the outcome.

Thanks for reading and may your time be good.

6 replies on “What Appears Versus What Is – Religion and Politics”

> The reality is, the folks in uniform have not only been quite careful to not harm or even infringe upon the rights of peaceful protesters (even the ones who are running interference for the rioters and and looters), but have done their best not to harm the abusive, lawless folks (and have also made it their business to not infringe on their rights).

https://youtu.be/dCISe83UUgI

Daniel,

I’ve said in many of my posts that address the subject of protest, that police have made and will make mistakes.

I’ve also indicated that there are those in law enforcement who are guilty of (sometimes heinous) wrongdoing. Some of their acts are literally criminal (as appears to be the case in this video).

Nobody’s perfect, that’s a fact. I’m not saying, “everybody wearing a uniform and a badge is sinless.” Such a statement would be naive at best.

On the other hand, presenting “anecdotal evidence” to the effect that one or more appointed officials is or are guilty of wrongdoing hardly negates the point(s) made.

I could with great ease, find you a good many videos in which law enforcement were being pelted with a literal barrage of “projectiles” that could very easily be exceptionally harmful to their wellbeing.

That being said, I don’t want to take away from your point. The police and other enforcement entities absolutely do make errors in judgement, some of which are “with malice aforethought.” And some of those actions are criminal.

As I hope I indicated in this post (I certainly have in others), they too should be held accountable for their actions. This is not to me, a matter open to dispute.

Thanks for commenting. Thanks for taking the time to read.

Hope you’re well,

Dad (Kurt).

1.
“””
On the other hand, presenting “anecdotal evidence” to the effect that one or more appointed officials is or are guilty of wrongdoing hardly negates the point(s) made.
“””

Labeling video evidence that directly contradicts your claims as “anecdotal” is a cheap trick, and begs the question, “Why would this author need to minimize the validity of the highly reputable medium that most clearly disproves his claims?”

Video evidence, while not perfect, is as close to a gold standard of evidence as you’re going to get in terms of documenting real-life events; and the particular incident I posted is high definition, and filmed from multiple angles. There is little left to interpretation. Arguing otherwise about the validity of video as evidence is a fool’s errand, and if we can’t form a basis of reality in directly filmed events, there is probably nothing on which we’ll agree.

2.
“””
I could with great ease, find you a good many videos in which law enforcement were being pelted with a literal barrage of “projectiles” that could very easily be exceptionally harmful to their wellbeing.
“””

Another cheap trick. This line is an attempt to bait me into a position about protesters. All I’m doing here is providing direct video evidence that contradicts your thesis that “the folks in uniform have not only been quite careful to not harm or even infringe upon the rights of peaceful protesters”. While I have a position on protesters, I think addressing the bad-faith debate tactics you’ve employed is more interesting.

The fact of the matter is that a law enforcement officer cracked the skull of a 75 year old man on concrete, which caused the victim to bleed out of his ear and suffer brain injuries, while the 75 year-old presented next to no threat to the agents responsible for the violence.

3.
“””
That being said, I don’t want to take away from your point. The police and other enforcement entities absolutely do make errors in judgement, some of which are “with malice aforethought.” And some of those actions are criminal.
“””

I think debate is fine and healthy, so I won’t begrudge you the argument you’re attempting to make. Make it as directly and clearly as you can. But there is really no need to be deceptive about your intentions. It seems pretty obvious that attempting to “take away [my] your point” was exactly the intent of your preceding two paragraphs before the above quote.

Second, you’re contradicting your article. If you’re admitting in this response that law enforcement might perpetrate “literally criminal” acts, that it’s “naive at best” to assume the police are sinless, and that they are capable of committing “criminal” acts with “with malice aforethought”, then how can you square these claims with the central thesis of your article:

“””
…law enforcement officers are cracking down hard on the peaceful protesters, as well as the rioters and looters.

Wait, you mean to say you hadn’t noticed this trend? That would—of course—be because *it isn’t occurring*.
“””

I think the only thing I basically agree with in this article is this quote:

“””
With all of this though, it doesn’t take very long before individuals get positively fed up with, others trying to cram their sometimes-horribly-radical beliefs down our collective throats.
“””

Please take a long look in the mirror and say that out loud.

Daniel,

I’m going to respond to each of your points in turn. I will use the same numbering, so you can refer back to your original question or comment.

1. an•ec•do•tal ăn″ĭk-dōt′l►
adj.
Of, characterized by, or full of anecdotes.
adj.
Based on casual observations or indications rather than rigorous or scientific analysis.

Pertaining to or consisting of anecdotes.

Whether video evidence or not, there are two facts with regard to the video you posted. The first is that what happened before and after the video(s) is not nearly so clear as what happened during the video(s). This, funnily, is the less important fact.

My intent was not to in any way belittle the video as evidence. It looks very much like a set of occurrences rolled forth that must be investigated. Rather, my point was to say this was not some sort of statistical analysis of what has been happening in the period in question. As with the video of Mr George Floyd and Mr Dereck Chauvin, we’re talking about an isolated incident.

The far more important question in both cases is, “How often does this sort of thing happen?” The answer in both cases appears to be, “Very rarely.”

Arguing that video is some sort of “gold standard of evidence” (even if true) doesn’t change these facts.

2. In actuality, I was in no wise attempting to “bait you” into any perspective with regard to the protesters. How you feel about them is only germain to this subject to the degree that you’re willing to argue against what I say outside of reason. Rather, the point of my statement was to say, “Even with what could easily and rightly be termed excessive provocation, the general tendency of law enforcement officers was to interact with the folks doing the rioting and looting as little as possible and with the greatest care. In general, they had zero interest in interacting with peaceful protesters.” An important point, protesters don’t throw projectiles at police officers. As such, nothing I said in my response was intended to evoke any reaction towards protesters whatsoever.

With regard to the video presented, it’s my sincere hope that justice is served, however that ends up looking when all is said and done. If it’s decided the action was unprovoked, and/or the officer acted inappropriately, then whatever course is decided by the legal system is what ought to occur (within reason).

3. I think you’ve misunderstood the entire article if you assume my “central thesis” was to say anything about what law enforcement had or hadn’t done directly. The main point of the article was to say that everyday citizens may well be getting to the point where they’re tired of parts of their cities and other municipalities being trashed by lawless mobs (not talking about the majority of the demonstrators here, though the do tend to leave unnecessary messes where they go).

This ire may well translate to people coming out to counter first and foremost the rioters and looters, but secondly, possibly the protests as a whole. The reason? That I believe a large percentage of folks don’t agree with the central concepts presented by the protesters. The rioters and looters just exacerbate the situation by bringing unlawful activity to what could be simple protests.

My point in response was to say I thought it reasonable to assume that not in all cases were law enforcement acting as I had indicated. That was the point I believed you to be making that I was trying to “not take away from.”

3a.

I want to speak to your final statements.

To begin with, I know very well that there are those who’ll agree with what I’m saying in this article, and those who won’t. Based on what you’re saying, I’m assuming you’re one who doesn’t. That’s entirely within your rights and though apparently we disagree, I have no intent—yet again—to begrudge you that fact. You are your own person, as such, you must make your own decisions what you will and won’t support. That’s fine by me.

With regard to the “long look in the mirror,” I do that regularly and my conscience is entirely clear. That you or others disagree with me is not some matter that foments anger or a desire to attack. People have different ideas and opinions, you have yours, I mine.

Perhaps I’m wrong in what I’ve said, time will tell. If I’m correct though, there may be some terribly unhappy protesters (and rioters and looters) in the very near future.

The funny part? I neither intend to be one acting against them, nor was my intent to attempt to get others to take action. I was simply stating what I saw as a potential outcome, current circumstances considered.

Final thought, again, small amounts of individual malfeasance on the part of law enforcement does not a “crackdown” make. The fact that there’re people who do things they ought not, and that some of the folks in question work in law enforcement, doesn’t mean that law enforcement is involved in some sort of large scale action against protesters, rioters and looters.

Again, this was not really the primary thing I was trying to present in the article to begin with (that law enforcement was or wasn’t “cracking down on” individuals), but it’s still important to note that the overall tenor of police interaction with various entities is neither violent, nor can it be seen as “cracking down.”

To close, I see that you seem to have some degree of animosity towards me (veiled though it may be), I’m sorry that’s the case. You can rest assured I have no such feelings toward you. My interest is in discussion of what I believe and quite frankly, potential debate that follows. As such, you’ve done pretty much what I would have hoped. That means from my viewpoint, except that I think you’ve missed some things I bring up here, this has worked pretty much as I would desire it to.

I truly hope you and yours are well,

Dad (Kurt).

Daniel,

I doubt you “keep up with” my blog (I’m sure you’ve little time for such things, being a busy individual). I wanted to make it clear I meant what I said in my former reply to your comment.

This post will hopefully help you to see that this is something I’ve maintained for some time.

Questionalble Judgement – Religion and Politics

Hope this clarifies.

Dad (Kurt).

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