We That Are True Lovers Get Into Strange Capers…

….notably, this afternoon for love of my daughter, I went to a Black Lives Matter  protest of George Floyd’s death, in Wilkes Barre, Pa.

My daughter announced she was going and asked if we wanted to come.  I said, as lawyers we shouldn’t risk arrest— especially, she  shouldn’t, poised at the beginning of a law career in which she would be well-positioned to  work for system-wide change.  Sha said she attends protests all the time, I said, I know, but you’re home now, and I’m…aware.  . Well, I didn’t want to sit home worrying for 5 hours, so I said I’d go, and so did my BMD.  We’ve both had less-than-pleasant experiences at the hands of cops, and I am furious with this Chauvin bozo.  WHAT could he have been thinking?

So, on a beautiful,  cool,  sunny day we marched from Kirby Park, across the Susquehanna River , to Public Square.  The dread police were assisting the procession at crossings.  At Public Square we all lay face down on the ground for 8 minutes intoning  I CANT BREATHE , with the organizers reminding us how much worse it would be with someone’s knee an our necks, and that, at least WE would be getting up  again.  ( I was totes into this, since we had our faces coverEd  with bandanas and I really could not breathe too well.)  Almost the entire crowd, we estimate 250  people tops, was white.  We chanted GEORGE FLOYD and NO JUSTICE NO PEACE,  NO RACIST POLICE and BLACK LIVES MATTER and NO MORE DEATH. A drone hovered over us, and we all held our signs to the sky. Then we marched back to the park, with. motorists enthusiastically honking and waving.

The requirement to assume an unfamiliar posture ( first we were asked to kneel, then to prostrate ourselves)  Couple with the mantra-like chanting, is very powerful.  We were only out for maybe 2 hours, but I can imagine an increasing susceptibility to suggestion the longer you stayed standing in the streets.

One  of the organizers had exhorted us not to wreck any businesses, but that was never on the agenda for this crowd.

Well:   this, O Ratty, is northeastern Pa.
I felt I was among people of good will.

I suspect the intentions of many people attending protests in the big cities may be similarly benign, but that as darkness comes, and parade fatigue becomes endemic, the more malign element takes control.

For today, in Wilkes  Barre, I witnessed only the exercise of  “the right of the people to peaceably assemble”.

God save the United States!

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13 thoughts on “We That Are True Lovers Get Into Strange Capers…”

  1. EThompson:
    Police office Chauvin was arrested on Friday for third-degree murder and second-degree manslaughter and is being held at the Ramsey County Jail in St. Paul on $500,000 bail. The other three have been fired from the force and are awaiting further charges.

    Appears as if the system is doing its job and no need for the rest of us to endanger more lives and destroy property.

    “Reason not the need!”  
    Yes, he was charged, but they should also have charged him with Murder 1, in my opinion.
    But I don’t know whether that would’ve avoided what has happened in various cities, because I do believe what Barr said about instigators of the violence.

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  2. I want to see the VICTIM!’s blood tox report.   If I were the cops nationwide, I’d do a Rodney King – no police anywhere enforcing anything for a week.  Let Socialism free the streets and end towering real estate hegemonies in cities.   After there is nowhere to live, nowhere to work, nowhere to purchase, and no public transportation… invade Mexico.

    Or, end this crap by indefinitely suspending Welfare and Medicaid RIGHT NOW.

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  3. Isn’t murder 1 premeditated (malice aforethought) ? This one looks like a bad-tempered, impulsive unprofessional who will spend the rest of his life where the sun never shines amidst black convicts. He’ll get his.

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  4. Hyp, don’t you think the entire purpose of having the crowd lay flat & repeat their mantras is to traumatize the most malleable there into unthinking dedication to the cause? This to me seems to be a brainwashing regimen right out in the open in public view.

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  5. Pencilvania:
    Hyp, don’t you think the entire purpose of having the crowd lay flat & repeat their mantras is to traumatize the most malleable there into unthinking dedication to the cause? This to me seems to be a brainwashing regimen right out in the open in public view.

    I agree. I am always really dubious about when these incidents are brought to the forefront. There have been, I don’t know, hundreds of thousands of interactions with law enforcement every year, probably more. Some are non-incidental, some are situations where excessive force is used, where people have lost their lives. Back in 2019 a man named Tony Timpa died in a similar way by the police as George Floyd did (you can look it up, it was in Dallas) no one cared about that guy. It’s only when the media decide to highlight them do we see this kind of madness grip the nation. Remember Freddie Gray, when Baltimore was almost burnt to the ground. The difference here is, the riots are spreading to multiple cities across the country. Seems to me that much of this has nothing to do with what happened in Minnesota. That is the reason given, and Antifa has been given Carte blanche to destroy.   So much of this stuff stinks.

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  6. Pencilvania:
    Hyp, don’t you think the entire purpose of having the crowd lay flat & repeat their mantras is to traumatize the most malleable there into unthinking dedication to the cause? This to me seems to be a brainwashing regimen right out in the open in public view.

    Yes, I do.  I kinda admire their technique.  It’s like in church, when, devoutly kneeling, we all hear the recitation of our transgressions and intone “Lord have mercy upon us”.

    In this post I am practicing the “participant observation” technique I learned in Anthro 101.
    The anthropologist may admire, or deplore, what she observes about a culture.
    Herein, I admire our traditions of freedom of assembly and speech. (Yes it’s my own culture, but I refuse to hate it just because it isn’t exotic.)

    And it’s  not that those Freedoms  can’t be subverted..maybe a separate post about “sacred speech”..

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  7. Hypatia:
    So, on a beautiful,  cool,  sunny day

    the lovely Mrs E and myself went to Sandy Hook NJ and peacefully assembled, barefoot, on the beach.   There was no marching, but we did walk a few miles, ankle deep in the chilly surf.   Don’t tell Gov Murphy, but even in NJ … for a few hours … there was liberty and the pursuit of happiness.

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  8. Mike LaRoche:
    More rioting, looting, and arson tonight, including here in Texas. A declaration of martial law, once unthinkable, may no longer be so.

    Same going on in Jax; a comparatively small city. Talk about the “perfect storm” – virus + police brutality equals a complete breakdown of society.

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