The Sad State of Our Union

Protests of the violent death of George Floyd at the hands of a police officer began right on the tail-end what at the time was thought to be the worst of the COVID-19 pandemic. These Black Lives Matter protests, themselves honorable and fully justified, have sometimes gotten out of hand and violated laws, killed people, and damaged property not belonging to the protesters. Most if not all of the violence and lawlessness has been fomented by anarchist and extremist groups, unaffiliated with Black Lives Matter, with objectives unrelated to the police brutality or the death of George Floyd, sometimes backed by foreign adversaries, and with the goal of instigating injury to protesters like the nice folks you see in the photo below.

A crowd of peaceful protesters line dancing. People in cities all over the world have gathered this summer in groups such as this to say “Enough” to race-motivated killings and general police brutality toward people of color by some in law enforcement. Heroes such as these use rule of law to stand for equal protection under the law for all as promised by the supreme law of the United States of America, the U.S. Constitution.

Police, regardless of their own race, political affiliation or reputation have gotten lumped together with scum like Floyd’s killer, Derek Chauvin, effectively ending respect for law and order by much of the population and elevating terrorists, murderers, thieves and vandals to the status of heroes.

The site near the killing of George Floyd memorialized.

Many this year, on both sides of the isle, seem to think that their own personal and/or political interests trump the rights, lives, health, and general well being of their neighbors who just several years ago they actually cared about. Many Conservatives and Liberals, each in their own way, have used the politics of an election year as an excuse to resist the guidelines laid down by experts intent on curtailing loss of life in the worst and most lethal pandemic in the U.S. in modern history, perhaps ever. Why have we stopped caring about killing people?

Where have we come as a nation that we now care so little about one and other?

The memorial of revolutionary soldier and statesman Caesar Rodney in Wilmington Delaware. In Dover, Rodney heard that the Delaware delegation was deadlocked between its other two delegates in the Continental Congress. He rode all night in a thunderstorm, in poor health, to cast the deciding vote for Delaware, turning the tide towards a unanimous vote on the Declaration of Independence. The statue shown here was temporarily removed from the monument on June 12th, 2020 to protect it from threatened vandalism by rioters (https://www.wdel.com/news/wilmingtons-caesar-rodney-and-christopher-columbus-statues-come-down/article_17d3295a-acd0-11ea-aa20-1ffff6f97c7a.html).

This July 4th, let us take a breath, think things through, and remember the things that made this country a world leader in peaceful discourse and the bloodless transfer of power. Let us reject racism in all of its forms on both sides of the political isle. Let us remember the sacrifices of patriots in blood and treasure and join them in standing up and the civil rights of our fellow human beings as much as our own. Let us protect all people of all races, positions, incomes, and religious affiliations.

To quote Rodney King…”People, I just want to say, you know, can we all get along?”

~ by Bill Housley on June 29, 2020.

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