I stood on one of the four corners with quite a few people but trying to keep a social distance. Most of my co-protesters are white, I’m one of the few brown people there. I heard passing motorists scream at me, “Go back to your country!” We all heard the idiotic racists with their comeback to our Black Lives Matter signs with “All lives matter!” and ” N*** Lover!”. Along with signs that said, “Black Lives Matter” we also held signs that with “End Racism”, “ACAB”, “No Justice. No Peace” and “White Silence is Compliance.” Our signs were created to denounce police brutality inspired by the strong images of George Floyd slowly dying on a street, his throat caught under the knee of a white Minneapolis police officer in our minds. The fact that a dying George Floyd called for his mom tore at every single one of us who are mothers. As the video circulated, we could no longer accept the mainstream media’s explanation for police brutality. We could no longer ignore that black people have suffered for centuries in the United States under oppression and brutality.
Why George Floyd’s death and not the hundreds of deaths and acts of police brutality before? I’m not sure and I’m ashamed. None of us should have ignored the institutional and defacto racism that thrives in this country. I’ve heard the arguments in favor of the cops but there are no acceptable excuses now. So yes, even though the autopsy reports included in a CNN article shared that George Floyd had drugs in his system or existing health conditions, we have to acknowledge that George Floyd’s death was violent, unnecessary and was intentionally done by a police officer ( a first responder ) and was observed by 3 police officers who stood by. Honestly, I want to believe that there are good cops. I grew up believing that the police are the good guys and I want to believe that most of them are. Now, I wonder if it was all a lie.
“All lives matter” is a sentiment that I have only heard uttered by white racists whom feel they are the neglected downtrodden who are dying off at the hands of people of color. The fact they cling to that, “All Live Matter” sentiment is ironic considering their dislike for people of color.
These days, our signs are “Black Lives Matter” signs in recognition that the racism against black people must end. U.S. News published an article on June 03, 2020, Mapping Police Violence indicated that over 1,000 unarmed people died due to police violence. Out of those killed, a third of them were black. Overall, people of color were more apt to experience police violence than white people. This must end. George Floyd’s death has ripped off the blindfold and the rage it awoke is felt, not just in the United States but all over the world. In a CNN article it was reported George Floyd inspired Black Lives Matter demonstrations in Britain, Greece, France, Syria, Brazil, Mexico, Ireland, New Zealand, Canada, Poland and Australia. Hopefully this time, we’ll make a difference or keep fighting until we do.
The Violence and Destruction at Protests
I wanted to share a couple of videos from the La Mesa protest that began around 2 pm on May 30, 2020 that was not an official Black Lives Matter event. Participants said the demonstration did not get violent until the police became violent and most of the protesters did not participate in the violence and other criminal activity. However, with the media coverage showing footage of looters ( all races ), vandalism and then the fires there has not been an area without heavy police presence and stores boarding up their windows. Honestly, I can’t blame anyone for wanting to protect their property and their businesses. These are businesses who might have been shut down or recently allowed to reopen during our Covid-19 shutdown restrictions. These are businesses whose employees depend upon for their housing, food and other life necessities. With the Covid-19 shutdown some people were just hoping to have a job to come back to but for some of these people, that’s less of a possibility than before. Residents of La Mesa are understandably angry, I hope they understand not ALL protesters were involved. There were opportunistic looters abound and protesters who were trying to prevent crimes. We should also keep in mind that years of tolerating police brutality against people of color must end now. As for the police? They used well trained snipers to shoot rubber bullets, one shot a woman right between the eyes and she’s still in ICU. Tear gas was used throughout the day, a semi truck was seen where no protesters were and where fires started. Plenty of stories and I’m more likely to believe a protester over anyone else. Especially, the police department. Nevertheless, lets look at some footage then decide. First off, I have a link to a news video from CBS 8 that you can view HERE. Also, I’m sharing other videos to give another perspective of happened in La Mesa on outside of mainstream media.
The Other Perspectives
This is Part 2, you can find Part 1 and Part 3 at Strong – Heart Warrior Media on YouTube
This video was shared to me by Ryan from Osmium619. You might recall the post I wrote about them. During times such as these, we all need some therapy and Metal is awesome therapy! Osmium619 is massively metal.
Thank you for dropping in. I know that this post is the first in a couple of weeks and it has almost nothing to do with the usual theme but things have suddenly gone from weird to fucking insane. I’m going to end with telling how the protest experience has been for somebody who is very close to me.
I have a loved one that attended the downtown San Diego protest on May 31, 2020. Somehow the police had boxed in the protesters who knelt with their hands up in the air, my loved one looked up to see a police officer standing in front of her. He smiled down at her then turned his body cam off. The protesters were allowed to march and they were peaceful when they marched. However, the route was directed by the cops who had positioned their cars to block and direct. The protesters ended up boxed in under snipers who began shooting tear gas, rubber bullets down on the protester who were pummeled by baton wielding cops. There was blood, people lying motionless on the ground and trampling as protesters tried to flee. Those who sat in prayer were yanked up by the police. Luckily, my loved one and her friends got away. Back in the 70’s, cops used their clubs to beat her father when he was a teenager. They didn’t like his long blond hair and he had refused to give them his identification. His family sued the city and a restitution was paid but not from the police officers but from tax dollars and those police officers remained employed. Therein lies the problems, a lack of personal accountability and proper training. As frightening and painful as our experiences have been with the police, unless you’re black, you have not nearly experienced what it is to be a black person. A black person in America has ancestors who were slaves. They may have living relatives who recall the random police and rowdy white people doling out beatings for being black in the wrong place. It is likely they may remember the sketchy real estate deals, the redlining, the crosses burning on lawns to chase them out of white neighborhood, the segregated restaurants, sitting in the back of the bus, “whites only” drinking fountains and sleeping in cars on road trips simply because the only nearby hotel did not allow blacks.
I want to believe that there are good police officers. I want to tell every child that a police officer is one of the “good guys” and trustworthy if a stranger bothers them or if they get lost in a crowd. I’m beginning to believe that a “good cop” does not exist. Sadly, we have nobody else to call if and when the need arises.
Be safe and well.
*The videos and images are credited and are not property of San Diego Blather*