You know how I ranted a whole bunch about the Michael Brown incident over the last couple months? And a year ago, I ranted a bunch about Trayvon Martin?
So you’d think I would have done a nice little blog ranting about Eric Garner (warning, do not follow that link if you don’t want to watch a 43-year-old man choked to death) and I thought about it. I was trying to think of what I had to add to the conversation. See, a lot of people think I just rant to rant. I don’t. I actually think about what I rant about very carefully. And in my head, I wanted to talk about the differences or lack thereof between shooting someone and going all Tazmission on you. I saw a few people complaining on the interwebs that Garner wasn’t really choking. Because “When you’re choking you don’t have the air to say ‘Help! I can’t breathe!'” *sigh* Anyone who feels that way, I invite you to come over and let me slap a rear naked choke on your for about ten seconds. If I’m in a good mood, maybe I’ll release it before you incur any permanent damage.
But people have addressed that. And really, it’s sort of beside the point.
Rand Paul in all his infinite wisdom did the pundit circuit the other day and claimed that Garner’s death wasn’t about race but instead was a direct result of New York’s ridiculously high tax on cigarettes. Rand Paul doesn’t understand the basic principles of cause and effect. Here’s the thing, I even kind of actually agree with Paul’s base point. Applying a tax to something that is HIGHER than the actual cost of the item is pretty much government sanctioned robbery. Sure. But, even if that was in some grand cosmic way related to the reason that Garner was selling cigarettes on the street (and that’s a tenuous claim at best), that has nothing to do with why he was killed, unless Rand Paul has access to some stats about bootleg DVD sellers being choked to death on NYC streets as well, and I’m unaware of it. But you know, even if you believe that, if you’re a perennial presidential hopeful, maybe there are better times to address that issue than while you’re literally speaking over video footage of a man being choked to death.
Fuck you, Rand Paul!
So then I decided, maybe I’ll talk about Tamir Rice. Let’s see… 12-year-old boy. Has toy gun. Police pull up next to him and shoot him two seconds later. (warning, do not follow that link if you don’t want to watch a 12-year-old boy shot dead at point blank range on video tape)
Yeah, that kinda sucks…
Yeah, that would have been a great blog. Shooting 12-year-old boys at point blank range sucks. Film at 11.
And then I realized what the problem is. See, I’m a wordy sonuvabitch. I’m currently 30 pages into writing what I thought would be a 10 page term paper. Even here I’m 500 words deep. I get paid to write shit. Hell, I get paid to teach people to write shit. I’m a crazy, curmudgeonly bastard who will rant about TV shows annoying me just as much as I will about social injustices. I compose intricate ten minute skits to make telemarketing scammers question their religion, sexuality and very place on the planet, WHILE I AM TALKING TO THEM. In short, I am a massive asshole. But for anyone who has argued that Brown, Garner and Rice isn’t about race (and I’ve seen a bunch of people in my FB/Twitter streams trying to do just that) remember one thing:
Police are literally killing unarmed black guys faster than *I* can think of anything to say about it. (warning, do not follow that link if you don’t want to read about a whole bunch of people getting killed in the same way in a relatively short amount of time. And yeah, I think its pretty fucked up that we live in a world where I have to make these warnings. )
*sigh* Remember the good old days when being black meant that maybe you got a trumped up speeding ticket or at worst an ass whuppin’?
So yeah… That…