Why do we applaud violent uprisings against oppressive regimes in other countries, but can't seem to wrap our heads around the fact that what we saw in Ferguson - and now in Baltimore - is exactly that? A marginalized and abused minority rising up against a government and their agents that would prefer to keep their collective jackboot squarely on the throats of the oppressed.
Violent uprisings in places like Iran, Syria, Egypt, China, and Pakistan are touted by our leaders and media as "witnessing the birth of democracy," and yet, when it happens on U.S. soil, they seem to be more concerned with property rights than human rights. Why are Ferguson and Baltimore not viewed as "the exercise of democracy?"
More maddening is the fact that many, if not all, of the critics of these violent reactions to oppression are the same Second Amendment absolutists that would arm every man, woman, and child in America to protect themselves from a tyrannical government. They advocate for a bloody coup using firearms on U.S. soil, but denounce the actions of rioters in Baltimore and Ferguson who, in my opinion, are doing exactly what these armchair patriots say is necessary to prevent systemic oppression. If you shoot people, it's a revolution, but if you burn a building it's terrorism. I guess a rose by any other name DOESN'T smell as sweet.
We denounce the acts of "ethnic cleansing" by dictatorial regimes in Eastern Europe, sometimes even lending military support to those ethnic minorities, but ignore the same "ethnic cleansing" happening in our own country.
Then there are the cro-magnons who say things like, "Slavery ended 150 years ago. When are black people going to get their act together?" Newsflash, genius: Slavery was the most egregious tool of oppression, but it was not the only one. Those other tools of oppression continue to this day in the form of "broken windows" policing, stop-and-frisk tactics, and a society that, from the top down, is designed to keep blacks down.
Another nugget that I just love is, "We have a black president. How can there still be racism?" While true, that is, how we say, the exception and not the rule. Despite the skin color of our president, life for everyday black folks hasn't really gotten a hell of a lot better since the days of Martin Luther King Jr. It's still harder for blacks to find employment, and still easier for them to be harassed, arrested, prosecuted, and jailed for crimes committed - and in many cases - crimes NOT committed. You don't have to search far and wide to find cases where blacks are straight up MURDERED by police before the due process of law has even begun. Add to that an increasingly militarized police force whose jackbooted thuggery seems to know no bounds, and you've got an award-winning recipe for violent protest.
You will hear countless people, some in positions of power, say, " I/We don't condone what's happening in Baltimore," but WE DO condone it; in any and every other country except our own. It is the stratospheric height of hypocrisy, and just another indicator that bigotry is still alive, well, and thoroughly ingrained in the U.S. of A.