Art and Community / Art-Making and Culture / Community and Culture

On Wite Out: Erasure, Rectification and Frankfurtian Bullshit

IMG_1670If Ferguson wasn’t a wake up call, the Grand Jury non-indictment in Staten Island in the homicide of Eric Garner should be.

‘Cause this shit happened in liberal New York, and shit like this never happens in liberal New York. Of course, that’s an empty claim–it’d be bullshit, were it not so intimately anchored to a belief collected and sifted through New York magazine that it must be true; the claim is beloved as true by many millions, I’m sure– and it’s false for Amadou Diallo was killed in liberal New York. So, then, you say Eric Garner shouldn’t have been killed in Mayor de Blasio’s New York. Yes, Garner shouldn’t have been killed in de Blasio’s New York, because he shouldn’t have been killed in anyones New York. Yet there he was, killed after whimpering for the last time, “i can’t breathe”.

Garner’s murder is an American story, and failure of the promise of America. Now, his murder is the failure of a promise, and that he was murdered by an agent of the State is the morally indefensible issue at play but that issue is, if anything, evidence of the successful turn at another round of status quo shit in American politics.

All observations of political phenomena (stuff that goes between between two or more people) that consistently march together are really the manifestation of equilibria states between competing forces, factors, fuckers. What you get is the sum total of agents moving in service of their interests, a rubber band expanding, moving, only where it gets pulled, stretched out of shape. If you observe then that African American men are disproportionately shot by agents of the State, then someone, something, somewhere is pushing, pulling things along so that far too many shootings of unarmed black men is the vector sum result.

Now, we in America are supposed to have authorized our government to do stuff for us. That’s what representative government is supposed to do, mostly for us. Since Andrew Jackson’s turn at nation-wide politics we’ve called that arrangement a democracy. But dig a bit deeper, plumb down past the democratic platitudes that tend to mask issues of truth and falsity, and get beyond the bullshit idea that truth is concealed, and that the world, politics or whatever un-conceals it, reveals it. (Truth as revelation: the ultimate Christian doctrine!) We’re meant to think that our revealed democratic duty discharged is the cum that’ll hold us together. Well, it turns out that the truth is out there, and always has been out there for everyone to see, that what really matters is the identity/demographics of the bloc of voters who show up to vote. Usually, that’s an older, richer crew. They show up to school board elections; they show up to vote in off-year elections; they show up to vote even when there’s no eloquent candidate who gets you to hope for the change she’s bound to deliver, and this bloc of voters tend to vote conservatively for people who won’t rock the boat, the one that you can tell from afar is sinking. Well, voting conservatively in a country that as a matter status quo policy in “multi-dimensional space” is kind of whacked out right of center, what with it having been founded by religious Rightwing nutjobs (the founding fathers you know about and love so much were only the hardcore elite of a cohort that even in the 18th C, was made up of seriously Rightwing nutjobs) is always going to yield new policy that’s mostly conservative. Add to that electoral rules and Congressional voting rules that tend to moderate policy issues to flimsy fluff that a majority of dunces can agree on, then you persistently have and maintain a right-centrist country with rightist policy.  And, naturally, as long as that shit’s going down you won’t have winning policy platforms on anything that doesn’t fit the demands and duties of Righty McRights. And more people like Eric Garner will get killed because the kinds of policing, the kinds of public engagement that’ll deter these sorts of murders tend to follow the left winning high office, and forcing through concessions from the stable status quo Right. Even with President B. Hussein Obama in office, the Rightwing in America remains ascendant.

Yeah, no wonder that egalitarian moves that have long tracked the progress of greater racial and gender equality falls off the fuckin’ track that without all that lefty business is really set to take this country down to hell.

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