As featured on p. 218 of "Bloggers on the Bus," under the name "a MyDD blogger."

Sunday, November 19, 2006

What The Hell Is Going On In This Country?

First we had an incident where UCLA campus police tased an individual for not having the right ID, which if you believe is a punishment that fits that crime, then you must also believe that Rosa Parks should be tased.

After all, Rosa Parks was black, committed a premeditated crime, and loudly and rudely disrupted the commute of a lot of nice white people who simply wanted to get home after a hard day's work. Bitch.

Then there's Ernesto Miranda - another colored guy. Hell, Miranda wasn't even American - he was one of those Mexicans that Lou Dobbs is always talking about. And Miranda was even worse than Parks. Miranda got arrested, and convicted, of kidnapping and rape. Yeah, real nice guy. According to the court, he was a "seriously disturbed individual with pronounced sexual fantasies." Freak.

Or how about Roy Allen Stewart - robber, murderer, sentenced to death. He was an indigent black guy who dropped out of school in the sixth grade. Loser [...]

(PS In case a few of you haven't figured it out, the names above are all of famous US civil rights cases. Each of those nasty individuals is responsible for you having some of your most important rights as American citizens. Think about that. You have YOUR rights because the courts recognized THEIR rights. That's why cases like this, where the victim is an "asshole," matter. Those assholes are responsible for most of the rights you now take for granted.)

Now in comes the news of police using horses to trample protestors engaging in civil disobedience in Houston.

Again, these weren't violent criminals, these were janitors making $5.15 an hour who were protesting to call for better wages and affordable health insurance from the Houston real estate industry. Not only were they abused in public, but the DA set bail at $888,888 per individual, approximately $850,000 more than murder suspects in the county.

I want you to read exactly what was done to these striking low-wage workers.

We sat down in the intersection and the horses came immediately. It was really violent. They arrested us, and when we got to jail, we were pretty beat up. Not all of us got the medical attention we needed. The worst was a protester named Julia, who is severely diabetic. We kept telling the guards about her condition but they only gave her a piece of candy. During roll call, she started to complain about light-headedness. Finally she just collapsed unconscious on the floor. It was like she just dropped dead. The guard saw it but just kept going through the roll. Susan ran over there and took her pulse while the other inmates were yelling for help, saying we need to call somebody. The medical team strolled over, taking their own sweet time. She was unconscious for like 4 or 5 minutes.

They really tried to break us down. The first night they put the temperature so high that a woman--one of the other inmates--had a seizure. The second night they made it freezing and took away many of our blankets. We didn't have access to the cots so we had to sleep on a concrete floor. When we would finally fall asleep the guards would come and yell `Are you Anna Denise SolĂ­s? Are you so and so?' One of the protesters had a fractured wrist from the horses. She had a cast on and when she would fall asleep the guard would kick the cast to wake her up. She was in a lot of pain.

The guards would tell us: `This is what you get for protesting.' One of them said, `Who gives a shit about janitors making 5 dollars an hour? Lots of people make that much.' The other inmates--there were a lot of prostitutes in there--said that they had never seen the jail this bad. The guards told them: `We're trying to teach the protesters a lesson.' Nobody was getting out of jail because the processing was so slow. They would tell the prostitutes that everything is the protesters' fault. They were trying to turn everybody against each other.

This makes a mockery of American values. It is not appropriate nor should it be accepted to trample striking workers with horses and brutalize them in their holding cell, nor is it acceptable to use a taser, which can be lethal, because of a missing student ID. The country has been asleep for a few long years, believing that the world was such a dangerous place that authoritarian techniques like this were necessary and right. If that's true we've lost America, at least the one that I once knew.