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Viewpoints: Letters / Opinions


By David G. Hanger


June 26, 2020
Friday PM

Let’s start out by noting that “defunding the police” as political mantra or slogan is almost as dumb as Trump holding a rally in Tulsa on Juneteenth. I rather imagine a whole lot more of you in the past week or so have learned something about both the Tulsa Massacre of 1921 and Juneteenth, the day the slaves of Texas learned they were free; the day of Jubilee.

That aside, I would encourage Mr. John Suter and many others of you to seriously evaluate which way your flags are waving. “Antifa,” for example, is not an entity in any sense of the term, not an organization; it is just a label. Rather than continuously slurping the kool-aid of the Joseph Goebbels School of Journalism and Propaganda that gives you nothing substantive except a severe case of Jello- brain, and otherwise parrot-like conduct and thought, try reading the police reports and the FBI reports of this series of demonstrations that have been occurring nationwide since Memorial Day weekend.

What you might have learned is that while there were many individual instances of looting and burning, there is no evidence of left-wing organizations of any kind coordinating dissenting activities. What you also would have learned is that there is a lot of evidence of violent right wing groups coordinating activities designed as ‘false flag’ operations with the specific intent of blaming someone else for their crap. The ‘Boogaloo Boys’ have already murdered two law enforcement officers, been involved in multiple nefarious actions, and are planning even more violent endeavors according to the Feds. Your ‘Boogaloo Boys’ are organized. They are also moronic, idiotic, and dangerously violent.

The people in the streets, your neighbors, for the most part are not.

I was raised by Bomber crews who survived World War II. My father was a radio operator in a B17. They probably voted more or less 50-50 Republican/Democrat, but in relation to the hundreds of thousands of European fascists this bunch killed, their primary observation was it was “just a good start,” referring to the fact that American fascism also required serious resolution. That was back in the 1950s.

I am definitely an anti-fascist, and I would be concerned if you weren’t, too. Nazism is simply the German variant of fascism, so get it straight what you are talking about; dominance by a bunch of authoritarian assholes who will kill you just because you disagree with them on some fine point. Perhaps you forget, or never learned, that Hitler purged the conservatives before he went after the liberals. No, I am not a member of Antifa; I am a member of the National Association of Enrolled Agents, that’s it. But proudly and adamantly anti-fascist, you bet.

While a stupid label, “defunding the police” is actually tactically quite witty. Its intent is to bust the police unions wide open, and that has merit. Our cops are too militarized, too frequently view the public they are supposed to serve as the enemy, have “warrior-trained” their personnel to the point that way too many of them are blind, ignorant bullies who intentionally escalate routine situations. This “qualified immunity” doctrine in combination with “warrior” training has created a bunch of trigger happy jerks who justify shooting someone twenty plus feet away 14 times who has a three-inch stick in his hand. (Not an exaggeration. Go watch the 2010 Manteca shooting incident that I have precisely described.) “Qualified immunity” needs to be abolished, or at least extremely modified, and such things left to the cops as dealing with the mentally unstable also requires substantial review and policy changes.

The problem is real and the tactics are logical. The slogan “defunding the police” is downright stupid. Back in the 1970s the late Richard Pryor publicly alleged that most inmates in U.S. prisons were political prisoners. Then one day he went and did a show in a California prison. His comment shortly thereafter, “There’s a lot of really bad people in there, and they need to stay in there.”

Hurricane Harvey dumped 60 inches of rain and more on Houston, Texas, but San Antonio a mere 180 miles away got one-and-a-half inches of rain. Yet someone started a rumor that gasoline would be in short supply which started a mad panic with even giant, open plastic tubs in pickup beds being filled to the brim, and despite reassurances by authorities that there was no gas supply shortage, in a day’s time there was no gas to be had anywhere in that city.

Society does not work without cops, anybody with half a brain knows that. But things do need to change; this generation of cops is way too twitchy. And yes, dammit, I want all of those folks to go home safe at the end of their day, too.

This left/right political differentiation started in France when Louis XVI bent to whims and allowed a legislature to convene, at which the royalists sat to the right of the podium and the social liberals calling for representative government sat to the left of the podium. That is where it came from, and that is all that it really means.

This idea that political thought is a linear graph where all the reactionaries are at one end of that line and all the non-reactionaries are at the other end is nonsense. While the center point gravitates along a narrower, linear arc, the reality is that a better metaphor is that the nature of politics is circular, by which is meant if you go too far to either extreme, left or right, you end up in the same place with an intolerant, ignorant dictator killing everyone who disagrees with him. (When we have a female dictator, I will add “or her.”)

I realize that many Alaskans have never associated with a black person or a Hispanic person; never broken bread with them, never visited them in their homes, basically just don’t know anything about them. Then via the Republican party’s “Southern Strategy,” intentionally designed to capture the racists of the deep South as permanent Republican voters, all of you who vote Republican who claim not to be racists nonetheless enable and empower the worst racists in this country, and in some respects the worst in the world. But you will deny to your dying breath that there is a single racist bone in your body.

Perhaps it is better if you noted that racism exists, that you have no personal experience or understanding of it, but appreciate the fact that those who experience it systematically don’t like it. I think your attitude would be different if you were repeatedly pulled over for “driving while black.” (Which happens with frequency to this very day even to black U.S. Senators.)

Quit empowering it and enabling it by ceasing your support of the damned racists in this country. You are equally guilty if you aid and abet a murder, and you are definitely complicit in racism if you support racists with your votes.

“There are only two types of people in the world. Good people and bad people.” Color has nothing to do with that.

David G. Hanger
Ketchikan, Alaska




Editor's Note:

The text of this letter was NOT edited by the SitNews Editor.

Received June 19, 2020 - Published June 26, 2020

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