Nov 15 2014

On Ferguson

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The cold blooded murder of Michael Brown by Ferguson Pig Darren Wilson, witnessed by dozens of residents and visitors to Canfield Green apartments on August 9th, 2014, has ignited a longstanding powderkeg of racial and class tensions in the greater Saint Louis region.

Since the anti-police riots the evening of Aug 9th, sparked by the murder of Mike Brown and disrespect shown to his body by Ferguson Police and the subsequent rage vented on local monied interests by this long-brutalized and marginalized community, the whole world has learned the name “Ferguson”.  It has become a dirty name, a name associated with systemic structural/institutional racist and classist violence, with a community forgotten and brutalized by militarized police who more and more blatantly look like the occupying army they’ve always been.  Ferguson has become a symbol for a generation whose future was looted long before any of us were born.

While Ferguson has become a Mecca of sorts for pilgrimages of radicals and activists from all around the world, as well as heartwarming messages of solidarity from Palestine to Egypt, the streets of Chile to the highways of Hong Kong, to the Liberal/Progressive politicos, Ferguson has become the locus for a new civil rights movement.  National “Social Justice” ambulance chasers like Jesse Jackson, Al Sharpton and local Democratic Party shills like Missourians Organizing for Reform and Empowerment (MORE) and the multitudinous front groups associated with them have spun an absurd and outdated narrative of nonviolent movement demanding a mythic and equally unlikely “justice”; justice, of course, within the context of an inherently unjust system of social organization.  All the old, tired movement “organizing”, nonviolent civil disobedience training, get out the vote campaigns, divide & conquer narrative management (“violent outside agitators“, anyone?) and photo ops have left a bad taste in the mouths of a whole new generation of pissed off youth.

The opportunistic Socialist Left, including all the old socialists, Black Nationalists, Marxist/Leninist/Maoists – even batshit-crazy “Chairman Bob” Avakian‘s Revolutionary Communist Party – have seized on the opportunity to write new statements no one will read, print more papers no one wants to read, and attempt to recruit a new generation of indignant youth into the ranks of this or that vanguard party.  Each faction hopes to capitalize on the explosion of righteous indignation in the streets of Ferguson and Saint Louis and harness that energy for whatever brand of revolution they hope to lead, at some arbitrary date in a future fantastical world where anyone gives a fuck about reading their poorly xeroxed socialist rag sheets.

For the far-right, Ferguson has been an opportunity to openly declare their support for law enforcement – a cultural trope of The State masking the racist, sexist/misogynist/patriarchal, classist organized violence meant to maintain the day-to-day order of the prevailing social, economic and political hierarchies.  The Ku Klux Klan, an organization with deep historic ties to organized police forces (just like fascist organizations all around the world), have threatened violence against Ferguson protesters, raised funds on behalf of Ferguson Pig Darren Wilson, and benefited from an uptick in membership and interest from increasingly polarized whites panicking for fear of losing the security of their historic positions of privilege in the social hierarchy of racism in Amerikkkaa.

It really is amazing how social/class consciousness manifests in the most abhorrent and monstrous manner among the privileged, whenever they feel their privilege is even remotely threatened…

Gun sales to business and property owners have reached record local highs, demonstrating the extent to which the privileged are more concerned with the integrity of “their” things and protecting “their” property than they are with the lives of racialized & marginalized persons.  News has emerged that Darren Wilson will return to work when the grand jury announces its non-indictment.  Meanwhile, black militants have announced they are stockpiling ammunition and arms as well, to deal with the violence threatened by the KKK and militarized police and National Guard units promised by Missouri Governor Jay Nixon.  The hacker collective Anonymous has launched a campaign to expose local KKK members, and have exposed corporate donations to the joint efforts of local, state and national law enforcement agencies, proving that the police “serve and protect” the interests of The $tate and the un-interrupted flow of corporate profit$.

Anyone who works in retail, a school, a hospital, who takes public transit or works with the public in any capacity by now has witnessed the absurd mania of whites scared out of their minds of the boogieman they are convinced is coming for them, their kids, their neighborhoods and their property.  Local broadcast and print media, as well as the mainstream online media and cable news have encouraged this, and retailers are cashing in BIG on the racist paranoia as scared bigots stock up on everything they have the privilege to afford to hoard.

Clergy and liberal leadership are calling for “de-escalation”, “dialogue” and “healing” between police, government, and “the community” (whose community?) when the anticipated non-indictment ruling is passed down by the grand jury in the next few days.  Meanwhile the indignant youth, offered no future by the perpetuation of the status quo and trajectory of Empire, racism, class and social stratification are left to wonder, what is there to talk about?

Why should WE keep “healing” the wounds inflicted upon our community by the armed gang of murderers, rapists, thieves, bullies and racists known as the police?

Why should WE dialogue with the system they serve?

Why should WE be held responsible for de-escalation, when THEY are the ones who bring guns, clubs, tazers, zipties and handcuffs, body armor & tanks and sound cannons to candlelight vigils and protests?

Regardless of whatever tomorrow or the next day or the day after that brings to the streets of Saint Louis and Ferguson, one thing is for sure: For many of us, the time for talk ended the moment Darren Wilson made a decision, a choice, to gun down MikeMike.  WE, generation fucked, the youth are the ones who have inherited this fucked up world from the generations before us who fucked it all up.  In this context, the strict nonviolence that accomplished jack shit for the generation before ours has absolutely ZERO relevance, and the champions of pacifism and calm look like fools at best (collaborators and snitches, at worst) in the face of the extreme violence inflicted upon our daily lives at work, at home, and out on the streets.

It is uncertain whether or not the youth who take to the streets in the days to come will bring the reckoning white racists have been dreading, and this racist city deserves.  Let’s hope so.