It’s 6:15 in the morning as I start this. Since this and The Gibberish have been getting later and later – and since this bit of News is held under less stringent rules as the rest of the week – I thought I’d go ahead and start something. See how much I could get down before the afternoon nap came along.
I’m not going to lie, though. I was exhausted all day yesterday. I’ve been out of my carvedilol for most of the week and was just day before yesterday to refill my prescription. Like just about all my blood pressure medications, one of the side effects to it is fatigue, so I’m going to chalk yesterday up to that. Even after sleeping most of yesterday, I went to bed before midnight and was out before “Gatemouth” Brown got through “Frosty“.
You know, before I get too deep into it, let’s post the links to this week’s Gibberish. All of it’s influenced by the protests across the country, across the world, against out-of-control police violence, a flame lit by the murder of George Floyd by the Minneapolis Police Department. Tuesday was a little bit of navel gazing, as an exploration of racism in America, but I think Thursday’s piece is worth the effort. It’s an exploration of why The New York Times publishing right-wing nutjob Tom Cotton’s call to use the military to stomp down on dissent isn’t really all that out of character for either the Grey Lady or the big corporate media in general. Saturday was just me trying to stay awake long enough to wrap up the week and heap a bit of praise on Saladin Ahmed’s fiction.
Tropical Storm Cristobel is heading towards the Gulf Coast and dumping some rain between Florida and Louisiana. They’re calling for landfall sometime this afternoon, and we in Northeast Mississippi should see plenty rain come Monday. It’s more than likely not going to upgrade into a full-blown hurricane, though there is a possibility. Moderate flooding and fierce storms are on the plate, but the weather folk are saying it’s probably not going to be too heavy.
Speaking of the protests, the corporate media and the President are trying to play like the energy’s tapering off, but you couldn’t tell that according to reporting from across the country. Especially in Washington, D.C., where Mayor Muriel Bowser keeps sticking her thumb in Trump’s piggy eye. The street leading up to the White House has been temporarily renamed “Black Lives Matter Avenue”, and there’s been a huge “Black Lives Matter” stenciled on the street itself. Another one saying “Defund The Police” went down, so she ain’t playing. He tried to bring in the National Guard but she kicked them out of the hotels they were in, pumping a little life into the Third Amendment for the first time in God knows how long.
A judge in Denver has granted an order limiting the use of tear gas and other projectiles at protesters, and frankly, I’m sort of irritated it’s taken this long to put something like this down on the books. It’s a never-ending source of disappointment that so many of us are fine with the cops coming in loaded for bear with the express purpose of shutting down and all dissent. These people don’t care about the “looters,” they just don’t want to be told that something like this militarized state of police is just wrong.
We’re seeing a lot of people wet themselves over the call to “defund the police” and I don’t think they really understand what that means. It doesn’t get rid of the police entirely – not for most folks anyway – it simply means that they shouldn’t get the lion’s share of any municipality’s tax dollars. For example: out of the $6.5 million budgeted for Itawamba County, the sheriff’s department got almost $1.2 million, which is almost twice of what other departments, equally important, got. This is in addition to the $860,000 budgeted for the county jail, and this is all for a county of little more than 23,000 people.
And it’s not just the money that goes to police departments that’s sticking in people’s craws. It’s how the cops are used for everything that really shouldn’t be in their wheelhouse, from wellness checks to EMT services. While visiting my brother, I developed a nasty cough to the point where I passed out. He had to dig my tongue out because I was turning blue. My sister-in-law called an EMT and six cops showed up as well. They just sort of stood around. Go figure.
Now, however we want to define it, defunding the police hasn’t really been tried on any sort of large scale so we really don’t know how well it’d work, if at all. However, back in 2014, the NYPD pulled a stroppy over someone calling them out – I think it was Beyoncè – and pulled back on what they call “protective policing”. Crime complaints went down by a number of 2,100. Just an interesting tidbit.
I think that’s enough for an early morning run. In any event, stay strong and don’t let the bastards grind you down. Tomorrow is another week, God help us all.