Paint it (a little less) black

Red dawn. OK, so it's more purple and magenta.

Red dawn. OK, so it’s more purple and magenta.

Lots of discussion among the Twitterati this morning about last night’s ruckus in Berserkely.

David Simon — yes, that David Simon* — is arguing that the violence apparently instigated by the usual gang of black-masked hellraisers to shut down a speech by the notorious and vainglorious fascist tool Milo Yiannopoulos plays right into the hands of Orange Julius Caesar, who would love nothing better than to show how tough he is by having one of his punks give the First Amendment a good wedgie.

Yiannopoulos spoke last week at the University of Colorado in Boulder and recently here in Duke City at the University of New Mexico. There were protests, but the speeches went off as scheduled. And that’s as it should be. Free speech isn’t just for people with whom we agree.

And consider this: I’ve joined a few protests, marches and rallies over the years, and speaking from my experience as a rabblerouser on the streets and in the public prints, there’s nothing the cops and press enjoy more than a good ol’ outside agitator, whether there actually is one or not. You don’t think they have all that hand-me-down military gear lying around for nothing, do you? Ever get a new bike and not want to ride it?

Now, you can make the argument that what we need here is a bold stand against the New World Ordure, and I’d say “Fuckin’ A.” But I think the boldest stand would be forging a huge mass movement that shows the extent of the opposition, not merely the energy of a small faction.

It’s tough to get Maw and Paw to join Buddy and Sis at the barricades if Paw might get thrown into the hoosegow and lose a few days’ work, Maw loses her whole damn’ job, and everybody loses a few teefers. And what about the businesses that were said to have been vandalized? I’m not familiar with Telegraph Avenue, Shattuck Avenue and Center Street, but if any small businesses took a beating, I say “Shame!” Likewise if a few organizable working folks find themselves short in the paycheck department because their employers have to close for repairs.

Herself and I joined an antiwar rally in Bibleburg during the administration of Bush the Lesser, and all was well until the Black Bandana Brigade decided it would be fun to make a shambles. Naturally, the cops are better at that sort of thing, and they set about proving it.

Hearts and minds, people; hearts and minds. Let’s try to win them instead of breaking them.

* Incidentally, if you’re not already following David Simon on Twitter, you should be.

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14 Responses to “Paint it (a little less) black”

  1. Pat O'Brien Says:

    The colors in that pix are extraordinary. Nicely done, Señor Dog.
    I am convinced that unless the protests are peaceful, and the participants come from all sides of the political spectrum, they will be ignored. The two political parties divided the people in this country, and the current “administration” is just taking advantage of it and driving the wedge between us deeper. The ideal situation is that two years from now the majority of voters are registered as no party affiliation (independent in some states.) Then they could no longer take any of our support for granted.

    • Patrick O'Grady Says:

      Thank you, sir. It’s all the Universe and my little Canon 300 HS.

      We need a broad-based movement. Left and right. Union electricians and agricultural laborers. Moms and dads. White collars and blue collars. Youngs and olds.

      A handful of aggro’ dudes in black kerchiefs you can get anywhere. And I wouldn’t be surprised if a few of them were cadets from the local police academy or actual undercover cops.

    • Pat O'Brien Says:


  2. Dale Says:

    “And I wouldn’t be surprised if a few of them were cadets from the local police academy or actual undercover cops.”

    A long time ago we called that being “narced”, and it did happen.

    • Patrick O'Grady Says:

      If your conspiracy contains more than three members, you may be sure that at least one of them is a cop. The trick is to find out which one it is, then wall the sonofabitch off in some revolutionary cul-de-sac and feed him tantalizing yet fictitious info to keep his bosses happy.

  3. Libby Says:

    Well stated. I posted this before. Seems apt.

    • Patrick O'Grady Says:

      Ho, ho. Can you imagine Gaga singing Ochs at the Super Bowl? The universe would cave in upon itself. And about time, too.

      • Libby Says:

        As you probably know, Gaga bought Zappa’s house and is keeping his recording studio. Not ripping it out but restoring his “Utility Muffin Research Kitchen” as he called it. Evidently there is more than one studio, too.

      • Patrick O'Grady Says:

        No, that’s news to me. You must have your ears a little closer to the musical ground than I do. I was hollering along with John Prine’s first album while cooking yesterday. That’s how current I am.

        Zappa is one of the folks I’d like to reanimate if I could, get us a little backup in these dark days. Also Phil Ochs, George Carlin, Richard Pryor, Bill Hicks, Molly Ivins, Hunter S. Thompson, Emma Goldman. …

      • Hurben Says:

        Woody Guthrie !!

        Look what I found.

      • Pat O'Brien Says:

        Hurben, that is a find. I was not aware of it. Wonder what Conway has to say about that? Nah, I really don’t care to hear more bullshit.

        Spent 20 minutes on the phone with a staff member of Martha McSally yesterday. He was calling about an email I had sent about how broken the budget process and corrupt the budget process is. I told him that McSally should get her Air Force buddy, recently nominated for Sec of The AF, to cut 10 F-35 planes and use the resulting $10.3 Billion savings to catch up backlogged maintenance for the NPS and FS. Then, this morning I get the minutes of the volunteer group that help maintain the Brown Canyon Ranch on the Coronado NF. The NF says that have to raise fees or close down some of the recreation sites. Fees = taxes.

      • Patrick O'Grady Says:

        Well done, Hurben! I’d heard about it, but hadn’t done anything with it. Trying to keep up is like shoveling sand against the tide.

        Well done to you, too, Pat. I expect we’ll get more fees with this lot driving the clown car. Even our old comrade Charles Pelkey signed on to a measure that would have charged Wyoming mountain bikers a trails-access “conservation stamp” fee, like those levied on hunters and fisherpersons.

        His argument was: “My reasoning is that I think, as users of state public lands, we should have a say in management of those lands and that we should be willing to kick in a bit to have a seat at the table.” Last I heard the measure seemed unlikely to come to the floor.

  4. Patrick O'Grady Says:

    Meanwhile, the NYT has served up a bit on the so-called “black bloc,” which is crowing about its explosive growth in the New World Ordure. See my comment above about police infiltration of activist groups.

  5. khal spencer Says:

    We need to take back the Rust Belt. Otherwise, we are fucked. That means fewer temper tantrums and being played by idiots like Milo, and more time spent reaching out to those Baskets of Deplorables that Clinton couldn’t understand.

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