Wednesday, December 10, 2014

This violence has been brought to you by the letters C, I, and A,
and by the number 1492

So, the Senate has released a "bombshell" report on the terror of torture, and what I have learned from it is that officials, talking heads, members of the voting public, and other assorted Earth citizens need to go back to preschool. My three-year-old niece is better at connecting dots than most people seem to be today. Kids, let's take a look at some dots that we can connect!

  • Dot 1: The CIA routinely tortured(s?) multiple suspects around the world with brutal tactics of systematic, and systemic, violence in a massive post-9/11 problem-solving effort. 
  • Dot 2: Police officers in the U.S. are found to be routinely shooting to kill unarmed black men in an effort to solve "problems" (such as fear of black men?), revealing more systemic violence. 
  • Dot 3: Young men and women are shipped off to wars/military operations/police actions around the world, many of them dying "for" their country, because -- you guessed it! War, also known as age-old systemic violence, solves problems! Right? 
  • Dot 4: Other young men and women die on the streets right at home, because why go abroad for gang warfare and gunfire when you can get some of the made-in-America kind? 
  • Dot 5: And why stick to gangs, when you can just be a lone shooter who takes out some teenage students in a cafeteria, or moviegoers in a theater, or shoppers in a mall, or kindergarteners in a classroom, who are progressing from connecting the dots and coloring into learning some problem-solving skills? 
  • Dot 6: You put birds and rabbits and ferrets and other animals in cages, because you have declared that they are "yours." You lock them up for life. They are alone and trapped. You call this "having a pet." 
  • Dot 7: You own all the land. You're entitled to it, and all the oil beneath it, because you earned it fair and square, by slaughtering all the Native American peoples who lived on it and anyone else who was in your way. 
  • Dot 8: Slavery.
  • Dot 9: Rape.
  • Dot 10: You think Homeland is a good show. 
  • Dot 11: Oh, that last was too much for you, huh? Real systemic violence is one thing, but don't mess with your shoddily written fantasies about global domination? To a guy with a hammer, every problem looks like a nail. To an enhanced interrogator, perhaps every problem looks like a will to be broken. To a violent system, every problem is something to "solve" violently, and the best the system can hope for is that every industry falls in line to feed the beast, from manufacturing to entertainment, from lobbying to factory farming. God bless that! Homeland might not be actually hurting anyone (unless you count the strain from all the eye-rolling at its scripts, plot lines, and characters), but will it make you feel good about yourself and beef up your arguments the next time you and a friend debate torture over a couple of beers? Wait, you say you don't question the CIA's systemic violence when talking with your friends over a couple of beers? Because that would be too "political"?  I see. 
Really, my niece might be persuaded to lend you one of her coloring books, if you ask her nicely.

1 comment:

JD Ireland said...

Great stuff Linda.
Unfortunately most people cant connect the dots and the users and abusers are well aware of this and carry on regardless.