Why Is Protesting Only Okay When Your Side Does It?
Written by: Staff Writer
I have been trying to figure out how to put some thoughts into words for a couple days now. Since the 6th I watched a very clear narrative come out of mainstream media, you could see it in the words used to describe the protests. Let us be very clear, that is exactly what happened on the 6th, a heated protest. It was no different than any protest that occurred in 2020. The use of the term insurrection, and coup. It was very clear that a narrative was being crafted to try and somehow distinguish this from the Floyd protests. Whether you agree or disagree with the claimed grievance, that does not take away both the moral right, and the legal right to protest and demand a redress of said grievance, even if that redress is merely an investigation that proves no wrongdoing.
“But it was the Capitol! This was a coup!” people have said. There is nothing sacred or sacrosanct about the Capitol building. It is just state-owned property. All summer long BLM and its supporters besieged state-owned property, both local and federal. Most of you making this claim defended their right to protest, and even absolutely destroy via arson some of it. You even went further, legitimizing the destruction of private property belonging to parties that did not do anything to aggrieve you. This was the point where you lost much of the “center” on the issue. Because while we could absolutely agree that the state had wronged many, the justifications for damage to individual’s property who had nothing to do with the issue except being in physical proximity fell flat. The right then going to state-owned property, and protesting, even destroying it, is absolutely in line with this principle. Again, whether we agree with the grievance they are claiming is irrelevant.
“They were attempting to disrupt legitimate democratic processes!” Where was this outrage when Kavanaugh’s confirmation vote was being interrupted by protests? The same ones who stormed the senate gallery and attempted to get into the senate chambers? This smacks of rights for me and not for thee. If we expand our scope to state elections and state democratic operations, we will find numerous more examples of this occurring. This is not some sort of aberration; this is the political norm. And one that was largely driven by the ideological left via their protests. For whatever reason, this fact has disappeared from the collective political memory. Whether intentional or just happenstance I do not think matters. The reality remains that this has been the norm in political protesting. To act like now because your political opponents used the same tactic, at a higher level, that it is somehow immoral is intellectually dishonest.
This point has been the hardest for me to tolerate. The woman who was murdered on the capitol because the police opened fire with live rounds. This summer watching police across the country use and abuse “less than lethal” munitions, maiming and killing people was abhorrent. It was a grotesque abuse by the state. The way in which I have watched people try to justify the murder of that woman however has caused me to lose the most respect for many. The same arguments that the right have used ad nauseum every time there was an extra judicial killing were trotted out, unironically. Every single one about how she should have complied, she should not have been there, if she had just followed lawful orders, she would still be alive. And not one person has recognized the hypocrisy. Make no mistake, this was an extrajudicial killing. No different than any of the hundreds that went on in 2020. Difference is because it was an approved target for the left, some of you have dismissed it, others have been outright gleeful over it. No recognition of that has been given by anyone on the left that I am in contact with. That demonstrates an unprincipled approach and worldview.
And now the purges from social media have begun. This gets into some of the weeds, because for me private industry has the rights whom it does or does not associate with. However, the fact is Facebook, Twitter, TikTok, et al., have enjoyed legal protection under 47 U.S.C. Section 230 of the US Legal code that they are clearly flouting. If they want to restrict what content may/or may not be on their platform, they must accept the burden of being a publisher. They currently enjoy the protections and privileges of being a platform, which absolves them from numerous liabilities. Further on this point however, again the glee I have seen out of many of the left because their ideological opponents are being censored and removed from the political discourse is disturbing. The concept of free speech, not the legal form, but the philosophy means tolerating speech you disagree with, you find onerous. This has been a long running problem for the left. This week it has manifested most strongly.
The fact is that the marketplace of ideas is a free and open one. Many of these far right and far left notions filled with outright stupidity quite frankly only survive because they are not honestly discussed. People have chosen to cling to politics as their new religion. This has been going on for as long as I have been politically conscious. I have tackled three core points to the language used since the 6th, demonstrated clearly how problematic these talking points are. They are intellectually dishonest and have no grounding. It is on you to sit with this and ascertain whether there is truth here or not.
I already expect that most of the comments will be some for of “nuh uh”. As that has been the core of comments on most of my posts about this issue up until now. Trying to demonstrate why some minute detail separates what happened on the 6th from most of 2020. However, like the Kavanaugh example, every element of Jan 6th can be found in protests from the ideological left as well. And again, there is nothing sacred about the Capitol building. It is just a structure owned by the federal government. There is nothing sacrosanct about the certifying of electoral votes. Legitimate processes of governance are all the same. The principled stance here is either disrupting those processes is legitimate protest or not. If it is not, there is some serious explaining to do regarding the tactics used in the very recent past.
I have a particular view on the world. In part because whether I like it or not, I have lived and continue to live on the fringe of society. That has meant that I see the absolute tribalism of the duopoly, and how yes both sides are equally vile at times. Of course, there are those of you who refuse to hear this. So deeply embedded in the religion of your tribe you are unable to acknowledge the evils “your guy” perpetrated, or how “your guy” set up the levers of power that allowed Trump to do what he did. Trump was and continues to be a shit stain. I prefer to live in a country where I can say that about yet another imperial president, who operated legally much the same way Obama did, just without the tact and grace. Like Obama, I can see the silver linings and few good things that came about. With Biden I expect much the same – a host of state sponsored evil and a few silver linings. With regards to the imperial presidency, my quote remains this. “Mark my words boy, Mark them well, I have survived your predecessors and I will survive you.” – The Merovingian.