One of the numerous ill side effects of living in the so-called “information age” is that quantity does not beget quality. When everybody has a platform, it becomes increasingly difficult and extraordinarily time consuming to attempt to parse through what is relevant and not, worthy of reading and not. In a potentially futile effort to combat this phenomenon, I find myself utilizing certain key words and phrases to filter out unhelpful or unnecessary information – things that indicate a flawed perspective on behalf of the author and render the remainder of the information obsolete. For example, if I hear somebody say “vaccines,” Bill Gates,” and “nanobots” all in the same sentence, I am quickly alerted to the fact that I should run away from that person, preferably at high speed.
I suppose it was unfortunate then, that the editorial featured in (the June 12) edition of the Journal-Tribune waited until the penultimate paragraph to include a mention of “evil anarchist George Soros.” Had the newspaper – because no writer is listed, we must assume this editorial to be the opinion of the J-T at large – placed some similarly speculative and inflammatory language at the outset of the piece, we could have all moved on with our lives much sooner, agreeing to disagree. Instead, I was forced to slog through a straw man of epic proportions that fundamentally misunderstood nationwide initiatives to defund police.
Take this blurb for starters: “Wasn’t it just a few months ago that Americans were praising essential workers, which included law officers, for their roles in fighting COVID-19? How fickle people can be.” Yes, how fickle we are for expecting law enforcement to protect and serve, as opposed to profile and strangle.
“Without officers to enforce the laws there would be absolute chaos and rampant violence. Maybe that’s what these people want.” I think Americans’ demands for a level-headed, nondiscriminatory and publicly accountable civil service that sets out to meet the needs of its citizens without undue violence are relatively clear. The police currently check none of those boxes. No need to speculate on the motives of “these people.”
“The death of Floyd was a travesty of justice. But so were the riots. As the saying goes, two wrongs don’t make a right.” Now you may feel differently, but I don’t put property destruction on the same level as cold-blooded murder. And judging by the positive institutional change that these protests have already sparked, I would wager that the second “wrong” only appears that way when seen through hate-tinted glasses.
You act as though reallocating funds toward more proven, less-likely-to-kill-black-people professions (i.e. social work, healthcare, education, crime prevention and reduction) will precipitate the fall of modern society, and that’s simply not true. When the police are abolished, they will be replaced – by a more diverse, more flexible and more compassionate alternative. Peddling conspiracy theories in order to obscure that fact is irresponsible. Willful ignorance is inexcusable.
Kirby J. Brennan,
Park Avenue, Marysville