December 18th, 2020
America loves criminals — as long as they have the right color skin and their subjective ideals align.
This post has been a long time coming, but better late than never.
I’ve heard, too many times, this era being compared to prohibition. Besides being an absolutely baseless and embarrassing comparison, it reminded me of something: people think the bootleggers and gangsters were the good guys.
Spoiler alert: they were all criminals, despite their intoxicating lingo and impeccable fashion sense.
“But the laws are unjust!” is a rallying cry for those under actual persecution and an excuse for selfish folk who need justification for their bad and illegal behavior.
It’s funny: bank robbers are objectively bad, right? Stealing is wrong? Please explain to me why there is a celebration called Jesse James Day, and try to include logic.
A recent hot topic has really displayed the hypocrisy of our sordid affair with the “right” kind of bad people; let’s talk about Alibi Drinkery in Lakeville.
You have certain people calling these law-breakers legitimate heroes. You know what really riles those same people up, though? Mention that one of the co-owners literally tried to murder police officers in September:
Owner of Lakeville bar that reopened in defiance of COVID-19 restrictions charged in September with attempted murder of cops
They’ll tell you, “Nah, that has nothing to do with the matter at hand.”
Conversely, when George Floyd was murdered without a proper trial (much less a complete arrest), his criminal record was immediately dug up and presented like a charcuterie board for those who had to justify that kind of criminal’s death.
That kind of criminal.
I wrote about anger yesterday and I’m trying to not write this while having that feeling, but I do.
In Ta-Nehisi Coates’s brilliant Between The World And Me, he writes: “[They] are quoting Martin Luther King and exulting nonviolence for the weak and the biggest guns for the strong.”
America loves criminals — the right kind, the strong kind, the kind that you see yourself inside. All others are outsiders and terrorists, despite committing the exact same crimes.