Checking in

Seattle has long been a powder keg, ready to explode. The last few days, I’m pretty sure a fuse has been smoldering.

I am fine, and I am safe. I live right next to where a lot of the action is taking place, and it’s been pretty surreal. Friday night there were riots within a couple blocks from me; I didn’t hear them very much, but the onslaught of sirens and riot-suppressing fire (rubber bullets and tear gas) were quite hard to ignore.

Saturday after the sudden curfew was enacted, things got eerily quiet. Later in the evening I heard more gunfire. Some of my neighbors saw people breaking into and looting the drug store next door, and called the police on them. I haven’t dared to go outside to look myself.

Fortunately for me I happened to1 stock up on food on Friday, and a friend will be staying with me for a week and should be able to help me out with the stuff I can’t do due to this seemingly-unending pain flare. Assuming they’re able to come here; I have no idea what the status is of the curfew.

This has really shined a light on how hypocritical and racist the Seattle PD is. Black people, peacefully protesting, are getting tackled, maced, and arrested under the “resisting arrest” tautological2 premise. Meanwhile, white people are walking around proudly displaying their assault rifles, and the cops are looking away, saying, “He’s just carrying, not menacing.” One of those people did eventually get his rifle taken away, but as far as I know he wasn’t detained and certainly wasn’t brutalized.

The Seattle PD was also instructed to turn off their body cams before going to the protest, under the pretense of “protecting the privacy of the protesters,” but the entire point to body cams is to monitor police to make sure they’re not doing any of the things that they’ve been doing while the cams have been off. Even if we assume good faith on their reasoning for turning the cameras off, it was a boneheaded thing to do, and to double down on.

All of the protest violence has been started by the police. Meanwhile, given the demographics of the gun-toters and the people caught looting and vandalizing, it seems pretty likely that most of the people who are causing actual damage and committing crimes are opportunists who are likely not aligned with the protesters. I wouldn’t go so far as to assume that they’re members of the alt-right purposefully trying to make the left (Antifa in particular) look bad, but that’s sure what it seems like to me. And of course it’s working.

Saturday morning we had an incredible rain storm, with thunder and lightning. I got to thinking about how much energy was stored up in that storm, how much was unleashed by a single lightning bolt. Very few things humans have made are capable of releasing that much energy in such a short time, and it’s just a blink, a sneeze to nature. It gives me some comfort to know that no matter how bad things are, all things will eventually pass; in a thousand years, this will be ancient history. In a million, will we even still be here? In a billion we almost certainly won’t; whatever’s left of us will have been long destroyed by our swelling, dying sun, which produces more energy in a millisecond than Earth can in a thousand millennia.

We are insignificant, and everything will be fine.

Outliving this is a reason to go on.3

  1. Not really intending to, but maybe my subconscious had a better idea of things than I realized… 

  2. It goes something like this: 

    1. Cops decide to arrest someone
    2. Person asks what are they being arrested for
    3. Cops decide that’s resisting arrest, and turn the arrest violent
    4. Person struggles while being physically assaulted, “proving” resistance
  3. I have really got to get around to properly recording this song. Every time I’ve started I’ve felt like it was pointless since this was all just going to go away in a couple weeks anyway. But the fact that Trump’s impeachment didn’t lead to his removal should have been a cue. 


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