Letter: It’s time to stand up
After attacking Pearl Harbor at the beginning of World War II, Imperial Japanese Admiral Isoroku Yamamoto was purportedly quoted as saying, “I fear all we have done is to awaken a sleeping giant and filled him with a terrible resolve.” Those currently at the commanding heights of pop culture, media and politics should take note and remember this lesson.
Since the horrible death of George Floyd, protests have gripped cities around America. What should have been an honest conversation about policing, racism and socioeconomics has devolved into seemingly indiscriminate rioting, looting and burning with very little regard for Black lives or livelihoods. What masquerades as racial unrest is in fact economic despair entrenched and defended by decades of failed policies by the same people that claim “justice.”
Those who condone, or overtly embrace, a stance of, “it takes violence and rioting for people to listen,” ignore their own childish naivety. In a wider group, the roughly 40% of the country that still thinks the nightly news is giving them an honest take, who respond with ambivalence are, according to their own definition, co-conspirator in the act of blindness.
People around the country are waking up to the falsities and are seeing through the thin veils of attempted reframing as “peaceful.” Anyone outside the bubble, with their eyes open, can see the very real counter-productivity the terrorizing approach inevitably leads to. People who actually care about issues of racism and injustice should denounce the barbarousness of illegitimate protesting and recognize it hurts the cause significantly more than it helps.
Notably absent from this week’s Steamboat Conversations panel discussion about policing in Routt County was any sort of condemnation on behalf of our non-law enforcement elected leaders of the horrific anti-police rhetoric and actions wearing on the true heroes that put their lives on the line every day to keep our communities safe.
It’s time for those of us who have stayed quiet to stand up and push back against those that wish us to be silenced and sidelined. It’s time to defend our values that include the unwavering commitment that respect and dignity should be given to every truly peaceful person — regardless of race, gender or faith. It’s time for our voices to be heard to bring about true justice for those that need it most.
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