Version 2.0

Culture, healing, politics and bullshit - Not necessarily in that order

The general, socio-political and very personal rantings and ravings of a hip hop head from the hood hustling for change... Of himself.

You all know me and are aware that I am unable to remain silent. At times to be silent is to lie. For silence can be interpreted as acquiescence.
—Miguel de Unamuno


Thursday, August 06, 2009

The Least Of These

Let me get this right...

A small percentage of so-called 'patriot citizens' have loosely banned together using motivational tactics from an over bearing, finger pointing radio personality and an over emotional TV buffoon (both with past drug problems) and political leadership from bible misinterpreting, philandering policy screw-ups with no viable solutions to some of the problems that they help to implement in years past to go out and spend time and money to disrupt town hall meetings on health care, flood the internet with disparaging remarks about politicians, scholars, journalists and tax paying citizens that do not look like them and put billboards and posters up around the country disrespecting and badmouthing anyone that oppose their scripted and arrogantly, painfully ignorantly believed, forced fed theories on what life in a Christian based, free-market democracy should be?

That's nice. People can say what they want. We do have freedom of speech in this country and the right to rebel. It is said that rebellion is the best form of patriotism, and it is. I just have one problem: Where in the hell is the opposition?

If you have a job and never read that thick-ass packet of medical stuff you're supposed to turn in-in order to get your benefits started, you know... Just filled it out and shot it back to HR and then years down the line get rejected for that oh so necessary surgical procedure or better yet get dropped from coverage or even better than that hit your coverage limit (this year it dropped down to 2 million for executive and management types), then you have to take responsibility in knowing that you never took the time to read the million pages of small print. You see, doctors get paid to treat the symptoms and not actually heal you. If they got paid (like in other countries) to heal you then you wouldn't need to pay a continuous premium for your limited coverage. You also wouldn't be force fed one or two insurance firms in bed with your employer to pay those monies to as well. But you do read the fine print, go to the town hall an shareholder meetings and actually use the internet to research pending version(s) of health care law and pending reform bills to actually know if your government is or isn't trying to force you out of that coverage, is willing to further subsidize your premiums or not and create competition (or not) so that costs would actually lower said premiums as well as set new rules regarding accepting and not dropping and actually treating folks like myself with a pre-existing condition, right?

You read the bill?
You know the current laws, right?
Called your congressman and or senator, right?

Okay then.

You also understand that as the most powerful nation on the planet that we have safeguards, oversight and an electoral college (as well as a few fraternal and societal orders secret or otherwise) set up to function within a set of laws laid out and interpreted by justices on multiple levels hundreds of years old (well, revamped after our first 11 or so presidents were NOT native of this country) written, displayed, set and taught in plain English at the elementary, middle, secondary and post secondary graduate and juris levels (because we are a nation of laws) to thoroughly vet all candidates running for and and then nominated for final election of any municipal, state and/or federal office, right? That a minimum set of rules has been established for qualification for these important seats, and if these criteria aren't met the candidate absolutely cannot run, nevertheless hold the seat in said office?

So what's the deal with the damn birth certificate again?

You do use the internet, right?
Read the newspaper?
Go to the public library?
Private libraries?
Library of Congress?
Private schools and public universities?
Personal archives?
Roam municipal, state and federal halls of record?
Private investigator?
Tribal storyteller?
Again, where in the hell is the opposition?

I think I get it. Most of us are scared to speak out of fear that they may lose their position.

I am the least of these.

What about knowing your legal rights as it pertains to you as a citizen both in public and private? Do you understand the Bill of Rights and how that affects municipal law and your rights to roam in public and how one can act in private? The right to bear arms? Freedom of enjoyment as it pertains to owning or leasing property? The right to exercise restraint or perform any act as well as refusing to allow unauthorized persons on private property, including the police? Miranda rights? What about filing false reports and unlawful arrest? I'm still at a loss as to why the press (or anyone else in the media for that matter) or even our presidential beermiester hasn't questioned the blatant false statement written on the Gates report! Have you studied them to the point where you actually know what procedure should be?

NOTE: I have been pulled over and taken out of my vehicle more than 20 times, laid out on the ground while cops performed illegal searches, finding NOTHING, stopped on the street, asked and had my ID ran more times I can count (because I resemble a suspect...) and had my home involved in unwarranted visits at least 10 times (as a resident of a Chicago suburb, being the only black guy on the block, they NEVER set foot in my spot!). As a kid and a teen I was harassed and assaulted, but after I learned the law and informed the officers what I knew the assaults stopped. As of my 33rd birthday there have been zero pullovers, but I still get tailed and get my plates ran in certain spots where neighborhoods have 'extra protection', so you can imagine what my police trust level is. But I am older, have veteran plates, etc...

Right now, the folk with the least are complacent in having just that, less than. The average Joe has been scammed, nickeled & dimed, shamed and scared into complete silence and numbed into not wanting anything more than what they have. Folks that are attacked and judged racially are now the racists. Leaders have been scrutinized in the negative so much by the haves that the have-nots are shamed into forcing them to relinquish said leadership. Community organizers have been ridiculed into obscurity because a one-time community organizer got elected president. Media personalities with blatant agendas use airwaves paid for by the auto, oil, health care and pharmaceutical industries to purposely misinform viewers and listeners via sensationalism, causing a wedge, thus creating angered, arrogant and ignorant partisanship when it comes to political issues and the understanding of detail is lost in translation.

Truth in journalism is dead. It got deregulated right around the time the financial institutions did. All that is left is corporate newspapers and television as well as a corporate web presence all designed to partner up with the manufacturers of consumer goods and services creating false genres with no real dedicated consumer identity because it's all about selling shit. Our must trusted news person is a cable TV comedian.

I know life is hard. I know you have responsibilities. I also know that you need hobbies and need to actually live life in order to balance things out, but the times call for us to stay informed, ARMED with information, and there are so many ways to get it. If financial freedom, fair taxing, racial equality and proper health care, as well as living in a secure and free society is what you crave then I urge you to speak on it.

Our current situation of xenophobia and castigation by a small bunch of angry folk mad that their candidate lost in last year's election is the equivalent to arguing with a law school grad that cannot pass the bar. We all can litigate, but if we never do the research and get the facts all we end up doing is just blowing a whole lot of hot air. As for the working poor, the black middle class, immigrant workers doing jobs we just don't want to touch, women of all races and the working elderly as well as the uninsured, you people need to speak the hell up.

But first, arm yourselves.

There is a small, unarmed militia with no solutions and skewed facts from both sides of the isle (and a few from the cornfields and back alleys) hellbent on spreading gossip, lies and fear just ready to interrupt so the point won't never get across. And because you choose to remain silent due to fear, they will end up influencing policy.

And the fight against Jim Crow, the sacrifice for the Suffrage Movement and the fight for immigrant acceptance and reform as well as voting, wage and health care rights will end up being fights that were executed in vain.