Conflicted Hour

Usually, of course, it’s Happy Hour.  I KNOW THAT.  Still, with the extra load of (self inflicted, I admit it) pain and injury and having once again looked at the news, it’s more of an alligator wrestle with the mind to get it to sit down and focus on the important things, like…dinner?

Speaking of which, last night we did indeed have chilis.  In a sauce that eventually required more heat than originally included.  So I put a small piece of habanero in, from an already cut specimen on the counter.  I always test them with my finger to see what to expect.  I touched the end of the chili, but being a bit dried it revealed nothing.  So, I, Genius, got my finger wet, touched the chili, put the finger in my mouth.  Then, in an extraordinary display, even for me, I put that same finger ( I’d rinsed it off by then while screaming) in my eye.  Yes.  There’s also a third degree burn on one hand and an injured thumb on the other.

So then.  This morning I learn that the Oakland P.D. shot an unarmed and nonviolent #occupy oakland protester.  In the head.  They haven’t commented, the OPD.  Why should they?  The video footage makes you want to scream.  Two IVAW and Veterans for Peace members are standing at the perimeter of the “protesters”, in front of the barriers behind which stand the Darth Vader’d Out aforementioned OPD.  These two men, one of whom is in a Navy uniform, the other of whom is in a camo jacket and booney hat, both well worn and obviously by him for a long time, are standing quietly and peacefully between the OPD and the crowd.  Suddenly you see a projectile and sparks and the man in the camo jacket, Scott Olsen, is on the ground.  People from the crowd quickly rush up to help him- remember this is in front of the barricade behind which stand people..uh, sworn to protect and serve and who see this man fall to the ground with a head wound (which I am pretty sure they witnessed as it happened.  Unless they were napping at the time.).  And then? Then the OPD contingent fires a tear gas/ flame thingy RIGHT NEXT TO OLSENS’ HEAD.  While he’s on the ground.  Filling the area with smoke so no one can see or do anything.  Except the Navy guy who had, after calling for help at first injury,  immediately walked right over to the OPD line, faced them, and presented the Vets for Peace flag: At Arms.  So, to continue getting this straight, this man lying on the ground bleeding from the head  in front of the OPD line has served, at age 24, two tours in Iraq. ( Which for OPD? is probably more often than not pronounced EYE RACK.)   No injuries or wounds except the ones you can’t see.  Until now, when he is exercising his supposed First Amendment rights, peacefully and non violently and documentedly to boot.  (oh, dear…) When he gets shot by civilian police.  With a tear gas cannister to the head.  For extra fun he gets to go to Highland Hospital, about which I have written before.  Because, see? The Partner is FROM Oakland, and I have lived in and around it for the bulk of my adult life.  Until we Came To The Yurt.  So we already know OPD.  This seems pretty raw even for them.   And they are renowned for raw.

It makes me think that back when dinosaurs roamed the earth, and the Black Panthers were a presence in the community, and people in East Oakland often took shots at the OPD helicopters buzzing their neighborhoods with bright lights at all hours of the night (ever had that happen? It is quite something, and a real test of your commitment to non violence)- maybe they weren’t wrong to do that, take that shot, say You Can’t Do This In My Neighborhood.  It’s just that it never gets anywhere, that sort of action.  Which seems to be something Mr. Olsen understood and felt strongly enough about ( perhaps naively but what the hell- he earned the right) to attempt to express the awareness that peace IS the way,  in a setting where it might be of service, the best way he could see at the time.  Perhaps, if this senseless act provokes some communication it will be of immeasurable service.  But I think about his mom and his friends.  And him.  And it took me a long time to stop crying today and although I still don’t know how to deal with all this? One thing is for sure.

I’m a person who has always voted, has always felt it was profoundly important.  Now I see we have a completely corruptible system, we know voting has been a sham and twisted to the purposes of those who meant to win no matter what. The people who are running for and in office are despicable more often than not, and also more like something straight out of the Psychiatric Diagnostic Manual than is even palatable to think about.  It is very largely about how much money they can raise.  So I decided to register to vote up here- I hadn’t yet, being so disgusted and confused about it all- only to enter NONE OF THE ABOVE.  Some how, some way, Gentle Reader, fellow beings, we have to turn this thing around.  We are here on earth now, and really.  We need to remember that.  We have to have an alternative so that we can all move forward for the good of all, not just the few.

2 responses to this post.

  1. “Thanks for sharing, this is a fantastic blog post.Much thanks again.”


  2. Posted by garrymoore on November 26, 2011 at 8:35 am

    hi to all boozilla.wordpress.comers this is my first post and thought i would say hello to you all –
    thanks speak soon
    garry m


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