The interior of the Ferguson Market and Liquor Store is littered with broken bottles and scattered snacks. Despite the plywood boards covering the windows and doors, looters with their faces covered in bandanas helped themselves to anything they could find as those who came to memorialize Michael Brown carried on his work.
The violence in Ferguson didn’t begin when a police officer shot Michael Brown. It began when a 300 lb thug robbed the Ferguson Market and abused a clerk. The release of the video showing the obese criminal assaulting the clerk led to a terrified statement from the store manager that he had not called the police and had nothing to do with the release of the video.
“They kill us if they think we are responsible,” he said.
That is what this conflict is about. The police exist so that Ferguson Market and a hundred other stores can do business without being robbed or murdered. Darren Wilson, the officer who shot Michael Brown, was holding down the thin line that makes it possible for stores to stay open and children to go to school.
When the police pulled back, the rioting and looting began in earnest. A mob forced its way into Ferguson Market and other stores. Governor Nixon, a critic of the police was forced to turn to the National Guard.
After all the lectures about militarization, there was no better solution to the violence than the military. The police were never the problem. The looters and rioters were.
The photos of protesters with their hands in the air confronting police in riot gear told a very misleading story. But the real story was sitting in a video held by the Ferguson police and the Justice Department. It was the video of Michael Brown assaulting a clerk at Ferguson Market.
The Justice Department and Governor Nixon did not want the video released because it put the emphasis back where it should have been all along. This was not a conflict between Michael Brown and the police. It was a conflict between Michael Brown and a Ferguson Market worker.
We are all that worker.
Any one of us can be targeted by a Michael Brown at any time. Every week delivers up fresh new victims of the knockout game. A pregnant woman. An elderly man. A child.
The police are the common defense we use to protect ourselves against the kind of society where store workers have to fear being killed. They are not perfect, but they are far better than the rule of the Michael Browns who take what they want and attack anyone who tries to stop them.
In Ferguson there was a choice between looters wandering around shouting “Hands Up, Don’t Shoot” and ordinary citizens crying out “Hands Up, Don’t Loot”. Shouting “Hands Up, Don’t Shoot” at a police officer might work. Shouting “Hands Up, Don’t Loot” at a looter won’t.
And that is why we have police forces. As flawed as they are, they follow some rules. The looters follow no rules at all.
Despite all the talk about the militarization of the police, there is very little discussion of why. The police and the prisons are a societal immune response to an infection.
Talking about the immune response as if it exists entirely apart from the infection is how we ended up with hysterical coverage of the unarmed teen shot in the back by a crazed racist officer. Not only was the media take on the story a lie, but it removed the context of the crime from the response to the crime. That was what made Brown’s shooting seem senseless and insane.
Stripping away the rioting and looting from the police in riot gear made the law enforcement response seem deranged and insane. It’s only when we see the rioting, the looting and the arson, the shots fired and Molotov cocktails thrown that the heavy gear suddenly has a context.
This is a trick that the left has been playing for a very long time. In Ferguson or Gaza, in Afghanistan or New York, it focuses on what soldiers and police do without the context of what they are responding to. Watch a few hours of media coverage from Gaza and you’ll conclude that Israel is fighting a war against crying children. Without footage of Hamas terrorists or Israeli children under fire, the Israelis seem like murderous lunatics.
And that is exactly what the media wants you to think.
If the United States continues bombing ISIS for another month, the media will stop showing photos of crying Yazidi refugees and instead show us the crying Sunni Arab children of the families in Mosul who support ISIS. And then the United States will start looking like maniacs who are out to murder crying children for no reason at all. Most people will forget that we got into it to save the Yazidis from genocide at the hands of Sunni Muslim supremacists and they will shake their heads.
This happens all the time.
The media gave us every detail of Clayton Lockett’s suffering after his botched execution. It didn’t tell us how he raped one teenage girl and shot her friend and buried her alive while she begged for her life. It didn’t even tell us that Lockett died horribly because opponents of the death penalty had been working overtime to cut off the supply of reliable lethal injection drugs.
Without that context, the justice system seemed monstrous for making a man suffer while the monster was passed off as the innocent victim of the senseless brutality of the system.
All systems and people are flawed, but our law enforcement and military are reactive. When we don’t talk about what they are reacting to, then there is nothing meaningful to say.
We don’t have SWAT teams because law enforcement has gone completely insane. We have them because of race riots and urban guerrilla warfare. Without Watts, the Black Panthers and the SLA, the police militarization would probably never have existed.
The militarization of the police was a response to left-wing violence and terror. And the left knows it.
If the left hadn’t spent much of the last century inciting race riots and setting up terrorist groups, there wouldn’t be police officers armed for war.
If not for the left’s disastrous social experiments, the War on Drugs would never have been necessary. Instead the left trashes social values and criminal laws and then complains about the authoritarian rebound from the crime waves that follow. The wealthy liberal who snorts cocaine and dashes from sexual encounter to encounter can walk away with little damage done. The same behavior in the ghetto leaves behind shattered lives and destroyed communities because there is no safety net for it.
Finally, if the left hadn’t shifted immigration over to the Third World while sympathizing with Islamic terrorists, September 11 and its law enforcement and military aftermath would never have been necessary.
This is why the left tears away the context from a crisis. If we began to genuinely discuss why there are police officers dressed like soldiers or TSA agents examining your shoes, the line would trace all the way back to the policies and agendas of the left.
The left isn’t just covering up for the rioters and the looters, the terrorists and the murderers. It is covering up its own role in causing all of this.
That is why its cultural apparatus snips away the context, reacting to the reaction as if it were the cause. The left keeps yammering about finding the root cause, but it is the root cause. The root cause isn’t poverty. It’s not racism. It’s the left.
Communists realized how useful race riots and the authoritarian backlash could be to their agenda. Terrorists don’t just aim for the target; they also exploit the fallout to polarize a society.
That is what the left has been doing for generations since.
Everything from the Weathermen to September 11 became a means of polarizing the response while removing the context. The left plants the bombs and then acts as if the security men running around are insane fascists who could have no other possible motive except abusing innocent people.
Ferguson is more of the same. The left’s army of activists and reporters troop down to the city. The activists start the violence while the reporters dramatize it. The coverage polarizes Americans and gives the left another hook for hanging on to power long after its economic policies have been as thoroughly discredited as those of the Soviet Union.
Law enforcement is an immune system. If we have an overdeveloped and oversensitive immune system, that’s worth discussing, but it has to be discussed in the context of the infection it is reacting to. Until we treat the infection of the left, the country will be caught in the same cycle of crime and authoritarian backlash, liberals who open the door for criminals and conservatives who slam it shut.