Monday, May 4, 2015

is Bill O'Reilly stealing my thoughts?

Began to wonder this, last week, after seeing a headline which read, "Bill O'Reilly:  Zero Tolerance for Police Brutality."

And they (media) keep putting the word "police" at the forefront -- important to remember, it seems to me, is, there's a whole system which is crying out for reform -- the whole system backing up the policemen and highway patrolmen, etc. -- judges, attorneys, government agencies, courthouse employees and how these employees behave toward the public. ...

Going out and selecting a member of the public to be beaten or killed, basically for "sport" or self-importance, used to be (40 years ago? ... 25 years ago?) something you heard of criminals doing; now, in some cases in some places -- North Charleston, South Carolina, in Baltimore, etc. -- it's something being done by law enforcement officials.  Criminality "migrated" -- causing an inversion and perversion of the "Justice System" in civil society.

That happens, with human -- societal -- institutions.  They get mixed-up, and off-track, out-of-whack ...pretty soon weird, inappropriate behavior becomes "how we do it," because some set a bad example and sometimes other people go by what they see around them.

FixingThat.  Must be next on the menu....


At least the National Guard came into, and got out of, Baltimore without killing anyone.  Forty-five years ago today the Ohio National Guard at Kent State University opened fire during an anti-war demonstration, and killed four students.  I was in elementary school in Rootstown, a small town in the vicinity -- my mother was taking a class or two at Kent....

(And I shouldn't jump to that conclusion -- if the National Guard is coming, someone's going to get killed...National Guard people take care of thousands, millions, of problems and situations, with no loss of life -- obviously -- I KNOW this, and of course have great respect for the National Guard and its members...but that first impression -- a shock, a terrible thing to get your mind around, when

it is in the paper, and

you are in grade school --

it's a permanent jolt, which makes kind of a -- dent.  You think something automatically -- and then you have to quickly, quietly, correct yourself, straighten out your thoughts and make sure you have the right perspective....)

---------------------- [excerpt, Journals of Arthur Schlesinger Jr.] ------------------


May 6

I find myself more depressed these days than I have been for years (except in particular moments, like Dallas and Los Angeles) -- more depressed about the short-run movements of events and the long-run future of our country. 

Last week Nixon invaded Cambodia. 

With the evident failure of his Vietnamization policy, he accepted

a plan the Joint Chiefs have been hawking around Washington for years and which even Johnson, to his credit, refused. 

Then he traveled to the Pentagon and denounced protesting students as "bums."

When the President of the United States thus creates a national mood, I suppose one cannot be too much surprised if the National Guard of Ohio fails to exercise discrimination. 

At any rate, in the course of breaking up an anti-Cambodia rally in Kent, Ohio, the National Guard killed four students and gravely wounded others.

I know Kent; I have often lectured at Kent State.  It is the essence of an Ohio small town; the students are all from other small towns or off the farm; nothing could be more square, unradical and Midwest-American.

The reaction has been one of gloom and fury....


{Journals 1952 - 2000.  Arthur M. Schlesinger, Jr. - The Penguin Press, New York, 2007}


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