Tuesday, November 18, 2014

The High Cost of Living Room

Many people in the United States are anxiously awaiting the announcement of the grand jury verdict in the case of the shooting death of Michael Brown, an unarmed black teenager, by Ferguson Police officer Darren Wilson. It's interesting that several weeks ago, U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder resigned from President Obama's cabinet. And it's also interesting that a number of law enforcement agencies are “preparing for the worst”: to wit, the Department of Homeland Security, the Missouri National Guard, and the U.S. Federal Bureau of Investigation, among others.

This leads me to make a prediction. First, I expect the grand jury to refuse to indict Officer Wilson. Secondly, I expect that the authorities, from Missouri Governor Jay Nixon downward, along with President Obama, to have known all along that this is how the verdict would turn out. Third, I do not expect the U.S. Department of Justice to prosecute Officer Wilson or the Ferguson police department. Fourth, I expect protests to result from these things. But while the protests will be largely peaceful, the response of those who hold power will be anything but peaceful. Thus the rest of the world will get to see a fresh display of the hypocrisy United States, which is busy bombing and killing other nations in their quest to bring “democracy” and “human rights” to those nations.

Fifth, I expect a flood of right-wing commentary from the blogosphere, as well as some rather surprisingly right-wing comments from people who brand themselves as “left of center.” The commentary will seek to justify what is in actuality a campaign of oppression and extermination designed to grant a little extra “living room” (in German, Lebensraum) to the largely white ruling classes in the United States at this late hour of their existence. Some of the commentary is likely to come from people who willfully ignore the history of their own forbears who endured the cruelty of nations looking for Lebensraum in the last world war.

Lastly, I expect many disenfranchised people in this country to become quite creative in the art of passive rebellion.

I pray that I may be proved wrong about predictions #1 through #3.


Aimee said...

Could you expand on what you mean by "extermination" and "living room?" I assume you don't mean it in a literal sense, that the authorities will kill large numbers of residents of urban St. Louis to make literal space for white/wealthier people to move in. Not that I think that is philosophically impossible - I just don't think the real estate is needed that badly. So I'm guessing that you mean a psychological beat-down of protestors to create a more comfortable psychological environment for the ruling class? A kind of extermination of resistance so that the ruling class can more easily continue to believe in the moral rightness of there stays quo?

TH in SoC said...

Hello Aimee. Sorry for the delay in posting your comment. What I mean by "extermination" is the sort of random killing of dark-skinned or non-Anglo people that almost never gets effectively addressed. Think of Blackwater in Iraq, for instance. What I mean by "living room" is not necessarily a literal claim on real estate, but rather the use of force by a dominant group to enable them to continue to "live large" at the expense of everyone else.

Ah, how depressing it has been to have to focus on such things! Hopefully, I'll soon have opportunity to turn my blogging attention to something lighter.

TH in SoC said...

One other thing occurs to me, namely that gentrification is a form of seeking Lebensraum. And gentrification is possible only via economic oppression of the long-term residents of the place that the well-to-do want to gentrify.