Originally published at http://www.commondreams.org/views/2020/06/06/rest-world-sees-uprisings-not-riots
Framing and definition provides the context of words. When there’s a power issue involved, those who hold the power uses the words that cause an immediate flight-or-fight reaction in the reptile brain. “Riot” is one of those words.
“Uprising”, on the other hand, puts a pause in that rush to fear. The brain asks, 'What is being challenged to change? Why does it need to be changed" What do I need to know before deciding what to do?" At that point, the person researches the power structure and wonders why the imbalance is so strong that it motivates people who, on the whole prefer the security of the status quo, to push for change.
Also, a riot assumes a group of people that are out of control, becoming mob mind. Uprising implies a long gestation period, with requests being made over a period of time but not being addressed. Then people rise up, making sure this time their issues and concerns are heard and answered.
We’re in this for the long haul. The long slog. The status quo may be maintained. But if we don’t speak up and act, those in charge sure as hell will remain in charge!
The only ones rioting are the Police, afraid they will be restricted to treating us like the human beings we are.
I say, Fire Them All, then, put up a sign saying, "Hiring-Must Be Human."
Reese Erlich is my own private Jesus, damn near epitomizing the kind of writer I might aspire to be, someday when I grow up. (The cocked-hat look is cute, too!) I copied a few tasty quotations of quotations, just to whet your appetite for reading the whole thing through. It’s a masterpiece.
“The growing protests… against police brutality in the U.S. are fundamentally an uprising against an entire system of racist exploitation and oppression,” read a statement issued by the BDS (Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions) movement in Palestine.
“We believe that our problem is not one of civil rights but a violation of human rights,” [Malcolm X] said in 1965. “Not only are we denied the right to be a citizen in the United States, we are denied the right to be a human being.”
“There’s never been a period like this,” [Ajamu Baraka] says. “This is one of the most serious and dangerous moments in the history of this country.”
Introspection has never been a strong suit in American life. The media, seeded with propagandists, is largely to blame. While there have been excellent films that have pointed out flaws in how America works both intra- and internationally, the message is usually overshadowed by the celebrity of the messengers (the actors) in the minds of most viewers. They are also counterbalanced by out-and-out proto-fascist war porn. Add on worship of violence in sport and the sickness goes to the bone. Pile on fop of that our persistent assault on nature in myriad ways oft out of sight of those clustered in cities (though I would argue that is an assault on their access to nature) and we have systemic problems that can only be addressed with Progressive solutions. Ain’t going to happen, but
BRING BACK BERNIE 2020!
Unpopular opinion: The fundamental distinction between a riot or protest, and an uprising or rebellion, is the interplay of the authorities and the crowd opposite them.
In a protest, the intent of the protestors is generally non-violent, and the authorities may respond either with crowd control or less-lethal crowd dispersal methods.
In a riot, the participants engage in violence, but they are not aiming to militarily overthrow the existing power structure. Authorities will usually rely on less-lethal crowd dispersal methods.
In a rebellion, the participants are armed and seeking to militarily defeat the existing power structure. The authorities likewise treat the participants as an enemy army to be destroyed.
That’s just my opinion.
American Spring ?
Question: Are we better than that?
About five years ago I read a Christian Science Monitor article about the population of poor whites in South Africa. No one here will be surprised that in a black ruled nation filled with millions of poor black folks, the population of poor whites receives no aid or attention from the government.
Back then, 2011, there were many calls on this forum hoping for an Arab Spring Tahrir Square moment here in the USA, the people rising up to overthrow our government and existing social system. Disappointment so far. You had better hope for better than that. As Alexander Solzhenitsyn documented, what the Soviet Union did in oppressing people was several multiples worse than what the czars of the Russian Empire had done. I have seen a similar statement about Iran, and a similar statement deserves to be made about Cuba.
Yes. THIS!! Absolutely agree.
Such as the police rioters we all witnessed.
Not long after JFK observed that “those who make peaceful revolution impossible make violent revolution inevitable”, bumper stickers warning the YOUR LOCAL POLICE ARE ARMED AND DANGEROUS.
When you say the media is the problem, you must mean not the media writers, but the media owners. I remember a writer about thirty years ago,telling about what he was not allowed to write.
It is an interesting observation. Police wear uniforms and drive vehicles that are very distinctive so they are a recognized authority. (most people recognize or have come to expect identified behavior) The problem over time is that the parameters for expected behavior has changed in ways that benefit people unequally. What happens in a riot is people stop responding to the usual social cues that establish order. They ignore the rules of public conveyance and most social boundaries in favor of different social cues Now is when there is a trend to re-establish social order in a way that recognizes how best to make equality a part of that discussion of social order.
Syrian girl has opined that what is happening in the US is a version of a colored revolution that they attempted and failed in Syria, but succeeded in other places (Egypt). Here in Portland the graffiti that antifa is spraying all over downtown Portland, includes “antifa runs this town” “more dead cops” “all cops are bastards” When the international cabal attempted to take out the Nicaraguan government, their first target was the Nicaraguan police. When the Israeli golems attacked Gaza in 2009 their first target was a missile strike against the Gaza police force during role call. Here in Portland, OPB, the Oregonian, Willamette Week are all covering up the damage and sentiment of antifa, letting them spin it as some sort of righteous protest. All of the thugs and antifa operatives that have been arrested in Portland have been released, the riots continue for the 8th straight day, the park where antifa gathers to attack the Portland Justice center remains open and antifa occupies it, much like in the “occupy” days (another failed? color revolution). Portland is dying at the hands of antifa.
Are you sure it’s the Antifa & not their mortal enemy,
the Proud Boys?
You can’t return to normal if you’ve never been there.
The uprisings started years ago, when neoliberal regimes started falling apart.