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Whistleblowing, the Pandemic and a ‘Law and Order’ System of Injustice

Originally published at http://www.commondreams.org/views/2020/06/23/whistleblowing-pandemic-and-law-and-order-system-injustice

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Off topic somewhat but, if Bolton had chosen to appear before Congress during Trump’s Impeachment trial, with the information he possessed he would have become the “Ultimate Whistle-blower” perhaps saving an entire nation from a mentally incompetent man, and a killer virus that man would unleash on a country he purposely divided for his own pleasure.

Instead, Bolton blew his own whistle to the tune of $2 Million.

This seems to be a present-day example of a Corrupt Coward whose traitorous choices betrayed an entire nation.

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For those who do not know Jeffrey Sterling’s story, I would hope that you would look it up. It provides a horrifying look into what this country does to the principled people who expose its crimes.

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Given the accelerating pace of social change that was happening even before the virus and George Floyd’s murder, I am hopeful that people like Mr. Sterling can get a second hearing from society. A majority of white Americans now agrees that black and brown people are not treated the same as whites by the police; this is a momentous change, because the white majority has always given the police and the military-intelligence complex the benefit of the doubt, while the press has, up until recently, provided utmost deference to both.

Times are certainly interesting and on the verge of possible change if the energy persists in the direction that is needed.

Sterling is onto something with the notion that doing little more than finally holding police accountable or defunding police departments will bring the needed changes. The Harvard philosopher Willard Quine wrote of the “web of belief” which in part notes that our beliefs, and by extension our culture and society, are interwoven, or comprise a web, such that where one begins and ends is not so clear; being linked together, they influence each other. Any coherent discussion on the kinds of issues we are facing today and that Sterling writes about here lead to and reveal these interdependencies. George Floyd was killed because of racist attitudes, combined with lax policing of the police, combined with…? Accused of using a counterfeit bill, why would he do that? Why does a George Floyd feel the need to use fake money? Why are the poor poor in America? And so the discussion spreads. Re-writing the American legal book is necessary, but wouldn’t be enough. It is always too easy for those in power - who know about the web of our circumstances - to isolate and perhaps give in to a very narrow change in order to leave the greater web, and their power, undisturbed. Once they have done that, it’s too easy for those who had protested to feel their concerns have been addressed, only to find that nothing has really changed. The anger surrounding George Floyd’s murder is based on so much more than his case or the case of racism in America, it reflects all of what makes living in this world such a struggle for the masses as compared to those holding the power. So it is more than the legal system that needs changing, it is everything about how our society, our social and economic lives are carried out that needs revision. However, we would be able to leave much of the spirit of the law, even the spirit of modern business, intact (freedom for all, opportunity for all, fair pay for fair work, etc.) if we simply make sure that there is no gap between theory or spirit and morality - and practice, as we have now. Because now, we have a theory of freedom for all, but not all people are free. We have a theory of decency and fairness in business, for example, but decency and fairness is very far away from reality in a large percentage of successful business today in America. We can say the same about politics, clearly. This is important because people fear change, but if they are made to realize that much of what needs changing is “only” downstream - again, leaving many principles intact - and that those elements we (or many of us) hold close to our hearts can remain as they are, only now realized instead of ignored, they can be encouraged to keep pressing on and to start moving down the road of change, despite how sweeping those changes will need to be and how much work it will involve.

Dear Common Dreams editors! Why is it that when I click on the book title shown in Jeffrey Sterling’s biography, I come to an Amazon website? Does CD receive money from this vile corporation? If so, I won’t donate to your effort again until you sever that relationship. If not, then why not bring readers to books through online booksellers not owned by Amazon, and not guilty of the kinds of ethical violations towards workers that Amazon is? Please. We all need to boycott Amazon, now.

I deeply appreciate these comments, though it does seem to me that Trump is enabling not a “white moderate” agenda but a brutal and racist agenda that goes far beyond moderation in any sense of the word.

I do hope any people who are caught in the suspended animation of white moderation wake up and join with brothers and sisters of every racial and ethnic background to finally create a nation of justice for all.

It’s definitely “gone on far too long.”