Friday, October 03, 2008

Lynched!

Look how happy everyone is.
Less than fifty-years ago, lynching, defined as, "To execute without due process of law, especially to hang, as by a mob", was socially acceptable as long as the victim lynched was African American, but acceptance of this extralegal practice also extended toward non African Americans who stood up for civil rights.

Today, lynching, as defined above, is no longer as accepted. I say no longer as accepted, instead of unacceptable because if the victim is homosexual, it's doubtful that the perpetrators would be subject to the same punitive extremes of the law, than if the victim were not gay. Gay males (of hate crimes based on sexual orientation. 61% of these attacks were against gay men, 14% against lesbians, 2% against heterosexuals and 1% against bisexuals) in particular, have replaced the African American as America's acceptable scapegoat.

Violence and corruption have always been accepted as a part of our culture, however as we have "evolved", conspicuous acts of violence and corruption are not as politically correct anymore, therefore instead of disappearing altogether, have mutated into a more refined version of violence and corruption that escapes our radar, either through deliberate ignorance, or through the deliberate calculation of the perpetrators of such acts.

In 1900, Ida Wells-Barnett defined lynching as the following, “cool, calculating deliberation of intelligent people.” This definition defines the lynching that takes place today, more accurately. The result of this type of "lynching" can be financial, emotional, and even spiritual devastation, which in the extreme; can only be compared to the first definition, hanging by neck until death.

The "lynching" that takes place now is less conspicuously gruesome, however, can be just as deadly. Instead of killing one person at a time, current lynching methods take life on a grand scale. Often times, rather than the characteristically extralegal activity we associate with the first definition, the current definition of "lynching" is deliberately and calculatingly written into law especially regarding our health care, financial, legal and economic systems, therefore is more a form of legal corruption.

Lynched:

Since the Iraq War began, 3382 Americans soldiers died , and 30,662 soldiers were wounded, many whose quality of life will never be the same. At the same time, our wealthiest citizens profit, directly or non-directly (tax cuts), from this war, the result of the cool, calculating deliberation of "intelligent" people. Intelligent? After all, this war was a catastrophe. Well, check their bank accounts...certainly not a catastrophe for them.



A 2006 update by the Urban Institute reported at least 22,000 U.S. adults died in 2006 because of a lack of health insurance, according to Families USA.





Then we have victims of law - too many to count or keep track of - as our legal system works almost entirely for those who can afford the steep price of the self-regulating law profession, the same profession that all of our judges emerge.

The law profession, more and more, operates independent of the law, where anything goes. We, the people can do little about it because as Judge Dennis Jacobs says, "Judges can be counted on to rule in favor of anything that protects and empowers lawyers.” The lawyer discipline board does not hold lawyers accountable. Laws are broken, the rules of the court mean very little, and the line between opposing parties is often smeared and crossed as attorneys collude rather than work in the best interest of their client. Of course there are good attorneys who try their best to work within the framework of the law, however, the corruption has become embedded in that framework and will continue to spread unless we rise up to take back our system of justice.

We can't forget the victims of our financial system as it has topped the news everyday for the last few weeks. Every single taxpayer has not been "lynched" by our financial system, however, starting 30-years ago, when the greed and corruption started to infiltrate, the number of people who were "lynched" as a result far exceeds most estimated statistics as it is impossible to track, considering all of those who fell through the cracks over the last three decades.

Nothing will change until we finally realize that "We the People" that begins our Constitution, does not translate to greed, power and profit for the tiny minority at the top, rather it means we all need to take care of each other, because we are all in this together and what we allow to happen to the "least of our brother", we increase the chance that the same thing will happen to us.

2 comments:

Tom,  13:39  

I think using the word, lynched is taking it a step too far. People who are randomly lynched have no say in the matter, whatsoever. All of the other situations you have pointed out, the people do have some input as to how their situation will turn out. By using the term lynched you are cheapening the experiences of those who have really experienced lynching. It's like comparing victims of the Holocaust to people murdered in WWII. It's just not the same.

Roth's stepchild 12:51  

That's a very good point. Victims of lynching normally have absolutely no control over the situation, and did nothing to contribute to what's happened to them. Whereas, in the other situations I presented, more than likely, because it's a more gradual process, individuals did contribute to their predicament, even it's negligible, such as taking the wrong job, moving into the wrong house, banking with the wrong bank. Not to mention there are those whose decisions make them even more culpable for their situation such as running up their credit cards to buy their kids decent Xmas presents, or even more culpable, running up credit cards to buy stuff they didn't need...and it escalates from there.

However, the bottom line is that many of the situations presented kill. Lynching is gruesome and extremely painful, and something where others can witness the entire process within a matter of minutes. It is very clear what is happening, therefore very clear who is the perpetrator and who is the victim. However, as you can see in that picture, even then, the victim is not seen as a victim.

Clarity is completely removed when an individual becomes a victim of our system. The process is long, grueling and very often physically, mentally, and emotionally torturous. The "system" makes sure the victim is not clearly defined, and even goes further to deliberately place the blame on the victim, as it did in the lynching process (systemic racism), creating a situation of hopelessness for that person.

Having said all that, I find it hard to equate the violent process of lynching to anything else but hanging by the neck. Nevertheless, just as lynching executes without due process of law, victims of our justice, economic, health care, etc. are eventually executed without due process of law, although it's often a much slower process where unless someone is capturing your life on video, impossible for the average person to see.

Thanks for the comment!

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