I try and I try to give people the benefit of the doubt. I don’t like to use words like “murder”, because they are incendiary. But wrong is wrong. Crime is crime. Murder is murder, except when it’s not, according to people who decide such things.
To those of us not in power, murder is murder. I’m getting sick of people who pretend it’s not. In watching Rachel Maddow yesterday, I discovered that a computer put in place by an in incoming governor in Michigan withheld people’s unemployment checks — because they applied for unemployment. Then called them frauds, took their tax money, and charged them fines to clear it up. The legislature now is taking the ill gotten money (the fines!) and attempting to keep a portion of it. This sounds like robbery, and it is that, on so many levels.
But it is more than that. If you lost your job, you have no income. If you have no income, in Michigan and elsewhere, you freeze in the cold, starve when you are hungry, and experience massive stress which leads to abuse in relationships, often leading to suicide or homicide (yes, murder). If you have made a decision (for “policy reasons” or “economic reasons” or any other reason, frankly) which actively causes people to freeze or starve, you are murdering them. How do I know? Because if you or I did it, the authorities would be telling us we murdered them.
If a police officer shoots an unarmed civilian and kills them, that’s murder. Again, how do I know? Because if you or I did it, it would be murder, and there would be no question. Accidentally shooting someone is different, though the victim remains just as dead. People in dangerous situations make mistakes, and people with a conscience are punished by that conscience for the rest of their lives. Victims are still dead. You and I would be charged with manslaughter, but I get it.
This year has seen enough people getting shot in the back, shot while unarmed, shot while telling police they were unarmed. That’s murder.
Then, there’s Flint’s water supply. Two years after the news broke that residents were being poisoned by city water and “economic decisions” the people still drink bottled water and elected officials are being charged with fraud. What they did was attempted, and sometimes successful, murder. Will governor Rick Scott ever be charged? Maybe, maybe not. Will he be charged with murder? Most definitely not.
I want to believe in authority. I want to believe in law. I want out streets to be safe, and our people to be free. What authorities who don’t follow the law don’t seem to realize is that authority means responsibility. Lawlessness happens all the time. You can’t have it both ways and say justice is important. “Law and order” means everyone. Until it does, I don’t want to hear about law and order. I want murderers in jail.