Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Dancing in the Streets

Riots come...and riots go. Generally, whatever the flashpoint, the real reason for the riots is not even remotely connected to the street wars. I lived through the sixties in Chicago. Rioters burned down much of the city. Looters stole and robbed. I remember being evacuated from my workplace in armored buses. And the violence continued.

Rioting isn't about some single injustice perpetrated by the overlords. Rioting is about anger--long term, systemic anger and resentment. Whatever the primary root cause, the result is a slowly smoldering anger that only requires an opportunistic flashpoint to flare into a roaring bonfire.

The sad thing is nothing is accomplished by rioting except loss of life and destruction. Nothing positive comes from fighting in the streets. It's exactly like a child misbehaving to get attention. The result is never what he's looking for. And the cycle continues.

As I look back at all the riots I've witnessed over the years, I see no positive outcomes. None. Dialogue is not possible when opposite sides are dodging bullets and missiles. Flames just feed on the anger. And innocent bystanders frequently find their lives in ruins through the destruction of their property. Don't tell me looting and rioting is because some young man was shot.

Looting and rioting is carried out by angry people. Anger and despair are the reasons those folks are out there throwing Molotov cocktails. The law-abiding folks are at home. Or praying in church. Or grieving their dead.

1 comment:

  1. Riots help no one. Riots destroy local businesses. Anger can be righteous. Riots are simply about stealing stuff and destroying stuff.