Epicenter


Nothing had happened for the last few days at the police department. The trial had already come and gone. Protesters were blocking I-70 going west. Yet the new guy was stuck here. Just in case.

“You never know which part of town will get riled up,” he told me. Never even glanced up from his phone.

I overlooked the language and stared across the street. How did the department view the camera? It wasn’t too far from the interstate exit. My fantasies of the chaos inside the office was punctured every now and then by the chanting of the protesters will. Each shout a call to action. The car horns all sounded alike. An interesting representation of the status quo. Each honk, another yell to conform.

Although the streets were empty, my friend stayed in the car. Paralyzed by the footage the media editors strung together. The fighting, looting, riot gear. Their absences were a miracle if the footage was to be believed.

The neighborhood he viewed as crazy was snoozing through its lunch. He couldn’t see what I did though. The fear of what he was supposed to see here was enough. Lack of understanding and compassion, the real cause of all the crimes.

A random thought. Should I force him to eat lunch here? There is a mom and pop restaurant in sight of the station.

“it’s perfectly safe.”

“…let me know when you’re ready to get out of this crazy town.”

I close the door before I can tell him how I feel.

My oppression is showing. His privilege is out. We still have a few days ahead of us. Reminding myself to breathe is hard. I notice my hand clutching the camera. Death grip. What a fitting term.

No. His world is not ready.

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