The Bad Influence
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The Bad Influence


Civil Disobedience — A Moral Responsibility To Disobey Unjust Laws?

I liked the prompt and the spirit behind it

The Terrorists Were Going to Kill Nancy Pelosi and Hang Vice President Pence. They did attack the cops, too. . . . By Tyler Merbler from USA — DSC09156, CC BY 2.0, . . . Both Homeland Security and FBI Director Christopher Wray categorized the right wing attackers as deadly terrorists.

I’ve certainly civilly disobeyed many times in the past sixty years — but it may be largely impossible now. Wait! There’s no maybe about it — it is impossible.

I had to start with the shock value of that picture. So that’s a case where there is nobody being civilly disobedient, except for the police agencies who were not prepared to protect the capitol and kill or capture the terrorists — perhaps in something like the way American cops generally dealt with BLM protests, which yes, we’ll get to that.

The Congress and other politicians in the capitol had some culpability. They were at least involved in allowing the existence of 18,000 police agencies in the U.S. That adds up to over half a million armed cops out there. Maybe these leaders of the country could tell the cops who they can attack at will and who they can’t, and whether skin color or culture should affect their decisions.

Can you see the problem, reader? We started out, so far, with Trumpists who are legally terrorists according to our government — who were attacking cops, politicians, and the literal foundation of the democracy — Congress. Now I’m wondering how you name the “sides” in these kinds of conflicts. If the Trumpists had instead been BLM would the cops have treated them with the same kid gloves?

So where are the righteous citizens who want to do civil disobedience, and I mean white people — liberals — who could with some training and support come out in numbers in order to protect the innocents. Oh, what a mess. The innocents were the people working inside the building and the police who seemed ineffective and maybe deferential to the protestors and the congresspeople. Oh, I am confused.

If I had had advance warning and had resources for getting to Washington . . . who the hell would I talk to? The Pentagon would not be the worst choice. Maybe West Point Academy to talk to some strategists… or what? Try to coordinate a counter-attack with the police against the rioters? Maybe talk with the executive branch. They have a trained prosecutor wasting her time as Vice-President.

But that’s a time-machine question. If I hopped a jet now and found some citizens willing to go to war with me, what would we do next? We’d need arms and preferably some authority to take custody of the people trying to end voting and the very existence of our Democracy — not that it ever was — not really — it was never a functional Democracy. Hence all the rich white guys holding all the money and the power.

All roads lead to Revolution. We’d need some millions of soldiers with preferably some authority to try to install a new Declaration and Constitution, and that’s not on the state’s levels. Well, out of the 167,000,000 who aren’t either Trumpists, Republicans, or Religious fanatics, we should be able to overrun Congress and the White House. Now that would be civil disobedience.

At this point doing nothing will accomplish nothing. The United States would die, and it appears that it would happen soon. Whereas a successful attempt to create one of the socialistic forms of government could save the country.

But there are big fucking problems. I could fly in, get arrested, and slammed into a cell for insurrection or whatever. I could get kicked off Medium and other media. While huge numbers of ‘conservatives,’ Trumpists, federal employees who imprisoned Latin children at the border and committed a host of other crimes against persons and humanity are mostly running around unindicted.

Could someone convince Biden to step down “for health reasons” and let a real prosecutor and the Vice-President take the reins? VPs are unknowns usually, and Harris could end up being the most useful and impressive President the United States has ever had. So what if President Harris upsets the racists and misogynists. It would sure set a tone. She’s not a risk to everyday US citizens — she did okay at very difficult jobs in California.

I won’t act until someone asks me. Maybe the best bet is a parley with the executive branch.

Thanks Marla Bishop for the prompt and the words I borrowed for the title.

Fred Ermlich



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Fred Ermlich

Fred Ermlich

Living in rural Panamá — non-extractive, non-capitalistic. Expat USA. Scientist, writer, researcher, teacher. STEM mentor +languages.