Dystopia in Live Action

I’ve tried to write. I’ve tried to read. But it’s pretty much impossible to concentrate on either when there’s some live Orwellian dystopian shit going down in middle America. I have Ancillary Justice on my e-reader, I have de Bodard and Griffith and Elizabeth Hand and I can’t even.

Media blackouts and snipers and tear gas and politicians/journalists being arrested for taking video recordings and because… what? Some folks did about as much damage in reaction to a cop killing an unarmed kid as you find in a southern town after a particularly exciting SEC football game? The Bill of Rights have been suspended in a city in America, a teenage kid is dead and more have been injured all at the hands of police, and if you care as much about some TV’s being stolen as all that? Stay the hell away from me.

I don’t have words. Not adequate ones, anyway. The racism in the media coverage (and lack of coverage) of these events has been appalling, as has the racism of law enforcement involved. I hope to be book blogging again soon, because I know that even though my brain doesn’t work that way, for a lot of people horror is made more bearable with the escapism that fiction provides.

But today, my mind and heart are in Missouri.

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5 Responses to Dystopia in Live Action

  1. I couldn’t believe it when I was on Twitter last night. I laughed out loud, because it felt like it should have been a joke. Reporters arrested for reporting in America? What country are we in? Once the reality dawned on me, it was with a grim face I kept following the story. I’m so glad it’s blown up in social media, and I’m thankful to those on the ground keeping us all informed.

    • cecilykane says:

      Same here. Several folks on my Twitter feed pointed out the similarity between these events and Octavia Butler’s Parable series. And with each subsequent piece of news that comparison looks more and more apropos, right down to today’s attempted retconning of the story by the PD during their press conference.

      • It’s just disgusting the bizarre lengths people will go to try and justify their (or their department’s) actions when they’ve made a mistake. They are willing to consider any scenario except one where they are just flat out wrong. No one should have died that day. Period. No excuses. The only silver lining here is that this incident has sparked more discussion of the systemic problems of racism in law enforcement programs. When everyone is a journalist (thank you Twitter) you can’t “make this go away” anymore.

  2. I have been contemplating what kind of post I should write about this, particularly when the entire event just makes words feel like they could never, ever be enough to describe these events. Thanks for doing one yourself. I hope I find words for it soon.

    And oh jesus, the Butler/Parable parellels, I didn’t even think of it, but yes of course holy shit, so much.

    • cecilykane says:

      Yeah. You know, yesterday I had an opportunity to run a social experiment*: I was walking around downtown on a sidewalk directly across the street from where my car was parked, and on the opposite sidewalk stood a police officer. So I impulsively, and brazenly, jaywalked right in front of the dude.

      And I not only didn’t get shot, or ticketed, or so much as warned, but the cop smiled at me.

      Pretty sure that’s what white privilege looks like.

      *Obligatory do-not-try-this-at-home disclaimer: jaywalking is not a good idea. It’s a good way to get hit by a car.

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