That Was The Week That Was

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Memo to the last week: YOU WERE DUMB.

After an inadvertent but necessary week off, let's talk about a few of the big things that happened at greater length than I could on Twitter.

Obviously, the biggest story of the week was the baseball practice shooting that injured Louisiana Republican Steve Scalise and two police officers. The gunman, James Hodgkinson, was a homeless anti-Trump Berniecrat. The political response has, of course, been completely fucking insipid.

First, of course, were the non-stop calls for "collegiality", "toning down rhetoric", and " stopping the polarization". This, of course, was applied consistently to "both sides" because, for the first time in like forever, the dickweasel who thought a gun would help things was on the left.

You know why politics has gotten more polarized? Because policies have become more polarizing. Who was it that turned Mitt Romney's health care plan into the greatest demonic force in political history because a black guy got it passed? Who've proposed the most draconian policies on everything in decades? Which party has normalized their fringe?

And yet, somehow, it became somehow uncharitable to point out that the wife of the black lady cop wounded trying to save Steve Scalise's life wouldn't be her wife and wouldn't be allowed to visit her in the hospital if Scalise had his way on gay marriage. I'm sad he got shot, and I'm sad there's some social media stuff out there that paints him as more racist than your average white 51-year-old Louisiana Republican, but there's also no denying that the policies he supports specifically hurt people and are contraindicated by the events of his shooting.

Members of Congress spent the week complaining that it's tough for the public to see them as "people" or "human beings", to which I would suggest that maybe they should act like it more often. Right now, way too many of them are interchangeable engines of hurtful, hateful policy, ineffective defenders of a status quo eroding beneath their feet, or both.

Meanwhile, in criminal "justice" news, Philando Castile's kiler got off, Bill Cosby got a mistrial, and Donald Trump may or may not be under investigation for obstruction of justice, depending on which of four nearly consecutive sentences from one of his lawyers you decide to believe.

The Castile aquittal is both the most obvious and the worst. The standards for convicting a cop are incredibly high under current law, and cops are trained, both formally and informally, to take full advantage of that, both when it comes to the decision to use deadly force and in the excuses presented for using deadly force after the fact. Add in institutionalized racism and the tribalized politicization of police violence by racist politicians and politicians with a racist base, and you have a LOT of things that have to change before the state stops slaughtering minorities for infractions that range from nonexistent to minor.

As for Cosby, pretty much the same power dynamic at play, but with different players.

As for Trumpikins, who, according to reports, is roaming around the White House yelling at televisions when he's not going off script to decide that the level of exaggeration in his prepared remarks wasn't grandiose enough and that Scalise had the prayers of the "entire world" behind him, which I'm sure would come as a shock to most of the world's residents.

To loop back around and try to form some kind of vaguely coherent point despite being a bit rusty, when Steve Scalise was shot, everyone got behind him, ignored his many faults as a human being, offered their full support, gave him the life-saving health care he needed, and waited at least a couple of days before trying to pin his shooting on Democrats to try and gain an edge in the Georgia special election.

Which is fine, except for that last part, and how every shooting victim should be treated, except for that last part, but it's not how most people get treated. Most people get treated much, much worse. And if pointing that out is polarizing or divisive, well, that kind of bullshit is exactly what I want to be divided from and the polar opposite of.