This is hard to believe. Just watch, listen, and read and tell me what you think.
The are so many subtexts to this era of American history. A good portion of them are indeed racial in nature. The truth is, Joe Rogan wannabes with their backwards ballcap and overly tight T-shirts are cowardly man-children who have the emotional IQ of a toddler. But also, we see a brazenness in this case, a sheer disrespect for authority or boundaries, and a sense of self-importance. This sort of behavior reflects poorly upon us in the rest of the world, although I can’t imagine they look at us as the nation of FDR anymore at any rate.
— Billy Corben (@BillyCorben) August 28, 2021
It never ceases to amaze me how people who get upset at airports see, “powerless worker”, and not, “protected by Federal law worker. Perhaps it is ignorance, or just a disrespect for labor, but watching this clown swing pole and punch an employee I could not help but think that he comes from serious privilege, unaware of consequences, never been told no, and carries around with him a card of a lawyer for when his dumb ass inevitably gets hauled into the local free hotel.
But what struck me was what Mehdi Hasan said, crystallizing what I could sense very succinctly:
Let me be clear: there's no scenario in which someone who looked like me, with my name, could get away with even six seconds of behavior like this at an airport, let alone sixty. Where on earth are the police? Security? https://t.co/RY6xUmcxF8
— Mehdi Hasan (@mehdirhasan) August 28, 2021
This begs the question of what would have happened if he had been a gentleman wearing a turban. How quickly do you think he gets a gun pointed at him? And yet here we are with the airline employees left on an island where they have to fight the guy off themselves, and I must say, a very restrained, professional response was seen. Where were the airport police? This went on for over a minute, which is more than enough time for violence to unfold, and escalate.
It turns out the veteran, as the suspect is identified as, was taken into custody and, well, what better evidence of privilege than this?
Hospitalized. Evaluation. In general I am fine with checking on mental health, absolutely. But if that is going to be your focus, then it should be applied as a standard not arbitrarily. Thus I have to ponder Mr. Hasan’s question. How many black veterans are eating bologna tonight if they pulled that stunt? How many would be hospitalized from the police response? What about a female vet? See we can’t have two different standards and function as a nation, much less defeat a pandemic on top of it. A wide berth for such actions can only encourage more of the same.
Do I think he is first treated for a mental breakdown if he is anything other than white and male? No I do not.
The good ol’ boy system that protects people like this is crumbling, and as they see that power structure grow weaker, they get ever more furious. And more furious-
is more dangerous.