Imagine Blacks using violence to try and stop lynching a 100 years ago, though with justification. Imagine how well that would have went. Yet even with justifications, it is best to not trust the use of violence, because first and foremost, the use of violence comes from being on top of the violence food chain.
Only those with a chance of “winning” when using violence can enforce their justifications. If the White power structure in the U.S. expects Blacks to overcome racism and police brutality in a non-violent manner, why don’t they practice what they preach and overcome terrorism in a non-violent manner?
Why do Whites get to use violence to fight terrorism, but Blacks do not get to use violence to fight racism? The fact that Whites are so determined on defeating terrorism and not racism, is proof that Black lives do not matter to many Whites.
What is the difference between hurling bricks and bottles at police after what happened to Freddie Gray, and hurling bombs at Afghanistan after what happened on 9-11? The crime is not racism, the crime is the people of color responding to racism in a manner that is viewed as unacceptable. The burden for ending racism is put on the backs of those subjected to it and how they respond to it.
War is a very simple physical phenomenon. It comes from being on top of the violence food chain. The U.S. government gets to claim its violence as war, but from being on top of the violence food chain.
The Boston Marathon bomber cannot walk away from his killings by claiming it was war, because he is not on top of the violence food chain. We are still very primitive, because it is still the most lethal violence that decides what justice is.
Frank Erickson lives in Minneapolis.