Where’s Our Soul? Food for Thought - Journal Entry #5

You couldn’t do a better job of portraying how blindly partisan this country is than with the Ahmaud Arbery murder and commentary since. Most of the dialogue surrounding this issue - the meat and potatoes of what is actually being bickered about on social media and the internet alike (at least what I’ve seen) - is all so utterly stupid.

Somehow the conversation has become more about what criminal histories mean in terms of long term expectations, why Ahmaud was even there, where he actually lived, and what trespassing is in the state of Georgia. It has become more about whether or not two seemingly-nosy community members had the right to carry out a citizen's arrest that then resulted in the killing of a man in the name of self-defense. Semantics are interesting, especially when things get legal, because so much is purposely left out. There sure is a lot of talk about what the McMichaels’ rights are, but not Ahmaud’s. Well, one of those was the right to life.

Instead of discussing whether or not killing someone is justified when that someone reaches for your gun, people are putting a spotlight on a gun offense from Arbery’s past. Now, of course, shooting someone who grabs for your gun is justified, but the real question is this. Were the presumptions upon which the McMichaels went to confront Arbery justified? If so, did those presumptions really justify the confrontation? How about murder?

You’ll be hard-pressed to convince me that much was justified at all. And regardless, how does his track record warrant murder? In my opinion, talk of past criminality as it pertains to this situation is moot at best, used simply to make the point that if Arbery had been in legal trouble before with a gun, then the McMichaels’ belief that Arbery might be armed would be more reasonable. Whatever; we see that excuse all the time.

At some point, it seems to me like ego came out to play in this situation. In the least, there’s something squirrelly about people who are so gung-ho for grabbing pitchforks and policing their neighborhoods on their own authority. Fun? Sure. Stupid? Yep. How about calling the fucking cops?

Weird times we’re living in. And I’m not sure many people get the point. Let me break it down. You’re probably more in the wrong for killing a suspicious someone while patrolling your neighborhood as part of community watch than you would be as someone snooping through under-construction homes and perhaps looting them. I’m glad law will never be in some of y’all’s hands.

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