Something happened in Oregon, USA. And for anyone who has ever written a comedy article, it is the poor people equivalent of Donald Trump. For people who do not know what I’m talking about, a group of armed militia had taken over a government owned wildlife refuge in protest of a couple of people being sent to jail for suspected arson. It’s really a lot more complicated than it needs to be. You can read it yourself.
“Radicalism threatens radicalism. In a time where a perpetual war is being fought on one side of the world and the economy is bad, it is imperative that the rest of us remain calm and logical in the face of a confusing and terrifying prospect.”
In just the first week of the standoff, the militias have humorously asked for snacks, had home made meals from neighbours like grandmothers feeding kids who had just came home, and gave a specific plan with no specifics.
It’s funny, because it’s terrifying. Let’s laugh. Hah!
I’m not sure if Americans know this, but the world is watching them right now. Between the presidential race where the racist warmongering fruit loop quesadilla known as Donald Trump might win presidency, the war in Syria, and the global climate agreement, many eyes are on them.
Or at least, mine are. Because, to me, this decade will end in two ways. We all die from climate change as the culture of civilization crumbles to racism, or we have a revolution of understanding not seen since the renaissance.
All this came hot on the heel after a boost in LGBT rights around the world. It also came after a slow but steady rise in atheism across the planet. So logic and empathy has been winning earlier this decade. The next half we’ve arrived in will decide the next age, I feel.
Which brings me back to Oregon.
It’s everything wrong with the world, toned down, and squeezed into a single spot of land on the face of the planet.
“It’s funny, because it’s terrifying. Let’s laugh.”
It’s not terrorism if you are a patriot. It’s not extremism if you’re fighting for freedom. It’s not racism if you’re a white man. It’s not socialism if you are the ones getting it. That’s the grounds these “protesters” are standing on, whether they admit it or not.
Because racism is what happens when a black 12-year-old boy is shot dead for a BB gun in a park, but a group of heavily armed white people marching on federal land with assault rifles is ‘a peaceful protest’.
Because terrorism is when a group of extremist Muslims threatens to remove unholy infidels from their lands and attacking the lands of U.S. But a group of mostly white Christians brandishing guns at their own kind and threatening violence to take back land from their government is ‘a liberation team’.
Because socialism is coddling the citizens with healthcare and education, and not when ranchers who get 93% discount on land conduct a hostile takeover of public space in a bid for free acres. No. Those guys are ‘patriots’.
Because having guns for self-defence also covers using it to lay siege on a government by taking over a plot of land. That’s not recklessness, that’s ‘protecting the constitution’.
These are the grounds they are standing on. It’s laughable. It’s stupid. It’s no doubt brought about by the same type of people who would beat up and threaten to burn dissenters at a presidential rally.
“It’s not terrorism if you are a patriot. It’s not extremism if you’re fighting for freedom. It’s not racism if you’re a white man. It’s not socialism if you are the ones getting it.”
Radicalism threatens radicalism. In a time where a perpetual war is being fought on one side of the world and the economy is bad, it is imperative that the rest of us remain calm and logical in the face of a confusing and terrifying prospect. We should not join the fear and the hatred. Sensible people should and continue to stand up against these nut jobs.
This standoff in Oregon will likely have little impact on the world. But we should not put it off as a fringe group saying crazy stuff in another crazy corner of the planet. If there’s anything 2015 should have thought us, is that the world is now more unpredictable than ever, and the fringe group might gain crazy momentum.
An adulterer being the moral guideline for refugee admission. A crazy baboon running for president of the U.S.A. A country whose political votes were jerry-rigged in favour of the ruling party (Yes, I’m talking about Singapore). Anything can happen now in the world. NASA could be defunded again. Global warming will kill us all this year. Someone else could finally support me on Patreon. Anything!
For now, let’s just hope that the Oregon standoff will go the way of their state’s most infamous slogan and die from dysentery. Before it sits in and fester as the eyesore it is.