“I wouldn’t give a fuck if Ahmaud had broken into the Smithsonian and was running off with the Hope diamond. He didn’t deserve to die and that was murder.”
By David Icke Turner and Count Grackula
Let’s play Devil’s Advocate.
Let us pretend, for discussion sake, that every horrible thing said about Ahmaud Arbery is true. Most of it is a collection of distractions meant to absolve America of its guilt vis-a-vis young African American men. But let’s play a stupid game. OK?
Every insinuation, every suspected crime, every armchair characterization is totally ‘true’. First and foremost, one must have appropriate footwear when stealing from construction sites so Ahmaud laces up his sturdiest pair of steel-toe boots. With shorts. Whatever. A seasoned criminal with an arrest record, he has made an unwavering decision that he is going to steal something from this neighborhood. He knows this area as he frequently comes here to burglarize properties both inhabited and under construction. But it is a slow day. The bundles of copper usually at the construction site are nowhere to be found today. On his way out of the neighborhood, he runs past two patriotic Americans, the McMichaels, who seek only to defend their rural Gerogian enclave and dispense justice if need be. As Ahmaud makes his way past these two completely well-adjusted good samaritans, they yell “Halt friend, we would like to converse with thee!” He refuses and keeps running. In an effort to detain the potential criminal, the McMichaels chase down Arbery while expressing their 2nd Amendment rights. A scuffle ensues as the criminal, Arbery, does not realize these are two God-fearing, red blooded Americans.
And then they kill him.
It seems every time some young African-American kid is gunned down by over-zealous ‘neighborhood watch’ or even the real cops, some dummies drag out some evidence of how bad the kid was and why he deserved it. Every poor report from a grade school teacher, every misdemeanor arrest, every far-fetched accusation, is taken as gospel by those desperate to ascribe blame to the victim.
But instead of getting distracted by this distraction, we should rather be asking “So what?” Naturally, we fall into a trap when seeking to defend the dead of benign accusations. As Kinfolk Collective recently posted, “I wouldn’t give a fuck if Ahmaud had broken into the Smithsonian and was running off with the Hope diamond. He didn’t deserve to die and that was murder.”
You see, this process of hauling out unrelated stories intended to disgrace the victim is a classic case of ‘Red Herring’; a literary device named for a fish used to both train and confuse dogs. Quick history lesson: Legend holds that herring was dragged against the ground to help escaped prisoners scramble the dogs tailing them. The fish is typically a silvery hue, yet in the 17th century people began smoking to preserve them, making them turn red. Hence the term ‘Red Herring’.
What happened to Ahmaud Arbery is murder, murder, murder.
This should go without saying, but what does go without saying in a country that is shitting its own bed? We have very specific laws and a social contract that creates distinctions between common people and law enforcement. Law enforcement is exclusively tasked with, well, enforcing the fucking law. They (usually) wear a uniform and a badge. It’s their job to stop (arrest) an individual, who then has a right to a speedy, lawful trial, to be adjudicated by a jury of his peers and presided over by a judge, who wears a dress and pronounces a sentence. It’s literally the worst drag show in town, but that is what is called “due process,” or “the law.”
Ahmaud Arbery had a right to that process. This is non-negotiable — he had a right to due process. And here’s the rub — even if all the accusations against him are true, none of them warrant execution. There is not one thing said about Arbery that would/should have gotten him even a week in jail. Yet his killers, like George Zimmerman, will likely walk free, soon enough.
At best, the McMichaels deluded themselves into believing they were qualified to dispense justice, and shit went awry. At worst, they saw an opportunity to demonstrate their power over someone they hate. Regardless of their initial intentions, we know where it went. I can not imagine a more dangerous society than one where anyone gets to self-deputize on a whim.
Nothing Ahmaud did made him deserving of his fate. By all measures, he was your average twenty something “kid”. By all accounts, loving and very loved. Every kid I ever hung out with — white, black, rich, or poor — had been arrested by the time he was 17. We had our fair share of trouble but were good “kids.” As an adolescent, I do not think it was possible for me and my friends to walk past an open construction site and not look around. In fact, resisting the urge to look around an unfinished structure is so ubiquitous that landowners are typically held liable for injuries to people walking around such properties. This is legally referred to as ‘Attractive Nuisance Doctrine’ — a much lovelier-sounding doctrine than the Castle Doctrine or the I-was-in-fear-for-my-life-your-honor Doctrine, but equally deadly. The McMichaels thought themselves righteous and pious enough to judge and execute Ahmaud Arbery.
The good news is, though regular citizens are not bestowed with the power to enforce laws, we do hold the power to judge. I pray that the McMichaels get a fair, impartial jury that does the right thing and sends them to die by the state’s hands.