Brother vs Brother
The Political Divide
In Our World, social progress never comes easy. Families get divided on issues, lives are lost, and people are locked up. An anonymous liberal friend share, with my new found blog, CrispyView, the story of her two brothers. One is an anarchist and the other is a cop, sharing the same family in a time of solidarity for those most oppressed.
Love and pride for her brothers obvious. She finds herself thinking of them while hearing Dallas Police Chief David Brown talk about his family. He spoke about his brother being killed by drug dealers and his son killed by police. As she hears this, she wonders how he and his family dealt with both losses from gun violence and from police officers. She imagines some in his family must blame the police for the loss of his son. How many officers deal with the police brutality debate inside their very own family?
National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund estimates in the United States that there are approximately 900,000 officers. Many of those officers must deal with friends and families who have dealt with excessive police force. How do those families manage movements like black lives matter that calls out our police officers?
The liberal sister tells us of her middle brother who is a military police officer in the Air Force. He always wanted to serve his country. With his passion for the military and police, he has succeeded in his career.
Her oldest brother was the first born. A festival-going, free spirit who believes a society is brought down by the system. He believes in anarchy but not the bomb throwing, underground shelter living anarchy. He believes in more of a system, such as: “…communities of people who know each other decide how to live together. Anarchist order is based on common consent and common sense..” Bob Black referenced Pierre-Joseph Proudhon in Anarchy 101.
Their family divided grows over the African American community and others against racial injustice rising up in protest. The divide widens as a shooter kills 5 police officers and injures 12 in Dallas on July the 7 during a protest against police violence. The political divide can easily be seen in their Facebook post afterward.
Prejudice and biased towards police is not unfamiliar for cops. Milwaukee County Sheriff David Clark tells CNN “I’ve been watching this for two years. I’ve predicted this,”. Many cops oppose the BLM movement and her brother, who serves our country as military police, says, “Truth is I don’t agree with any of it [BLM]. They have preached violence to police regardless of race”. Her brother goes further on to admit there is still racism and prejudice in the United States; however, he can not support the BLM movement. He could not stand behind the Occupy Movement either; although his old brother fully supported the occupy movement.
Alfred W. McCoy wrote How America’s Wars are Systematically Destroying Our Liberties. In 2008, McCoy wrote “the Army’s Northern Command announced that one of the Third Division’s brigades in Iraq would be signed as a Consequence Management Response Force (CMRF) inside the U.S. Its new mission: planning for moments when civilian authorities may need help with “civil unrest and crowd control.” In 2010, her oldest brother tried to warn our government been stockpiling rubber bullets. As he participated in the Occupy Movement, we got to see the use of those bullets to disperse crowds around the United States.
As the Occupy Movement fades, the oldest anarchist brother finds himself driving his eco-friendly car on a daily commute to and from Corporate America. Grudgingly part of the system which was made for his younger brother. The oldest brother recalls his younger brother always wanting law and order, even as a child. Our military and militarized policing focused system provided order for his younger brother and many others in the United States. The brothers with dramatically different views still love and respect each other. A cop and a brother, with two siblings supportive of movements like Occupy and BLM, is himself, in the midst of our country’s developing revolution yet he says, “you have to respect that decision whether you agree with it or not, that’s what love is”.
My liberal friend is a slice of the American life. Everybody knows our country is divided politically even within many families. Pew Research Center confirmed this as a fact in 2014 during their research to understand the political polarization in America. One of the findings that stand out regarding their research was 38% of Democrats and 43% of Republicans now view the opposite party in strongly negative terms. I hope our country, which is deeply divided, could still see each other as their own brothers and sisters. We need to lead with empathy and an open mind. Recognize there are opportunities for social equality but only with law and order.