Free Speech And The Berkeley Riots
In the past year my life has changed profoundly. I quit my job, I quit my Ph.D. program, and I completely left a promising career due to bullying and a decade of fearful self-censorship. I have no income and could not be more disillusioned with the systems I have held in such high esteem for so long. The whole endeavor left me a drunken pot head whose body has seemed to just fall apart lately, of which my hoarse voice is both a symptom, and a tragic metaphor.
As I try each day to rebuild my constitution, my faith in my fellow man, to establish a more coherent foundation for the knowledge I’ll need to complete this last third of my life with integrity, I am forced to realize that those that claimed to be my ally and those that seem to have shown themselves to be violent enemies are actually not so mutually exclusive, and that, in fact, they cannot play the traditional roles of friend and foe as I once was so easily assigned them to.
My personal interest in the Berkeley riots is not just about finding news I can trust, or finding the data I need to make informed decisions regarding my beliefs, and belief structures. For my interest in all of those concerns can be summed up as my need for free speech, or more specifically and importantly, my need for the preservation of free speech.
When I say beliefs I am referring to the myriad of individual conclusions we each reach in our lives; when I say belief structure I am referring to the coherence of the totality of those beliefs. The structure of our beliefs are our principles, the building blocks of who we fundamentally are. This may sound grand, but that doesn’t make the claim any less true. Our belief structures could be considered the framework of who we are right down to whatever we think of as our soul.
I believe the state of news reporting lead me, and is leading me, if I am to believe their accounts, to reach conclusions that would force me to introduce serious flaws in that belief structure; flaws that would, essentially, reduce my arguments to fallacy, reduce the quality my word, reduce the quality of my life. Sadly, I believe that at best some of this misinformation is a result of ignorance, and unfortunately I now believe much of it is worse, that it is straight up deceit. And, I’m just not taking that shit anymore.
The riots of Berkeley and the reporting on them have proven quite important in this regard. They have highlighted through the violence how each side of the issue not only attempts to sculpt the narrative of their agenda using the same data, but does so in direct contrast to their actions:
When Yvette Felarca commits premeditated violence for the purpose of disrupting the lawful gathering of a group that holds views she finds abhorrent yet not immediately threatening to life or limb, I see malice, mayhem, hypocrisy.
When masked ANTIFA toss lit and ready to blow M-80s into crowds of soft-flesh humans, or strikes a man in the head with a bike lock even though he is kneeling with his hands raised in appeal to peaceful discussion, I see indiscriminate malice, mayhem, hypocrisy.
When Nathan Damigo targets, surges toward, hones1 in on, and blind sides Louise Rosealma, he is not exercising self defense, nor standing his ground. I see self interest, mayhem, assault.
When Louise Rosealma meets free speech clutching a bottle as if she’s in a barroom brawl, I see an intent to follow through on fighting words, I see violence, I see hypocrisy.
When half a dozen grown men set upon a single person, gaining advantage over a now prostrate and threatless body, and attack with kicking and punching and stomping, I see orgy, I see bloodlust.
When witnesses of, and journalists reporting on, the events refer to Rosealma as Moldylocks or Damigo as a Nazi I don’t see an interest at finding truth, I see self-interest, partisan polemics, I see hate.
When Shane Bauer says he, “Went Behind the Front Lines With the Far-Right Agitators Who Invaded Berkeley” I don’t see a journalist reporting on an event, I see a person assigning one side the good guys and the other side the enemy; I see the antithesis of journalistic integrity.
I’m not a Nazi, or a white supremacist, or a far-right agitator, or even your basic conservative. What I am is a true believer in free speech, to my core. And though I may be liberal, a tranny, I can guarantee you, even after all that I saw of the Berkeley riots, the hate, the violence, which side of the fence I’d hold my camera. For at the end of the day I’d rather be hated by those I am free to criticise than silenced by those those claiming to protect me.
Be well, be safe…