Cry for your mother if you like. Worship the bully. Or else. And maybe anyway.

Gilead

Police White supremacist gangs


Fig. 1. Photograph by Lorie Shaull, April 1, 2021, via Wikimedia Commons, CC BY-SA 2.0.

I have read descriptions of the white supremacist gang murder of Tyre Nichols[1] They are, of course, horrifying.

Nichols’ murderers are Black[2] but this does not matter. They participated in a white supremacist organization and they conducted themselves accordingly. Because this is what white supremacist gangsters do.

The only thing new here is the clarity of the video from multiple cameras[3] and, of course, the violence these recordings depict is inexcusable. But this is what white supremacist gangsters do. Again and again and again.

And we invariably treat these events as exceptions.[4] Again and again and again.

It’s just like what we do with mass shootings and gun violence generally. It keeps happening. Again and again and again.

But sacred cows are clearly involved. We won’t do anything about capitalism. We won’t do anything about white supremacist gang violence. We won’t do anything about gun violence.

Because no matter what politicians or corporate executives or white Christian nationalists tell you, our real god is the bully, in whatever garb, in whatever form, and “thoughts and prayers” and ritualistic but empty condemnations are our most sacred rite.

Libor Jany, Noah Goldberg, and James Queally, “Video shows Memphis officers kicking, punching Tyre Nichols as he calls for his mother,” Los Angeles Times, January 27, 2023, https://www.latimes.com/california/story/2023-01-27/tyre-nichols-family-calls-for-peaceful-protests-when-video-released

Jason Hanna and Elizabeth Hartfield, “Video shows Tyre Nichols calling for his mother, beaten by officers now charged in his death,” Cable News Network, January 28, 2023, https://www.cnn.com/2023/01/27/us/tyre-nichols-memphis-friday/index.html


  1. [1]Jason Hanna and Elizabeth Hartfield, “Video shows Tyre Nichols calling for his mother, beaten by officers now charged in his death,” Cable News Network, January 28, 2023, https://www.cnn.com/2023/01/27/us/tyre-nichols-memphis-friday/index.html; Libor Jany, Noah Goldberg, and James Queally, “Video shows Memphis officers kicking, punching Tyre Nichols as he calls for his mother,” Los Angeles Times, January 27, 2023, https://www.latimes.com/california/story/2023-01-27/tyre-nichols-family-calls-for-peaceful-protests-when-video-released
  2. [2]Jason Hanna and Elizabeth Hartfield, “Video shows Tyre Nichols calling for his mother, beaten by officers now charged in his death,” Cable News Network, January 28, 2023, https://www.cnn.com/2023/01/27/us/tyre-nichols-memphis-friday/index.html
  3. [3]Libor Jany, Noah Goldberg, and James Queally, “Video shows Memphis officers kicking, punching Tyre Nichols as he calls for his mother,” Los Angeles Times, January 27, 2023, https://www.latimes.com/california/story/2023-01-27/tyre-nichols-family-calls-for-peaceful-protests-when-video-released
  4. [4]James Downie, “Time to toss the ‘bad apples’ excuse,” Washington Post, May 31, 2020, https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/2020/05/31/time-toss-bad-apples-excuse/

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