I’m unusually busy today, so I wanted to share just a couple of things. First, when I was walking my dog (Paul!!) this morning I noticed an unusual number of police cars congregating around a few major intersections. There’s a police station nearby, so one or two cars on a given walk isn’t that unusual, but in this case there were three motorcycle cops parked on the sidewalk across from an elementary school (a sidewalk I had intended to walk on, incidentally), so I stopped to ask what was up.
Here’s where, in an exciting story, I’d report that something happened. But nothing did: they had been instructed to set up a speed trap (which is sensible enough, since, as I mentioned: elementary school), and that’s all that was going on. All three men were very polite to me.
What is notable about this, to me, is that all I felt was curiosity and than annoyance when faced with three armed policemen on a normally empty street. The only reason I was even annoyed was that they were blocking my way; I was not scared for even a moment. This is not a testament to these policemen (though again, they were quite gentlemanly). It’s a testament to the fact that my experience in the world is mediated through my race. I’m white, so this kind of thing is easy for me.
I feel like people are losing track of what’s happening in Ferguson, and that’s understandable. It’s been a few weeks in a bad summer overall, and people get tired of talking about the same thing when nothing changes. I get that way too. But I think it’s important to keep talking about this situation, because it’s bigger than just Ferguson: complex, criminalizing race relations are a fact of our country, and a sad damn fact at that.
So to that end, here’s an essay by Ezekiel Kweku that went live at The Toast today. It’s worth your time.
Second thing (because I promised two things): I might have something called a cholesteatoma* in my left ear, which would explain why I’ve been getting ear infections non-stop for over a year. It sucks, and my ear will not stop spitting vile fluid, no matter how many expensive antibiotic drops I put in there. Medical science: I am in your hands.
*I’m not linking to anything because it’s kind of gross and disturbing and I encourage you not to educate yourself about this unless you have to. One symptom is face paralysis. There. I said it. Go wild, hypochondriacs.