Saturday, July 9, 2016

Police Shootings -- At and By

I remember taking Public Policy and Social Change while in college. It discussed past instances very similar to what is currently happening, e.g., the Magna Carta; the Reformation; the Enlightenment; the French and American Revolutions; Abolition; US Civil War; Women's Suffrage; Prohibition; McCarthyism; the Peace Movement of the 60s; Civil Rights Movement; Hitler's Rise to Power. All of these have very specific examples of a set of characteristics that can be directly shown to also exist in the current situation of the Black Lives Matter / Police Shootings / Minority Unrest. And I do mean EXACTLY the same characteristics. Anyone who has ever studied Marxist economic theory (or any economic theory for that matter .. Adam Smith even noted it), or Hagel's Theory (Thesis, Antithesis, Synthesis), or Liberation Theology understands that public policy (and specifically economic realities) are derived from the social justices / injustices that are real because that is how they are perceived by a group. It is a very complex picture we are in, just like all the other examples were complex and multi-faceted and the roots go back generations, yes, even centuries. And truth be told, everyone has a bit of the truth but not all of it. This is where the social scientist, the historian, the economist, the policy maker, and everyone else needs to realize what is happening. This cannot be boiled down to simple sound bites or political spin to a certain viewpoint. Blaming this on the Black Lives Matter movement, or the poor, or the police, or any single Boogy Man is, well, ignorant. I'm not trying to stick up for Obama but he is exactly right on this and his education is definitely showing, contrasted to Lord knows what some others are saying.