Summer 2020

The Season Of Tyranny Must End

George Floyd Killing

No one is safe in a society that ignores the tyranny of evil men. No one.

Antagonistic perspectives on life and a crisis of viable core values create behaviors in and amongst us that make the formation of community very difficult, if not impossible. The struggles that each generation must go through in its search for a more humane world, are testaments to the challenges inherent in the incompatible values of competing interests all around us.

The aspirations of white supremacists, and the struggles of people of color for greater justice, are examples of the antagonism that is endemic in a society that has not come to terms with the necessity for laws that have their foundation in core values of fairness. This antagonism finds a cradle, and sustenance, in institutions critical to the functioning of our daily lives. In government. In law enforcement. In economic institutions. In academia. In media outlets. In the design and build of housing. In the origination and distribution of natural resources.

The law of the jungle has become a cliche that finds expression in the lives of those whose insecurities drive them to define their lives and the lives of others in terms of a certain tragic oppositeness. When the hopes of the white supremacist clash with the aspirations of those they seek to victimize, the consequences can be seen all over the world in the solidarity in conflict of those who demand that their lives be valued on a just scale. It is in the resulting struggle that a determination is made as to who is really the fittest of the fittest.

Despite the obvious superficiality of the supremacist’s perspectives, this oppositeness that they insist on becomes the rationale for reeking havoc among us. Race. Gender. Sexual orientation. Nationality. These attributes, among other observable variations that occur in the course of our experiences, become the reasons for the attempts to – and the history of the dehumanization of one group by another.

Envy. Avarice. An overwhelming sense of one’s own perceived inferiority. A vain sense of being superior to others based on transient attributes. These corruptions of our humanity become the engine that motivates us in our assault on the lives of others whom we have conveniently devalued in our need to satisfy the sprawling emptiness of our souls. The vanity of those who insist on values that are incompatible with a durable sense of our common humanity eventually becomes their undoing. That with which we seek to destroy others will become the source of our own destruction. So Jah say!

Fear obliterates the commandment and the inclination to love thy neighbor as thyself. Hate, the torment that fear breeds and gives rise to, becomes our modus operandi. The cultivation of a sense of otherness finds its way to our doors in a world where reclusivity becomes the norm that dispenses with the need for community. And so we end up in an existential cul de sac in which we aim to denigrate and disenfranchise, rather than protect and serve each other. In time we fall into the ditch we dug for our presumed victims.

Behold, the destiny of the oppressor is his own destruction.

It is no wonder then that the fires we designed to incinerate others become the inferno that turns our incivility to dust… It is not difficult to understand why our hypocritical lamentations about law and order become the echoes in the wind that haunt us… It can be expected then that our appeals to the beasts of our inhumanity will fall on deaf ears and deadened sensitivities when those beasts turn on us…

And so we live to see the graven images of those lifted up as heroes by their acolytes to the chagrin of the dispossessed of the earth being toppled… even as we speak…

The season of tyranny must come to an end.

We will no longer seek to reason with those who require the obeisance of our fellows even while they unashamedly press their vile knees against our necks. Reasoning with the unreasonable has shown itself to be an exercise in futility. We will not be an audience for the foul hot air that proceeds from the mouths of those who have, and continue to justify the creed of a vile culture while they ignore the anguished cry… I can’t breathe….

No more!

Our exasperation is expressed in expletives that forcefully object to the offensive nature of our dehumanization. Our cuss words are symbols that are meant to bear witness to our determination to no longer be polite to those who would openly and carelessly hurt us… and casually kill us.

There is nothing polite about the hot lead that they let loose into our vulnerable flesh at the least provocation… or without provocation. There is nothing polite about the hard knee that forces our faces into the ground in public… while their cohorts casually look on. There is nothing polite about the looting they facilitate through an unjust economic system, even as they denigrate shoplifters who help themselves to the crumbs from tables in their midst.

The season of the unchecked fecundity of tyrants must come to an end. That time of the imposition and proliferation of an immoral value system must meet its inglorious and overdue demise. The expectation that we should submit and succumb to the violence of an unjust society must meet the torch of our determination to rise up and be counted.

In the face of unchecked wickedness, we must lift our voices with the Rastaman Marley and declare:

We refuse to be
What you wanted us to be
We are what we are
That’s the way it’s going to be – if you don’t know –
You can’t educate I
For no equal opportunity (talkin’ ’bout my freedom) Talkin’ ’bout my freedom
People’s freedom and liberty!
Yeah, we’ve been trodding on the winepress much too long Rebel, rebel!
Yes, we’ve been trodding on the winepress much too long Rebel, rebel!”

When those who would lecture us unendingly about the virtues of law and order, themselves become lawless; those who believe in righteousness must embrace the destiny that unfolds in the necessary demolition of the status quo. Enough with the pointless otherworldly obfuscations of the wicked and their agents! We hear now the voice of our ancestors militating against the values of a vampirical system of immorality. We heed the call to action implicit in their timeless warnings to oppressors then …and now.

In a moment such as this, we hear the voice of His Imperial Majesty, the Emperor of Ethiopia, Haile Selassie as he prophesied then… And we declare now:

That until the philosophy which holds one race superior and another inferior is finally and permanently discredited and abandoned;

that until there are no longer first-class and second class citizens of any nation;

that until the color of a man’s skin is of no more significance than the color of his eyes;

that until the basic human rights are equally guaranteed to all without regard to race;

That until that day, the dream of lasting peace and world citizenship and the rule of international morality will remain but a fleeting illusion, to be pursued but never attained.

Did you hear that…?

No justice, no peace.

One Love!

R. A. G.
Roy Alexander Graham
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