I Lived Through Violence. It’s Coming To America

When people speak violently and show their guns, believe them

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Rachel Bess, Ghost Blood, 2011

Americans don’t seem to understand, but people talking about violence eventually do it. I have seen this happen in Sri Lanka. I have seen this happen to my dog. Now it’s happening to you.

The telegraphing of violence is nothing new. It’s been this way for millions of years. Dogs growl, rattlesnakes rattle. What makes you think America’s far-white is any less serious? Look around you. Listen. Hear the howling noise from your TV set.

Blood is on the wind.

Where you are

This is where you are.

American society has already collapsed. 285,000 preventable deaths, accellerating to over 2,000 a day. Not numbers, people. Look at them. Mothers, fathers, teachers, neighbors, children. All gaping holes in your society. If you don’t call this collapse, then are you living in a society at all?

America’s government in the middle of a stupid coup. Your President is attacking election results and nearly 90% of Republican legislators support him. In the meantime you don’t have a functioning federal government at all. This is the worst thing about a failed coup, it leaves you crippled and extremely vulnerable to attack. It happened to Sri Lanka and that’s exactly how it turned out. A stupid coup is still a coup.

You can comfort yourself saying it’s not this, it’s not that, but then what is it? If you don’t use these words does the reality go away? Put down the bath salts of your mythology and look around. You’re lost. You’re screaming. You’re covered in blood.

Where I’ve been

I have been here. Millions of people have been here. Violence is nothing new. It’s been there since the first ape picked up a bone and bashed another over the head. It’s been all over the world. You think this is something that only happens to the third world, but America is the most violent place on Earth.

Ask the four million people you enslaved (at peak). Ask the 2.3 million people you keep in cages now. Ask the 37 million people displaced in your Terror War and the over a million killed. Ask the people you besiege with eternal sanctions, or beset with drones. Ask the orphans made at your border, the ‘illegal’ underclass picking your food. The question was never whether chickens would come home to roost. The only question was when.

The answer is now.

American arrogance has been killing the world for decades, but now it’s killing you. Unfortunately, you seem as able to ignore your own deaths as everyone else’s.

As CLR James said, “myth-making conceals another virulent poison for the myth-makers. It insists that they see themselves always as the givers, and Africans as the takers, themselves as teachers and Africans as the taught.”

What he means is that such empires cannot learn from their subjects. They’re so used to lying to the world that they lie to themselves. Hence I will tell you, though you may be incapable of hearing.

I have been here before.

Violent delights have violent ends

Sri Lanka ‘beat terrorism’ in 2009 and we were chilling. And yet the signs of future violence were always there, albeit less obvious than yours. I know this in hindsight. You can see the signs right now.

First, violent speech. In 2016 the Muslim community warned about extremists preaching. We didn’t listen.

Next, weapons. After Buddhist statues were desecrated Mohammad Razak Taslim helped investigate, leading to the discovery of explosives. We did not react enough. Not nearly enough. Certainly not for Taslim.

Then, violence. Taslim was shot in the head, lying next to his wife and child. But it didn’t end there. Violence begets violence. This was just the warm-up.

At each stage our terrorists told us what they were doing, as your terrorists are telling you now. I’m reluctant to even use that word, because terrorist is a racist term of power. Let’s just call them assholes. We ignored the violent words, the violent weapons, and even the violence until it blew up beyond all imagination.

On Easter Sunday — after numerous intelligence warnings — suicide bombers walked into multiple hotels and churches. They killed 269 of us, including many children playing at church, eating with their families. Then racist mobs attacked Muslims, terrorizing the very community that tried to warn us. It was a shitstorm, and it had been telegraphed for months.

What is the lesson here? These violent delights have violent ends. Our extremists delighted in violence. They talked about it, they preached it. Then they showed us their weapons. Then they used them. Then they used them all.

This is where America is today. You’re acting like the violent telegraph is just a bunch of random dots and not a very clear message.

• • • • • •

Believe them

Sri Lanka and America are very different places, but violent assholes seem the same all over the world. They yell that they’re going to get violent, and then they do it. This is a lesson humans seem incapable of learning, but as Oprah said, “when people show you who they are, believe them.”

Your far-white is carrying guns and saying they want to execute the governor. Believe them. They have killed people in Wisconsin, and people raised money for the killer. Believe them. Trump’s supporters published this ad in the Washington Times:

“Without a fair vote, we fear, with good reason, the threat of a shooting civil war is imminent… We will also have no other choice but to take matters into our own hands, and defend our rights on our own.”

Believe them.

Don’t take my word for it. Disregard my experience and that of millions of others. Just believe the angry white people in front of you. When they talk about violence, when they show their guns, when they shoot people or run them over — believe them.

I have lived through violence, my dog lived through violence, and our ape ancestors millions of years ago lived through violence. It’s the same thing. Someone yells, they show their weapons, and then they hit you. A dog growls, bares its teeth, and then bites. America’s not somehow immune to this because you pissed on the moon 60 years ago. This is life on Earth.

Wake up. Look around you. You quibble over words and live in the past, while events are unfolding in front of you. Violence is coming to America. It’s just a matter of time.

Listen to a podcast on this article here.

Written by

A writer living in Colombo, Sri Lanka. He/him. indi@indi.ca. Videos: tiny.cc/indication and podcast: anchor.fm/indication. patreon.com/indication

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