Ruby Ridge August, 1992.
Waco April, 1993.
YFZ Ranch Raid April, 2008.(The Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints)
Hundreds of children forcibly removed from the only homes they knew. The courts hash it out and the families are reunited but we sure learned a lot about that crazy Warren Jeffs.
One might get the impression that I'm relating a series of events in chronological order. Now I need to reverse it.
L.A. Riots April-May, 1992.
Because to the sizable African-American population of L.A., Rodney King was like any other individual in that community. Exacerbating factors: the authorities (police) on the video were white and the trial venue was moved to a mostly white community but that is not the point I'm getting to.
Washington D.C. Sooner than you think.
Tensions rise and the pheromone of fear and aggression spreads through the area affecting protesters and police, alike. To the mob, without the real members of the legislative and executive branches, the police are the face of the government. For some, the threat of deadly force is not enough to back down and flee--they can't face the thought of returning to their cold and hungry families.
And, of course, this is all playing out on live TV and the web.
The predictable and preventable becomes the inevitable. A young officer, early to arrive on the scene and not one of the better protected in riot gear draws his sidearm.
One of the mob yells, "gun", but the other police nearby don't know that the warning came from the crowd--it's the standard warning police shout when encountering a firearm.
The shooting starts and it is all over very quickly. A dozen citizen bodies are on the ground and the mob falls back to be peaceably detained and subsequently dispersed.
Later, the forensic investigation reveals the officers that discharged their weapons and they are arraigned. Later, the government and media spin machine goes to work, finding something wrong with the slain individuals. Something conspiratorial or insidious.
But that is all later.
Right now...right now more than a million citizens are watching in real time and in horror. Between the 24/7 cable news and the web more than 20 million will have seen the primary events within 30 minutes and by 7:30 everyone in the US knows that a dozen protesters just like them were gunned down.
Does my little tale have any merit? You have to be the judge of that.
Because the above is a simple retelling of the events of
Boston March 5th, 1775. (The Boston Massacre)
(updated for the 21st century)
(And yes, that mob was protesting over money.)