Assessing Federal agents deployed to Portland

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Re: Assessing Federal agents deployed to Portland

Post by Alphaville »

nomadscientist wrote:
Wed Jul 29, 2020 6:56 pm
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Re: Assessing Federal agents deployed to Portland

Post by flying_pan »

From the outsider perspective, even before all these riots and federal response, USA looks very much a police state to me. It includes both government policing and "people" policing.

For example, you simply can't just randomly go somewhere in a typical american city. I mean, you can, but it is silly, and you can get into troubles. I always walked around cities in Russia and Europe without a second thought, but here I am honestly slightly scared to do so, I am trying to learn about different parts of the city before venturing there. I am not saying that in Europe you don't have to do in (especially in certain cities), but the overall feeling is that it is much safer.

Another part is that there are tons of people willing to report you. Talked to a kid? Male in a park when tons of children are around? Just somebody walking around the neighbourhood (unfamiliar face)? There are even loitering warnings, I have no idea how often they are enforced, but the mere notion that you can't be outside near some businesses is kind of weird.

On the other hand, actual police is dangerous. It is brutal, often unnecessary so; it is completely invincible, as you are not allowed to do anything against them. It is heavily armed, they can shoot you if they feel "threatened". Do they often do so? Not really, but they can, and it happens.

But I think that federal agents is an opportunity for the states to become more independent. Even before that, pandemic response was pretty bad from the federal gov, and now they probably made the worst possible move with unmarked people putting somebody into an unmarked van. I think the backlash is pretty big, and I think it might help with federalism. Doubt that it will make the country any better in terms of safety, though :)

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Re: Assessing Federal agents deployed to Portland

Post by George the original one »

Feds pull out of downtown Portland and the downtown courthouse protests are no longer violent. A few miles away, on the other side of town, things were not so peaceful. ... ?id=251060

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Re: Assessing Federal agents deployed to Portland

Post by Freedom_2018 » ... -for-trump

Peaceful Portland protesters 🙂

One thing I admit I got completely wrong about the millennial /Z generation was that they somehow were more tolerant, inclusive than gen X or boomers in general. I better understand now that their frustration/anger was buried under playing videogames (never prrsonally understood the intense appeal of videogames but now feel that they allowed young men especially to express their violent side in a 'safe' manner in the confines of their homes, the downside of that is that they never learnt to handle/channel these emotions in the real world where in general you can't shoot your way through problems) and an external veneer of tolerance. diversity etc.

What they lack in individual courage, they make up in group viciousness.

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Re: Assessing Federal agents deployed to Portland

Post by Hristo Botev »

@Freedom_2018: I've never been a gamer, but the best way I've heard the appeal of gaming understood is in line with your feeling--young men are wired to seek danger and adventure (leave the Shire, slay the dragon, save the princess), but middle-class kids in the West live in a world where any "danger" is almost entirely abstract, so video games scratch that itch. What worries me, however, is that gaming isn't as satisfying as confronting actual danger; and so we might have a generation of folks who are both looking for actual danger and who are acclimated and trained to meet that danger in the manner that they would in the virtual gaming world (and I'm assuming that's lots of blood, guts, and mass murder).

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Re: Assessing Federal agents deployed to Portland

Post by jacob »

I'm not sure it's the games or the danger as much as the gaming culture that allow these teens to "stir up shit" anonymously in the associated gaming chat rooms, ... It's one thing to talk trash IRL at a soccer game or running around in the woods. It's quite another thing to do it online to "pwn" random people they'll never meet w/o any empathy or remorse. The former does develop some social skills like learning when one crosses the line of being a jerk/douchebag/a-hole ... the latter does not.

Adding to my point. I was a gamer around 1987-1997ish. We had violent games too and one would have to be "old" to be unable to distinguish between that or reality or think that it created a confused sense of danger. (At least that was the perspective of the young ones.) What was different was that computer/internet culture was very different. ... if you wanted to shoot up other people in Quake, you'd have to organize a LAN party IRL so standard social rules applied. You could still insult someone in the game but kept in mind that the guy was sitting across the desk. IOW, being a douchebag would be a good way to not get invited to the next LAN party.

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Re: Assessing Federal agents deployed to Portland

Post by Hristo Botev »

Seems like the masked protester/rioter is somewhere between these two extremes: it's an IRL activity, but also mostly anonymous (b/c of the masks).

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Re: Assessing Federal agents deployed to Portland

Post by nomadscientist »

Tolerance etc. are political phrases that shouldn't be taken too literally. Their use signals membership of political grouping and politics is inherently about use of force, groupings inherently about exclusion.

Essentially these people have been brought up believing in the ideology of school teachers, and this ideology gives moral justification for violence in some (not well defined) circumstances.