If only we had a real left in this country, one based in the most oppressed classes instead of liberal weenies like the self-described "activist" who wrote this article on AlterNet. She apparently had a disturbing encounter with a Brink's guard at her local supermarket. Here's her description of the incident.
"On Nov. 6, at approximately 12:45 p.m. on a sunny afternoon in Los Angeles, I walked through a parking lot en route to my neighborhood Albertsons market to pick up a prescription. I paid no mind to the Brink's armored truck to my right, as it waited alongside the store. The second I reached the store entrance, the uniformed Brink's guard emerged from the market with his gun outstretched, pointing in my direction. His face was turned away from his gun, leaving him unaware of my presence. Before I knew it, I'd walked right up to his gun, stopping inches before colliding. The suddenness of my stop thrust me slightly forward. I was so close to his gun that I saw its every groove -- from its "sexy" color and shape -- to its perfect fit in his hand. Its glimmer still glares in my mind.
"Just then the guard turned and saw me and completely lost his cool. He flinched at my proximity just as I flinched at his. He became more aggressive despite my obvious fear. Instead of assessing that I was no threat and pulling back to allay my fear, he took the opposite tact (sic). He became more aggressive and waved me off with his loaded gun, shaking it threateningly to move me away. I responded without hesitation, believing that if I hadn't, I might end up dead. In that one brief encounter, my entire 59 years of believing I was fearless evaporated in air. For the first time in my life, I experienced overwhelming, palpable fear and a vulnerability I'd never known."
She explicitly compares herself with people threatened by men with guns in places like Iraq, Afghanistan, and Somalia. She claims that she experienced an injustice. Oh, please. I'm not going to defend the Brink's guard. It's not clear what he was doing with his gun out and pointing at anyone. As she mentions in her article, that's contrary to what they're supposed to do. However, it hardly compares it to what happens to people in the places she mentions, and I don't see how she can maintain that she's been done an injustice. It seems like an unfortunate incident to me, an unfortunate incident that could have been averted had she not been such a bozo.
Think about what she says. First of all, she paid no mind to the Brink's truck. How could she be so oblivious? I've found armored trucks parked in front of stores that I'm about to enter before. The first thing I do is assess the situation. I want to know where the guards are, what they're doing, etc. If they're exiting the store with money, I wait until they're out of the way. These guys aren't exactly professionals. They don't go through any real training, and they don't get psych evaluations. I want them to know for certain that I'm no threat. You don't just walk up on them. But let's give this woman a pass on that. People get distracted sometimes. They've got other things on their minds, but look at what she goes on to say. The guard comes out of the store with his gun up. That right there should set off all of your personal alarms. A man with a gun up. You stop and move out of the way, but what did she do? She walked right up to him and got close enough to startle him. Say what?! I hope that prescription she was going to pick up was for her Alzheimer's, because I can't think of any other reason why someone would behave so stupidly.
There's a lot of injustice in the world, and people are unjustly threatened with guns, but I put this incident on the woman to whom it happened. You've got to be responsible for yourself, and part of that responsibility is that you make yourself reasonably aware of the world around you. You don't just walk up to a person with a drawn gun and startle him. That's just plain stupid. Then, of course, she goes on to over-dramatize the whole incident, talking about how she experienced a "overwhelming, palpable fear and a vulnerability I'd never known." I've had guns pulled on me before. It was in the Sixties. A number of us blocked a draft bus and the cops came at us with guns drawn and pointed. This was in Gainesville, Florida too, back when the cops didn't appreciate what they called hippie protesters. It certainly focused my attention, and it was literally one of those moments when time slows. I was shaking when it was over, but I never experienced anything that I would call overwhelming fear or vulnerability, and it certainly didn't mark me in any way.
Of course, the woman thanks that nut bag and media hound Vincent Bugliosi for his "insight, support and collaboration" on her article. I guess that right there should tell me something, but it still bothers me. People like her make those on the left look like weenies and fools.
For those of you who might like to read the whole article, here's the link.