Wasteland Bait & Tackle: We Need to be Human

Columns Reviews Wasteland Bait & Tackle

Photo by YouTube screenshot https://youtu.be/sBs2IpPnuR0

I once passed a southbound patrol car on U.S. 281 in central Texas. The lettering on the door said,“Johnson City Street Gang Unit.” I almost ran off the road laughing. Johnson City doesn’t have but maybe fifteen streets, how many gangs could it have? Imagine the city council meeting, “We have evidence that there’s a Crip on Maple and a Blood on Mesquite, you really gotta watch them boys, they hate each other.” No doubt, some state or government agency had money available for a new patrol car, if the City Fathers were willing to paint the right words on the door. Well, who could blame them? Everybody can use a new car.

It seems that Asheville, North Carolina has a SWAT Team. I’ve played Asheville many times. It’s a big enough town that a situation which demands the expertise of qualified SWAT could arise, but why did they bust up a medical tent and destroy water bottles? They say the bottles could be projectiles. No doubt they could, but in the pictures, the SWAT guys are dressed up like RoboCop, full body armor and helmets, and they were worried about water bottles, really? A frozen bottle could sure sting, but the ones the cops perforated bled out, they weren’t frozen, and they were in a medical tent. Those bottles were for hydration and washing out tear gas. Asheville isn’t the only recent example. It’s about domination.

Why is it now OK to attack medics? What is their crime, aiding and abetting the enemy? Are We the People now the Enemy of the State? I guess we’ve become the marauding Comanche in John Ford’s “The Searchers”, trying to pull back our wounded while John Wayne snarls at Ward Bond for letting us do so, snarls at him for trying to be human in the face of horror.

Yeah, destruction of property sucks, but that’s the least of our problems. While property can’t always be replaced, life and limb never can. A journalist covering a protest lost an eye recently. Insurance can’t replace it. Rubber bullets can kill and maim, because they aren’t rubber clean through. They often have metal cores.

We need to be human.

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