Power in the name of Angel Andy Lopez

Note: This is an unedited first draft written primarily for Mary, Shepherd, Terri, Jonathan, Michael and the loved ones of the Lopez family. And for Andy, of course.

Power in the name of Angel Andy Lopez
Dedicated to Sujey Lopez and Rodrigo Lopez
by Oxman

“Look at this story about a boy who was my age, Papi.” — the author’s thirteen-year-old

This has nothing to do with the previous post, which I pray no one who cares about the murder of Andy Lopez will read… until they talk to me… one-on-one… quietly… in person… in private… at the appropriate time. THIS posting, however, should be read TWICE immediately. My presumption is warranted.

For the community actions building up as per http://dissidentvoice.org/2013/10/boys-toys-and-guns-a-fatal-mix/ demand a supplement, just as the Shepherd Bliss article itself begs for something additional.

The actions being planned, the predictable, understandable forms of protest and expressions of justified anger coming down the pike should all be embraced, of course. That said, the “supplement” I speak of is a necessary supplement.

I have asked people involved in the community in which the Lopez family lives to connect me with someone in that quarter, also offered to provide a telegraphic sound bite of the “supplement” I keep referring to here, the requisite “plan for action” that needs to be implemented right away. [Pause.] I usually insert the proviso that it’s not necessary for anyone to move in solidarity with me as per my specific recommendation, that all that’s important is that we discuss what THEY think might work as a supplement to the obsolete forms of protest, and obsolete attempts to bring about lasting change which are currently employed routinely. I’m hesitant to do that now, but I AM open to discussing alternatives… always.

I say “obsolete” in the sense that those forms and attemptsare ALWAYS employed as concerned citizens’ primary or exclusive means for achieving their goals. I am NOT saying that articles shouldn’t be written. I am NOT saying that marching in circles with placards and screaming at the top of one’s lungs should not be supported. I am NOT claiming that summits and conferences and investigations do no good. I am NOT asserting that the endless number of books, documentaries and protest songs should not be published, filmed or performed. That letters-to-editors, calling representatives, circulating petitions and vigils ad infinitum do not serve a purpose from time to time. Rather, I am saying that they clearly need a supplement of sorts, whether or not it’s what I am recommending, at this juncture.

One person I spoke with this morning told me that she had been involved recently in putting together something in honor of the Black Panthers. Wonderful, was my reaction. That said, it should be underscored that the “general approach” embraced by the Panthers will not work at this point, not without tremendous tweaking. Ditto for ALL approaches I see on the horizon at present.

And on that note, I close in the hope that someone will invite me to meet with someone in the Lopez realm immediately. I do realize that lots of recommendations will be dumped on the core people who are in mourning, the Lopez family and loved ones, the rightfully enraged community. BUT, as I pointed out to that lovely woman on the phone this morning, that long-standing activist, what I have to offer is unlike anything that’s been tried before.

I believe — if my memory serves — that she likened the multiple offerings by concerned citizens to people throwing all sorts of ideas into a pool. My response was that I had a “plan for action” that was designed to empty the pool.

We can no longer afford to throw ideas around in lieu of calling the shots. The abominable shots that were fired at Andy Lopez remind us of that fact. His death demands fresh action. His family’s grief demands fresh action, not what has been tried in the past and failed.

I know all about Fail. Fail again. Fail again better. I have lived that way all my long life.

The too too short life of Andy Lopez begs for his community to stand still after their obligatory march, and get with me to listen leisurely to my proposal. Not occupy. Not plead on bended knee.

It is time for citizens to secure significant reins of power.

Contact the author at aptosnews@gmail.com. Everyone lets their experience and worldly wisdom get in the way… dismissing what I have to say prematurely. I ask for a rendezvous with someone for leisurely discussion, with ample time for obligatory, in-depth Q&A. Exactly what is required for ANY fresh idea. And if the reader — once they’ve received the telegraphic sound bite I speak of above — thinks that my proposal is NOT unprecedented or practical… I submit that they should submit themselves to an in person argument with me. For, then, after losing the argument they’ll be able to move in solidarity with me following a fresh paradigm. And have a chance at the change they are asking for, begging for… for far too long.

Afterthoughts: Howard Zinn once told me that “the struggle for justice should never be abandoned on the ground that it is hopeless… no cold calculation of the balance of power need deter people who are persuaded that their cause is just.” That doesn’t mean that obsolete forms should be embraced as one’s primary or exclusive means for securing justice. http://www.bing.com/videos/search?q=FOR+A+DANCER+JACKSON+BROWNE&FORM=V IRE7#view=detail&mid=1CD4BF043B5222593C981CD4BF043B5222593C98

Addendum:

If one wants to eliminate police brutality where the Lopez family lives, pretty much where anyone lives… there are some facts to consider.

In no special order:

a) Police brutality is in place by design. Meaning, that although reps of the powers that be do not sit down in a cigar-filled room and openly discuss how they’re going to keep this and that demographic “in place” by being brutal to them in this and that situation, the hiring and training practices for police are set up so that from time to time there will be rogue abominations, to ensure that fear is stirred up, so that the chaos in a given community continues, so that the immiseration of the poorest of our masses is deepened*. That fact, I trust, will make one think twice or three times about trying to change things by pleading on bended knees to career politicians who are the reps of the powers that be. Who, themselves, have long ago been sold a bill of goods… which they no longer question. There is a need to create a watershed in history; traditional reform only placates for a given moment, by design.

*Increasing disparity is desired by those in power. That would not be desired or enabled if, say, the Lopez family were in a position of power. And that’s what I’ll be addressing… if and when someone on their end asks for the telegraphic sound bite alluded to above.

b) Code Blue dynamics, which guarantee that “reform” will go only so far, can be broken up only by threatening a radical transformation respecting who passes judgement/calls the shots when horror comes down, when murder takes place in the community. Now here I insert something which is not being discussed at present in trying to “supplement” the upcoming march. That is, that “the community” must be viewed as an entity that’s larger than what’s presently conceived. The community should include, say (for conversation’s sake here), all of California. And sanctioned murder, then, would have to include not only the state’s position on capital punishment, but its recent treatment of hunger striking incarcerated citizens. AND others in other realms. But to keep things somewhat manageable for the moment, let’s just say that a conversation needs to take place — involving some core members of the Lopez family and others — regarding what community should constitute presently, and what so-called “other issues” should be addressed simultaneously.

I have much more to say about other considerations AND the above. But out of respect for the limited heartbeats I know people on the reading end of this must have… I’ll bow out right now… and wait to hear from someone. Keep in mind, though, if you will, again, that the above was rushed, and that I do expect there to be a need for elaboration.

The “cowardice” spotlighted in http://www.counterpunch.org/2013/10/25/cops-unbound/ cannot be addressed by securing some cosmetic alteration of the status quo. For, with regard to law enforcement, it’s a function, in part, of societal momentum. That momentum must be stopped.

For starters, one way — one approach — can be to have writers like Carp stop posting pieces in lieu of taking meaningful fresh action in solidarity. I have written to at least a hundred writers associated with so-called alternative media outlets in the last month or so, and “movement in solidarity” in the real world is a “no go”… as they are primarily or exclusively engaged, for one reason or another, in… writing. To the degree to which they are involved in grassroots on-the-ground activity at all… they’re embracing obsolete forms of activism. It is instructive to me, and I hope for the reader, that very few of these writers provide easy access, if any , to themselves. I had to pull teeth to secure access of any kind for the vast majority of the hundred+ subjects of my outreach.

Only one example of what cannot be separated from the murder of Andy Lopez: http://dissidentvoice.org/2013/10/an-angel-song-for-peace-and-an-end-t o-violence/

“Sunday’s scene was one of overwhelming sorrow cloaked largely in white. Hundreds of mourners had worn that color at the request of Andy Lopez’s mother, Sujey Lopez, to, she said, ‘represent the angel that he is and was.’”