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In These Tweets is a weekly cultural dive into trending topics on Twitter. A collection of snapshot analyses on a variety of moments impacting our world. Sometimes serious, sometimes light, always substantive. We outchea, #InTheseTweets.
AOC’s Twitter decree stating “The United States of America should not have secret police” strikes a chord on what has been a terrifying series of occurrences in Portland. The reality of federal agents occupying Portland and making arrests and abductions while not identifying themselves is the height of an anti-democratic state. Ocasio-Cortez and Washington D.C. Delegate Eleanor Holmes Norton are introducing legislation this week that would require federal law enforcement officials to clearly identify themselves.
The Trump-approved deployment of unidentified federal agents on U.S. citizens is an indicator of his continued desire to enact a full-on dictatorship. This is a specific war waged on Black Lives Matter activism that is not differentiating between the race of those who are advocating. The need for legislative intervention is critical as there is deep concern that these actions will replicate in various cities that offer a pronounced resistance to police brutality.
After months of showing up for briefings and visits to virus-ravaged locations (including hospitals) unmasked, Donald Trump has finally decided to don a jet black, super villain looking face covering. All of sudden he claims it’s an act of patriotism to wear a mask, when he formerly railed against social distancing requirements. Maybe it’s the hundreds of thousands of deaths he’s decided to recognize, or the record-setting unemployment brought on by the pandemic, or the fact that members of his own campaign team contracted the coronavirus that has changed his tune.
Whether he feels as if his newfound cautionary measures symbolize leadership or not is beyond a point of redemption. His cavalier attitude has impacted the position of many of his devout followers and in turn, has done a great deal of irreversible damage.
But I guess we now know what Darth Vader as the commander-in-chief would look like.
Charles Blow weighed in on the passive and often miscalculated approach of the Democratic party with a recent tweet on the current state of affairs. “Dems are back on this ‘let’s just get to Election Day and remedy it,’” Blow tweets. “Meanwhile Trump’s negligence is killing ppl, his troops are in the streets of Portland & he’s saying he may not accept the election result. Stop being naive. Stop thinking he is going to play by the rules!”
Many establishment/seasoned Democrats are still stuck in an antiquated ideology in regards to reversing damage done by the Trump administration. The desire to return to a status quo system of governance is not only inconsequential to those most harmed by the old way of doing things, it is a damn near unreachable destination given all the chaos this administration has ushered in.
A hard shift to (better than) normalcy cannot wait until November, nor should it ever have. Dems outchea playing checkers while the Trump regime is playing Call of Duty. Not sure what else has to happen for a different rationale to set in.
Hip hop pioneer KRS One has seen an enormous resurgence of one of his most impactful records. As LEVEL reports, “the Blastmaster” KRS’ 1993 classic ‘Sound of Da Police’ has now amassed over 56 million plays on Spotify, eclipsing any other song in his catalogue by 30 million streams.
“Sound of Da Police” wasn’t just a concept; it was a conflagration. Driven by a dizzying, propulsive beat, KRS floats in and out of Jamaican patois the way he had on “The Bridge Is Over,” challenging the authorities with lines like, “We run New York/Policeman come, we bust him out the park/I know this for a fact, you don’t like how I act/You claim I’m selling crack, but you be doin’ that.” Eric Ducker writes about the lasting impact of the culturally relevant record.
It is a gift to have music that transcends time but it is also a sobering reminder of how much things have yet to change. There have been several songs of protest, advocacy and liberation that have rehashed in this period of uprising and reckoning. And aside from a few outdated references, the messages are as resonant now as they were at the time of recording.
Mercy, mercy us.
Twitter user @_raviee contextualized the length of this pandemic timeline with a brief post about where we began and where we are now. “I miss the Insecure/Verzuz part of quarantine. Shit was easy then. And to think that was already 7 years ago,” they tweeted, and truer words may not have been spoken on Twitter in the past…shit…however long it’s been.
Before we knew George Floyd or Breonna Taylor’s name; before we were witnessing unidentified agents abduct citizens off of American streets; before we were witnessing an aggressive uptick in coronavirus cases, Teddy Riley’s technical difficulties and Lawrence and Issa’s on again/off again romance were some of our biggest quarantine topics of conversation. There was a moment that felt as if we would be able to resume our normal lives quickly. A naiveté that suggested America’s sole focus would be on mitigating COVID, therefore allowing no time to terrorize us.
I have found myself missing the “simpler” times of an incredibly difficult year and reluctantly asking myself what’s next?