I am one who firmly believes that the difference between a genius and a totally crazed nutjob can sometimes be difficult to determine. A crazed nutjob holds views about reality different from ours, but so does a genius. That’s one reason I think that full freedom should be given to all people, including crazed nutjobs, unless they plan violence on another. You just don’t know when a crazed nutjob is really a genius that sees something in reality that the rest of just can’t see. As Henry Davis Thoreau put it, “If a man does not keep pace with his companions, perhaps it is because he hears a different drummer. Let him step to the music which he hears, however measured or far away.”
Which brings me to the case of Miriam Carey, who was gunned down by law enforcement on the streets of Washington D.C. after a car chase.
From reports, we know that Carey started acting strange after she fell, some time ago, and hurt her head. It seems as though some filter we must all have in our head to keep us relatively calm amongst an ever growing surveillance state was shut off in her mind.
According to friends and family, she was concerned that President Obama was monitoring her. Well, how could that not be true? Certainly, after the Edward Snowden leaks, we know it to be truth. And it is noteworthy that Carey visited Washington D.C. just after Obamacare was launched where even more data is being taken on all of us.
Now let’s consider the chase:
It started near the White House, which I have passed by many times. It appears close to impossible for most vehicles to penetrate the barriers that are up. It would take a very heavy vehicle, a large dump truck traveling at a high rate of speed, to break through the barriers, but an Infiniti automobile, which Carey was driving, had no chance.
But it is noteworthy as to what Secret Service police did when she was near the barriers. According to an eyewitness:
The Secret Service guys pulled a black metal gate into her path and she slowed to try to go around it, they said. But the agent moved the gate in front of her again. At that point “she just gunned it,” B.J. said. “She ran the barricade down and the guy; knocked him up onto her hood. He rolled off into the street and she tore off down Pennsylvania Avenue.”
For a woman who was spooked by government in the first place, that must have sent her fear into overdrive. Thus, the chase towards the Capitol where guns were starting to be aimed at her, which must have spooked her even more.
In Los Angeles, car chases are a common occurrence broadcast on live television. You can even get twitter alerts that notify you to turn on your television when one is in progress. The chases occasionally go into very populated areas, the police just follow. Once a chase went right past me in downtown Los Angeles as I was walking on the sidewalk.
Usually, the chases continue until:
A.The suspect runs out of gas.
B. Spikes are laid out ahead of the car
C. A maneuver is made that forces the car to stop.
At such times the police apprehend the suspect. The only time gun fire is exchanged is when the suspect comes out shooting, never, never have I heard of southern California police shooting at the end of a car chase if the suspect wasn’t firing at them.
Unfortunately, Carey wasn’t being pursued in Southern California, but in Washington D.C., where police are more paranoid than she likely was. You see, everyone, until proven otherwise, is considered a danger to the state and its key rulers.
Any incident in the area is considered a threat to government unless proven otherwise. A shooting many, many blocks away at the Naval Yard, resulted in the Senate going into lock down. A women, who feared the state, driving with a baby, and unarmed, caused the entire Capitol to be locked down. Who is really paranoid here, the woman who did die at the hands of the state? Or government leaders diving behind desks and sending out their hired muscle to eliminate the “threat”?
The death of Miriam Carey is a terrible tragedy. In some way that most of us can’t see, she recognized government as a threat more intensely than most of us. Her trip to Washington D.C. proved what she believed, that unarmed and travelling with nothing but a baby, government could perceive her as a major threat that had to be eliminated.
After this tragedy occurred, inside Congress, members of Congress stood to thank their private police force that “protected” them from an unarmed woman with a baby. I ask you, who really is nuts here?
Reprinted with permission from Economic Policy Journal.