Riots, they seem more commonplace than ever, they seem pointless, brought on by people whose only avenue of expression is to harm and destroy. In response, people call them foolish, and blame the rioters for not considering the irreparable damage they do to their local businesses and townships. In truth, these rioters are the minority; few citizens riot, while many protest, yet we rarely hear about those brave souls who choose peace instead of violence. We can blame the media for the lopsided coverage; call it a grand illusion crafted by the government to keep us entertained while banks and corporations gather more power to truly ruin our lives. The truth is, it is no grand illusion, it’s a distraction that we, everyday people, have created to divert ourselves, from the emptiness of our lives.
That’s an absurd statement, one might say, why would we wallow in violence, when so many of us call out against it? This statement is true; the outcry against violence is an important part in maintaining community solidarity. Coming together as a single voice is just the first step in diffusing these seemingly rampant acts of violence that plague our enlightened culture. Still, if the majority of the community is speaking against the violence, then shouldn’t that be enough? We live in a democracy, the majority rules, and we as the majority call these violent protests abhorrent to our society. Democracy is slow, ponderous, if it weren’t so, then the essence and spirit of democracy would be violated, and its application undoable. If government is not the vehicle to make effective and quick change, then what is it? We are not there yet; the issue of the self-made illusion still haunts us, and it must be discovered in its entirety.
This concept of the self-made illusion works as a promise of sorts, a contract that the rule abiding citizen creates within themselves to correctly admonish the vile actions of others. The idea is that the individual becomes harmonious with the spirit of laws that they abide by, not the actual laws but the idea of law, and rule of law. All others who do not follow the law are deemed separate from society, because of their refusal to accept the contract of laws. They see these criminals and call out their disharmony with society, they are deemed selfish and intemperate, hungry animals concerned with self-gratification. The problem is not them; the problem is that the harmonious citizen views them as the other, someone beyond themselves. As if their adherence to the law has made them into another species entirely. This is the self-made illusion that people, who participate wrongly in community, are not the community; this couldn’t be farther from the truth. The harmonious and disharmonious citizens are both parts of the community consciousness.
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