Cows With Guns

4  65%  20%  0mph SWS bar30.06  steep fall windchll2  winter

                    Full Winter Moon

Here is a wonderful movie from the BLF, the Bovine Liberation Front:   Cows With Guns.  Thanks to Paul Strickland (and a Golden Plump Warrior Chicken Tip o’ the Hat to the Helgeson’s: Beware of the chickens with choppers.)

The Woollies met last night.  We discussed our memories of the Civil Rights movement and the time before it which we can remember well.  Paul remembered white’s only drinking fountains, segregated movie theatres and a grandmother who said of a man beating a dog, “I wouldn’t treat a nigger like that.”  Scott Simpson told of two and a half years as a member of an African-American Pentecostal church in north Minneapolis.  When he brought a lady friend home one evening, his mother quietly asked him, “You don’t plan to marry her, do you?”  I recalled the bitter and often painful days when white radicals like myself marched and acted in solidarity with Blacks.  We were all struggling to find our identity and we accomplished some of that in angry confrontations with each other. 

We debated how far the culture had come since those days.   Some of us thought we’d come a long ways, others (myself, for instance) thought not as far as it seems.  I cited this incident from that went to trial in September of  last year:

“Al Hixon installed some carpeting for his residential construction business one Saturday morning. Then he took his Jaguar out of winter storage and stopped for some fresh oil at a Sinclair station near his Golden Valley home back on April 2, 2005.

The next thing he knew, police officers were throwing him face down on the pavement, jumping on his back, handcuffing him, placing a boot on his neck and shooting pepper spray in his eyes and nostrils, according to his testimony at a federal excessive-force trial Friday in St. Paul.”

Warren told of an African-American friend who found an Eveleth restaurant accepting and a Virginia bar, only a few miles away, hostile and threatening.  It’s the randomness of these experiences, the not knowing when racism will rise up, that makes life still stressful and unpleasant, at the least for most African-Americans.

Oh, and we set up our calendar for next retreat, decided on a theme for the retreat and the next year:  All Themes Considered.   This is astonishing productivity for a group of usually slow to come to a decision men, but we liked it anyhow.

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