Purpose In Times Like These

This was initially sent to my email list first, but I thought it was important to send here!

This is an odd week. 

I’ll get the housekeeping out of the way. I’m releasing my newest album, “Politely Angry” and I’m excited about it. It’s a dollar on Bandcamp, but it’s also available on the other streaming platforms from iTunesPandoraSpotify,Google-Play, and of the like. Secondly, I’m donating 100% of my ticket sales from June 5th Citizen Revolution Virtual Stand Up Show to the Black Voice Collective, then 50% of each show for the rest of June. Each of these shows will be different, with a different theme and different material. As I mentioned before these shows and the sustaining memberships are basically how I’m going to be earning my income going forward. I hope some of y’all will get tickets for one, a few, if you’re a superhero all of these shows! I’m figuring out the course of action for July as we speak.

The links are below and please share them out, because I’m fairly certain that social media is suppressing posts made about this. 

As excited I am for this release and writing new material and sharing that with you guys, it’s very difficult right now. It was difficult to get out of bed this morning. I was frustrated, depressed and anxious. This sort of thing hasn’t happened to me in long time. Much like most of the nation, I spent last week enraged at yet another death of an innocent black man at the hands of the police. I was trying to figure out what to do with this anger. Usually my anger is channeled into and through my Comedy. I’m still trying…and I always will. In my experience, anger that isn’t filter through some kind of action or creativity is often exhausting and draining. And I think that’s where I am. 

The anger we are feeling as a nation – as people – is justified. It is valid. This is coming from a history of oppression & violence. This is coming from decades of platitudes and empty, hollow words from our leaders. This is coming from a corporate, money driven media system that ignores the peaceful protest, strikes and marches. They propagandize them and turn we the people against each other. When our peaceful voices go ignored & unheard what else is left to show the world that we matter? 

I’m sure most of you have seen the endless videos coming out of police officers assaulting unarmed protesters. There is mounting evidence and instances where either uncover police or provocateurs are sent in to instigate protests. City after city has posted images and videos of piles of bricks showing up in the path of the protests. Or unguarded empty police cars. Videos of police breaking their own vehicles to incite the ‘broken window’ theory in hopes for more violence. There are several systemic reasons for this and I’ve done video after video after video about this topic. (And I’m not the only one) 

This past weekend I attended a protest. For over 2 hours it was peaceful. We had a few provocateurs within the protest and some that were there to antagonize the protesters. Things turned wild, incrementally. My friend and I stayed till the turning point. As we were walking back to the car, I got a chance to process what happened and I was mad. You can see my documentation below.

The conversation after events like this shifts to non-violent protests vs. violence from protesters. Look, I’m a pacifist. I’m not going to throw a water bottle at cop – especially if its full, that can go to a protester who has to quench their thirst – or cause property destruction. I can’t even kill a bee, despite being very allergic to their stings. Whatever that thing is inside someone that drives them to do that, I don’t have it. Or maybe I don’t act on it. But when the non-violent protests, strikes and marches go ignore and then are instigated, I will step out of the way for what comes next. I won’t burn the building but I will let you in what direction the wind is blowing. And I will be here when you need water, medical help, lend an ear, a good story or some food. 

There are some folks that are giving into that narrative shift. Because it’s easier to ignore the non-violent protests. Honk your horn in support, but never get out to march. It’s easy to ignore the comedian that talks about big issues. It’s easier to say “I don’t want to listen these strikers chants, but good for them for doing it”.

It’s harder to ignore when your city is burning. It means your complacency is burning.

The folks that have given into the narrative shift like to quote Martin Luther King Jr. or Gandhi or any other non-violent Civil Rights leader, but ignore the fact they said they said they understand why someone would choose rioting. 

The full quote: “A riot is the language of the unheard. So what is America not hearing!” 

This is us…This is all of us…getting really fucking loud. Let your complacency burn. Complacency is a privilege that not all of us are privy to. We will rebuild it into something better.

Side-bar, if you’re reading this and getting defensive, ask yourself why. I’m not targeting any particular person. Just commenting on what I generally see from people statements against protesters and such. 

After the protest I was thinking about my role in all this. I felt guilty for leaving on Saturday. I felt guilty for not being in the thick of it with all the other protesters, not breathing in my share of the tear gas or taking my share of the rubber bullets. But I know, I am not the warrior in this.

In the very beginning of the protest, my friend and I stopped into get some milk, just in case we got maced. There were 2 gentlemen discussing what had happened George Floyd, but they had some of the details wrong. I turned to them and politely gave the information I had. They thanked me for helping out and we were on our way. 

After 2 goons on motorcycles tried to run the protesters down, or at the least give us a scare to put us on edge, my friend hurt his knee. I watch a few folks come over and offer medicine, antiseptics, bandages and gauze to treat my friend’s wounds. They weren’t there to be warriors. I reflected on this and spoke to a few friends about this. I don’t think my role in this is that of a warrior on the front lines. I think it’s to make sure people know what’s going on. To make sure we know the information about systemic problems and propaganda fed to us. 

I am angry. We’re all angry. I’m a curious person. I can share that curiosity with the people, so we know what we’re fighting for. So we know who we’re fighting for. I’m here to present discomfort so we can understand where it’s coming from. I’m here to point out the hypocrisies of our society so we can laugh it’s absurdity and try to do better. I’m going to keep trying to do this. I will succeed and I will fail, but I will not be afraid to speak out. 

I hope you will speak out with us in your own way. No Justice. No Peace. Fuck These Racist Police. Thanks for your time.