by Jose H. Villarreal
Written July 9, 2014 –Yesterday word came out that Sonoma County District Attorney Jill Ravitch would not be prosecuting the cop who shot the young Chicano Andy Lopez dead. The D.A. said something to the effect that the cop was correct because he feared for his life. At 13 years old it’s ridiculous to suggest that Andy could have brought this upon himself because he allegedly did not obey a command – but then again, Chicano lives are worth nothing to Amerika.
Many people become consumed with living their life and doing their thing out in society, and when our youth are terrorized by the pig it becomes almost normal to some people. But there’s nothing normal about it: It is a crime against the people.
Some do not pay attention to these tragedies until they are personally affected, like when one of their family members succombs to pig terror. This process of IGNORING the reality that we face is also abnormal and is really a symptom of living one’s life under such brutality and horror for generations. This ignoring reality is a way the mind helps one cope with a horrendous situation. It’s called self-preservation, but self-preservation will not solve these issues no matter how much we wish them away.
When I first heard about Andy and his death and I started to read articles about this tragedy, I had no doubt that there would be no justice for Andy coming from the D.A.’s office; it will come from the people. Expecting the D.A. to provide justice in this case would be like asking Israel to stop shelling Palestine. The oppressors will never police themselves. But the thing that did give me hope was seeing the people rising up in Santa Rosa demanding an end to pig terror.
It’s important that when something like this occurs and when our youth are taken by pig terror, we need to understand what exactly is taking place. This pig terror is really state terror because the police are only an arm of the state apparatus, like the military, the prisons and the kourts.
These components of the state are means to exert state repression on oppressed people, and we would not be oppressed without these forms of state terror – because we would liberate ourselves. State terror does more than just keep a boot on our necks; it also works to help coerce folks into keeping a blind eye to the terror and to see the appeal of staying on the plantation.
State terror does more than just keep a boot on our necks; it also works to help coerce folks into keeping a blind eye to the terror and to see the appeal of staying on the plantation.
It is a classic carrot and the stick: On the one hand, one can speak up and rise up and RESIST the oppression that we all face, or we can make excuses for our common oppressor, act like we don’t see or hear what is happening and continue buying more stuff to sedate ourselves.
Why state terror?
State terror does notarrive out of miraculous conception; rather it is developed by think tanks and capitalist warfare institutes. In short, it is created by OUR COMMON OPPRESSOR! But this oppressor does not come out of thin air either. It has been honed by the centuries of exploitation, the blood and bones of our ancestors. It’s terroristic and highly organized.
Yes, it is the real terrorist organization that we exist under. It is from this lethal apparatus that state terror springs forth on poor people on these occupied streets and the reservations as well as lands around the world – wherever poor people exist.
State terror is not only what took Andy’s life, but it is what gives a poor person in California life in prison for stealing something worth less than a dollar out of hunger. It is also what will stuff someone, someone poor, in a cell for 40 years in complete isolation for having a drawing or for telling another person, “Good morning.” State terror is then simply the process of the oppressor attempting to neutralize its enemies – the oppressed.
State terror is not only what took Andy’s life, but it is what gives a poor person in California life in prison for stealing something worth less than a dollar out of hunger. It is also what will stuff someone, someone poor, in a cell for 40 years in complete isolation for having a drawing or for telling another person, “Good morning.”
People have lived under state terror for so many generations that many folks are mentally colonized and do not even realize this is state terror. Babies are born knowing nothing OTHER than being socially, politically and economically oppressed – and our oppressor will be the LAST one to point this out.
Instead Amerika does all in its power to conceal this colonization and it does this through its corporate media, which self-censor truth. It does this through its kourts by creating laws that work to uphold state terror – like the new proposed legislation that would ban any publications that disagree with the state.
This would allow the state through prisons to shape the ideas of prisoners – even those being tortured in solitary confinement. This shaping would come in the form of only allowing us to read what it wants us to read – and this will be more publications like the brainwash journals that ask us why we chose bad decisions and do we regret it, as if we all made wrong choices, as if we are all guilty. The state should be the ones doing the step-down journals, as they step down from national oppression and imperialism.
The state terror that Andy Lopez underwent, like so many others before him and after him, is not normal. It is not normal to be shot by the pig for walking down the street; it’s not normal to be prevented human contact for decades because you do not want to be an informant. These forms of state terror should be stopped immediately.
State terror will never stop if the people do not mobilize and demand it, struggle and MAKE IT STOP. But in order to move in this direction, whether in prison or out on the outside, people have to understand and grasp that it is unacceptable – and this is the process of decolonizing the mind.
How do we defend the people?
These forms of state terror will ALWAYS continue in one form or another until we can transform society as a whole. Until that time comes, we need to defend our people.
There are many ways to defend against an onslaught, a genocide, perhaps too many ways to thoroughly discuss in this forum, but the first line of defense should be to educate the people. This education should start in one’s home or, for those of us in prison, through the mail to our family, friends and comrades.
Our communities should understand what state terror consists of. We should decolonize the people’s minds so that they understand that when our youth are murdered by the pig, we know that it is state terror. There should be no dwelling in any barrio or ghetto project where the youth living there do not know what state terror is.
There should be no dwelling in any barrio or ghetto project where the youth living there do not know what state terror is.
We cannot raise our youth attempting to fill their heads with ridiculous notions that we can somehow be a part of this trifling beast called Amerika. Attempting to get our youth to “just be good” and we will somehow be accepted into the oppressor’s plantation – even though this oppressor has us in the cross hairs – is a mistake which has already cost too many lives.
Our choice in Amerika, to be brutally honest, is to join or attempt to join the oppressor and oppress other poor people like us for them – whether this is done in one of its uniforms or by being passive – or to RESIST. I choose to resist the plantation in all of its forms and bribes.
Andy Lopez was being a good young man and doing nothing other than attempting to be a young Chicano in Amerika, and for that he experienced what Chicanos and Chicanas have been experiencing since we were first colonized in 1848, when our land was stolen by Amerika. This was not some pig gone berserk or an isolated incident; it is a pattern and a pattern that has gone on for hundreds of years.
Andy will prove to be another example of Amerika’s true colors in terrorizing our youth. Once more no justice will come from the kourts, but I believe that his death will help mobilize folks and will help to educate the people, and so Andy will help to defend the people by contributing to the process of decolonizing the minds of the people.
Police brutality and, to be more honest, pig terror helps to keep the people in their place, but throughout history there are disruptions to this process when the people resist. I believe that we are on the threshold of some more of this resistance and, no matter if folks are in prison or outside of the kamps, there is a place for people to contribute to this beautiful process of struggle for justice.
I believe that we are on the threshold of some more of this resistance and, no matter if folks are in prison or outside of the kamps, there is a place for people to contribute to this beautiful process of struggle for justice.
Our youth in their lives nourish the people and fertilize our nation, and in death our youth continue to cultivate our thoughts, ideas and our actions so they still nourish our struggle. Defend! Educate! Resist!
Send our brother some love and light: Jose H. Villarreal, H-84098, PBSP SHU C11-106, P.O. Box 7500, Crescent City CA 95532.