Full disclosure: I’m divorced. I have hundreds of friends, family and acquaintances who’d willingly testify to my overall good character but I’m uncertain that my ex-wife and her family would extend such grace. I suspect they might be slightly more eager to tell you of my shortcomings and more dangerously, attribute innocent actions to ill intent. I would not want my ex’s family charged with writing my biography. Sadly, this is precisely the way we treat the history of the Black Panther Party.
What is happening in Oregon right now is about power. More accurately, it’s about who is allowed to display and exercise power. The American story is that: power and might carry the day and certain groups are allowed the privilege of demonstrating that power, others are not. This is precisely why the issue of gun control is so contested. Guns represent power over those who are otherwise equals, power to combat aggression and the ultimate deterrent to attack. The ability to control who can have such power is in and of itself, an exercise of power.