Hoodies Anyone or Hoodwinked in the Homeland

What the fuck was Geraldo Rivera thinking about when he suggested that Trayvon Martin invited his own murder by wearing a hoodie in Sanford, Florida?  I guess by the same logic he would say that every woman dressed provocatively in the public square is inviting rape; or that anyone challenging US war policy should be prosecuted as a supporter of terrorism.  But, let us try to parse the perverse irony of Geraldo’s goofy remarks.

We have spoken on more than a few occasions about the tendency of liberal capitalist democracies to commodify and monetize any cultural phenomenon, deviant or otherwise, including, if not especially, counter-cultural activity. The hoodie, by now a rather common garment found amongst a growing segment of the populace, is a solid fashion statement resulting precisely from this sort of commodification. So what Geraldo may be implying is that the entrepreneurial, profit-focused tendencies of our liberal capitalist democracy are themselves responsible for this boy’s death. The commercialization, marketing, and subsequent adoption by our youth of what was once considered ‘gangsta’ wardrobe now turns a random portion of the body politic into a group of apparent thugs just asking to be murdered.  An impeccable use of syllogistic reasoning, no?

In the interests of full disclosure, I am approaching my sixtieth birthday; I am a white American-born citizen, of Eastern European descent, and I happen to own two different hoodies.  I will freely admit to buying them on impulse as a good American consumer over the past ten years. However, I would note that the hoodie, aside from its current fashionableness, has the obvious benefit of keeping one’s head warm and dry on otherwise inclement days or cooler nights.  So what’s the beef? And what the fuck was Geraldo actually thinking about when he uttered his condemnation of young Trayvon Martin?  Is not his ‘beef’ with capitalism, or perhaps the consumerism that drives such entrepreneurial behavior?  Is he simply irritated about the commodification of counter-cultural activity; or is Geraldo just totally confused, as seems to be his perpetual modus operandi?

Perhaps, just perhaps, the real problem lies much deeper. Perhaps it is a function of the psychopathic behaviors, like that of Mr. Zimmerman, encouraged, if not celebrated, by the owners of empire, their law enforcement representatives or otherwise deputized homeland security personnel.  Yet, wouldn’t you know it, the Sanford Police Department finally succumbed to the outcry of far-flung villagers, commoners, and more tribal relations (affine and consanguine) around this fair land.  Regular citizens have spoken out loudly against these official guardians of virtue and they have said ‘enough is enough’!  However, would we have seen the law enforcement hierarchy in Sanford, Florida do differently had there been no public outcry, no public rebuke?  And where were the ‘Occupy Sanford’ folks hiding anyway?

Of course, this entire episode may help shed light on a larger and substantively darker issue. Indigenous peoples and people of color in the USA, be they of African, Indian, or Mexican descent, have been a persistent reminder to the rest of us (even us white-folk who think we are better off because we are of European heritage) that laws are enacted to protect and serve the rights of the owners of capital and their handlers, but not the enslaved masses. Certainly, I am not arguing that we should equate our common enslavement with the experience of black, yellow, or red America. The heavy burden those somtime-reluctant citizens bear is much more palpable day-to-day; but, it also gives them a vital sense of fundamental problems with our concept of law, even with purportedly democratic governance. Yet, in the final analysis, the treachery of our own enslavement by means of the same legalistic framework is no less real and no less frightening. However, we tend to ignore our human bondage, simply letting the shit roll downhill, and pretend that somehow we remain immune from persecution or prosecution – above the stench (so to speak).  We are not!  In fact, we are complicit even in our own bondage.

It is a sad fact that each regular citizen of the commonwealth is becoming just another expendable number in a creeping global system of despotism and its ever-growing database in the ever-expanding bureaucracies that constantly monitor our whereabouts, our associations, our conversations, our Internet connections, our consumer preferences, and our other public or private activities.

As Chris Hedges catalogues in his Truthdig column this week with respect to the homeland:

There are now 1,271 government agencies and 1,931 private companies that work on programs related to counterterrorism, homeland security and intelligence in about 10,000 locations across the United States, The Washington Post reported in a 2010 series by Dana Priest and William M. Arken. There are 854,000 people with top-secret security clearances, the reporters wrote, and in Washington, D.C., and the surrounding area 33 building complexes for top-secret intelligence work are under construction or have been built since September 2011. Investigative reporter James Bamford wrote in the latest issue of Wired magazine that the National Security Agency is building the largest spy center in the country in Bluffdale, Utah, as part of a secret NSA surveillance program code-named “Stellar Wind.” Bamford noted that the NSA has established listening posts throughout the country to collect, store and examine billions of email messages and phone calls.

It is George Orwell’s vision of 1984, people; and Dr. Cass Sunstein (the President’s Director of Information and Regulatory Affairs) is finally getting his wish, and then some.  Certainly, systemic racially-motivated head-hunting has been a legacy problem in the USA since its founding; yet, it is only the tip of an enormous and emerging iceberg – an imperious, “security and surveillance state [that] does not deal in nuance or ambiguity,” as Hedges again reminds us. The USA has itself become a head-hunting machine, going after whistle-blowers, the disenfranchised, and any other ‘colorful’ people who dare to speak-out.  Whether the State acts through direct agency or its deputies (corporate or private citizen-agents), it is a machine that is slowly, but systematically enslaving each of us under a spreading umbrella of fear and trembling and a sickness unto death.

As civilizational collapse continues apace, the emergent gulag mentality of this paranoid, totalitarian, globalizing corporate powerhouse, reflected most clearly in recent legislative and executive decisions – informing both traditional law enforcement and the growing numbers of clandestine homeland security forces – becomes a “clear and present” danger to all of us, and represents a much broader problematic. So while the city-sanctioned posse continues to head-hunt neighbor-hoodie ‘terrorists,’ easily identified by their racial profile, there are already federally-mandated, State-sanctioned posses covertly hunting the rest of us – what they perversely perceive as would-be trouble-makers, accessories, supporters, or terrorists in principle.

As Hedges summarizes our predicament:

You are for us or against us. You are a patriot or an enemy of freedom. You either embrace the crusade to physically eradicate evildoers from the face of the Earth or you are an Islamic terrorist, a collaborator or an unwitting tool of terrorists. And now that we have created this monster it will be difficult, perhaps impossible, to free ourselves from it.

As our mentor Nietzsche reminds us:

Only where the state ends, there begins the human being who is not superfluous; there begins the song of necessity, the unique and inimitable tune. Where the state ends – look there, my brothers! [Kaufmann, 163]

32 Responses to Hoodies Anyone or Hoodwinked in the Homeland

  1. relentless says:

    Thanks for the horror stories Sandy. Just when you knew it was getting really bad, it enters the terrain of far worse. As i’ve intoned previously, it’s way past ‘time’ to opt out of, and i mean, here specifically, the technological monster, especially the zeros-ones, the digital modus operandi of the controllers which they are so utterly dependent upon. Why make it easy for the bastards? Such as our flaying about with creative digital transferrence of thoughts that might never occur to anyone so indoctrinated with constipated thinking and a profound hatred of life. Many of us simply desire to exist with a deeply-felt connection to the wondrous, the creative, the amazing beauty bequeathed us as breathing beings, but obviously there are those who despise such a path and are hellbound to thwart and destroy all who have the gall to dream and perceive these gifts. If they weren’t so pathetically paranoid and aggressive i’d simply feel sorry for them. See where a lifetime of cultural mindwashing materializes in the final analysis? You do, i do and your readership does…but they don’t, can’t, won’t…they are too far gone. Sad.

  2. javacat says:

    Geraldo had his big moment in 1972 with Willowbrook; why anyone pays attention to him now is beyond me. Still, his seemingly inane comments likely reveal what more people than we’d like to admit were thinking. It also underscores how very little progress this country has made in the area of discrimination, racial equality, and justice. In discussing this case with a colleague, I said that even if this case somehow blows up, it has served to force us to examine such laws as Stand Your Ground, and has scraped away the veneer that covers our sense of race. How long that awareness will last…anybody’s guess. Most folks have probably seen the Howard University video, but worth posting: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rH5bB8HUWFs

    This season of attack–racial, economic, misogynist–coupled with the disturbing array of legal machinations–everything from flying drones to strip-searches to mandatory vaginal ultrasounds–exudes fear and its partner, control.

    Sustaining the outrage, sustaining and acting on the belief of what is right, what is fair, and what is humane is the challenge.

    • kulturcritic says:

      Great video, JC. I know Howard University well; I did some work there years ago. And the profiling and attacks are going to increase (people of color, people with different ideas, people at the lower economic range); all will become more grist for the mill, as conditions deteriorate. Thanks for sticking with us. sandy

      • javacat says:

        Sandy, unfortunately, I think that your assessment has more truth than I’d like to admit. We’ve already seen many examples of blatant racism (Ex. A teacher in a Virginia school asking the only black student in the class to read a Langston Hughes poem in a ‘blacker’ voice.). Legislation at state and local levels striking out at the poor, the elderly, those in medical need, and women. Race and ethnicity add another dimension to all those groups–and that’s not even touching on arrests, prison populations, and education. Oddly, or ironically, as these changes are happening, the white America is rapidly becoming a minority, as this 2009 article from The Atlantic Monthly explains: The End of White America (http://www.theatlantic.com/magazine/archive/2009/01/the-end-of-white-america/7208/).

        • Brutus says:

          Javacat sez:

          I think that your assessment has more truth than I’d like to admit. We’ve already seen many examples of blatant racism (Ex. A teacher in a Virginia school asking the only black student in the class to read a Langston Hughes poem in a ‘blacker’ voice.).

          For adults who can still think (becoming fewer all the time, as Geraldo exemplifies), there can be no surprise that racism since the Civil Rights Era merely went underground and is continuously resurfacing in new garb (the hoodie?). The psychological underpinnings of racism (e.g., fear of otherness) are too strong to wipe away entirely, though they have diminished among many young people. I wouldn’t count on racism disappearing through attrition.

          Examples such as the teacher in the Virginia school can be multiplied many, many times in classrooms everywhere. One might expect teachers (like journalists and/or politicians) to have more “progressive” ideas on the subject of race, but it’s clearly a crapshoot. The memes and counter-memes are out there, and what position one takes on the continuum (e.g., racial equality vs. irrelevance of acknowledged differences vs. innocuous racial discrimination vs. virulent racial victimization) is not always predictable, especially when playing the race card puts anyone/everyone on defense about the issue.

          • javacat says:

            Brutus, as always, your thoughts and observations are solidly unclouded and accurate.
            Your point about fear of other is especially well taken. Race is still such a powerful flashpoint in this country that we cannot have a meaningful dialogue.

            Racism did go underground, at least in some parts of the country; it became institutionalized through neglect (think inner city schools), through socio-economics (think prisons, drop-out rates, single-parent homes), and probably through a concerted effort for the power structure to stay intact and strengthen.

            What dismays, disheartens, disturbs me deeply is the blatancy of exposure in so many areas–what we might have looked at in horror as a tragic anomaly a few years ago, is becoming more and more ‘acceptable’ today. The examples that come to mind for me are the anti-Obama bumper sticker (“Don’t re-nig”), the show of guns at political rallies as a means of intimidation, our elected officials demeaning women over and over and over again, publicly, loudly, with few effective returns and corrections. It feels like a time in which boundaries and inhibitions have broken down, except rather than the happy
            drunk dancing on the table, we’re releasing the dark inner id, the negative forces within us. And I’m not sure the forces can be restrained or channeled–If I’m honest, I think they cannot.

            • kulturcritic says:

              JC – those ‘dark inner forces’ of the ID may be better attributable to the alienation that is built into a system of structural anonymity and forced (legal) sociability. My three year old son has no fear of the other per se, after the briefest period of familiarity with a new person, color or gender not withstanding.

              • javacat says:

                Sandy, thanks for making this point. I agree with you completely. I was using ‘id’ loosely to represent the destructive forces created by fear, rather than in a more primal aspect inherent in human nature. Fears and restrictions are implanted, purposely, sometimes with good intent, and often unknowingly.

              • Brutus says:

                Don’t overlook the infrequency of the safe, secure environment you provide for your son, which enables him to go forth into the world confidently and fearlessly. When childhood environments are characterized by fear, insecurity, dominance and submission, etc., the shape of one’s character is shaped differently. Which obtains for most people, and for that matter, which is closer to a state of nature?

                • kulturcritic says:

                  Brutus – I agree that the developmental period of childhood and adolescence are critical for a healthy relationship to the world at large (and I am not sure that I represent the perfect example, LOL); I think Shepard, Nature and Madness has excellent perspectives on this issue in preliterate cultures. Although your comment is confusing at the close, where you say “Which obtains for most people, and for that matter, which is closer to a state of nature?” Could you restate your intent here. sandy

        • kulturcritic says:

          Interesting piece!

  3. kulturcritic says:

    Folks – I have just posted a comment on The Eyes Have It that drives our point home about becoming a vision driven machine, the other senses having lost all meaning in this visual world.

  4. Martin says:

    Not to excuse his comment, but Geraldo (wonder if that’s his real name) is old enough and dim-witted enough so that ‘Hoodie’ automatically equates in his ‘mind’ with ‘Hood’ (as in hoodlum), which equates, a priori, with ‘Bad Guy’ especially if said hoodie-wearer is a young person whose skin tone is other than mottled pink and more especially if said hoodie-wearer is going about top-up or top-down – the former position I’ve noted as being the more favored of those younger hoodie-wearers here in my neck of the woodies.

    I myself have wondered about the significance of the top-up position of the hood of the hoodie, no matter the state of the weather. Is it just a fashion statement or are they attempting to hide their features so as not to be recognized for some nefarious reason? Are they attempting to be anonymous within their legion of look-alikes or is it a definitive statement of alienation from the culture at large, intended or not. I, being a way older guy myself and not at all attracted to statements of any kind through fashion, obviously do not know, but I tend to land more or less on the alienation theme.

    I’ve noted that a couple of TV series (yes, I look at TV from time to time – bless me, for I have sinned) that deal with the supposed activities of cops often show their undercovers and/or non-uniformed minions wearing hoodies – most often top down – but the implication is always that these folks are ‘edgy’ and are probably not to be trusted. Talk about being vision-driven (a wave to your post above, Sandy).

    On another note – that of surveillance – I’m very pleased to note the prevalence of current knowledge of same. I see it as part of what I call The Great Unmasking. It seems to me that more and more people are becoming aware of, and outraged about, what is going on. It wasn’t always so. I cite the ‘good ol’ days during the war in Viet Nam when I was involved in a ‘co-op house’ (read urban commune) in Portland, Oregon. We became involved in a network of stopovers for young men of draft age who were attempting to emigrate north. We were aware of some look-see by the local police, but had no idea of the scope of the surveillance that was going on. Some years later, under the freedom of information act, I was able to retrieve a file the FBI had on me and I was astounded by what they had, even though a lot was redacted. Why I/we were never arrested or at least shut down I do not know. Small potatoes, I guess.

    Anyhow, there is nothing that even remotely surprises me anymore.

    • Brutus says:

      Can’t say that I’ve untangled the complex of cultural reference points embodied by the hoodie, either, but I see them all the time in cops-and-robbers flicks that reinforce nothing but clichés. Jedi, medieval monks, and the Grim Reaper similarly keep their heads and identities shrouded under hoods. A local produce store I frequent has a policy against hoodies. And of course, the Unabomber back in the day was always depicted in a hoodie and aviator sunglasses. Lots of us have soaked up these citations.

      Personally, I own two hoodies, which I tend to wear top down mostly when I’m out on my bike in the cold and sweating from exertion. For personal comfort and style, however, I far prefer the baja, also worn mostly top down. Since what hair I have left is always kept closely cropped, I use other means to keep my head warm.

      • kulturcritic says:

        Great remindr about the Unibomber, Brutus…. our first glimpse of a real “terrorist” in the homeland, eh? So the hoodie was born!! and it haunts all the hoodlums in the hood, including the rest of us. The fact is that the system looks for edginess, Martin, and uses that as a lever to flush out all the bad guys, black, white, red or otherwise. And they don’t always go by the fashion statement, as you found out in your FBI file.

  5. xraymike79 says:

    Something like a quarter of all adults in America have a criminal record of some sort that bars them from most employment. With only 5% of the global population, we hold 25% of the world’s prisoners. America seems to excel at some very perverse achievements, the end result of a society which treats everything with a profit-seeking business model perspective. The building of a national security state has gone into hyperdrive in recent times. It seems our increasingly dysfunctional capitalist markets are also demanding an ever more oppressive government in order to operate in the face of a swelling population of the disenfranchised, the ranks of whom include more and more who once thought they were the beneficiaries of Empire.

  6. Brutus says:

    Sandy sez:

    … your comment is confusing at the close … Could you restate your intent here[?]

    I was contrasting the safe, secure environment some children enjoy vs. the chaotic, contingent, and hostile one others experience — especially as the two extremes (for the sake of argument, admittedly) shape character and either resolve or reinforce fear of otherness. “Which obtains …” mere asks which environment (or one tending in one direction or the other) is more typical for most people. And because the safe, secure environment is part of social arrangements themselves part of industrial civilization, it occurred to me to ask further whether the state of nature lived by prehistoric, uncivilized, and/or indigenous man is closer to one pole than the other.

    I can’t comment on other cultures I’ve only witnessed modestly, but in the U.S., wealth tends to confer privilege, including safe and secure home life. In Chicago where I live, it’s not limited to the well-to-do northern ‘burbs, but it’s concentrated there. I’ve seen it firsthand with students I’ve taught, whose confidence has an unmistakable noblesse oblige. Sometimes parents even manage to nurture their children when they’re not trundled off to the nannies and boarding schools. But since wealth is concentrated in the hand of a few, the urban and rural poor in particular often lack a nurturing environment to develop the sort of confident that would mute a natural fear of otherness. Moreover, considering the crazy-making character of the dominant culture, how many parents, whatever their financial means, have a sane centeredness to model for their children? The prevalence of physical and psychological abuse is one example of how chaotic, contingent, and hostile childhood environments are for lots of people, which are of course repeated from generation to generation.

    • kulturcritic says:

      “because the safe, secure environment is part of social arrangements themselves part of industrial civilization”… this statement is ludicrous, IMHO

      While this is much more accurate: “Moreover, considering the crazy-making character of the dominant culture, how many parents, whatever their financial means, have a sane centeredness to model for their children? The prevalence of physical and psychological abuse is one example of how chaotic, contingent, and hostile childhood environments are for lots of people, which are of course repeated from generation to generation..”

      There are virtually NO models of maturity today, because there has been no legitimate maturation for perhaps a thousand generations.

      Before you say anything further, my friend, I humbly suggest you read Paul Shepard, Nature and Madness. You will enjoy it immensely.

      Here I quote some conclusions at length:

      The West is a vast testimony to childhood botched to serve its own purposes, where history, masquerading as myth, authorizes men of action and men of thought to alter the world to match their regressive moods of omnipotence and insecurity… From the epoch of Judeo-Christian emergence is an abiding hostility to the natural world, characteristically fearful and paranoid. The sixteenth-century fixation on the impurity of the body and the comparative tidiness of the machine are strongly obsessive-compulsive. These all persist and interact in a tapestry of chronic madness in the industrial present, countered by dreams of absolute control and infinite possession… The fantasies, anxieties, and hostilities of unresolved immaturity [in our civilization] are acted on or repressed and redirected in many ways. In this dark shadow of adult youthfulness is an enduring grief, a tentative feeling about the universe as though it were an incompetent parent, and a thin love of nature over deep fears. What agriculture discovered was not only that plants and animals could be subordinated, but that large numbers of men could be centrally controlled by manipulating these stresses, perpetuating their timorous search for protection, their dependence, their impulses of omnipotence and helplessness, irrational surges of adulation and hate, submission to authority, and fear of the strange.” (pp. 126-27;116)

      • Martin says:

        Or, perhaps more simply put, we now exist in a state of permanent cultural adolescence. It has seemed to me to be true for much of my lifetime – at least since the end of WWII, if not before.

      • Brutus says:

        I appreciate the Shepard quotes, but I’m unclear why you believe it ludicrous to observe that the entirety of our psychology stems from our position within civilization. If we actually lived close to nature, without the domesticated support mentioned by relentless, well then sure our psychology would be different, including the relationship of self to other. But we’re not there, and to suppose that one psychology is inherently our nature while the other is unnatural, if that’s what you’re suggesting, makes little sense to me. And besides, nature is rather hostile and unforgiving in the raw; we have our predators, too.

        • kulturcritic says:


          Sometimes you are brilliant; other times your statements make no sense, for example, because the safe, secure environment is part of social arrangements themselves part of industrial civilization – I have no idea what you are trying to say here.

    • kulturcritic says:

      More from Shepard:

      The archetypal role of nature – the mineral, plant, and animal world found most complete in wilderness – is in the development of the individual human personality, for it embodies the poetic expression of ways of being and relating to others..the real brittleness of modern social relationships has its roots in that vacuum where a beautiful and awesome otherness should have been encountered. (108)

      • relentless says:

        Have read much of Shepard Sandy, and Nature & Madness was perhaps his most incisive. i think our only disagreement is over domestication. Shepard claims modern humans are not, cannot be domesticates because their genetics, unlike domesticated cows, sheep, etc., have not been ‘modified’ genetically. Personally, i rather doubt that, and this statement was made, what…30 years ago or so? Whatever one’s science may claim, so be it…science isn’t static, nor the modern human body, genetics is still in its, sic, infancy, isn’t it? That said, i prefer my use of the term: how modern humans actually live day to day, and glancing about at my contemporaries–yes, and myself–we surely fit a domesticated mold. We require the same care and outside goodies from the system as a cow, even with out ‘superior’ minds, though i think a cow if turned loose would survive a mite longer than most of the domesticated humans i’ve encountered. As a simple proof, consider how well 99% of amerikans would survive if their infrastructure disappeared completely. Yes, not really the Shepardian version of domestication, but nonetheless, seems to show all signs of being domesticated, with or without the genetic manipulations…but then, there are more ways to manipulate the modern human than via
        MonSatan’s personal touches, eh? Otherwise, Shepard’s take on maturity, or it lack of in modernity, is dead on. One small opinion…and it isn’t Ellsworth Toohey’s (The Fountainhead) 🙂

        • kulturcritic says:

          I think he still views the current crop of folks as “domesticated” after a fashion… and certainly, we will make that a biological reality soon… if not already the case.

  7. pixelwhiplash says:

    Welcome to the dawning of the digital Dark Ages. Independent thinking, collaboration of collectives with a common purpose of living simpler, more human lives, will be thwarted at every turn. Any message not “on point” will be quashed, spun, demonized and ultimately expunged. I’m with you Sandy. Though it may have me struck down in some fashion, I am a pixel Spartacus.

  8. John Bollig says:

    I agree that the west is doomed and whatever comes after it will be pure dark ages. BTW, I don’t think it will be digital. It will be a dark age in which civilization will collapse and we will revert to feudal socety. Racialist and racists will reappear in our midst as if they never left. It doesn’t look good for any of us who think differently. I attended a conference on employment of disabled citizens last week. I think that the push was for getting people any job that they could find them. Thinking that work would improve the mental and physical health of the individual. However, what was really going on was the desprate efforts to squeeze the last bit of utility out of a population who had never been considered of any value. Efforts were made to push individuals to work by various state agencies. How moronic can these people be ? It may be an effort to drive down wage scales and to create a new set of frantic scared workers who will do whatever to have some income.. It is a realization of the efforts to enslave another population even more. BTW, they are cutting Medicaid increases in the state by 800 million dollars. At the same time, they are adding another layer of private vultures to the mix. They are having private insurance companies bid on who will cover what in medicaid. KanCare is an effort to enrich the insurance companies while denying coverage to thousands. How is a person with a disability going to compete for a job in a job market where thousands if not millions of nondisabled workers are willing to do anything for a job.
    One wonders if this is the begining of the end of the line for millions and the next step is the ovens.. Useless eaters ??????

  9. javacat says:

    Sandy, I can’t find it now, but somewhere you shared the thought that the fact that Trayvon Martin was walking –not wrapped inside a vehicle–made him more suspicious to outsiders. I’ve mulled it around a bit. The attitude toward walkers in the country depends a lot on where you are. In NYC and other large cities, walkers are common and no one looks twice. In my semi-rural neighborhood, folks walk for exercise, to be social, to get out and about. I get to know the regulars and notice when new folks walk through. In a state with poor public transport, cars are essential, so those non-recreational walkers must be poor.

    In the suburbs, though, it seems like a different story. And the more separated the enclave–those cul-de-sacs, higher-end housing developments, right on up to the gated communities with their own security police, with their emphasis on keeping out, holding the borders tight, will be extremely sensitive to many types of other–including ordinary people simply walking in broad daylight. The vigilance to keep out reinforces the fear of other, which may drive the vigilance to outright paranoia. When so much energy goes into defensive living–which exclusive living really is: a forced separation for the illusion of superiority and security–events that shouldn’t even be blips on the radar are magnified into dire threats.

    I’m guessing that there will be many factors in this case, each revealing a part of a distorted, kaleidoscopic view.

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