chapter 14

Date: Sun, Jun 7, 2020 at 10:37 AM
Subject: chapter 14

It’s been awhile. Nothing worth reporting. Another round of Nelarabine that brought the malignancy down to a barely detectable <0.01, which is not as good as desired but good enough to keep Dave on track for stem cell transplant. Originally we thought that we had no choice but to go with the conventional AMA chemo because the disease was so acute and aggressive that there was simply no time to research alternatives. Now that the malignancy is barely detectable, we were still hoping that we could find alternatives that would keep it there. No such luck. There are alternatives that claim success with other cancers, but none that we have found have claimed success with this particular variety. Which does not mean that he could not be a first, but all those familiar with T-Cell ALL, with whom we have talked, agree that this one is much harder to deal with, and offer no alternatives. So now he is on maintenance chemo until there is a window in the transplant schedule – probably late July or early August.

Wednesday, June 3rd, we went to the dentist for cleanings that had been postponed since last October. Old style manual cleaning instead of sonic due to COVID. No further appointments needed. On the way back when we got to Federal Way aboard the 578 bus from Sumner, (after a Lyft from Bonnie Lake), the driver addressed us all and informed us that the bus was only going as far as the SODO station because Seattle was ‘closed’ due to the protests. So we took the Link from there to Capital Hill, a bus down to the west side of the freeway and walked the remaining half mile. Total of about 3 and a half miles walking, so we got some exercise in addition to the teeth cleaning.

Capital Hill was quiet at that time, but later we saw video footage of Police attacking protesters there earlier in the day. Police were still stationed at the entrance to the Link when we were there. I am heart broken that there is so much violence associated with these protests. The protesters have valid grievances that have been festering and ignored for decades. With emotions running high it is not surprising that provocateurs have managed to incite some rioting, but the reports of property damage, as bad and inexcusable as it may be, seem relatively low under the circumstances.

Since governments want to maintain the status quo, they do not want to have to deal with proponents of change. There are many reports of authorities inciting violence instead. This is presumably as a distraction and in order to have an excuse for total suppression of the protests over George’s killing. There are also reports of other groups instigating violence as well, presumably in hopes of overthrowing the government. And history is replete with false flag actions of instigators framing opposing sides (like ‘warnings of looting’ attributed to Antifa but traced to their nemesis), so that is going on as well. So both sides, those wanting to maintain the status quo and those wanting radical change, are interested in using the public’s anger for their own ends. This does not bode well.

Erica Chenoweth ( https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YJSehRlU34w ) studied the history of government changes and found that non-violent civil disobedience is more effective than violence in bringing about positive change. Non-violent civil disobedience requires fewer participants (<3.5% of the people), and leads to better and longer lasting results.

The good news is that, along with the reports of violence and understandable calls for stronger efforts to quell the rioting, there are also reports of police expressing solidarity with peaceful protesters and even taking a knee. But at least one of these appeared to be only a photo op as on the following day the same police department exhibited brutality. There are peaceful (some armed) protesters condemning and providing protection from rioters. Though I worry about them possibly deciding they need to use force rather than just intimidation because, so far as I know, their ammo is lethal. We should not add vigilantism to the mix.

There are people expressing ideas of what needs to be done to make lasting positive change. I have heard speeches from leaders calling for specific action, admitting that words are not enough. People are patronizing minority owned businesses in increasing numbers to show and provide support. A pizza franchise owner offered employees paid time off if they wished to join the protests! GoFundMe accounts to help the victims of vandalism. These all tend to get less press coverage since the media feeds on mayhem, but thankfully these reports are also available. Only time will tell whether these saner voices will be able to prevail.

I have seen no mention of estimates of total numbers of protesters but it would appear to be numbers not seen since the sixties and only a few have been provoked into riots – frequently by the police themselves. The rioting is extremely troublesome since it is counter productive, to say the least, and it needs to be dealt with. On the other hand, it must not be allowed to detract from the message of the peaceful protesters who are legally seeking redress for genuine grievances – grievances highlighted over and over again by the unprovoked brutality of too many bad apples among the police. I don’t care for bad apples in either barrel, but I find them more inexcusable in the paid professional barrel than in the reactive civilian barrel.

There is cause for hope! I hope you will join us in supporting the minority community and their businesses.

Robn

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