“The ancient proverb will be well effected, – A staff is quickly found to beat a dog.”
(King Henry VI part 2 act 3, sc. 1)
Comments. As you can see from the picture (and from the video whose link is also posted in this entry), in Austin, Texas, Santa Claus has been handcuffed and made to lay to the ground. His guilt? Having chalked on the pavement near the government building words such as ‘Peace’ and ‘Love’. His repeated question and lament “Why am I arrested?” receives a barely audible answer by the police-person, “for chalking”.
The arrest was targeted – other ‘chalkers’ weren’t arrested. The Santa Claus in question happens to be also an activist for the preservation of Alaska’s wilderness, therefore a ‘communist’, or better a ‘terrorist’ in the warped minds of the 1%.
The image of this man thrown on the ground is filled with so much symbolism that to describe it properly would require a larger space than the confines of this entry allow.
In a scene of the video, his small box of chalks is shattered and the chalks, symbolically loose and broken on the ground.
It is also reasonable to suggest that what refrained the policemen from placing their foot on the back of the victim (as I have seen done in other occasions) was the presence of the camera that filmed the event. Which explain the hardly contained anger of the policeman who closes in to the camera to take a picture of the camera-man.
I cannot think, now, of any other picture that better represents the current ideology of democracy – that is, the dictatorial Freedom of the Market and the use of the police to transform perception, while gratifying the audience with the techniques of the spectacle. Other than the camera-man who attempts to infuse courage into Santa Claus, notice (in the video) the inert expressions of the spectators, true representations of the society of the spectacle.
Equally meaningful is the shout of contempt heard in the background and directed to the arrested man, “Call Mama”. That so many are convinced that we live in a democracy and that they are its beneficiaries, confirms Feuerbach’s observation that illusion only is sacred, truth profane. And that the highest degree of illusion comes to be the highest degree of sacredness. The floored, handcuffed and abused Santa Claus, obviously humiliated and reduced to the status of a dog illustrates brilliantly today’s Shakespearean quote.
Video Link: http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=u2Wzao_2PSI
Tips for Use. Comment on injustice and unjustified police methods or brutality
Image Source: http://juanitajean.com/2012/12/22/texas-state-troopers-declare-war-on-christmas/