It is Saturday evening of my first Matsuricon here in Columbus. The evening of Friday was spent walking about the convention floors, but not having a pass to anything. The young age of the crowd surprised me and despite my daughter’s encouragement to take pictures of other people, I felt too creepy to take many. During lunch on Saturday I decided I had to get a pass.
The line for passes midway through the second day was far longer than I would expect. Perhaps people came and then decided later to sign up, I’m not sure. On Friday evening, they closed registration down a bit early and many of those who pre-registered did not get their passes and could not attend Friday evening’s festivities. The organization for passes seems to need some work.
Once the line was down to a manageable length, I queued, filled out the form and then had sticker shock. Here it is 1:30 on Saturday and thinking the 3-day pass at the door was $40, I was surprised that just Saturday was that price. Oh well, at least I can go to a few panels today.
Attending some panels was good experiments. Now with a pass, I felt less like “creepy old dude” while walking about. Still shy to ask for many photos, I did get a few. The newly purchased PNY 32GB SDHC cards however, continued to give fits. Friday night they kept messing up and only a scant few minutes of video was shot. Practice time with the Glidecam XR-2000 was also too limited and the video was not the best anyway.
I’m sure I’ve walked miles today. Waiting for the elevators takes too long. Good thing we are only on the eighth floor, so walking up the steps is not a bad option. No need for cardio this weekend.
Overall, the experience was not bad. It is definitely not the place to just walk about taking pictures. More than once someone told me that Ohayocon is better. There are so many kids here running around. Doing Cosplay seems to be a mid-twenties thing and down. If I come next year though, I’ll be rocking some old school Cosplay. Which character to dress as?
Each day, more information about the tragedy in Ferguson, Missouri comes to light. The initial narrative of a gentle giant has now been shown to be false. The two young men were walking in the street and this is what lead the policeman to stop. The two started an altercation which eventually lead to the death of one of them and a policeman’s whose heart breaks.
Throughout all this, the various community agitators keep the Hate speech going. Each night the rioting destroys property and it is quite a miracle that dozens are not killed every night. The rioting causes the police to become more and more militarized. The violence of the riot produces violence from the police which produces more violence from the fear controlled crowd.
The cycle becomes self-feeding. The circuit complete is not broken.
Only one thing can end this cycle of violence feeding violence: Love. After the riots in Los Angeles, Rodney King asked the question, “Can’t we all just get along?” He was dismayed by the riots and his sadness lead him to the question. Many impugned him for his comments and it became a joke. Rodney was right. Getting along means at least having respect for one another. True community builds on getting along to loving your neighbor.
An early hit for the group The Black Eyed Peas was Where Is the Love? Its message was powerful and correct enough that it even found playtime on Christian Radio Stations. The song asks what is wrong with the World filled with hate and wonders where the Love is. There should be Love in the World. Love for Everyone. The secret is Hate is being played into the World to keep Everyone warring with each other instead of Loving.
The same continues to be missing from Ferguson. Instead of really wanting Justice, those who profit from the agitation preach Vengeance. This brings more violence, not Love. Should the policemen be charged? Perhaps. After all, the British soldiers who killed Americans in Boston in 1770 were put on trial, though the crowd wanted Vengeance. Interestingly, they were defended by future second President John Adams. This is Justice.
The questions remain. Why can’t we get along? Why do some feel they are allowed to take from others because the are bigger or stronger? Why do some feel they must destroy in order to be heard? Where is the Love, Ferguson? Where is the Love?
When your protest uses violence, you will prosper the very tyranny you claim to fight.
What we see in Ferguson, Missouri shows this exact point. People are angry and riot. This is not the first time this has happened in the US. Local police forces see this and worry it will happen in their towns, so they collect more and more military style equipment and tactics. This concerns many citizens and the loop becomes a vicious cycle. Love and Peace should be our first recourse, not violence. The former can overthrow tyrants, the latter will be used by tyrants to increase their grip. True and lasting change is created one person at a time and spread through Love.
Instead of turning to hate, live with Love. Seek the path of Forgiveness in all things. Despise not your Enemies. Love them and stand on Principles. Hearts are Converted with Love, not hate.