In the event you are not familiar with the nation of Chaz, it is six square blocks of downtown Seattle. After overwhelming the police station with profanity, the secessionists declared the territory they now occupy to be an autonomous zone – and the fledgling new nation of Chaz.
No … the new nation was not named after Sonny’s and Cher’s daughter-turned-son, Chaz. It is the acronym for Capitol Hill Autonomous Zone. The declaration of independence came after revolutionaries, anarchists and rioters routed the combined forces of the Seattle and Washington State governments. It was a relatively bloodless coup.
The square mile area fell after the Seattle police force surrendered their East Precinct headquarters after coming under a winnowing attack of name calling. According to Mayor Jenny Durkan, the decision to surrender was made in order not to provoke the rabble into more hostile actions. It was also to prevent the mob from taking the police station forcibly and ransacking the place. It half succeeded. They did not take it over forcibly, but they did ransack the building.
In their Iwo Jima moment, the revolutionaries hoisted a banner on the front of the former police facility – changing it from “Seattle Police Department” to “Seattle Peoples Department.”
Left-wing United States news media – which had been supporting protests and rioting in other cities – quickly recognized the new nation. CNN’s war zone journalist reported that the post-victory atmosphere was like a festival – with peace-loving new residents of Chaz enjoying street entertainment and food.
In an effort to mitigate any responsibility for losing a piece of America to street mobs, Mayor Durkan described the activities in Chaz as nothing more than a “block party” – noting that such block parties are often held in that area. (Yes, she actually said that.)
Durkan said that surrendering the police facilities was “meeting peace with peace” – a tactic similar to President Obama’s lead from behind policy in the Middle East and British Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain’s “peace in our time” agreement with Adolph Hitler.
It was said that the Seattle revolution was inspired by events in Minneapolis when similar forces took over the Third Precinct police station – but at least the Minneapolis police did not give up without a fight. Okay. The appearance of a fight. It was just that their pepper spray, tear gas, rubber bullets, pistols, automatic rifles and armored vehicles were just not enough to overcome a fusillade of rocks and bottles.
The situation in Seattle was reminiscent of the 1960s – except that no one found it necessary to disrobe as an expression of protest. If these young folks are going to mimic the Days of Rage, they can at least take up the more visually enjoyable tactics. I am not sure how nudity and civil protest are related, but those on the left seem to see a connection. (I was in Washington during the BIG demonstrations of the 1960s and nudity was everywhere.)
The Chaz revolt seemed to evolve out of concern over the death of George Floyd – but that did not seem to be the prime motivations of the overwhelmingly white revolutionaries. Rather, they seem to have been an assemblage of what I call the perma-pissed – those ever-ready to take to the streets in condemnation of anything associated with America.
As a humanitarian gesture, the government of Seattle donated a number of porta-potties. So, we know they will accept foreign aid. This is a departure from San Francisco where the progressive culture allows public defecation. Their solution is to provide a “poop map” so you do not step in it.
President Trump says he may have to intervene in Chaz, but Mayor Durkan said the President has no authority and any intervention would be unconstitutional. Madam Mayor seems to forget that it is a primary responsibility of the federal government to protect our borders. In view of the potential for the spread of Covid-19 into the United States from Chaz, Trump should also invoke a travel ban.
I am not mocking those who have declared their autonomous zone. No. No. No. There is no way to mock those who are mocking themselves. I am just reporting. The events in Seattle would make a great movie, but it has already been done – “The Mouse that Roared.”
Of course, what we are seeing is just street theater. That is different than a serious protest or demonstration. It is more of a social event than a political movement. Cut off the pot supply and the revolution will collapse. It will collapse anyway.
Remember Occupy Wall Street – and all the baby “occupies” that followed. This is just a variation of the theme. If you did not immediately recall Occupy Wall Street – that tells you a lot about the meaningfulness of these things.
So far, the pretend take over is merely symbolic – something the left loves even if there are no meaningful results in the long run. In the world of street theater, this one is at least comedy – not a tragedy. But with leaders like Durkan, we cannot discount anything. Like the line from the musical “A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum” – “tragedy tomorrow, comedy tonight.
So, there ‘tis.