Mill Avenue Resistance Reports: Saturday, March 14th 2009

The Mill Avenue Resistance reports are written by Kyt Dotson as an extension of anthropological research on the population of Mill Avenue in Tempe, Arizona. Since the Resistance does their protests Friday and Saturday there are two reports a week. The supporting material not related to the Resistance reports can be found on the Under the Hills blog.

The Resistance didn’t see much in the way of anything to resist when they put foot on the Ave. They congregated for a while at different restaurants and mingled. It took them a while of wandering around the Ave before they eventually found a single, lone preacher way out by the now closed Borders. That would be Al.

Rocco held a sedate discussion with Al most of the night about civil justice. The crux of the argument hinged on how positive law and social justice work and how harm is involved. The usual assertion involves something to the end of “any transgression against an infinite god is therefore an infinite crime deserving of an infinite punishment.” Except that social justice is a system based on harm. Thus the suggestion of transgression suggests two things (1) that the Christian god can and must be harmed for a transgression to happen and (2) that harm is comparable to “infinity.” It seemed interesting that someone decided to take an argument about justice to this particular quote rather than the obvious argument by definition: “a finite harm to an infinite object is infinitesimal, a harm that approaches nothing.” Although, this did have a stake in Rocco’s argument as well as sidebar.

Most of the replies smacked of special pleading—claiming that one justice was different from another but failing to demonstrate why to any sufficient extent or dismissing the need to show sufficient cause. After a long period of responses that Rocco found inadequate, Al fell back on, “You don’t understand it because you don’t believe.” Quoting a passage from the Bible making a reference to “making fools of wise men.”

The rest of Mill remained totally empty of anything the Resistance would have noticed.

So they spent most of their time clustered around one of the inner flanges of the Borders’s building, letting Rocco intermittently talk to Al. Until he finally left around 11:30pm. Rocco did also have a lengthy discussion with Maurice—a writer who makes some money selling poetry on Mill Ave (and he also possesses a particularly Mark Twain aesthetic.)

Tonight proved pretty much to be a social excursion for the Resistance and lacked much activism.

Probably giving them a calm day before the storm of Brother Jed who is coming to bring his carnival act to ASU all next upcoming week.