Sunday, October 19, 2014

Police brutality, affairs of the heart, etc.

So on a Friday night, after not going out properly for a long time, I decided to hang out with mates at Hanzo, a well-deserved evening out, might add. After getting there about half past 10pm, I sat talking with a friend I hadn't seen in a long while, and generally having a great time when, a few hours later, at 1am on 18 October 2014 I was about ready to dance. The I realised there was no music. So I went to the bar to ask what was happening, why the music was shut down and saw two cops on either side of the bar. Since the law allows for the music to be on while not allowing for alcohol to be sold after midnight (fuck the bloody paternalistic attitude of the state that thinks they could and should limit the alcohol sales by the hours of the day, anyway, a multitude of seriously fucked up problems arising out of the dry curfew, like people getting drunk at home, beating their wives and kids, for once, if not worse, just for starters), I asked if the music could be played since I wanted to dance. Admittedly I had used an equivalent of "Why the fuck is music out?". The police dude, a stocky, mid-thirties, short dude then said "Who the fuck are you?",prompting "A customer, a citizen of Mongolia" from me as well as "You guys do your work, but can we put the music back on so we could dance?" He got visibly irritated and promised that he would lock me up for sobering. I thought it was a fun idle threat as I was not unruly or disorderly in any way, and so I walked back to my table where friends were seated, and told them that since I had come out to dance that night, let's go someplace else with music, and got dressed to go. And that's when I was simply lifted from my two arms and carried out into the police car, where I was shoved in. They were carrying out their threat, and I just couldn't believe what was happening, I still had an idea that it was all a big old joke. But no: there I was, a dude who had 3 beers, who had wanted to dance, stated as much and, as a result, ended up in a lock-up at 1am from Friday to Saturday, the only one time I had truly wanted to dance. I was made to take off my shoes in the -5C temperature of the sober-up lock-up as all the windows were wide-open, with all the people in the lock-up shivering to their bones, I was allowed to use the toilet just once in the 14 hours that I was in the cell, I was not given a single drop of water in all that time, and plus around 8am, 7 hours later, I was dragged out of the cell by my dreads by the police officer and tackled and kicked and had my left arm twisted and wrung behind my back because when I received my belongings, the report of why I was there said "Refused to follow the lawful demands of the police officer on duty, obstruction of justice, unruly and disorderly behaviour disturbing public peace". All of that was bullshit, so I refused to sign the paper, circling the unruly and disorderly behaviour as the reason why I refused to sign. That's when I was dragged out and handled brutally in front of all the other people in the lock-up. What scared me further was they paraded me up and down the corridor a number of times, allowing all the drunkards and not-so-drunkards get a good look at me, most of them recognising me from my TV appearances, and who started going "Hey love!", "Hey homo love!", "What the hell? You are not a homo, you were a woman, weren't you?!", meaning that the police's irresponsible policing led to me being exposed in an extremely vulnerable way. What it call came down was that I was brutally handled by the police and lost 14 hours of my life spending it in a freezing cold cell while almost sober and entirely peaceful, being beaten up for refusing to sign their paper that I had never engaged in unruly and disorderly behaviour, by being treated worse than a prisoner as even prisoners get their ration of water and food, probably. What scared me was that the police are so used to treating people as if we're nothing, as if we live in the police state, as if they're all governors, and us, their faithful servants, while it is entirely the other way around. What scared me was that they had time and again said that they would detain me for 72 hours for daring to know my rights, for daring to tell them how things were. What scared me was that they could get away with that. What terrifies me now is that they probably will come after me when I complain about the behaviour of two cops involved, the one who dragged me out of Hanzo, and the one who bodily assaulted me. What it all made me understand, for the first time in my life, is that I couldn't probably continue living in a country where all you are is deemed nothing because of who you are. All the pains of going through the events of my life to finally be here where I should indeed be happy erased by the very people who need to be responsible and ethical enough to not endanger their own citizens. That's been that.

Which brings me to the next point: affairs of the heart. As it is, I am completely over the agony that someone brought into my life. I am now in a happy, serene, present space. While being held for all those hours in the lock-up, all I wanted to do was to curl up in my make-believe boyfriend's arms. Just to let go and cry the frustrated tears, just to feel his warmth. I never managed to tell him that that's what I wanted when he showed up. Instead I sat watching his beautiful eyes, and felt all the physical and emotional pain of the previous 14 hours melt away. To have someone as good as that come into my life in any capacity was a blessing, now I see. Whatever happens, whatever doesn't happen, no matter.

PS: Just an after-thought: would have police dared to do what they did to me had it been in any other club in the city? The answer is, sadly, no.

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