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Wednesday, August 23, 2017

A Rip Van Winkle who fell asleep in 1968, awakening now, would see TV news footage that was achingly familiar: An American city under siege as mostly white police officers, firing tear gas, face off against mostly black civilian protesters, some violent but most just angry. The two elections of a black president notwithstanding, some things haven’t changed very much.

Among those areas where little progress has been made is the criminal justice system, which still reeks of institutional racism and a plethora of human prejudices. Black men, especially, are viewed as dangerous, predatory, criminally inclined. They are not usually given the benefit of the doubt — not viewed as innocent until proven guilty — by white police officers, prosecutors or jurors.

That helps explain the anger that has exploded in Ferguson, Missouri, where black residents make up 67 percent of the population but black drivers accounted for more than 86 percent of the traffic stops last year, according to a report by the Missouri attorney general. Police in Ferguson, a St. Louis suburb, searched 12.1 percent of black drivers they stopped, compared to 6.9 percent for whites.

Are black drivers more likely to carry illegal substances? No. Contraband was found 22 percent of the time when the driver was black and 34 percent when the driver was white. The police department, by the way, has three blacks among its 53 officers, according to The Washington Post.

The troubling racial disparities do not absolve the looters, the rioters, the thugs who have attacked police and damaged property since protests began. There is no excuse for criminal conduct; moreover, it detracts from legitimate gripes with the police. Those who use the protests as cover to steal or toss Molotov cocktails should be arrested and prosecuted aggressively.

However, it’s also true that police officers, sworn to protect the public, have a duty to act without causing more harm. Let’s remember how the troubles began: An unarmed black man, 18-year-old Michael Brown, was shot dead by a police officer. What brought this young man to the cop’s attention? Was he breaking into a car or assaulting a passerby? Nope. He was walking in the street.

The police officer who shot Brown after ordering him to the sidewalk claims he was attacked and a struggle for his gun ensued. However, one of Brown’s friends, a witness to the episode, relates a very different version of events. President Obama, while calling for calm, said he had ordered the FBI and the Justice Department to investigate.

That’s a step in the right direction, but it’s not nearly enough. If demands for justice come mostly from black voters, if a thorough investigation is seen as a predictable political response from a black U.S. attorney general, if outrage is voiced only by the talking heads at the liberal outpost of MSNBC, then there will be many more Fergusons to come. The overuse of force by heavily militarized police ought to concern every American, not just those most likely to be on the butt ends of police rifles.

It’s clear, no matter the details of Brown’s death, that local police have handled the aftermath poorly, inflaming tensions with excessive force. Heavily armed officers in desert camouflage have pointed large-caliber weapons at peaceful protestors. A couple of reporters were arrested last week because, apparently, they failed to move along quickly enough.

If there is any good news here, it’s this: The sense of outrage seems to have finally broken out of the usual bounds of race and partisanship. In an essay published in Time, Senator Rand Paul (R-KY) wrote: “The outrage in Ferguson is understandable — though there is never an excuse for rioting or looting. There is a legitimate role for the police to keep the peace, but there should be a difference between a police response and a military response.”

Demilitarizing police departments won’t rid the criminal justice system of endemic racism, but it may help to curb the unnecessary, violent confrontations by officers who have forgotten their oaths to “protect and serve.” And that could keep a few more young black men alive.

Photo: Chris Lee/St. Louis Post-Dispatch/MCT

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76 Responses to Excessive Police Violence Must End

  1. Much has changed since the days of the civil rights movement, but there is no question that prejudice remains latent in parts of the country, and that ethnic minorities are often viewed with suspicion, not only by law enforcement officers, but by the white population of the United States at large.
    What happened in Ferguson is just the latest in a long list of injustices that have taken place in America since we became a nation. Injustices that, more often than not, are quickly justified by depicting the victim (s) as dangerous criminals, even when the evidence proves otherwise.
    The status quo that allows the use of excessive force, including the militarization of law enforcement agencies that began in the late 1990s, and went into over drive after 9/11, a court system and a media that are more inclined to give the benefit of the doubt to the police officer than to the right of the victim, and a culture that, although not as pervasive as it was until the 1960s, still has pockets where stereotyping and prejudice against anyone who looks or sounds different from the majority is the norm, all contribute to tragedies such as this.
    Seeing images of heavily armed police officers using lethal force against protesters is something that most Americans associate with what happened in Germany in the Third Reich era, or in South Africa in the days of apartheid, but not in the USA.
    Law enforcement officers must be trained with special focus on how to enforce the law objectively, rather than assuming that any person of color must be responsible for crimes committed nearby, and that the use of excessive force is justified when the suspect of a person of color. Most importantly, our judicial system must set an example by prosecuting officers who use excessive force, instead of looking for ways to let them off the hook.
    Law enforcement is a dangerous profession, and it is not too difficult to understand why police officers over react at times, but shooting unarmed teenagers in cold blood, simply because they were walking away from a crime scene is not the way to go.

    • As was stated many years ago in regard to racism- “You can cut down the tree,but the roots run deep.”
      I remember quite well back in the late 60’s how it was revealed that many members of the Norfolk,Va. Police Department were active klan members and how a telephone pole at a nearby bus stop was plastered with bills that advertised the latest local klan meetings.

    • Dom, you don’t know the facts, I don’t know the facts and once known you can use “cold blood”, “walking away from a crime scene” all you want. But until then stop acting like Al Sharpton.
      As to “court and media giving the police the benefit doubt” that is a bunch of hooey.
      Police are always training to best serve the community as a whole.
      “lethal force”, where are the bodies in Ferguson or else where in US.
      After the last 2 nights of rioting with shots fired last night into a squad car, and rioting will into the night resulting in the rioting gear brought back into use, maybe the heavily armed officers are necessary. I would protect my men any way I could.

      Still it is a mess, no one looks good.
      Racism, on either side??? We will wait and see.

  2. It is not just Ferguson where police are out of control. In most suburban towns they act more like an occupation army than protectors of the law. this is because Towns hungry for cash have place ticket quotas on its officers. this is turn has forced police to give as many tickets as possible and that becomes harassment of the community, especially young drivers, who are prone to mistakes. I’m black communities its much worse, where police think they have to heard in stray people enjoying their right to walk around town. A NJ police Superintendent was asked why the state police profiled black motorists for stop and search. He said who do you think are smuggling drugs, Irish people? Police have demonized Black men since the years after the end of slavery so this is not new. It was the police that enforced segregation laws up into the late 60’s. What is worse it was the police in urban areas that protected the Mafia as it spread drugs in black communities since they considered the people there worthless, especially the children. Once Drugs got out of control the police switched hats and used it as an excuse to ride roughshod over urban areas arresting as many young black makes as possible who were involved in the drug trade the police started. Also drugs were the largest employer of youth in those areas since there was capital flight from there.
    The only thing now that with stop this is a legalization of drugs. Take it way from the police and make it a public health issue. Take the crime out of it and the gangs will loose power and the police can go back to protecting the people that live there

    • Mississippi Burning is a 1988 American thriller film directed by Alan Parker and written by Chris Gerolmo. It was loosely based on the FBI investigation into the murders of three civil rights workers in the U.S. state of Mississippi in 1964. The film focuses on two FBIagents (portrayed by Gene Hackman and Willem Dafoe) who investigate the murders. Hackman’s character (Agent Rupert Anderson) and Dafoe’s character (Agent Alan Ward) are loosely based on the partnership of FBI agent John Proctor and agentJoseph Sullivan.

      The film also features Frances McDormand, Brad Dourif, R. Lee Ermey, and Gailard Sartain. It won the Academy Award for Best Cinematography, and was nominated for Best Actor in a Leading Role (Hackman), Best Actress in a Supporting Role (McDormand),Best Director, Best Film Editing (Gerry Hambling), Best Sound and Best Picture.

      It was filmed in a number of locations in central Mississippi and at one location in LaFayette, Alabama (town square scenes).

    • All of what you say may be true but don’t dismiss the quality of the officers themselves. When I was young I too wanted to be in law enforcement but when I read the qualifications one must possess I realized with a simple GED I wouldn’t have a chance and in fact that’s exactly what came up when I did apply. I also had a light record of teenage intoxication and later with a very small amount of marijuana that I had completely forgotten (two days in county). Today they will take GED and misdemeanors and that’s the problem. No longer are officers a special breed but rather frustrated high school bullies and low moral bigots (not all of course but it only takes one to discredit the many). Now, what with the emphasis of quota as well as the assumption that everyone is guilty until proven innocent, these ‘bigots’ feel free to do as they choose and with the full backing of their superiors investigating their own kind.. (result: always justified) small wonder they feel it’s open season 24/7.

    • You outline a number of the core contributing factors that collude, and combine, to make the problem even greater than it’s collective parts. In agreement on drugs, I would add, in at least two instances, the FDA in alignment with the pharmaceutical companies, have served to actually create illegal drug epidemics. Whether this was intentional, or simply a case of a Government agency acting on the wishes of a powerful, monied entity, (the drug companies,) I’ll leave to another day. In the first case, in the late 1950s, the FDA approved a wide variety of potent stimulants to supposedly curb appetites, and help the obese lose weight. Deemed as safe, doctors prescribed them by the boatload. Pretty soon, millions were enjoying the dandy little pick me uppers. From movie, and rock stars that took them to enhance their performances. To housewives, with busy schedules, to coast to coast truck drivers. Then, all took sedatives, or increased their alcohol consumption, in order to combat the major side effect, insomnia. Then, someone realized most of the Country was, “hopped up,” on diet pills, and decided the best thing to do was crack down, and hard, on the pill market. The thing is, speed can be very addictive. And when the, bennies,” became hard to get, the Columbian cocaine cartels, had a field day. As well as did, the cops, the courts, the lawyers, the rehab business, and the corporate run jails, and prisons. In fact, the only losers to this day, outside of the obvious, those who became hooked. Has been the taxpayers, and the Constitution. The second instance is ongoing today. As the FDA, ignoring all the warnings, approved powerful line of pain killers, made from a synthetic form of opiate, that mimics morphine, or heroine. Is extremely addictive, and after a decade or more of their proliferate use, and abuse. The government, through it’s drug enforcement agencies, and Federal, State, and local law enforcement, is carrying out another, zero tolerance crack down. As of right now, today, we have a completely manufactured, completely foreseeable, heroine epidemic raging among millions of our citizens. With high schoolers, making up a frightening number of the mainlining junkies. And the, “War on drugs,” that is actually a war on America’s people, and our Civil Rights, and children’s future, needs to stop. It must stop.

  3. One problem is convicting the officer before we know what really happened. All that is doing is adding fuel to the fire. Looting and burning buildings is never a answer. It is just behaving like savages. Now tax payers are going to be on the hook to rebuild. There is not excuse for this and the savages should be held accountable. Let the facts come out in court and if the officer is guilty of murder or using excessive force or whatever, then let our justice system convict and punish him.

    • Savages? Your characterization of criminals is part of the problem. It gives justification for the future mistreatment of others. It is strange that these type of words are ofen used to describe minorities. Mass murderers and child molesters who are white are presumed innocent until proven guilty and are described using normal adjectives.

      • I saw white, black, latino on tv news programs looting and burning. Call them what you want, but I call them savages. If you think calling a savage a savage is being racist, then you have the problem not me.

        • Typical bigot reply. I say something stupid and it is your fault. Criminals are criminals. That is like the bigots on Newsmax. You sound like you belong there.
          Subject: Re: New comment posted on Excessive Police Violence Must End

          • My point is that if you do not want to be misunderstood you should watch what words you use.
            Subject: Re: New comment posted on Excessive Police Violence Must End

          • See what happened in Ferguson, MO. last night when police were not heavy handed! The savages were out looting. Ferguson’s Black community is up in arms that police could not stop the looting.

          • The criminals are not savages. They act savage. No one was hurt, no assaults just looting. Savages would be attacking people.
            Subject: Re: New comment posted on Excessive Police Violence Must End

          • Would you prefer we say the rioters and looters act like savages? If it looks like a duck and it walks like a duck it is a duck! Same thing: if it acts like a savage it is a savage.
            BFD to New comment posted on Excessive Police Violence Must End. Clean up your own back yard! Violence by Black men against Black women and children and other Black men must end. Absolute no reason for that except savagery.
            Honorable Men of Color do not harm their women and children. Honorable Men of Color protect their women and children.
            More Black men are murdered by other Black men then by policemen and white men combined, never an outcry about that.

          • Difference is when the lack of outrage when a black male kills an 11 year black child and black grandmother. It is like nobody cares. All murder of a black person should cause outrage in their community regardless of the murderer’s race. I am upset by all killings I am aware of.

          • And where is that lack of outrage, Bob? Seems to me you’re the one talking about “the savages” who are angry when one of their own is killed by “law enforcement” without any kind of concern being expressed except YOUR kind satisfaction that you prejudice is apparently justified.

          • And lots of white people shoot white people. For a long time now, your only response to any posts is just a way for you to play the race card. Are you one of the outsiders that went to Ferguson to riot and loot and help the thugs while blaming everyone else for everything you can dream up?

          • Yes, they do. But they’re much more likely to get convicted and serve a longer sentence if the victim was white rather than black. Another simple truth you might know if you weren’t such a bigot yourself.
            And I just love listening to racists and those who support and enable them whining about “the race card.” I wouldn’t have applied it, and you wouldn’t have been so enraged by it, if it didn’t hit home.

        • Is it really that much fun, defending the indefensible?
          I guess for bigots such as yourself, no question that it is.

    • You hit a home run! Apparently our Northeast liberal elitist are unable to allow our judicial system to work. To them the police are always wrong and the thugs are never wrong. Talk about bias.

    • Of course, the military confrontation of a peaceful crowd by armored vehicles, snipers, soldiers in fatigues with assault weapons, smoke bombs, incendiaries, etc. is not “savage” or “adding fuel to the fire,” nor are obvious lies and deceptions by the police chief and his attempt to imply that stealing cigars is a capital crime by releasing a questionable video of a crime the officer was allegedly unaware of when asked for information about the shooting.
      Why does it not surprise me that you’re here, as in all apparently racially-motivated killings reported here, defending the likely perpetrators and libelling the victim and his community?

      • You love the good ole race card. You probably would accuse someone that chooses red licorice over black licorice a racist. Instead of letting the law take its course, you advocate violence and looting and rioting which does not surprise me at all. No one knows the whole story yet, let the facts come out instead of more violence.

        • Wow. That’s some pretty creatively dishonest reading of what I wrote. But then, that’s no surprise. Yes, let the law take it’s course, especially when it’s obvious both arms of the “law” – the police chief and the prosecutor – are prejudiced, the former telling three different stories and presenting a highly prejudicial and – according to his own statement – completely irrelevant video of a shoplifting by someone who MIGHT be the dead man (witnesses say otherwise) and the latter saying it was an outrage that the case was taken from the hands of those who called in armored vehicles and SWAT teams armed with automatic weapons to confront a peaceful crowd. We don’t know the whole story primarily because the police have chosen to obfuscate and delay as much as possible it finding it out.
          I’d like to let the law take it’s course, too. I just want to make sure that course doesn’t lead where it all too often does when an alleged perpetrator is a cop, especially when the alleged victim is black.
          And yes, calling you a racist is a reasonable response to your obvious belief – expressed a day or so ago on this site – that the reason there are way more black people in prison is that way more black people are criminals. Even the most cursory research would show that belief to be very highly questionable, at best, but obviously not to you.

          • Like I said: it fits. If you don’t like it, stop being a bigot. That includes religious bigotry, too, which really isn’t very fun.

          • I will not change my ways or beliefs for a racist like you. If anyone here is a racist and/or bigot its you.

      • Are you on something?! It is obvious you were not in Ferguson, Missouri last week. If you had been in Ferguson you would know neither soldiers nor snipers were participants in crowd control only State and local police participated. An incendiary bomb was thrown from your “peaceful crowd” at the police line . And your “peaceful crowd” that burned down a Quick Trip store.
        Oh, ya! Micheal’s accomplice, accompanies by his attorney, told the FBI that it is he and Micheal robbing the convenience store on the “questionable” video.

    • Remember, the shooting took place BEFORE the residents (or rather, an unrepresentative minority of them) began rioting and looting, BEFORE that particular officer had any reason to believe that the young man MIGHT have just committed a robbery (actually, more like shoplifting, since he was unarmed), so the alleged robbery had NOTHING TO DO with the shooting. Of course, even if he did commit the robbery first, and even if the officer had received an APB and recognized him from the robbery, shooting him in the back while running away is not a legitimate use of deadly force, not to mention shooting the FATAL shot while he was SURRENDERING, and not even calling an ambulance or attempting in any way to save his life.

      The protests, both peaceful by most and violent by a few, came AFTER the police shot the boy, and AFTER the police had already “soldiered up” with riot gear. I have wondered why the majority of the town’s population had not voted for a city council who would have named a less militaristic police chief. I can only assume that the black majority, although qualified to vote, must have been AFRAID to do so. I hope that this year’s election reflects a change in that.

      Incidentally, the officer will most likely NOT be convicted even if guilty, because the police will obstruct the investigation. Did the boy actually reach in and attempt to grab the officer’s weapon? If so, the autopsy will show gunshot residue on his hands … IF there was any attempt to preserve that evidence (the proper way to move the body would require placing bags over the hands in order to preserve that evidence), that is. If not, then a jury will tend to take a cop’s word over a citizen, even when the cop is lying. This police force did not equip their cars with dash cameras, and after this they will probably resist doing so, since it would make such cases more transparent to the courts and public.

  4. You can not legislate Love There is and will always be extremes like Liberal Media & Conservative Media, Blacks on Whites, Whites on Blacks, Rich on Poor, Poor on Rich and the beat goes on & on NOTHING NEW. You are dealing with people not machines. Take for example every weekend in Chicago a Gun Control Nanny City and what do you see Blacks killing Blacks & what do we hear from the Race Baiters like BO & Holder nothing, the same when Blacks Knockout & kill a White man & knockout a PG White women. I could go on for a week, but no one puts, two & two together especially the Media. This stuff sells newspapers like sex sells stuff every day in America, Our Moral Values are non existent, our leaders are pathetic, MLK is rolling over in his grave, people like Al Sharpton create more problems instead of solving any, America under this White/Black President has booed God, killed our future through Genocide & Gendercide brought Political Correctness to a new level but this has been going on since Bush’s second term. Again we could go on & on. Social Media has broadened the scope of our stupidity for we jump to conclusions. We need to stop, look, listen, question but above all stay calm. The waters are so muddy in MO that even the truth will not be believed because the line has been drawn. We must start at the beginning, foe example in Chicago if all the mothers (watch the comments) were to be given shot guns the B/B problem would be gone in a week. If Fathers were back in the homes & families reunited peace would prevail. If people had jobs (interesting the people who put BO in office because he was one of them have forgotten he is one of us as well) violence would shrink, Well I have said enough but in parting I say A Hand Up Not a Hand Out, Respect yourself & others will respect you. Respect your neighbor & he will respect you. Stay in School, work hard and these things will come. Good Luck America I have marched, picketed and been involved but at 78 I have said enough

    • 78 and lost in the 50s. You do know there was actually never a leave it to Beaver family. Putting on a pretty dress and strapping a gun to your hip and saying thank you God will not solve our problems.

      • You are so far off base, judging me as you have that it is almost comical. So before you judge me walk in my shoes. I have Black, Japanese & Indian (American) sons/daughter in laws with five mixed children, I marched for MLK, I successfully negotiated one of the first schools in IN for MLK Day before it was law. I have been to a KKK Democratic Party rally as well as a Black Panther rally & read their Manifesto. I took my students W/B to see Andrew Young & Julian Bond to name a few (by the way the all Black HS sent no one). I kicked a friend out of my house on New Years Eve for calling his wife the N word. I made a baseball player run a mile because he used the N word. A student in my house told his dad I was colored blind (best compliment ever). I was in LR in 55, drank out of a Black only fountain to show my solidarity (got chewed out). When I was in College I was part of an class experiment, since I was one of a few 21 yr old males in class. We all went to a bar in a heavily Black neighborhood in Indianapolis IN. All the tables had reserved signs we were the only ones there, so we sat down ordered and were drinking our beer, when two Black men & a Black women came in, since all the tables were reserved the women could not stay because women were not allowed to sit at a bar. The two men sat at the bar & the bartender said $2.75 for a beer (we had paid .75 cents). The prof went up to the bar and bought a beer laying down .75 cents. The two Black men drank theirs and left. The bartender went in the back room broke the bottles/glasses in a sink came out with a 38 waved it at us and told us not to come back (N lovers). We went across the street to a mixed bar and meet the three. One was a blind lawyer. A lesson learned because we A were in the North B were in a mostly Black neighborhood and still Discrimination. Blacks in African captured/sold weaker Blacks to slave traders. Blacks in Africa had slaves. Blacks kill many more Blacks then Whites do. BO is White as well as Black, so if you want to call him Black fine, this Democrat of 57 yrs did not/will not vote for, believe, trust or accept him except as a White Liar. He has abused his power, broken his oath of office, never takes responsibility for anything and blames every one else. He is worse the any of the 13 Presidents I have lived under above Nixon, Bush & Carter. Clinton with a Republican Congress did more good for America then BO ever could/did God Bless You God Bless America .

        • You are just like every racist I have ever met, you all tells stories that you think show just how un-racist you are then open your mouth and say things like “blacks in Africa had slaves,” “BO is white as well as Black,” “but will not vote or accept him” and end up sounding just like the what you are – a racist trying to not sound like one. You sir and people like you are what wrong with this Country. You have lost the war get use to sharing your world with people who do not look like you. It is the wave of the future.

    • Well, yes. You can’t legislate love. But, radicalism breeds radicalism.
      And there remains right, and wrong. And those who try to solve the
      problem, and those who deny the problem even exists. You Sir/ Madam are part of the problem. You consider the President a race
      baiter, only due to two realities. The color of his skin, and his acknowledgement of the problem. To have the widely held opinion
      that to talk about the inequities, is to be a race baiter. Is to launch a
      preemptive attack on the persons getting the short end of the stick,
      so as to hold your privileged position in the White power structure.
      As in, “Look out White People!” “Here comes the Black President,
      with his food stamps, and welfare!” Can reparations be far behind?
      “Is it still a mule, and 40 acres, Mr Obama?” Or how much of my hard earned tax dollars are you going to take away from the White people, and squander on your thug Homies? We’ve got to be careful here, do we not? That hand up, under a race baiter, don’t become an avalanche of hand outs! I’ve got your number, Sir/Madam. Loud, and clear. Hell the whole Country hears it.

      • Well friend. You are so far off base, judging me as you have that it is almost comical. So before you judge me walk in my shoes. I have Black, Japanese & Indian (American) sons/daughter in laws with five mixed children, I marched for MLK, I successfully negotiated one of the first schools in IN for MLK Day before it was law. I have been to a KKK Democratic Party rally as well as a Black Panther rally & read their Manifesto. I took my students W/B to see Andrew Young & Julian Bond to name a few (by the way the all Black HS sent no one). I kicked a friend out of my house on New Years Eve for calling his wife the N word. I made a baseball player run a mile because he used the N word. A student in my house told his dad I was colored blind (best compliment ever). I was in LR in 55, drank out of a Black only fountain to show my solidarity (got chewed out). When I was in College I was part of an class experiment, since I was one of a few 21 yr old males in class. We all went to a bar in a heavily Black neighborhood in Indianapolis IN. All the tables had reserved signs we were the only ones there, so we sat down ordered and were drinking our beer, when two Black men & a Black women came in, since all the tables were reserved the women could not stay because women were not allowed to sit at a bar. The two men sat at the bar & the bartender said $2.75 for a beer (we had paid .75 cents). The prof went up to the bar and bought a beer laying down .75 cents. The two Black men drank theirs and left. The bartender went in the back room broke the bottles/glasses in a sink came out with a 38 waved it at us and told us not to come back (N lovers). We went across the street to a mixed bar and meet the three. One was a blind lawyer. A lesson learned because we A were in the North B were in a mostly Black neighborhood and still Discrimination. Blacks in African captured/sold weaker Blacks to slave traders. Blacks in Africa had slaves. Blacks kill many more Blacks then Whites do. BO is White as well as Black, so if you want to call him Black fine, this Democrat of 57 yrs did not/will not vote for, believe, trust or accept him except as a White Liar. He has abused his power, broken his oath of office, never takes responsibility for anything and blames every one else. He is worse the any of the 13 Presidents I have lived under above Nixon, Bush & Carter. Clinton with a Republican Congress did more good for America then BO ever could/did God Bless You God Bless America .

        • I find I am seldom that far off base. If it walks like a
          duck, and talks like a duck, and claims to have lots of examples it’s not a duck. It’s a duck alright. Another thing that stretches the bounds of common sense, is how a Democrat of 57 years with your bias and attitude, didn’t change their Party affiliation, about 1965. As a Democrat, post Civil Rights Bill. Post Republican Southern Strategy, politics. I can read you chapter and verse, where President Obama has taken full responsibility, 100%, for dealing with what can only be described, as the worst Presidential/Administrative mess, in a hundred years. He has by his position, and action, taken responsibility for the unfunded wars. For paying, prosecuting, and ending them. He has taken responsibility for dealing with the worst economic decline since 1920. And throughout the entirety, dealt with unprecedented obstruction, and too many vacuous charges to count in this limited venue. All made by a, wounded, leaderless, radical, and dysfunctionally, incoherent opposition. And if you were a Democrat, or not a racist, you would realize that. In fact, there’s no way you get to the completely unfounded assertions you just made as a Democrat. So, just so we understand each other. You can claim President Obama is a liar. That he has abused his power as President, or that you hold no confidence in his abilities. But then, you may not claim to belong to the same Party of which I’m a member.

  5. Southerners and midwesterners like their “culture” and are happily comfortable using minorities as their whipping boys. After all, it is the fault of their former free black slave labor that these whites now have to do work their “inferiors” once had to do right?

    The reality is that the military industrialist states are 90% red. What does that tell you when they deliberate mass produce military weapons paid for by all US taxpayers and then find they have a “surplus?”

    It’s not so unthinkable that these same red bigot states would seek to get free handouts of MRAPs and other weapons of WAR to instigate war in our US streets. After all, their wild west and lynch mobs are part of their “culture” aren’t they? These uncivilized cretons may call themselves Americans. In reality, they are the same kind who much prefer a monarchy or oligarchy to democracy. Why else would they use federal taxapayers’ money to get free military weapons of war?

    The fact is that the DOD is at fault for allowing these military weapons to be purchased by states. What were they thinking? We hear all the time how the poor, down trodded whites in the south, lawless Wild West and Midwest have it so terrible thanks to blacks in their states. Their paranoid fear of white prejudice is another rebel negative they are always trying to prove. In other words, they will lie, kill and do whatever they can just to feel they are superior with a capital “S.”

  6. My oh my!!!! Warning. What you are about to read might contain information not suitable for the racially biased towards any particular race.

    First, I think Cynthia Tucker probably just wrote the most superficial piece of slop in her career and I personally hope it gets better than this for her sake as there is NO deep thinking or anything profound in this content whatsoever!

    I don’t intend to be incendiary and I want to be as truthful and as balanced as possible.

    With the information we now have (security camera stills) it appears Michael Brown was not an innocent victim of circumstance but was in flight after the commission of a crime whereby he could have been “LEGALLY” shot in the face by the store clerk he allegedly strong armed before he was shot by the LEO. Cynthia, you could have at least mentioned this matter.

    As we seek justice for police abuse and institutional racism against chiefly black African American YOUTH, we need to be truthful with ourselves about the nature of Blacks in America and how this feed into the institutional racism in the criminal justice system.

    During the civil rights movement Blacks were protesting for basic rights which for the most part Blacks (mainly youth) of this era utterly dis-appreciate and disrespect. Today, urban youth have almost totally squandered their birthright to vote, work and obtain primary education (people got the tarnation beat out of them for these fundamentals). I see this as spitting on our ancestors graves; and, it’s the modern day Black contribution to the tango our male youth dance with the muscled up well organized white racist (in) justice system.

    When Michael Brown “allegedly” committed larceny he set into motion the bad karma that culminated in his demise and set the stage to recycle our country back through the grief of our unresolved race relations problems.

    “He was just walking in the street” ????

    Isn’t that part of the problem? I live in an urban community and there have been numerous times when I had to stop my car or steer wide around black youth walking in the street when the sidewalk was completely clear for “safe” pedestrian activity. It always arouses my ire!

    Martin Luther King was attendant of the “good character” of a man and it was that aspect of “a man” he entreated us to judge. Lets be honest with ourselves here. In my mixed race community there is a recent deadly urge of Black and Hispanic youth gang violence with somebody (teenagers always) getting shot to death every month throughout this summer (I love our cold hard winter months). What is the character of these youth? What is the character of their parents? How should we judge them?

    Poverty is NO excuse for crime and it is not the reason either.

    I contend if minorities (chiefly males) want to survive their teens and live to become my age that they become willing and motivated to learn how to STAY OUT OF THE RACIST UN-JUSTICE SYSTEM. If you young guys want to get high stay at home in the HOUSE…keep it on the down low. Don’t act crazy in the streets. Pull your pants up! Stop violating your neighborhoods! Respect yourselves and act respectable. Then maybe we can begin to see the demise of the racists un-justice institution that’s rolling you guys up and taxing your communities to pay for the abuse it feeds back into the problem.

    What better example can we find for a definition of disaster capitalism

    • Sorry, but “we” know nothing of the sort you claim. You may know that the blurry video shows Brown, though witnesses say he wasn’t wearing the clothes shown when shot, and you may know the police chief was truthful, though changing his story several times times, at least once insisting the officer had no knowledge of the alleged crime, and you may believe that stealing cigars is a capital crime when committed by a black person, but most of us here aren’t so sure. You might also find that you are gravely mistaken about a store owner’s rights under the law when confronting an unarmed assailant who has not threatened his safety at all, should you bother to check.

      • Most importantly, nobody should be shot in cold blood because he/she stole a couple of cigars. If the officer thought Michael Brown may have been involved in the robbery at a store a couple of blocks away, they should have arrested him.
        I watched a video of this tragedy on Facebook. It was filmed by a passerby using her cell phone. It shows two police officers following and talking to Michael Brown, weapons drawn. When Brown reached a corner he stopped, put his arms up, and the officer closest to him shot him at point blank range. A few seconds later the officer turned the body over, apparently to make sure the “suspect” was dead. Why isn’t this video being aired by our “liberal” media? Why is only the burglary being shown on TV? I suspect the media, and probably our law enforcement agencies, decided not to air that video because of the likelihood of violent protests nationwide, but the likelihood of a coverup is definitely there.

        • You said: Most importantly, nobody should be shot in cold blood because he/she stole a couple of cigars.
          ************************************************************************
          But what if he had his big paws under your throat and his other hand behind him? I presume you would kiss him…LOL!

          • The video I watched on Facebook did not show a black teenager with his hands on anybody’s throat, and the other on his back. It showed a black man standing with his arms up, a police officer a few feet away, and another police officer about 15 feet away. Suddenly, without provocation, the police officer closest to the suspect fired his gun and killed the teenager.
            You are right about fear. People have to be consumed by fear to shoot an unarmed person, with his arms up. Those who see nothing wrong with tragedies like this are not only scared, they are consumed by ethnic intolerance and hatred.

          • There are numerous venues recorded around this event and no coordination across the spectrum. This so far is a terrible and irresponsible way to treat an event of such gravity. The media should be held accountable for violating our natural sensibility and right to know the truth.

          • I’m not sure if I’m following your comment but the shooter LEO allegedly didn’t know about the prior theft and accosting of the store clerk and if the LEO did know it seems clear he murdered Brown and justice will prevail

          • Let us hope so.
            I’m not sure which of my posts you’re responding to here. I was responding to what appeared to be your confidence that Brown was fleeing apprehension for a crime the police chief first said the cop didn’t know about, then said he did, then said god knows what else. My point is that the police chief appears to be a liar trying to cover for misconduct and possible murder by one of his officers unless Brown was actually attacking the officer – or someone else – with apparently lethal intent at the time he was shot. Hopefully you’re right, and justice will prevail, but it doesn’t look that promising to me.

        • But you don’t know what happened before that. There is also another video from a cell phone at the scene with a black man in the crowd saying he watched the event at the police truck and how police officer was attacked and shocked at the turn of events.
          Again. quit acting as Sharpton. The facts will come out and what ever happened justice will be done.
          But facts have never got in your way before.

          • Will they indeed, mike? Not from the Ferguson police chief; that’s for sure.
            What happened before is completely irrelevant, except perhaps if the officer were convicted, as a mitigating factor to be considered in sentencing.
            Even if the police officer was attacked, a surrendering criminal who is not “still” attacking is not to be executed by being shot multiple times; you never disputed the video Dominick cited.

          • It will come out between the State of MO and the Federal Govt. the truth will come out.

            Hey douche bag!! How can I confirm or dispute a video that is gone, disappeared, poof it’s gone. Dom’s words not mind. It seems when he went back to find it on FB it was no longer on his friends FB page. As he asked in an earlier post, why hasn’t the media played it?? Pretty simple, it doesn’t exist. I used FB, you tube to find it and couldn’t. Since you are so brilliant I know you can, Right??

          • OK, “douche bag,” have it your way.
            Video or not, unless Brown was in the act of attempting to use deadly force at the time he was shot, it was murder or manslaughter (I’m not a lawyer), or – giving absolute maximum leniency – severe misconduct. If the report of shooting six times is true, murder is the way to go. What happened before is completely irrelevant, not to mention that the police chief originally said the cop wasn’t responding to, and didn’t know about, the alleged theft. Shortly thereafter (realizing that didn’t fit with the preferred narrative?), he changed his story. The fact of the matter is that at this point it appears that police reporting about the incident is at least as unreliable as that of the witnesses obviously friendly to Brown, and possibly moreso. That would be misconduct as well.
            I never said I was brilliant, but thanks for the compliment :>). Hopefully, as you said, the truth will prevail, but even if it does, I personally doubt the cop will have to face the music if he was in the wrong, certainly not so much as Brown would if the situation were reversed.

          • That “douche bag” comment was done before I read your truce. Probably should have said something. You also received another after our agreement in which I used the word detente.

            Innocence until proved guilty. Time is on the side of the justice system. All will come out in the right time.

            A women friend of Wilson was on KTFK radio describing what transpired at/in car. There was a struggle and a shot was fired inside the car as Brown attempted to take his weapon. Is it true, we will wait and see. It was reported by witnesses (2 girls(one saw more than the other) in their apartment watched from their window on the opposite side of car from incident, saw struggle and heard a shot) it is on video on you tube.

            Am not sure if you saw release of time line.

            11:51 call received of robbery of Ferguson store
            11:52 description went out by police dispatch
            12:01 officer encounters Brown on Canfield Drive. Feds will go that with a fine tooth comb.

            Totally disagree on cop getting off if evidence proves him in the wrong.

            Now there you go again with that racism stuff!!!

            To me detente still force, up to you now.

          • If struggle took place in car, that is irrelevant if the guy was running or trying to surrender when shot (reportedly 6 times). I’m not up to date, having not seen anything today, but the issue is that – as I understand it – citizens, especially cops, are not permitted to shoot people unless someone is under imminent threat of death or serious injury by the target, so – though it certainly appears Brown is not exactly a choirboy – if the shooting didn’t take place during the struggle, it is not a “good” shooting. If the officer actually shot him six times, it seems to me that goes well beyond misconduct to at least manslaughter.
            I think there is abundant evidence that cops tend to get away with all kinds of things if the victim appears to be not a nice guy, or is the wrong color, clearly – in my opinion – why the chief and others have gone out of their way to attack Brown’s character. We could talk about some of the most flagrant examples, such as Amadl Diallo (SP?), who was shot 19 times (over 40 shots fired) by three cops for the heinous crime of trying to show the cops his ID. My memory grows fuzzy with age, but my recollection is that there was an outcry, but not much result. We can talk about Rodney King – I know, a lightning rod – or others. I’m quite certain that statistics show clearly that black people are more likely to be convicted than whites of same crimes with comparable evidence, more likely to get longer prison sentences, etc., and I believe both they and white perpetrators are more likely to get lighter sentences if the victim is black. I suspect there is strong evidence of higher level of police violence and harassment of African Americans. “Racism” in America is not in the imagination of those of us who call ourselves liberals; the evidence is overwhelming. Then there’s Travvon Martin, whose right to “stand his ground” when where he had a right to be while being stalked by an armed stranger somehow got lost in the minds of the cops and the jury, not to mention a LOT of people here.
            Yes, I hope you’re right, and justice will be done. I’m sorry if you find it offensive, but I’m inclined to doubt it will be.

          • There is so much chatter out there we will wait and see.
            If the St.Louis reporter and a radio station story is true then this becomes a whole new game. She is reporting that a source in the DA office said that Wilson received a orbital fracture of the eye socket. DA spokesman only denied the DA office is the source of leak.
            If it is true and the officer feared for his life then it is a justified shooting. If true, this should have been released days ago.
            Again, we will wait and see.
            How can I be offended by my new best friend. 🙂

            With the Feds involved I don’t see this swept under the rug.

            As to racism, yes it is still around but it is absolutely on both sides. But I do believe reasonable people are trying to work together.
            Now sit down, I have many wonderful Black friends. One of my best friends just died. He was black theology professor at a black university and I attended many fund raising and social events. And our discussions on race and life were sometimes heated but we loved each others company.

          • I think one of the aggravating factors definitely was the police chief’s evasive and changing responses.
            Not sure we’re quite best friends, but I will try to keep it friendly.

          • We are not BFF??? Damn!!!!
            It was earlier in the initial events with much confusion as to time lines. I can’t blame him, evasive?? I know there were contradictions but not sure what evasion.
            Lets face it he was over his head, and that is why he was replaced.
            Time will till what really transpired.

      • If the clerk could be interviewed that would clear up much confusion. The photo stills also feature another smaller youngster standing casually watching the crime in action…where is that person? The witnesses and the chief add to the confusion as well with disparate and changing facts. The clerk and the accomplice to the robbery can clear Michael Brown’ name if it wasn’t him…we shall see.

        As for shooting “for stealing cigars” of course you can’t shoot for stealing cigars but you can shoot if you think your life is in danger and the big figured robber had the little clerk collared and up off his feet. It’s easy for us to have mercy for the aggressor when it is not us being handled up close and personal by a thug who has rage in his face and maybe our death in his mind. I don’t have any person love or patience for hoodlums

      • If you were even slightly motivated to know the truth you would not spew hearsay but look for the facts. If you watch the videos before and after you will see he has the same clothes on-White shirt and khaki shorts.

        Is the police department looking incompetent? yes indeed.

        • If you were even slightly motivated to know the truth, you wouldn’t be here defending an apparent – I do say apparent – execution before you know the facts, mike.
          Yes, we’re both upset. I’m afraid that if the cop did commit a crime, he – like most other cops who kill, maim, or falsely arrest black people – will never be convicted and disciplined, not to mention that no one will pay for the massive, military-style overreaction to what was – by that time, at least – a peaceful protest.
          You’re afraid he’s being convicted already. But he isn’t. So far as we know, nothing whatsoever has been done to him, other than protect him from media questioning. And all the talking and outrage won’t cause him even to lose a day’s pay, while Michael Brown has lost his life, whether it was him in the video – again, irrelevant in any case – or he attacked the policeman. NO ONE was hurt but Michael Brown, and all your hysteria – and that of the other trolls here – might lead one to believe that what you’re worried about is that the cop will suffer for having killed a no-good “savage” who deserved it, anyway.

  7. Wow! Half truths and miss information make a great story. Last Saturday evening Ferguson police requested assistance in crowd control from St. Louis county police and all municipalities in the county. There was rioting and looting. Sunday Chief Jackson requested St. Louis county take over the problem. County Police requested help from the State Patrol, Governor Jay Nixon then asked Justice Department to investigate this shooting. President Obama authorized Justice to investigate.
    County Police took charge of crowd control using heavy handed methods. Riots continued, the riots intensified. Complaints were aired that the heavy handed police angered people causing the rioting to continue. Governor Nixon placed Capt. Johnson of the State Troopers in charge, he told police to stand down. Last night rioting continued and looting was added.
    Governor Nixon declare a State of emergency and impose a curfew from Midnight to 5am in Ferguson.
    Oh! Micheal’s friend and witness to the shooting admitted they had robbed the convenience store and it is them on the video tape. Guess the lies are unraveling.

    • Even if it is true that they did rob the store than still does not allow an police officer to shoot and continue to shoot an unarmed man. Police officers are not soldiers fighting the enemy.

      • No dis agreement with you on shooting an unarmed man. But if the guy is 6′ 3″ weigh’s 300 lb. and is physically attacking in an attempt to take your weapon different story. Truth is not out yet and may never be known. Do not judge yet.
        Just attempting to state facts as facts are put out.

      • What would have happened if a couple of upper middle class white boys acting stupid had run off with a box of cigars, or other merchandise, without paying, and if they were subsequently spotted by a police officer, and tried to run away? They would have been arrested later, taken to court, and probably given probation. That is even if the officer KNEW they were the boys who had recently gotten away from a shoplifting. If he knew nothing about that incident when he saw two white boys 15 minutes later, the only apparent crime being walking in the street, they would have gotten a warning (more polite that “get on the f*ing sidewalk!”), and if they had refused, the officer would have had no reason to shoot them unless one was armed and DREW A GUN. In other words, for white kids, the officer would have PRESUMED INNOCENCE of anything worse than jaywalking, unless they became aggressive.

  8. Many of these police officers have three things incommon,a badge on their on their chest,a gun on their hip and,racism in their heart!

  9. We must always be on guard against deceitful charlatans who are impelled by hatred for our Constitution and our Bill of Rights.

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