Oklahoma Police Officer Charged In Shooting Death Of African-American Man

An Oklahoma police officer has been charged in the shooting death of an African-American man while North Carolina authorities continue to balk on releasing a video in a shooting case there.

police-patches

The police officer involved in the shooting of an unarmed African-American man has been charged with manslaughter:

TULSA, Okla. — The white police officer who fatally shot an unarmed black driver here last week as he stood outside his vehicle overreacted during a confrontation captured on video and was charged on Thursday with first-degree manslaughter, the authorities said.

According to court documents, the officer, Betty Jo Shelby, 42, was overcome with fear that the man, Terence Crutcher, 40, who was not responding to her commands and was walking away from her with his hands up, was going to kill her.

An investigator with the Tulsa County district attorney’s office said in an affidavit that Officer Shelby became “emotionally involved to the point that she overreacted” and fired her weapon even though she “was not able to see any weapons or bulges indicating” that Mr. Crutcher had a gun.

Prosecutors have charged the officer with committing manslaughter “in the heat of passion.” Oklahoma law defines such passion as a strong emotion, such as fear or anger, that exists to such a degree in a defendant that it affects “the ability to reason and render the mind incapable of cool reflection.” Those found guilty of first-degree manslaughter face a sentence of no fewer than four years in prison.

Officer Shelby, a Tulsa police officer since 2011, has been on paid administrative leave. The authorities said that a warrant had been issued for her arrest and that arrangements were being made for her to surrender to sheriff’s officials.

Mr. Crutcher was unarmed when he was shot, and no weapons were found in his vehicle, officials said. The Tulsa County district attorney, Stephen A. Kunzweiler, said he filed the charge against Officer Shelby after reviewing video of the shooting from both a patrol car’s dashboard camera and from a helicopter that had responded, as well as 911 calls, witness interviews and other evidence.

Court documents state that based on Mr. Crutcher’s noncompliance, Officer Shelby’s fear “resulted in her unreasonable actions” that led her to fire her weapon. Mr. Crutcher died from a single gunshot wound to the chest.

The shooting is one of a string of deaths of black people at the hands of the police that have stoked outrage around the country. The unrest and violence in Charlotte, N.C., that has followed a police killing of a black man in that city were part of the backdrop in Tulsa. In a statement, Gov. Mary Fallin of Oklahoma praised city leaders, law enforcement officials “as well as the citizens of Tulsa for keeping peace and order during this difficult time.” She asked residents to keep both the Crutcher and Shelby families in their prayers.

“No matter how you feel about the prosecutors’ decision in this case, I hope Oklahomans will respect the views of your friends and neighbors, because we still have to live peacefully together as we try to make sense of the circumstances that led to Mr. Crutcher’s death,” she said.

Meanwhile, the family of Keith Scott, the man shot by Charlotte, North Carolina police, is calling on police to release the videotape in that case as protests and rioting continued to rock the city:

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — The grieving relatives of a man who was killed by the police here watched videos on Thursday of the fatal shooting, a wrenching experience that they said revealed no hint of aggression in him and left the family members convinced that the videos should be made public. But the city’s police chief, who had arranged for the private viewing, held fast to his decision not to release the recordings.

The wife and other relatives of the dead man, Keith L. Scott, watched his killing from two angles, recorded Tuesday by police dashboard and body cameras, and “it was incredibly difficult,” a family lawyer, Justin Bamberg, said in a statement.

He said the family had come away with more questions than answers and a different interpretation from the account offered by the police, who have said that Mr. Scott, 43, was shot after he got out of his car brandishing a gun.

“When told by police to exit his vehicle, Mr. Scott did so in a very calm, nonaggressive manner,” Mr. Bamberg said. “While police did give him several commands, he did not aggressively approach them or raise his hands at members of law enforcement at any time.” When an officer opened fire, he added, “Mr. Scott’s hands were by his side, and he was slowly walking backwards.”

On Thursday night, hundreds of people gathered at an intersection in central Charlotte, holding signs and chanting, “We want the tapes!” in a peaceful demonstration.

Mayor Jennifer Roberts ordered a midnight-to-6-a.m. curfew, the first since the unrest began, though the demonstrations were largely peaceful, and the police did not enforce the curfew as it went into effect. The police said that two officers were being treated after protesters sprayed them with a chemical. There were no immediate reports of injuries to civilians.

On Thursday evening, some protesters marched to the police headquarters and held a moment of silence, fists raised in tribute to a man who was fatally shot during the previous night’s protest and to those killed by the police. They marched to the county jail and chanted for the inmates behind the slats. Some inside blinked their lights off and on in apparent solidarity.

Later, Interstate 277 was briefly shut down as demonstrators moved onto the roadway, and the police fired smoke to try to disperse them.

Mr. Scott’s death touched off violence in Charlotte on Tuesday and Wednesday nights. As hundreds of National Guard troops and State Police officers fanned out across the city on Thursday in an effort to head off further violence, Chief Kerr Putney of theCharlotte-Mecklenburg police brushed aside demands by activists, community leaders and the news media to make the police video public.

“We release it when we believe there is a compelling reason,” he said.

Until they viewed the videos on Thursday afternoon, Mr. Scott’s relatives had said they were uncertain whether they should be released to the public, according to Mr. Bamberg.

While the family members differed with the police on some major points about the videos, they seemed to be in agreement with Chief Putney on one aspect. “It is impossible to discern from the videos what, if anything, Mr. Scott is holding in his hands,” they said in a statement.

Earlier in the day, Chief Putney said, “The video does not give me absolute, definitive visual evidence that would confirm that a person is pointing a gun.” He added later that he could not see Mr. Scott’s hands. But the chief, speaking at a news conference, said that eyewitness accounts and other evidence suggested that Mr. Scott was holding a pistol at the time he was shot, and that a weapon had been found at the scene.

Based on the available evidence, the charges in the Oklahoma case seem entirely appropriate. The video of the encounter that we’ve seen so far seems to make clear that Crutcher was not armed, that he posed no threat to the officers, and that he was not taking any action that could reasonably deemed threatening toward the group of officers seeking to detain him. Indeed, it appears from the point of view that we have that he was attempting to comply with whatever demands they were making of him at the time and that the officer who fired off the shots either grew impatient with him or, more likely, panicked and fired off her weapon, killing him without any real justification. This would explain the “heat of passion” indictment that the prosecutor issued and why they chose not to go with a murder charge in this situation since the facts don’t necessarily justify the finding that she had the requisite intent at the time the shots were fired. Instead, this would fall into one of those situations where the circumstances induced sufficient fright or anger in the defendant to cause them to act, but where the circumstances are such that it still amounts to an improper act. Again, while this is less than the murder charge that some may have desired we have learned from recent cases that prosecutors who approach these cases with the idea of hitting officers with the maximum charge possible often end up regretting the decision.

As for the North Carolina case, the refusal to release the video of the incident in question strikes me as the wrong decision in the light of the situation on the ground there. It’s understandable that authorities would prefer to wait until the investigation is complete before any such move is made, but failure to do so also plays into the suspicion that authorities are trying to sweep this case under the rug. If it’s true that the videos are not conclusive, then the public deserves to see this so that it can understand why the investigation is taking so long, or why it may turn out that the investigation reveals that no charges are appropriate. Continuing to hold the tape back, though, just plays into the suspicions that have been motivating these protests from the beginning, and to guarantee that they are likely to continue through the weekend. Indeed, one need only compare the relative openness that we’re seeing from police and prosecutors in Oklahoma and compare it to how authorities are acting in North Carolina to see the impact that being honest with the public in these situations can have. While there have been protests in Tulsa in the wake of Crutchter’s shooting, they have not turned violent in the same way that the Charlotte protests have. There are likely several reasons for this, but the fact that the authorities in Tulsa have been more open with the public has no doubt had a huge impact on how the public has reacted. North Carolina authorities would do well to pay attention to this.

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FILED UNDER: Crime, Law and the Courts, Police, Race and Politics
Doug Mataconis
About Doug Mataconis
Doug holds a B.A. in Political Science from Rutgers University and J.D. from George Mason University School of Law. He joined the staff of OTB in May 2010. Before joining OTB, he wrote at Below The BeltwayThe Liberty Papers, and United Liberty Follow Doug on Twitter | Facebook

Comments

  1. Jc says:

    According to court documents, the officer, Betty Jo Shelby, 42, was overcome with fear that the man, Terence Crutcher, 40, who was not responding to her commands and was walking away from her with his hands up, was going to kill her.

    Sad. We all saw this interaction and video. If this situation invokes that kind of fear, you should not be in law enforcement. Based on this statement Officer Shelby must have been overcome with fear for her life during every routine traffic stop of a black male. Expired tags? He wanted to kill me…side of the road with a flat tire, he is going to kill me…Sad. I feel for this man’s family and agree Tulsa Co. handled this tragedy in the best manner possible.

  2. cian says:

    There are likely several reasons for this, but the fact that the authorities in Tulsa have been more open with the public has no doubt had a huge impact on how the public has reacted.

    Agreed, Doug, but it was such and open and shut case they really had little to no choice. When it comes to our police force, the suspicion is always there that, had there been a way out, they’d have taken it.

    Also, this is only half way through the story, and as we’ve seen only too often, there’s every likelihood Officer Shelby will still walk free.

  3. Slugger says:

    Can somebody explain the North Carolina law that prevents public disclosure of video recordings of police actions? I understand that this law was passed recently. Was this in response to some event? What public interest is it intended to serve?

  4. mtar says:

    Good post overall. Two thoughts….

    Curious how quickly the Tulsa authorities are willing to paint a female cop as fearful and panicky. I’m not sure how the “heat of passion” charging option, which doesn’t exist in all jurisdictions, figures here. Maybe they’re trying to justify a lower charge for the cop than is really warranted. But I’m trying to recall when authorities admitted that a male cop fired out of unreasoning fear. In any case, again we have a situation where authorities are willing to charge an officer who is also an “other,” like the Chinese-American cop in NYC. Not drawing conclusions, just….find it curious.

    In Charlotte, I can understand holding the video until all parties have been fully interrogated, on the record. Is there an “Officer’s Bill of Rights” involved there that’s delaying the investigation? Some of those seem to prevent effective interrogation of officers for weeks after an incident.

    Also re: Charlotte, I have read that at least one of the officers there was in plain clothes, serving a warrant. Possible the citizen saw the undercover with guns drawn, about to make entry upon his neighbor, mistook it for a home invasion and thought he was playing the “good guy with a gun?” Just speculation; that video would help a lot.

  5. JKB says:

    @Jc:

    You seem to be missing the point. The charge “in heat of passion” seems to be one with a reasonable chance of conviction even of a police officer. There is no evidence of intent and the modifier give the jury something to hang on to instead of skipping to accidental death, but also a rationale as to why a decent police officer might do such a thing.

    Quite frankly, any murder charge would likely shift any jury to be disposed toward the officer as someone being scapegoated and persecuted instead of prosecuted.

  6. Jc says:

    @JKB: Yes, agree with the charge and how they are approaching it. It is the best accountability scenario based on statements by the officer and how everything happened. I would be surprised if there was no conviction.

  7. Jack says:

    4 years in prison, if found guilty, and if sentenced to the max will result in maybe 2.5-3 years with good behavior. This will not be enough to quell the BLM movement. This requires an immediate Justice Department “probe”, in name only, and a Violation of Civil Rights indictment which then skips the trial and moves directly to the sentencing stage, which is then skipped leading directly to the execution of the officer.

    Until this officer, and any officer who kills any black person, regardless of the circumstances, are flayed on live pay-per-view television for the world to see–with the proceeds to go to the family of the fallen black individual, BLM will not be happy.

  8. Bob@Youngstown says:
  9. Andrew says:

    So what if she was scared? A shot to the head was the only option? Bull.
    If soldiers have to follow rules of engagement, so must law enforcement.

    Not exactly giving the American people much to trust. A law enforcement agent is not prepared to deal with certain aspects of her job? I see. Then why is she wearing a badge?

  10. Tyrell says:

    I have not seen all the facts on the Tulsa case. Whatever happened to the police taking cover behind the police car door when they think there could be danger and use a megaphone “you are surrounded, put your hands up” ? Or is that just done on tv shows now ?

  11. Gustopher says:

    I think it would be incredibly hard to prove anything above manslaughter, and that juries are going to give police the benefit of the doubt whenever possible. So, manslaughter seems appropriate.

    At least from a pragmatic view, even if the actual offense is murder.

    And, if the officer was indeed overcome with fear, then she shouldn’t have been out there. Whether she has mental problems (untreated anxiety issues, perhaps), or whether she has had crappy training (police are expected to act appropriately, even when scared — they have to function with fear, not be overcome by it), she shouldn’t have been out with a badge and a gun. It would be good to see if there were warning signs, and if there are processes in place to prevent this situation before it ends in tragedy.

    (See, even I am willing to give the officer the benefit of the doubt)

  12. Thor thormussen says:

    I think we should ban cell phones. Ever since they came out, all these cops are shooting all these black people, sometimes planting weapons on them. This never used to happen. Years ago, black people were all making it all up. There wasn’t even any racism before Obama.

  13. Jack says:

    @Thor thormussen:

    There wasn’t even any racism before Obama.

    Good thing none of the officers in recent shootings were black because that would completely eliminate the racism charge. Oh, wait….

    http://www.charlotteobserver.com/news/local/article103212447.html

  14. Tillman says:

    As for the North Carolina case, the refusal to release the video of the incident in question strikes me as the wrong decision in the light of the situation on the ground there.

    Didn’t someone prominent at Vox write something about how there could be too much transparency in government? You know, the exact opposite conclusion any thinking journalist would come to.

    And the city officials are thinking in a vacuum, not relating to the outrage the Laquan McDonald video in Chicago caused by being kept from the public. The narrative has been reinforced throughout the last few years that police shootings will be protected from outside scrutiny, that police officers will be shielded from any retribution for their actions. What did they expect to happen? You only defeat a narrative with a counternarrative, and if the video is as inconclusive as the family members state releasing it would settle a lot of tension.

  15. Jack says:

    @Tillman:

    releasing it would settle a lot of tension.

    Releasing the video would violate their new law that hasn’t gone into effect yet…or something.

    Releasing it would somehow hinder the investigation…or something.

    Releasing it would taint a future jury…or something.

    Releasing it would definitely not in any way whatsoever give the viewer any indication that maybe the police officer overreacted.

  16. Loviatar says:

    @Thor thormussen:

    I think we should ban cell phones. Ever since they came out, all these cops are shooting all these black people, sometimes planting weapons on them.

    I’ve told friends that if possible I would nominate the cell phone camera as the most important civil rights item of the 21st century. Yes I know we’re only 16 years in, but can you think of any other item that has been or will be as important to civil rights in the 21st century.

    – It has shifted the conversation from believe me to let me show you.

    – It has reduced the Jack and bills of the world to “who are you going to believe me or your lying eyes”.

    – It has made JKB a believer in police brutality

    Now if we can only get James Pearce to admit that their is a privilege associated with not being killed as you’re standing next to your disabled car.

  17. Davebo says:

    @Jack:

    Four years is the minimum sentence. And in OK first degree manslaughter is an 85 Percent Crime, which requires the person convicted to serve at least 85 percent of his or her sentence before becoming eligible for parole..

    Oh, wait.. It’s Jack. Never mind.

  18. mtar says:

    Here is the case that apologists for the police like Bob Owens are citing, to claim the Tulsa shooting was justified. (Warning: it is unsettling.)

    Kyle Dinkheller shooting

    Apparently this video is shown routinely in police academies, to drive home to trainees the risk of allowing suspects to return to their vehicles. To my eye, key differences from the Tulsa case are obvious. And if you’re going to train police that they’re justified in shooting any suspect that reaches into their vehicle, you’re training them to do this:

    Levar Jones shooting

  19. Thor thormussen says:

    because that would completely eliminate the racism charge.

    that works in RWNJ land, but not in reality. Like when you guys say “Dems are the real racists because all the current republican racists woulda been democrats 70 years ago”. In RWNJ-land, that’s brilliant analysis. In the real world, it’s why you guys are about to lose your sixth of seven presidential elections. Not enough dumb white guys who believe that anymore.

  20. michael reynolds says:

    @Loviatar:

    As I’ve said before, the arrival of the cellphone camera has proven two things:

    1) No, there are no aliens arriving in flying saucers.

    2) Yes, cops shoot unarmed black men.

  21. Jack says:

    @Davebo:

    Four years is the minimum sentence. And in OK first degree manslaughter is an 85 Percent Crime, which requires the person convicted to serve at least 85 percent of his or her sentence before becoming eligible for parole..

    And it’s still not enough. Bring back the guillotine. Let’s execute some random officers in the town square right the fwck now!

  22. Jack says:

    @Thor thormussen: So, basically you are saying you have no actual facts, just conjecture. Typical Libtard.

  23. Jack says:

    @michael reynolds:

    2) Yes, cops shoot unarmed black men.

    But not white men. Never in the history of the US has a cop ever. once. shot. an. unarmed. white. man. EVER.

    Despite all of the articles you could find at the touch of a key but you don’t want to find because it kills the BLM narrative.

  24. Davebo says:

    @Jack:

    Well, we could just paint them in black face, put an afro wig on them and send them off in an unreliable vehicle.

    You’re such a cute little Skittle!

  25. Franklin says:

    Between this and HB2, North Carolina is really making a name for itself.

  26. Davebo says:

    @Jack:

    Who knew the internet could be useful for more than just regurgitating everything your drunk Uncle posted on your Facebook feed!

  27. Jack says:

    @Davebo: So, again. Nothing. Good to know you can blather on and yet, not produce one worthwhile post.

  28. michael reynolds says:

    @Tyrell:

    Car doors do not stop bullets, that’s just lazy Hollywood script writing. The cops know this. The only thing on a car that will stop a bullet is the engine block.

    A perp can draw a gun and shoot in maybe three seconds. One, two, three and you are dead. That reality is drilled into cops. Anyone could have a gun. Anyone could shoot you and you’d never see your children again. One, two. . . oops, now it’s already too late for you to draw first. In fact, you have to draw at the same time as the perp to have any chance.

    If the officer had only had to worry about knives or sticks, she’d have had plenty of time to react. Guns cut reaction time. Reduced reaction time = increased deaths. Once again, guns = death.

    Frightened, trigger-happy cops are one of the externalities that you gun cultists lay on society. Along with toddlers shooting siblings, the intimidation of women in domestic relationships, stolen weapons getting into criminal hands, impulse suicides, impulse murders, all symptoms, like trigger-happy cops, of a gun-saturated society. It’s the deadly toxic sludge smeared all across society by gun nuts.

  29. DrDaveT says:

    @mtar:

    And if you’re going to train police that they’re justified in shooting any suspect that reaches into their vehicle

    I’m still trying to figure out when the sea-change happened that allowed (and eventually encouraged) the police to fire the first shot.

    When I was a kid, it was understood that the police could return fire, but would only shoot first in the most extreme of circumstances. (Hostage situations, snipers, etc.)

    These days, it’s not even a part of the conversation any more — reporters, politicians, commenters, etc. all take for granted that the police will usually shoot first if they’re doing their jobs right.

    When did that happen? How? (Set aside any question of right or wrong; I’m just asking a history question here.)

  30. Davebo says:

    @Jack:

    Well, unlike you Jack it would appear I have at least a rudimentary understanding of Oklahoma criminal statutes.

    I may not posses your dizzying intellect but I get by.

  31. Jack says:

    @michael reynolds: You’ve become a stale cliche that offers nothing new to the conversation. Yawn.

    Please go hang out with Shannon Watts, I’m sure she would love some new ideas.

  32. michael reynolds says:

    @Jack:

    Of course they shoot unarmed white men, too, a result of the paranoia and rational fear that you gun nuts have inflicted on this country. But they shoot black men more often.

    So your question should be, “Why are white people indifferent to white people shot by cops?”

    Instead you’re furious that black people are defending themselves.

    Why aren’t you demonstrating in support of innocent white people shot by cops? Do you assume the cops are always right? How about Ruby Ridge? Don’t you care as much about white people as BLM cares about black people? Why aren’t you thinking, “Huh, BLM is setting a pretty good example, maybe I should emulate them?”

    Go ahead, Jack, in your spluttering, incoherent way, explain.

  33. michael reynolds says:

    @DrDaveT:

    Easy answer: the North Hollywood Shoot-out.

    The North Hollywood shootout, sometimes also called the Battle of North Hollywood, was an armed confrontation between two heavily armed and armored bank robbers and members of the Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD) in the North Hollywood district of Los Angeles on February 28, 1997. Both perpetrators were killed, twelve police officers and eight civilians were injured, and numerous vehicles and other property were damaged or destroyed by the nearly 2,000 rounds of ammunition fired by the robbers and police.[1]

    At 9:17 AM, Larry Phillips, Jr. and Emil Mătăsăreanu entered and robbed the North Hollywood Bank of America branch. Phillips and Mătăsăreanu were confronted by LAPD officers when they exited the bank and a shootout between the officers and robbers ensued. The two robbers attempted to flee the scene, Phillips on foot and Mătăsăreanu in their getaway vehicle, while continuing to engage the officers. The shootout continued onto a residential street adjacent to the bank until Phillips was mortally wounded, including a self-inflicted gunshot wound; Mătăsăreanu was killed by officers three blocks away. Phillips and Mătăsăreanu are believed to have robbed at least two other banks using virtually identical methods by taking control of the entire bank and firing illegally-modified automatic weapons chambered with intermediate cartridges for control and entry past ‘bullet-proof’ security doors, and are possible suspects in two armored vehicle robberies.[2]

    Standard issue sidearms carried by most local patrol officers at the time were 9 mm pistols or .38 Special revolvers; some patrol cars also were equipped with a 12-gauge shotgun. Phillips and Mătăsăreanu carried illegally-modified fully automatic Norinco Type 56 S-1s (an AK-47 variant), a Bushmaster XM15 Dissipator, and a HK-91 rifle with high capacity drum magazines as well as a Beretta 92FS pistol. The bank robbers wore heavy plate mostly homemade body armor which successfully protected them from handgun rounds and shotgun pellets fired by the responding patrolmen. A police SWAT team eventually arrived bearing sufficient firepower, and they commandeered an armored truck to evacuate the wounded. Several officers also appropriated AR-15 and other semi-automatic rifles from a nearby firearms dealer. The incident sparked debate on the need for patrol officers to upgrade their firepower in preparation for similar situations in the future.[3]

    Due to the large number of injuries, rounds fired, weapons used, and overall length of the shootout, it is regarded as one of the longest and bloodiest events in American police history.[4] The two men had fired approximately 1,100 rounds, while approximately 650 rounds were fired by police.[5] Another estimate is that a total of nearly 2,000 rounds were fired.[1]

    The cops were outgunned and it shocked them. The arms race was on, fueled by the NRA and our supine Congress.

  34. grumpy realist says:

    @DrDaveT: What was that case in NYC where there was a shootout and it was then discovered that every single damn bullet that injured a bystander happened to have come from the cops?

    Maybe we better start insisting on better aim, as well.

  35. Jack says:

    @michael reynolds:

    Instead you’re furious that black people are defending themselves.

    Since when is stopping traffic, beating up white people, looting, and burning down businesses considered self defense?

    Go ahead, Michael, in your sputtering, incoherent way, explain.

  36. Jack says:

    @michael reynolds: @michael reynolds:

    The cops were outgunned and it shocked them.

    Yeah, about that.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vHPPYNYOy-I

  37. michael reynolds says:

    @Jack:

    I see you avoid the question. It’s because you know you have nothing, Jack. You haven’t got the brains or the balls to deal with the issue, you’re only here to spew hatred from the gutless safety of anonymity. Spew away: no one is impressed. Every single person here knows what you are, Jack.

  38. Gustopher says:

    @Jack: Why do you think blacks are more upset about police shootings of blacks than white people are about police shootings of whites? I mean that as a serious question.

    I think it might be that the shootings are the top of the iceberg, and that there is a lot more going on with how the police treat black people. Alternately, white people have more to lose.

    Anyway, what do you make of this outrage discrepancy? I mean, you’re right, the police do shoot unarmed white men, but we’re not out protesting.

  39. mtar says:
  40. Jenos The Deplorable says:

    @Andrew: So what if she was scared? A shot to the head was the only option? Bull.

    He was shot in the torso. Police are trained to shoot for center mass, for several very valid reasons. Head shots are very, very bad ideas — Hollywood and video game designers are idiots.

    If the officer did lie on her statement, she’s in big trouble. The video shows the windows closed. But

    The guy, when ordered by police to stand still, walked back to his vehicle and reached for the door handle. What the hell was the danger in that?

    The old wisdom was that if an officer gives you an order, you obey it, and if it’s wrong, you take it up later. However, that’s now outdated. If you don’t care for the orders of the officer, just ignore it. They’re probably racist, sexist, homophobic, Islamophobic, xenophobic, and in general horrible people anyway.

  41. Jack says:

    @Gustopher:

    Anyway, what do you make of this outrage discrepancy? I mean, you’re right, the police do shoot unarmed white men, but we’re not out protesting.

    I have been more than upfront about my beliefs when it comes to police. Here for example.

    https://www.outsidethebeltway.com/protests-erupt-in-the-wake-of-police-shootings-in-oklahoma-and-north-carolina/#comment-2123242

    I don’t know why “white people” are not out protesting. I am not a “barometer” for white people and their protest tendencies. I personally do not protest in groups. I definitely do not protest all cops due to the mistakes of a few. Nor do I loot, burn, or throw things at police officers, as that kind of “protest” is not helpful and in most instances results in more negative publicity than positive. Also, I do not need a new LED TV, hair extensions, or liquor. I will continue to raise this issue to police chiefs and politicians when appropriate.

  42. mtar says:

    @Jenos The Deplorable:

    The guy, when ordered by police to stand still, walked back to his vehicle and reached for the door handle. What the hell was the danger in that?

    If you justify the Tulsa shooting based on the suspect reaching for the door handle, was the Levar Jones shooting also justified? If not, why not?

  43. Gustopher says:

    @Jack: What is the appropriate way to protest, then?

    Keep in mind, perfectly peaceful protest has been tried and failed. This level of mild violence, along with blocking traffic, has begun to stick in the national consciousness — aside from the willfully ignorant, people are recognizing that this isn’t a series of unfortunate local events, but a national crisis of police brutality. The opposition argument is shifting from “the police are just doing a hard job” but “what about white people who are also brutalized by police?” That’s a huge change.

    We are at a stage where there can be national movement on this — I wouldn’t be surprised to see proposals after the election (apparently, in America, we don’t do things during elections).

    What is the right protest to make that change, if this is so unacceptable?

  44. Jack says:

    @Jenos The Deplorable:

    The old wisdom was that if an officer gives you an order, you obey it, and if it’s wrong, you take it up later. However, that’s now outdated. If you don’t care for the orders of the officer, just ignore it. They’re probably racist, sexist, homophobic, Islamophobic, xenophobic, and in general horrible people anyway.

    Jenos,

    Failure to follow a police command, notice I didn’t say order as I am not in the military and the police are civilians just like you and I, is not an death penalty offense. Unless and until an officer can show that it was reasonable to believe their life was in actual, not fictitious, danger, that may lead to the officer’s loss of life or sever physical harm, an officer should have the obligation to not kill another human being. Hell, let’s include dogs in that scenario too. Far too many dogs are being killed by police as well.

    But of course it must be because of the dog’s race.

    Or Michael will say the dog had a hidden gun.

  45. gVOR08 says:

    @DrDaveT: It was TV, but it was reflective of culture. IIRC in the whole long lived Dragnet series, Joe Friday only fired his weapon once, and it was off camera before the start of an episode about the Internal Affairs investigation. Now it seems like every third cop show episode has a big shootout. This has to influence the cops.

  46. Gustopher says:

    @Jack: perhaps, if you were to not settle for not knowing, and actually look for reasons, you might learn something.

    “I don’t know why there is a difference” is a weak excuse, when you are using the difference as a cudgel to bludgeon others for the difference.

    (Cudgel and bludgeon are such fun words)

  47. Jack says:

    @Gustopher:

    perfectly peaceful protest has been tried and failed

    I believe Mahatma Ghandi and Dr. King will argue differently.

    The problem is the politicians at all levels have been unwilling to hold police, police chiefs, and police unions accountable for the actions of a minority number of police officers. The police have become militarized, even attending typical military training. They have learned that it is them against us. All non badge wearing individual are the enemy that must be brought in line because police work is so darned dangerous. Although, you know, not really–according to statistics not even in the top ten. Yet by god an officer has a “right” to go home every night, and they “put their lives on the line every day”. And so on, and so on.

    Until the myth of a dangerous job by the average patrolman is brought to light and severed from their training like a Glioblastoma tumor from the brain, this will continue.

  48. Jack says:

    @Gustopher:

    “I don’t know why there is a difference” is a weak excuse

    When did I ever say this?

  49. Mikey says:

    @Jack: Gandhi and King were a generation ago, and even then all protest was not peaceful.

    Today, if blacks riot, they are condemned; if they kneel quietly during the National Anthem, they are condemned. They are allowed no agency at all, save to “know their place.” (Just to be clear, I don’t believe you hold that mindset, so don’t think this is directed at you personally.)

    You are spot-on about the militarization of cops and their too often adversarial-by-default relationship with the communities they patrol. But don’t forget this stuff is also occurring within a specific context, of a nation with a long history of legally-codified discrimination and segregation which was enforced by police. Of course that’s going to have a pretty strong influence on both the cops and the black communities.

  50. DrDaveT says:

    @michael reynolds:

    The cops were outgunned and it shocked them.

    That’s the answer to a different question, Michael, about why cops are heavily armed these days. It doesn’t address the “rules of engagement” question.

  51. Andrew says:

    @Jenos The Deplorable:

    I see…

    Even though we have many recent stories of police caught in corruption scandals, fabricating charges against protesters, and lots of shootings. The answer is to just shut up, act as if you are guilty and hope that the officer is not corrupt, on a power trip, and/or is properly trained.

    This country used to hold the ideal you were innocent til proven guilty. Now, it seems your attitude is we are guilty, until later, when these honest and level headed police officers can give you back your freedom. Which is bull.

    An attitude we should NOT have in a free country.

    That is the attitude of a person living under a dictatorship. May as well just burn the Constitution, the Bill of Rights. Just keep your mouth shut and hope for the best.

  52. DrDaveT says:

    @mtar: Thanks; that’s informative.

  53. DrDaveT says:

    @Jack:

    I definitely do not protest all cops due to the mistakes of a few. Nor do I loot, burn, or throw things at police officers

    The irony is palpable. Every murdering cop is an exception; every looter is a representative of the class. Got it.

  54. KM says:

    @DrDaveT :

    These days, it’s not even a part of the conversation any more — reporters, politicians, commenters, etc. all take for granted that the police will usually shoot first if they’re doing their jobs right. When did that happen? How?

    I’m going to differ from the thread and go with post-9/11 militarism. See, your question wasn’t really about when the cops went mini-Rambo on us but rather when we started accepting that this was OK on a national level. The arms escalation was already underway but now had legitimacy it never had before. The sheer fear that day caused has still not left them. A cop in body armor with a big ass gun ready to roar was a comforting sight to many afraid after the strike that reminded Americans that You Are Not Really Safe Anywhere. The idea that they would not hesitate to get “those bastards” and would “cowboy up” first was praised, normalized and ingrained via media saturation. American WANTED kill-ready cops, not negotiators or de-escalators. Cop = solider suddenly to the average person. All SWAT, all the time. This is the War (on Terror) and its us or them!!!

    The thing is…. police never stopped. The terror on the streets didn’t materialize as expected but that trigger-happy, enemies-everywhere mentality stayed. Aggression in search of a target and wouldn’t you know, there’s some uppity citizens who are being a little too aggressive for them to feel safe. Fast forward to the SYG laws with their hazy “feel threatened” mentality enshrined in law and accepted in public, now they’ve got a built-in excuse for the collective PTSD police culture’s been suffering from for 2+ decades. The public gobbles up sob stories about how the officer “feared for the safety” without stopping to ask WTF the officer was so afraid. Of course it’s shoot first now, don’t you understand they could have died?!?!

    9/11 did a number of police culture and its showing in all these shootings – none of the officers were on the force prior to then. Younger generations of cops inherited their predecessor’s fear.

  55. Jack says:

    @Mikey:

    Today, if blacks riot, they are condemned; if they kneel quietly during the National Anthem, they are condemned. They are allowed no agency at all, save to “know their place.”

    I do not recall anyone condemning last nights nonviolent protests in Charlotte. I do however remember many people condemning the violence that took place the previous 2 nights. I do know for a fact that roughly 70% of the people arrested on these nights had out of state drivers licenses, so the condemnation does not belong to the people of Charlotte but outside BLM criminals.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cT67glzFDIs

    http://investmentwatchblog.com/cnn-anchor-erin-burnett-charlotte-police-sergeant-tells-me-70-of-charlotte-protestors-arrested-last-night-had-out-of-state-drivers-licenses-these-are-not-protestors-these-are-criminal/

    This kind of protest hurts the cause and has no place in a civil society. It diverts attention away from the topic of police abuse sometimes causes locals to demand an even harsher response to criminal activity thus increasing the odds of police abuse, which leads to more looting which leads to more police crackdowns which leads…

    After the group of peaceful protesters at UC Davis got pepper sprayed by an officer, all attention went to the officer and his actions and gained worldwide notice. No one even remembers what the protest was about but they sure remember the dumb officer spraying the protesters directly in their faces. If violence had followed, no one would remember the actions that lead up to the violence.

    As a NLF fan, I’m reminded of the saying the player that retaliates always gets flagged.

  56. Jack says:

    @DrDaveT:

    every looter is a representative of the class.

    Yes. Every looter is representative of looters.

  57. Steve Verdon says:

    According to court documents, the officer, Betty Jo Shelby, 42, was overcome with fear that the man, Terence Crutcher, 40, who was not responding to her commands and was walking away from her with his hands up, was going to kill her.

    Good, she should be charged. Here claims of fearing for her life are just outright nonsense. And even if she is exonerated she should be fired. Anybody who is that fearful should never be given a badge and a gun. Ever.

  58. Jack says:

    @Steve Verdon:

    Good, she should be charged. Here claims of fearing for her life are just outright nonsense. And even if she is exonerated she should be fired. Anybody who is that fearful should never be given a badge and a gun. Ever.

    This applies to every officer that shoots a dog as well.

    Why do officers get to claim “I feared for my life” when a poodle approaches but EMTs, postal carriers, , etc., seem to have no problem with these same animals?

  59. Thor thormussen says:

    The cops were outgunned and it shocked them. The arms race was on, fueled by the NRA and our supine Congress.

    and the gun dealers arm both sides.

  60. Steve Verdon says:

    @michael reynolds:

    To what extent have the police contributed to the arms race though?

    The country’s first official SWAT team started in the late 1960s in Los Angeles. By 1975, there were approximately 500 such units. Today, there are thousands. According to surveys conducted by the criminologist Peter Kraska of Eastern Kentucky University, just 13% of towns between 25,000 and 50,000 people had a SWAT team in 1983. By 2005, the figure was up to 80%.

    The number of raids conducted by SWAT-like police units has grown accordingly. In the 1970s, there were just a few hundred a year; by the early 1980s, there were some 3,000 a year. In 2005 (the last year for which Dr. Kraska collected data), there were approximately 50,000 raids. Some federal agencies also now have their own SWAT teams, including NASA and the Department of the Interior.

    Link

  61. michael reynolds says:

    @DrDaveT:

    The ROI are simple: Be judged by 12 or carried by 6. That’s what’s going through the mind of a cop. Is it better to risk trouble? Or risk death? Unsurprisingly, they choose to live.

    The question is: why are the cops scared? There is no level of training that will ever convince a police officer or any human in a moment of crisis to do the thing that risks his own life. People who do that sort of thing win medals of honor, they are not average folks. We have roughly a million people working as lawmen, so they are not going to be a million Audie Murphys, they are going to be average people with some training.

    If we institute new ROI and enforce the rules, some number of police officers are likely to die, and the backlash will empower cops even more. One cop dead because of what they see as overly restrictive ROI and you’ll have cops going on strike, and cities caving in.

    Do you think these cops intend on killing some random black person? I don’t. I think they’re scared, keyed-up people in a bad situation who react poorly. But put yourself in their place. Three seconds for the bad guy to draw and shoot, and if you wait till three, two, or even one, he’s got the drop on you and you’re dead. If guns are in the picture (or believed to be) the cop has no choice but to draw first if he wants to live.

    Guns – and the expectation of guns – reduce reaction times to milliseconds and no amount of training or new ROI will change that fact, or make it any easier for an average working man or woman to process data faster than their brains can manage.

    Race comes into play because officers expect African-American males to be more dangerous. The existing threat – guns – becomes even more urgent when you believe the potential perp to be a member of a group you consider inherently dangerous. There’s the racism element. But it’s fuel to the fire, not the fire itself. British cops can be racist, too, and yet they don’t shoot anyone, white or black, while our cops shoot whites and blacks, just shoot blacks more.

  62. wr says:

    @Jack: ” I do know for a fact that roughly 70% of the people arrested on these nights had out of state drivers licenses, so the condemnation does not belong to the people of Charlotte but outside BLM criminals.”

    Which is, of course, exactly what all the nice, white folks used to say about those damn Northerners coming to protest during the civil rights movement.

  63. Gavrilo says:

    According to court documents, the officer, Betty Jo Shelby, 42, was overcome with fear that the man, Terence Crutcher, 40, who was not responding to her commands and was walking away from her with his hands up, was going to kill her.

    She should have argued that she has pneumonia and it was hot and she was near-fainting and the gun just went off. Then the left would have been impressed that she tried to power through. Because that’s what women do every day!

  64. Steve Verdon says:

    Just going to leave this here….

    A bit inconvenient for Michael’s theory that it was the North Hollywood shoot out and gun owners owning weapons.

    The police have been militarizing for a long time. About 50 years in fact. But I’ll hand it to Michael, he doesn’t take on ideas, nor does he use many facts, but his rhetoric is awesome and frankly that is all you need these days.

  65. Steve Verdon says:

    @michael reynolds:

    The ROI are simple: Be judged by 12 or carried by 6. That’s what’s going through the mind of a cop. Is it better to risk trouble? Or risk death? Unsurprisingly, they choose to live.

    No, they choose to kill. Being a police officer is not a dangerous job. Propaganda and misinformation have lead many cops to think they are in a war, but it is largely errant nonsense. Hell, a roofer has a more dangerous job.

  66. mtar says:

    @Jack: @Jack:

    I do know for a fact that roughly 70% of the people arrested on these nights had out of state drivers licenses, so the condemnation does not belong to the people of Charlotte but outside BLM criminals.

    If it’s true that most of the violent are from outside the community – and I don’t necessarily doubt it – is there evidence they have a meaningful connection with #BLM, or even care much about the issue at all, rather than just goons/anarchists looking for a chance to tussle with the police?

  67. anjin-san says:

    @Gustopher:

    What is the right protest to make that change, if this is so unacceptable?

    Good question. Colin Kaepernick has been holding a peaceful, ultimately harmless protest, and he has had an amazing about of rage and hatred directed at him. My sense is that anything beyond “pleeze suh, don’t hurt me (uttered with eyes cast downward) is unacceptable to the right when it’s coming from a black man.

  68. Tyrell says:

    @michael reynolds: Thanks for that information.
    I think that new technology could make these situations safer and calmer.
    I tend to watch the older tv police programs, especially “5-0”.
    “Book him, Dan O ” (McGarrett, “Hawaii 5-0”)

  69. michael reynolds says:

    @Steve Verdon:

    Yes, and a roofer does what he feels he must do to stay safe. Right?

    It’s all well and good to pooh-pooh police fatality rates, but that will mean approximately fwck-all to a cop walking up on a car on a dark road at night. The odds are I won’t die falling down stairs, and yet, I hold the rail. The odds are you won’t die in a car, and yet you buy airbags.

    50 cops are feloniously killed in an average year. If 50 blog commenters were killed per year while commenting, how many people do you think would be here a month from now? Three?

    And if we want to play with numbers, what are the odds of a random African-American citizen being killed in any given year? The statistics are crap, as I’m sure you know, but using what’s out there it appears cops shot about 100 unarmed (presumptively innocent) African-American males last year. That’s 100 out of a population of 20 million A-A males, give or take. Cop deaths are 50 out of a million.

    One cannot be outraged (as we should be!) by 100 dead unarmed civilians and wave off 50 dead cops. If black men have a justifiable fear of cops (and they should) then cops have a justified fear of civilians. If the roofer uses a safety line to minimize his chances of falling, the cop uses his gun to minimize the chance of being one of the 50.

    Every cop in the western world has to deal with terror threats, with potentially hostile groups, with drug wars, with minorities the cop may not like. And yet nowhere does any developed nation even slightly approach our level of killing.

    You don’t like the answer, but it’s there just the same: we have guns. That is what sets us and our cops apart. Our cops are scared and they should be, because every single person they meet is a potential gunman. Everyone. Even little children who are playing with daddy’s gun.

    These are the externalities of the gun cult, the costs they create and then shove off onto society to deal with. If you saturate a country with guns, people are gonna get shot. You and the rest of the right-wing and/or libertarian crowd can deny and obfuscate and torture logic till it screams, but the fact remains that guns in private hands creates an atmosphere of threat.

    Want to know the difference between life here and life in the rest of the developed world? I was at a comedian’s performance at the Edinburgh fringe, when some audience member got seriously wild, as in shouted threats and raving. My British friends were only amused and a bit annoyed. I, on the other hand, was gauging the distance to the emergency exit so when the shooting started I could get the hell out.

    That’s what the gun cult does. It spreads fear that we have come to accept as normal. Fear and injury and death, with all the costs being shoved off onto the taxpayer, all so that little boys can stroke their guns and feel like men.

  70. Just 'nutha ig'rant cracker says:

    @Slugger: I don’t see that it’s intended to serve a public interest. Maybe an institutional one, though; I could go with that.

  71. beth says:

    @mtar: As usual, this is just a bunch of crap pushed by a police union rep with absolutely no basis in fact. It was widely repeated on the right wing “news” sites and is being parroted here by the usual suspects who never do any sort of follow up.

    http://www.wbtv.com/story/33164373/those-arrested-during-protest-most-local-most-without-criminal-records

    You would have thought they’d find a different excuse than “outside agitators” – it didn’t work in the 60’s and it doesn’t work now.

    ETA – watch the clip where this guy tells this to Erin Burnett – he says he “just about can say that probably 70% of the protesters were from out of state”. Nice weasel language there buddy.

  72. Thor thormussen says:

    The police have been militarizing for a long time. About 50 years in fact. But I’ll hand it to Michael, he doesn’t take on ideas, nor does he use many facts, but his rhetoric is awesome and frankly that is all you need these days.

    I agree with Michael on some things, and disagree with him on others, but he’s not incredibly stupid, and you can’t say that.

  73. anjin-san says:

    @Tyrell:

    “Book him, Dan O ”

    Ummm. It’s “Danno” not “Dan O”…

  74. Just 'nutha ig'rant cracker says:

    @michael reynolds: No, still only one thing–you can’t assert a fact from an absence of evidence, so we can’t be sure about about alien invaders. (Although “no” IS the most reasonable assumption based on the absence of evidence.)

  75. mtar says:

    @michael reynolds: Agreed about the poisonous effect of guns on our society. And yet….

    A roofer tying off a safety line is in no way analogous to a cop ventilating a citizen who hasn’t posed a clear threat. Reaching into a vehicle – for a wallet? a cell phone? – doesn’t meet the standard.

    And roofers don’t enjoy the special respect and support – both rhetorical and material – that society still grants to sworn police officers; respect and support that are based on the trust that cops are protecting the public by taking on some of the risk posed by criminals.

  76. michael reynolds says:

    @mtar:

    Okay, let’s try firemen. They are held in higher regard, they take greater risks in some ways, and they respond to those risks by doing absolutely everything they can to minimize them with every edge technology can provide them. You will not find an example of any trained professional in any occupation who does not take his own safety very seriously. That’s a given.

    Now, is there a way to convince a street cop who within a year of joining the force has probably been threatened 100 times, either verbally or physically, that they face only a minimal threat? No, of course not. Is there some reason why cops uniquely should be forbidden to minimize risks? No, of course not.

    Are there huge down-sides to any policy that reduces a cop’s chances of survival? Remember, something like 50 a year die. How long till some rule of engagement issue is blamed for a dead cop. See his smiling picture? See his orphaned little girls? See his distraught wife?

    Dashcams work both ways. They show cops acting like thugs, but they will also show a cop keeping his piece holstered under some new set of rules and being gunned down. And then what happens to efforts to rein in cops?

    This is not an either/or, it’s an all-of-the-above. Cops need to be trained, rules need to be promulgated, racial sensitivity should be taught. And all of that will probably cut the number of shootings by a little. But only a little, because the underlying reality has not changed. It’s still a cop walking up on someone he must assume is armed. He will still be scared. He will still want to live. He will still rather take his chances with a jury than be gunned down.

    The essential element in changing that dynamic is this: change the assumption that a person is armed. If the suspect has a 99% of being unarmed, you have a very different situation than when it may be 50/50.

  77. michael reynolds says:

    You know, when you get down to it, we collectively need a scapegoat, and the scapegoat is by definition, “Not us.” It’s always them.

    We have a debate here whether black men shot is the fault of the black men (and very few of us here are anything but white) or the fault of cops (and I don’t think any of us are cops.) Many of us are gun owners, however, and anxious to keep the focus anywhere but on them.

    American cops killed more people in just 24 days than British cops killed in 24 years.

    Sorry, that is not about training. Our training is hundreds of times worse? Our race-hatred is hundreds of times worse? Our city police policies are hundreds of times worse?

    No, the difference is this: suspected perps in the UK are all-but-certainly not armed. Therefore the cops are not justifiably scared. Therefore the cops do not react in a millisecond to a matter of life and death. And therefore no police killings, no riots, no need for prosecutions.

  78. Jenos The Penitent says:

    @mtar: The Levar Jones case? I’ve brought it up several times. Here’s just one example.

  79. Jenos The Deplorable says:

    @Jack: Jenos,

    Failure to follow a police command, notice I didn’t say order as I am not in the military and the police are civilians just like you and I, is not an death penalty offense. Unless and until an officer can show that it was reasonable to believe their life was in actual, not fictitious, danger, that may lead to the officer’s loss of life or sever physical harm, an officer should have the obligation to not kill another human being.

    OK, first up, I’ll go with “commands.” To me, they’re essentially synonymous, but if it makes some kind of difference to you, I can roll with that. Plus, I think the more common word is “command.”

    Yes, refusing to obey an officer’s command is NOT grounds for death. However, it is grounds for the police to use force to enforce their commands. And they can escalate that force to the point of compliance.

    Further, it isn’t simply “the officer’s safety” that is significant here. The officer also has the obligation to protect the safety of others. That’s kind of their job description.

    Simply walking away from a police officer who has ordered you to stop — at gunpoint, even — is NOT grounds for being shot. However, attempting to open the door of a vehicle is a threat. They can pull out a weapon. They might get a hostage in the vehicle. They might flee and endanger others. They can turn the vehicle and attack the officer.

    Or, in the Levar Jones case, they can be simply obeying the officer’s orders, and the officer can be an idiot. But that’s an aberration.

    We have a significant cultural movement that sees a prison record as a positive marker of social status, that promotes attitudes that “snitches get stitches,” and that denounces actions like studying and behaving and trying to succeed in life as “acting white.” This is NOT healthy for any parties — the people who live it, the people who enforce it, the people who celebrate it, the people who are forced to live under it, and the people who have to deal with it.

  80. Jenos The Deplorable says:

    @Andrew: I see…

    Even though we have many recent stories of police caught in corruption scandals, fabricating charges against protesters, and lots of shootings. The answer is to just shut up, act as if you are guilty and hope that the officer is not corrupt, on a power trip, and/or is properly trained.

    You really don’t get it, do you?

    “Don’t argue with the cop” is not advice based on principle, but on pragmatism. Because there is almost no chance of it improving your situation, and will almost certainly not make it worse.

    Don’t argue with the cop, don’t give the cop any attitude, don’t give them any excuse to act unprofessionally. But don’t do anything more than what you are commanded to do.

    The time to argue your case is later. As noted, the cops have the authority to give commands, and to back up those commands with force to get compliance. You are not going to out-stubborn a cop, you are not going to out-argue a cop, you are not going to impress the cop with your righteous indignation.

    Techniques that have a chance of helping your situation is to be polite, to go out of your way to not provoke the cop, to offer your full compliance. Make your arguments at the station, or through a lawyer.

    Yes, you have a right to be a jackass. But you have no obligation to do so, especially when it is against your immediate interest.

  81. Jack says:

    @michael reynolds:

    Our cops are scared and they should be, because every single person they meet is a potential gunman. Everyone. Even little children who are playing with daddy’s gun.

    To include the little 80 pound or less furry ones. The must have muzzle loaders, huh?

  82. Jack says:

    @Jenos The Deplorable:

    However, attempting to open the door of a vehicle is a threat. They can pull out a weapon. They might get a hostage in the vehicle. They might flee and endanger others. They can turn the vehicle and attack the officer.

    They could be about to detonate a nuclear device, but it’s unlikely. Unless and until the officer can show a demonstrable threat, they should be obligate to NOT shoot. Period. Opening a car door is not a demonstrable threat. Walking away is not a demonstrable threat. Giving the cop the finger is not a demonstrable threat.

    Unless and until that person pulls out a weapon, there is no threat. A weapon. Not a wallet, not car keys, not a book, but a weapon. Then and only then should a cop be able to demonstrate there was a threat to his life or the life of others. As a concealed carrier, I could nor should I get away with the crap cops get away with by shooting dogs and humans and then say “I feared for my life”. No reasonable person would believe I feared for my life because someone turned their back on me (legally called retreat), casually walked away from me (legally called retreat), or entered their vehicle (legally called retreat). Those are all indications of withdrawal from a fight. Hell, the cops wouldn’t even believe that load of crap if they heard it from someone not wearing a shiny piece of tin on their chest. But once you put that piece of tin on, those words become magical.

    Officer: Sit down!
    Dog: Woof!
    Officer: BLAM, BLAM, BLAM, BLAM!
    Young boy: why did you shoot my schitsu?!?!
    Officer: He was about to attack my ankles, uh, I mean, he bared his teeth and threatened my life!
    Police Chief: Case closed.

  83. anjin-san says:

    @Jenos The Deplorable:

    Don’t argue with the cop, don’t give the cop any attitude, don’t give them any excuse to

    act unprofessionally.

    By “acting unprofessionally” I take it you mean “execute you on the street”

  84. Jack says:

    @Jenos The Deplorable:

    Don’t argue with the cop, don’t give the cop any attitude, don’t give them any excuse to act unprofessionally. But don’t do anything more than what you are commanded to do.

    No. And sometimes Hell No!

    Have you heard some of the commands cops are giving to people that have not committed a crime?

    Get down on your knees.
    Get down on the ground.
    Lie face down (on superheated blacktop no less).
    Pull down your pants.
    Lift up your bra and shake it.
    Bend over.

    These are all commands officers have given to people who have committed no crime, but the officer is on a fishing expedition. These people are being illegally detained while the officer LOOKS for a crime. That’s bass ackwards.

    For a person that has committed no crime they are not obligated to follow any commands from an officer. Yet officers have this fairy tale belief that every word out of their mouth is gospel delivered on high from God. It’s not. Cops may believe they can tell me to get on the ground when I have committed no crime, but I’d rather be shot first. Let them explain that. It may take more innocent people willing to endure getting beaten or killed by police for refusing unlawful commands when no crime has been committed.

    Doing so will reinforce the idea that without reasonable articulate suspicion that a crime has, is, or is about to be committed, they need to leave people the hell alone. Absent criminal activity we have the right to be left alone.

    According to Thomas Jefferson and the Declaration of Independence, one of the “repeated injuries and usurpations” committed against the American people by the King of England was the erecting of “a multitude of New Offices, and . . . swarms of Officers to harass our people, and eat out their substance.”

    “The makers of the Constitution conferred the most comprehensive of rights and the right most valued by all civilized men—the right to be let alone.” -Justice Louis D. Brandeis

  85. Loviatar says:

    @Jack:

    Unless and until that person pulls out a weapon, there is no threat. A weapon. Not a wallet, not car keys, not a book, but a weapon.

    Are a bag of Skittles and a bottle of ice tea considered weapons?

    No reasonable person would believe I feared for my life because someone turned their back on me (legally called retreat), casually walked away from me (legally called retreat), or entered their vehicle (legally called retreat). Those are all indications of withdrawal from a fight.

    If you stalked someone for several blocks, then accosted them while they retreated, if you then threatened and attacked them, would you still be considered a reasonable person fearing for your life?

  86. Jack says:

    @Loviatar: Are a sidewalk and fists raining down on you considered weapons?

    The whole neighborhood was three streets. He was not stalked for blocks. Nor was he threatened. Confronted does not equal threatened.

    A cop in the exact situation would have never been charged.

    Your information about the case, not to mention your English, is as bad or worse than Rachel Jeantel. In the words of Rachel Jeantel, “That’s just Stupid, Sir.”

  87. Monala says:

    @Jenos The Deplorable: Levar Jones, Philando Castle, and Charles Kinsey (the behavioral therapist trying to calm his client) were all obeying police when they were shot. How many examples do you need before you no longer consider it an aberration?

    And what “cultural movement” are you talking about? The one in which violent crime rates in the African American community are now half what they were in the 1990s? Or the one in which African American college matriculation rates have doubled since 2000, such that the former statistic of more black men in prison than college has now reversed, and blacks in the U.S. now earn college degrees comparable to our percentage of the population? Or the one in which a husband, father, choir member and college student can get shot for having his car break down? Exactly which cultural movement are you talking about?

  88. Loviatar says:

    @Jack:

    The whole neighborhood was three streets.

    one street = one block. Three streets = several blocks.

    Confronted does not equal threatened.

    Stalk someone for several blocks, then accost them on a dark street while they retreat = threatening. Let me follow your ass for several dark blocks then”confront” you and we’ll see how unthreatened you’ll feel.

    Your information about the case, not to mention your English, is as bad or worse than Rachel Jeantel. In the words of Rachel Jeantel, “That’s just Stupid, Sir.”

    sniff, sniff, ahh the sweet smell of desperation.

    So tell me whats reasonable about stalking someone then accosting and confronting them in a threatening manner after being instructed by the police not to do so?

  89. Tyrell says:

    @anjin-san: Thanks for that correction.

  90. Monala says:

    @Monala: As a follow-up, notice how many of these black men killed have been married fathers, or if young, sons of married or divorced men.

  91. Jack says:

    Again, here is a map of the Zimmerman neighborhood in which Martin was staying.

    https://bcclist.com/2012/03/27/trayvon-martin-george-zimmerman-map/

    Zimmerman followed Martin for all of 5-7 houses.

    Confront is not accost. You keep using that word but I don’t think you know what it means.

    Martin avoided going home, confronted Zimmerman with the phrase “what the f**k is your problem?” then punched Zimmerman in the face. Sat upon Zimmerman after he fell to the ground and began pounding his head against the cement and ground and pound. Martin was the aggressor. Martin attacked Zimmerman for trying to find out what he was up to. Zimmerman’s gun became exposed during the ground and pound. The gun was never out of its holster until Zimmerman defended himself. Read the court transcript or at least any intelligent source on the matter.

    Martin was not “standing his ground” You don’t get to claim stand your ground if you are the aggressor. You don’t get to attack someone and then claim stand your ground. Zimmerman never attacked, or accosted Martin. He followed him. If being followed is grounds for attacking people, the paparazzi and private investigators would be few and far between, cupcake.

    Finally, the police never told Zimmerman not to follow Martin. The 911 operators are not law enforcement. Saying “we don’t need you to do that.” is not a command it’s a suggestion.

  92. Loviatar says:

    @Jack:

    Confront is not accost. You keep using that word but I don’t think you know what it means.

    Accost = approach and address (someone) boldly or aggressively.

    Confront = meet (someone) face to face with hostile or argumentative intent.

    Read the court transcript or at least any intelligent source on the matter.

    The dead can’t rebut the lies of the living.

    After being instructed by the police to stop following someone if you continue to do so you lose all pretense of being reasonable. If you then accost and confront that person, you are now being unreasonable. You are no longer standing your ground, you’ve become the aggressor.

    cupcake

    thank you. I’ve been told I’m pretty sweet.

  93. Jack says:

    @Loviatar:

    After being instructed by the police to stop following someone if you continue to do so you loose all pretense of being reasonable.

    Again, 911 operators are not the police. You really are obtuse. Martin accosted/confronted Zimmerman. You lose. Until evidence is entered that proves otherwise, that is what happened. Since the case is closed, I’m guessing that’s not gonna happen. Live with it, cupcake.

  94. Loviatar says:

    @Jack:

    Again, 911 operators are not the police.

    You seen to be fixated on making sure that I’m aware that dispatchers are not police officers. Its almost like you don’t have a real argument and you’ve fallen back upon petty semantics to make your case.

    No reasonable person would believe I feared for my life because someone turned their back on me (legally called retreat), casually walked away from me (legally called retreat), or entered their vehicle (legally called retreat). Those are all indications of withdrawal from a fight.

    Based upon the scenario you laid out above, is it reasonable to continue to follow someone down a dark street after being told not to do so by the police dispatcher.

    Based upon the scenario you laid out above, is it reasonable to confront someone on a dark street after following them for several blocks.

    You don’t get to claim stand your ground if you are the aggressor.

    It seems to me that the one who followed and then confronted another person on a dark street would be considered the aggressor. But I guess we’ll never know, the dead can’t rebut the lies of the living.

    Final question for the night; someone is pretty obviously following you down a dark street. That person then confronts you in an aggressive manner, how quickly could you stand your ground? Remember only the living can stand their ground.

  95. Grewgills says:

    Finally, the police never told Zimmerman not to follow Martin. The 911 operators are not law enforcement. Saying “we don’t need you to do that.” is not a command it’s a suggestion.

    So he followed furtively (rather than stalked) a young man down dark streets against the advice of the police dispatcher.

    Martin avoided going home, confronted Zimmerman with the phrase “what the f**k is your problem?”

    according to the man who killed him who has every reason to present Martin as the instigator

    then punched Zimmerman in the face. Sat upon Zimmerman after he fell to the ground and began pounding his head against the cement and ground and pound.

    I’ve seen the pictures of Zimmerman. I’ve seen actual street fights and bar fights. I’ve seen people fight in controlled situations with protective gear. Zimmerman was absolutely not subjected to ground and pound on concrete. Only someone who did not see the pictures of Zimmerman’s injuries or someone completely ignorant of what people look like after an actual fight would believe this. It is preposterous.

    Martin was the aggressor. Martin attacked Zimmerman for trying to find out what he was up to.

    according to the man who killed him who has every reason to present Martin as the instigator

    Zimmerman’s gun became exposed during the ground and pound. The gun was never out of its holster until Zimmerman defended himself.

    according to the man who killed him who has every reason to present Martin as the instigator
    If someone is actually sitting on your chest pounding your head into the concrete the odds of you being able to unholster a gun and shoot someone in the chest are minimal. If, however, you already have a gun in your hand… Of course if you have a gun drawn and approach someone aggressively after following them along dark streets they might feel their life is in danger. Some in that circumstance might flee, others might assume robbery and try to cooperate, others might fight.

    Martin was not “standing his ground” You don’t get to claim stand your ground if you are the aggressor. You don’t get to attack someone and then claim stand your ground. Zimmerman never attacked, or accosted Martin.

    Again, we only have Zimmerman’s word for this and he has every reason to paint Martin as the aggressor and himself as the victim.

    cupcake.

    Your argument entirely relies on the honesty of a man that repeatedly called police simply because he saw someone black walking through the neighborhood, someone with delusions of being law enforcement, but who failed even that limited fitness standard. Your argument is BS puddin.

  96. anjin-san says:

    @Grewgills:

    Only someone who did not see the pictures of Zimmerman’s injuries or someone completely ignorant of what people look like after an actual fight would believe this. It is preposterous.

    I’m still amazed that people actually think Zimmermann’s superficial scalp lacerations were the result of having his skull repeatedly bounced off of concrete by someone who was trying to kill him. The level of ignorance/stupidity is staggering. That kind of assault would have certainly have left Zimmermann in the ER, and probably in surgery with a fractured skull and brain trauma.

    Zimmermann’s actions over the last few years have made it very clear that what a lot of us said in here all along is true – the man is a compulsive liar, and a violent sociopath. Yet they take his testimony as gospel. Because the black kid just has to be a thug, be the aggressor. It’s sad and disheartening.

    In the case of Jenos and Jack, we have to consider the source, which is about two steps up from fungus. But I know people I grew up with that have bought into this BS too. Depressing.

  97. Jenos The Deplorable says:

    @Loviatar: You seen to be fixated on making sure that I’m aware that dispatchers are not police officers.

    You keep repeating that Zimmerman disobeyed instructions from police, then complain when people point out the facts that 1) it wasn’t an instruction, 2) it deliberately was not an instruction, and 3) the person giving the non-instruction wasn’t a police officer?

    Here’s a hint: if you want people to stop telling you to stop making up shit, a good first step is to stop making up shit.

  98. Jenos The Deplorable says:

    @anjin-san: In the case of Jenos and Jack, we have to consider the source, which is about two steps up from fungus.

    Remember, folks, it’s bad to dehumanize people… unless they really aren’t human.

    It’s bad to demonize people… unless they really are demons.

    It’s bad to call someone Hitler… unless they really are just like Hitler.

    At what point does “killing someone just like Hitler” cross from murder to a moral imperative? There’s already been one attempt to assassinate Trump.

    And just what is the legal penalty for killing something “about two steps up from fungus,” anyway?

  99. HarvardLaw92 says:

    As for the North Carolina case, the refusal to release the video of the incident in question strikes me as the wrong decision in the light of the situation on the ground there.

    It doesn’t work that way. There is no option of release. HB972 reclassifies police video recordings as not being public records. Only persons whose voice / image are captured in the recordings – or if said person(s) are deceased / incapacitated / a minor a relative / representative – may petition to view them (that means exactly what it sounds like – take a trip down to the police department and watch the video on their equipment).

    Copying / recording / release of the video requires a court order. The bottom line here is that, unless such an order is forthcoming, or the video is introduced as evidence in some potential future trial, it’ll likely never be seen by the public.

  100. Bob@Youngstown says:

    @HarvardLaw92:
    I may be misunderstanding HB972 but the effective date seems to be Oct 1 2016.

    SECTION 5. Sections 1, 2, and 3 of this act become effective October 1, 2016, and apply to all requests made on or after that date for the disclosure or release of a recording.

    Note also that the effective date refers to the “request” date (as contrasted with the date of the recording).

  101. HarvardLaw92 says:

    @Bob@Youngstown:

    Which simply means that they’ll delay releasing the video for another week, most probably by characterizing it as being evidence in an ongoing investigation (which it legitimately is). As written, HB 972 will apply to / essentially sequester every police recording which has ever been made by any department in the State of NC. They make it through next Friday without releasing the video, and they’ll never have to release it.

  102. stonetools says:

    Let’s not relitigate the Trayvon Martin killing here, please? Been done to death at least twice here. Thanks in advance.
    As to what’s to be done. Everyone, even Jack, has made good points. What’s happened is that we made a deal with the devil in that, through the various use of force laws and various other laws, we gave the police virtual carte blanche to shoot anybody they wanted, for any reason they wanted, in exchange for public security (“law and order”). For historical reasons, this falls hardest on minority communities, who are considered to be presumptively “armed and dangerous” by the white community, including white police officers.
    There is no simple cure for this. There is airy talk of changing things through “training” but much more than that is needed. There has to be a change in the law.
    There should be a federal law rewriting the police use of force laws to an objective standard. Jack is completely right when he says a police officer should be in no fear from a civilian unless the civilian pulls out a WEAPON- not a cell phone, not a wallet, not a toy , but a weapon.Unless the officer has objective reason to believe that what the civilian has is a weapon, he should have no right to use deadly weapon against that civilian.
    There should also be law requiring the police to use the least force possible and to de-escalate as a first step. Rolling up on a situation and opening fire should be grounds for termination and a criminal indictment.Life isn’t a Dirty Harry movie.
    I would also argue for a federal Civilian Rights Act giving an individual and the federal government a right to sue a local or state police officer in federal court for police abuse of force. There should be both criminal civil penalties funder that Act.
    Those are my first steps. Sadly, all this is completely beyond today’s politics. Hopefully, we can move toward this.

  103. Bob@Youngstown says:

    @HarvardLaw92: I’ll defer to your judgement, as I am not trained in law. However, it does occur to me that a request made prior to October 1 would fail to shield recordings made previously.

    It seems to me that what is essential is that a proper request be made prior to the effective date.

    I do agree with you this applies to every recording ever made by any NC Law Enforcement Dept. (can we say “overly broad” ?)

    I don’t know how they “make it through next Friday” avoiding a formal request.

  104. HarvardLaw92 says:

    @Bob@Youngstown:

    Any request made prior to Friday would be submitted under the provisions of the existing NC public records laws (which are relatively weak to begin with) and almost certainly be declined on the basis that the recordings are evidence in an ongoing investigation and possibly that their release would impede that investigation / potentially prejudice future jury pools. Professional opinion is that the video will likely never be released unless it’s due to it having been introduced as evidence at trial (a trial is also IMO unlikely to ever happen).

  105. Bob@Youngstown says:

    @HarvardLaw92: Ok, your the pro here, but let me ask: Is it possible to appeal (to court) an administrative declination of a request? Even more specifically if that request is made in a timely fashion ( that is, prior to Oct 1) and the request provides for the delayed release (after NC BCI has reported it’s findings to the county prosecutor).

    Lastly, could these recordings be required to be released to the plaintiffs in a wrongful death suit? (assuming that you are correct that a trial may never occur).

  106. Paul L. says:

    @Jenos The Deplorable:

    The Zimmerman was ordered by the Police to stop following Martin talking point is holy writ to progressives.

    Like Skittles and Iced Tea talking point, no facts are allowed to contradict it.

  107. Loviatar says:

    @stonetools:

    Let’s not relitigate the Trayvon Martin killing here, please? Been done to death at least twice here.

    I wasn’t trying to relitigate the case it just shocked me after some of the nonsensical things Jack had written about the case to see him then write about reasonableness when it comes to his precocious guns.

    Jack

    Unless and until the officer can show a demonstrable threat, they should be obligate to NOT shoot. Period. Opening a car door is not a demonstrable threat. Walking away is not a demonstrable threat. Giving the cop the finger is not a demonstrable threat.

    I guess to Jack asking someone why they’re following you down a dark street is a demonstrable threat.

    Jack

    No reasonable person would believe I feared for my life because someone turned their back on me (legally called retreat), casually walked away from me (legally called retreat), or entered their vehicle (legally called retreat). Those are all indications of withdrawal from a fight.

    I guess Jack believes its reasonable to follow and aggressively confront someone on a dark street after being told not to do so by a police dispatcher.

    I understand no minds have been changed on this subject, I just like calling out the hypocrisy.

  108. HarvardLaw92 says:

    @Bob@Youngstown:

    Appeal, no. Post administrative denial, the person(s) making the records request can then file a civil action (lawsuit) seeking to compel production / release, but no court is going to compel the release of evidence pertinent to an active investigation. It’s honestly just a non-starter IMPO.

  109. Jenos The Deplorable says:

    @Paul L.: The Zimmerman was ordered by the Police to stop following Martin talking point is holy writ to progressives.

    No kidding. This is the second current active thread where it’s being touted as Gospel.

    Aren’t these people supposed to be the “reality-based” ones?

  110. HarvardLaw92 says:

    @Bob@Youngstown:
    Sorry, missed your second question

    A civil court hearing a wrongful death action could certainly compel the recordings to be produced as evidence, sure. Actually winning such an action would be an uphill battle under NC law, but compelling the submission of the video into evidence in that scenario wouldn’t be unusual at all. The state would almost certainly move to have it introduced under seal, but that’s not unusual either.

  111. Gustopher says:

    @Paul L.: are you suggesting he didn’t have Skittles?

  112. mtar says:

    @michael reynolds: OK, let’s take firefighters. Breathing gear, heat-resistant coats and other defensive gear are, like the roofer’s safety rope, just not comparable to the cop’s weapons. The police have an offensive capability that’s unique in civilian society, and demands unique consideration and regulation. If firefighters were empowered to reduce their own risk by shooting people seen carrying gas cans in urban areas as potential arsonists, you’d have a point. But that’s not common practice. 😉

    As it happens, I’m a firefighter/EMT with 20 years service. In that time I’ve wrestled with my share of drunks, guys on whatever kind of drugs, psychotics off their meds, and even victims of crime and accidents who were probably sober but just had too much adrenaline flowing to be able to control themselves. Cops call them “suspects,” we call them “uncooperative patients.” And in 20+ years I’ve never shot anybody, or resorted to punching someone in the face to “gain compliance.” I’ve been tempted a couple of times but I’d be, you know, fired. Maybe the right professional analogy for cops is to carpenters. Just like anything proverbially looks like a nail to a guy holding a hammer; to a cop who gets (according to Vox.com) 120 hours of academy training in firearms and other uses of force vs only 8 hours in conflict resolution, maybe every problem looks like a target.

    The proliferation of guns is certainly a big piece of the puzzle, and I’m not trying to obscure that fact. But training, doctrine, and police culture all need to get better. One thing I’ve seen in these dash cam and viral videos as well as my own experience is that police demands seem at times to be incompatible with the human limbic system. When people are all fired up due to extreme stress they can become totally controlled by the fight or flight response. Immediate compliance, going rag-doll-limp in an officer’s grasp, is simply impossible for people in such a state. They’ll even fight with an EMT who’s trying to control their bleeding, let alone a cop who might send take them to jail. Yet that immediate rag-doll compliance is exactly what some aggressive police officers demand. Not all – some cops have amazing patience, poise, and people skills – but others do seem to enjoy taking people down. And their training and doctrine generally validate that impulse.

    Were guns the issue here?

    As for cops blaming tighter rules of engagement for increasing their risk – they always have and always will. There are plenty of people on the dedicated police forums and at police-apologist sites like Bob Owens’ Bearing Arms who will justify almost any police shooting, and blame restrictions for any cop who gets hurt. “If fear of losing his job hadn’t made him hesitate before shooting, he’d be alive today.” They complained when police deaths were well over 100 a year, and they’ll complain if there are 10 a year. And they’ll be right! Strict rules on use of deadly force will result in more police casualties. But even much looser rules that resulted in many more deaths of unarmed, nonthreatening citizens wouldn’t prevent all police deaths.

    Policing is a dangerous job and always will be. I say give them great pay and benefits, the best equipment and training we can, respect and support for what they do, and hold them to a high standard.

    Thanks for the engagement. Thoughtful and well stated as always.

  113. mtar says:

    @Jenos The Deplorable: I looked at some old threads but didn’t see any substantial discussion of the Levar Jones case. Don’t doubt you, just didn’t see the right thread.

    In any case you’ve made your feelings pretty clear here. You are correct that following an officer’s instruction is almost always the wise move.

    To go beyond that and suggest that the burden is on citizens to behave in a certain way in order to avoid getting shot by the police; or that unwise noncompliance by a citizen absolves an officer of responsibility for an unnecessary use of deadly force, is to abandon love of liberty and kneel before the authority of the state.

  114. Jenos The Deplorable says:

    @mtar: I’m not disagreeing with you, I’m making a different argument.

    You’re right as a matter of principle.

    I’m arguing that, in these particular circumstance, making a stand on principle will not help you in the immediate situation, and could possibly greatly harm you.

    Dr. Martin Luther King took his moral stance against the authorities, accepted the consequences of his defiance, and used that as a cudgel to pummel his opponents. But he still went to jail. He went to jail over and over and over again. It was an ideal tactic for his cause, and one he chose willingly, but he still went to jail. Generally speaking, that’s not a good thing for a person in the short term.

    If you do make your stand on principle, you will have my respect. But just know going in that you will very likely suffer for that stance.

    And I’d also add that I sincerely doubt that a lot of people who are defying the police today aren’t doing it out of any lofty principles like you espouse.

  115. HarvardLaw92 says:

    @Bob@Youngstown:

    The department appears to have decided to release excerpts of the videos today. No word yet on what they show / don’t show.

  116. Bob@Youngstown says:

    @HarvardLaw92: watching them now.
    Does this release suggest that the investigation has been concluded (both by CMPD and NCBCI) ?

  117. Paul L. says:

    @Gustopher:
    It was portrayed that because Martin was armed only was Skittles and Iced Tea. He could not have hurt Zimmerman. I offered to smack anyone who used that talking point with a bag of Skittles and strangely they got hostile to the idea.

  118. HarvardLaw92 says:

    @Bob@Youngstown:

    I wouldn’t make that assumption, no. From the (very, very carefully) constructed statement issued by their chief, it seemed more a case of “we’re handing over a few selected pieces of the video in order to quiet things down”.

    I read it as a strategic release with no real risk to the investigation or, to be honest, any probative value, intended more to get the public off of the department’s back and dial the volume down on the pressure to release the video.

    That having been said, from the commentary I’ve read on various sites, people on both sides of this issue are already tending to interpret the vague portion of the evidence which is publicly available to support their preconceived notions / agendas. Those who support the police are already dead certain that the dead guy was carrying a weapon. Those on the other side are dead certain that the officers planted the weapon after shooting an unarmed person, which is honestly ludicrous IMO, for one simple reason:

    The standard in NC is NOT that the officer has to establish the actual presence of a gun (or indeed any actual weapon). It’s merely what a reasonable officer would construe as putting his life in danger. An actual threat need not exist so long as the defense can convince a judge / jury that a reasonable officer (which is a very, very broad term) would have reasonably felt threatened. The short version is that whether or not he actually had a weapon doesn’t mean much here – it’ll come down to whether the DA decides to seek charges, which is doubtful IMO, and how the jury pool is comprised if he actually does so. I would say that racial dynamics would unavoidably worm their way into a trial as well, but in this case both the officer and the deceased are African-American, so all bets are off there.

  119. Bob@Youngstown says:

    @HarvardLaw92: Appreciate your analysis on the recordings, I can’t imagine that BCI has completed it’s investigation, which suggests that the “compelling” reason for the disclosure tonight was a tactical, despite the Chief’s prior rhetoric.

    With regard to your:

    I would say that racial dynamics would unavoidably worm their way into a trial as well, but in this case both the officer and the deceased are African-American, so all bets are off there.

    While can’t put myself in the “black man’s shoes”, IMO the racial dynamics are just as compelling regardless of the officer’s color. IMO to a large extent the demonstrators are protesting the police (regardless of color) seeming to target and react with quick and lethal force against black citizens.

    The narrative that the police provided this evening to explain why they interacted with Scott in the first place….. actually raises more questions than not. Of course I’m assuming that open carry, in a vehicle, is legal in NC. – Now if the plain clothes officers contended that Scott was pointing the weapon or otherwise threatening BEFORE they left the scene to get on their tactical gear and then came back to engage Scott, that might be more understandable. But that’s not what the police statement said (as of 7:30 tonight)

    Stay tuned…. probably more to come.

  120. Bob@Youngstown says:

    @HarvardLaw92: Just read Chief Putney’s statement that the State investigators said that release of the video would not hamper their investigation, as they had completed interrogating all the witnesses.

    Chief Putney also said :“It was not lawful for him (Scott) to possess a firearm,” To me that strongly suggests that the plain clothes officers knew Scott, and knew that he could not lawfully possess a firearm. (Regardless of the state’s open carry). If that is so, that the police knew Scott and his restricted status, that fact alone changes the incident considerably.

    Why couldn’t the police just have said at the outset that Scott was caught in a criminal act and that is why they attempted to arrest him.

  121. Tyrell says:

    News reports out of California : two teenage girls and their mother attacked and beaten by people wearing the “Black Lives Matter” t shirts in Stockton as they were coming out of a restaurant. Evidently there was some kind of protest there and BLM was there.
    BLM – a hate group, it should be banned completely.

  122. Loviatar says:

    @Tyrell:

    BLM – a hate group, it should be banned completely.

    Question of the Day:

    Why do you consider BLM a hate group?

    I believe we all know why Jenos, bill, Erick, Moderate Mom and the other racist who populate this site consider them a hate group, I would like to know why you join them in that feeling.

    Please give me your reasoning, no 20 paragraph diatribe, no links to some random website, your simple 2 sentence, 3 line reasoning.
    .

    Thanks you in advance and I await your response.

  123. James Pearce says:

    @Loviatar:

    Now if we can only get James Pearce to admit that their is a privilege associated with not being killed as you’re standing next to your disabled car.

    On the same day Keith Scott was killed in Charlotte, 5 other men were killed by police in other parts of the country. They were all white.

    What happens when the data tells you that your theory is incorrect? Do you modify the theory?

    When a black cop shoots a black suspect and the black chief of police maintains that it was because he had a gun and some weed, do we continue to blame racism and white privilege, or shall we look for some other culprit?

  124. Loviatar says:

    @James Pearce:

    Its surprising the stupidity that some people will put in writing for the world to see.

    Continue on James Pearce.

  125. michael reynolds says:

    @Tyrell:

    We do not ban hate groups in this country, we have freedom of speech. If we did ban hate groups the Republican Party would be banned.

  126. michael reynolds says:

    @mtar:

    I agree. I’ve never for a moment denied that racism is part of this, or that the drug war and terror war and subsequent militarization of cops was central.

    As a writer I create characters. Probably, I don’t know, five hundred, let’s say. As a matter of principal I never use a single motivation for any action. Motive is always plural, cause is always plural. And the first answer given to the question, “Why?” is never the full story.

    I also create the environment before I’ve worked out the plot. I create space and character and then see what happens, because this is IMO the most accurate way to approach human behavior. We are born in a time and a place, surrounded by various people, pre-programmed to a degree by DNA and childhood upbringing. Environment, DNA, free will and random chance go into basically every human action.

    A given cop has his DNA package and his upbringing and his free will. (Random chance persists whatever). We add training (a sort of extra layer of upbringing) and we impose rules. But as you point out referencing the limbic system, the cop remains a human, is still a product of his DNA and environment and we can only get so far with training.

    If I have a single criticism of police training it is this: cops are taught that they must always establish dominance in a situation. Which sounds good, but isn’t always. Sometimes I suspect they’d do better to let people yell it out. I have a teen-age daughter afflicted with Dramatic Personality Disorder (not a real thing) and I’ve discovered that the better tactic is often not for me to establish my Lordly Dominance (also not a real thing) but just to sit there and let her scream and denounce. Even she can only keep it up for about ten minutes. And then, if you were to graph it, you’d see the anger line start to fall.

    Here’s the thing, though: I know my daughter does not have a gun concealed in her jacket. The confrontation has 0% chance of turning deadly. In the UK a cop/perp confrontation has a greater than 0% chance. In the US the odds are far higher than in Britain. The more likely the confrontation is to be deadly, the more important it is for cops to establish control. The more they need to establish control, the more likely they are to have blow-ups with mentally unstable, or drugged people, because those are the sorts of people who do not read social cues.

    Threat demands countermeasures. You say alter countermeasures. I agree we should alter countermeasures, but that this is a band-aid on a wound that won’t heal without stitches. Less threat = less violence.

  127. James Pearce says:

    @Loviatar:

    Its surprising the stupidity that some people will put in writing for the world to see.

    You read enough drivel from progressives and Tea Party types– “both sides”– and it’s not surprising, not surprising at all.

    Tell ya what: You start the smug lecture. Imma go watch this football game.

  128. HarvardLaw92 says:

    @Loviatar:

    You completely sidestepped addressing his question.

  129. Grewgills says:

    @James Pearce:

    What happens when the data tells you that your theory is incorrect? Do you modify the theory?

    You related one day of activity. That does not in any way refute the data from this last year or the decades previous. In short the data are not saying what you are implying they are saying. In previous conversations you admitted that black men are killed by police in disproportionate numbers relative to both population and violent crime rates. Why are you backpeddling here? Is it just to irritate Loviatar?

    When a black cop shoots a black suspect and the black chief of police maintains that it was because he had a gun and some weed, do we continue to blame racism and white privilege, or shall we look for some other culprit?

    In this particular incident race may not have played a role. That does not negate the fact that race often does play a role. When race disproportionately disadvantages one group over another, we call the group not disadvantaged privileged. I know you bridle at that, nevertheless there it is.

  130. Just 'nutha ig'rant cracker says:

    @Jenos The Deplorable:

    Dr. Martin Luther King took his moral stance against the authorities, accepted the consequences of his defiance, and used that as a cudgel to pummel his opponents. But he still went to jail. He went to jail over and over and over again. It was an ideal tactic for his cause, and one he chose willingly, but he still went to jail. Generally speaking, that’s not a good thing for a person in the short term.

    If you do make your stand on principle, you will have my respect. But just know going in that you will very likely suffer for that stance.

    So you’re saying they should have shot him in the first place? Or are you doing your usual apples to cudgel comparisons?

  131. Jenos The Deplorable says:

    @Just ‘nutha ig’rant cracker: You wanna game out MLK’s campaign? You want me to take the side of the segregationists and figure out some way to thwart his movement?

    Well, I’m a war gamer, and I’ve often played the Nazis in games, so challenge accepted. I can take on sides without believing in that side’s cause. I can focus on the tactics, without dealing with the overall goals.

    1) Shooting King? Bad move. We saw that when he was shot. It made him an instant martyr and guaranteed his cause’s success.

    2) Jailing him? Same effect, just to a lesser degree, with the added downside of him still being around to antagonize us more.

    Someone like him, with his charisma and his following, is a hell of a challenge. He had both the moral and legal arguments on his side, so that’s even tougher.

    So instead of killing him, you need to strip him of his assets. Find some way of discrediting him in the eyes of his followers, and — more importantly — in the eyes of those he’s trying to persuade. Or find some other way of neutralizing his actions.

    The first idea I have is to simply not confront him. King and his people come to town to integrate a Woolworth’s counter, fine — let them. While they’re in town, the segregation stops.

    And it starts right back up as soon as they leave.

    Make it clear that whatever benefits he brings only last while he’s there. While he’s integrating Birmingham, Tupelo stays segregated. He goes to Tupelo, Birmingham switches back. “Integregation” becomes a traveling oasis in an ocean of segregation. He can’t be everywhere at the same time, and never gets the confrontations that he needs to make his big impacts.

    And if you wanna really play hardball, once he leaves, make life very difficult for those locals who helped him. Make it painful to support King when he comes to town.

    The other plan would be to discredit him. Fake up some evidence that he’s been paid off to NOT integrate specific places, indicating that he can be bought to not integrate places where the powers that be come up with enough money. Have prominent segregationists start to say vaguely complimentary things about King, that he’s the kind of man you can do business with.

    Any direct attacks on King made his cause stronger. He knew that, and constantly set himself up to be directly attacked. So deny him his greatest weapon.

    Fortunately for Dr. King (and the rest of us), his enemies were not smart enough to see just how counterproductive their efforts were, and couldn’t bring themselves to act strategically. They were used to having the power, so they naturally tried to use that power. They could not grasp that using their power was the quickest way to lose it.

    So they lost. And we all won.

    Of course, we have the benefit of 50-odd years of hindsight, so maybe they weren’t as stupid as we think they are today. But while I think that King’s movement was destined to succeed (and am profoundly grateful that it did), I think there were ways it could have been delayed — had the opponents thought of them. And I’m glad they didn’t.

  132. James Pearce says:

    @Grewgills:

    In previous conversations you admitted that black men are killed by police in disproportionate numbers relative to both population and violent crime rates.

    Careful there. I “admitted” before the council that black men are indeed killed by police in disproportionate numbers relative to population, but also submitted that this is a rather arbitrary and nonsensical measurement. There is no reason to expect black men to be killed “proportionately.”

    I have also submitted that white people are killed by police, and indeed more of them. Where is their memorial? Where is the privileged millionaire taking a knee for them? I don’t mean to suggest all these white men need memorials or some activist to rally to their cause. I mean to suggest that the whole racial angle is crap.

    Why is it so hard, within the framework of progressive intersectional theology, to understand the problem of police shootings as a problem for all races?

  133. Grewgills says:

    @James Pearce:
    There are at least two problems here: 1) police being too likely to shoot anyone and 2) police being more likely to harass and shoot African Americans. Why is it easy for you to accept problem 1 and so difficult for you to accept that 2 is also a problem?

  134. Loviatar says:

    @HarvardLaw92:

    You completely sidestepped addressing his question.

    No, I pointed out that it was self evidently a stupid point. Obviously I was wrong. James Pearce has done what children and bigots do, they ignore context in trying to make their argument.

    Context: the circumstances that form the setting for an event, statement, or idea, and in terms of which it can be fully understood and assessed.

    Historical Context
    This country was founded on slavery which lasted for almost a 100 years (1776-1865), we then had approximately another 100 years of government sanctioned bigotry (1865-1965). This has the been followed another 50 years of dog whistled racism (1965-2016) from many within our government.

    Situational Context
    Terence Crutcher who seemed to be unarmed, and posing no threat to the police was killed in a manner that led to an officer being charged with manslaughter. The question that will determine the officer’s fate at her trial will be why. Why did you kill this man? The context of this country’s history and the situation means race will and has to play a part in that officer’s decision to kill Terence Crutcher.

    James Pearce “says” 5 white men were killed by police on the same day. Maybe, but he has offered no other information besides his assertions. If we believe his assertions, under what situational context were these men killed. Again he has provided no description of any of the killings.

    Until he has provided that information, his point is not addressable.

    My random assertion:
    24 year old hispanic baseball player, José Fernández death is absolutely comparable to the death of 87 year old white golfer Arnold Palmer.

  135. Jenos The Deplorable says:

    @Loviatar: Situational Context
    Terence Crutcher who seemed to be unarmed, and posing no threat to the police was killed in a manner that led to an officer being charged with manslaughter.

    Let’s add a little more context. The police responded to a report of a vehicle being stopped and abandoned in the middle of the road, blocking the oncoming traffic lane. When they arrived, Crutcher came ouf of the woods. When ordered to freeze, he instead raised his hands and started walking towards his vehicle. More officers arrived, drew weapons, and repeated the orders to stop moving. He reached the side of his vehicle (which had the sun roof and, apparently, both front windows open — see the video and stills here), where he lowered his arms and started to reach into the vehicle with his left hand.

    At that point, two officers fired their weapons. The first officer on the scene, who had drawn her gun when she was still the only officer on the scene, fired her gun. A second officer fired his Taser.

    One more context for you: the officer was charged before the police finished their investigation.

  136. James Pearce says:

    @Grewgills:

    Why is it easy for you to accept problem 1 and so difficult for you to accept that 2 is also a problem?

    Because it’s BS. If a person is being harassed or killed by the police, that person is more likely to be white, not black. I know that’s hard to accept, but that’s the reality. The fact is that there are just that many white people in this country.

    And really, think about what you’re asking me to do here. I am trying to point out that police shootings are a problem for everyone. The facts are on my side. But I keep getting pulled into this ideological space that demands I accept as Truth this idea that white people are born privileged and black people are born to be shot by police.

    Such is the perils of “social justice” as we know it these days.

    @Loviatar:

    Until he has provided that information, his point is not addressable.

    Go to killedbypolice.net. Scan to Sept 20. Thomas Tucker, Sandy Joe Duke, Michael Goodale, Charles Dove, and Joshua Scott were the names of the white men killed by police on the same day Keith Scott was shot. Links to their stories are provided. No protests are expected.

    Care to offer any more lectures on context now?

  137. Mikey says:

    @James Pearce:

    An unarmed black person is almost twice as likely to be shot by a police officer as an unarmed white person.

    Even when controlling for all other factors, a black person is more likely to be shot.

    It doesn’t matter whether or not they’re in a low-crime or high-crime area; it doesn’t matter whether or not they are, or appear to be, posing an imminent threat; it doesn’t matter whether or not they have or have not just committed a crime themselves; it doesn’t matter whether they’re armed or not.

    If they’re black, they’re more likely to be shot. Period.

    Now put all those facts in the context of a nation with a multi-century history of enslavement of blacks, followed by another century of legally-enforced segregation and discrimination, and you may begin to catch a glimmer of understanding of why blacks get upset when yet another unarmed black man, posing no threat, gets shot down in the street by a police officer.

  138. Jenos The Deplorable says:

    @Mikey: Now put all those facts in the context of a nation with a multi-century history of enslavement of blacks, followed by another century of legally-enforced segregation and discrimination…

    Nit-picky point: the US had existed as a nation for less than a century before slavery was abolished.

    Not-so-nit-picky points: slavery was propagated and defended by whites, but was abolished by whites. If all whites were in favor of slavery, it would never have been abolished. If even a majority of whites supported it, it would not have been abolished. The majority eventually saw what an atrocity it was, and paid a very dear price in blood to abolish it.

    The same is true about “legally-enforced segregation and discrimination.”

    You wanna go for racially-based guilt by association, then you have to accept racially-based virtue by association.

  139. Mikey says:

    @Jenos The Deplorable: I’m pretty sure you don’t consider the 250 years as British colonies as irrelevant to America’s history.

    And of course many white Americans have deserved, and do deserve, great credit for their role in ending slavery and working to guarantee civil rights. That’s not in dispute, and it shouldn’t be.

    But there’s still something seriously wrong when a person’s likelihood of being killed by law enforcement is so closely correlated to skin color, especially after controlling for so many other factors.

  140. Jenos The Deplorable says:

    @Mikey: I said it was nit-picky, but it’s literally true: the United States tolerated slavery for less than a century. Prior to 1783, we weren’t a nation, we were governed by British law — and British law allowed slavery.

    But on the main topic — one factor that I believe you haven’t controlled for is behavior of the person who is shot. In these two cases, there is incontrovertible proof that both shot men were not only disobeying the lawful orders of police officers, but acting in ways readily perceived as threatening.

    And let’s not forget that in the Charlotte case, the initial outrage was that the police had shot an unarmed man. “He didn’t have a gun, he was reading a book!” was the initial rallying cry.

    Then the ratcheting began. Hey, there’s a gun found at the scene. The cops must have planted it.

    The gun had his DNA and fingerprints on it. Well, it’s an open carry state.

    He wasn’t pointing the gun at anyone. He still didn’t freeze or drop the gun when repeatedly ordered to do so.

    The gun was initially in an ankle holster, which is arguable whether it qualifies as “open carry.” (I did a little digging, and there are arguments on both sides.) Plus, the guy shot had a lengthy criminal record that meant he could not legally own or possess a gun.

    Do you also want to investigate why so many of these riots are instigated by arguments that later turn out to be provable lies? “He didn’t have a gun, he was reading a book” now ranks up there with “hands up, don’t shoot.”

  141. James Pearce says:

    @Mikey:

    If they’re black, they’re more likely to be shot. Period.

    And yet, looking at the numbers collected by the Guardian in their “The Counted” series, we see that they have 390 white people shot by police versus 194 black people shot by the police.

    The Guardian counts 33 unarmed black people killed by police. They count 66 unarmed white people.

    Now the only way you can get from those numbers to “twice as likely to get killed by police” is if you add qualifiers, like “Black men aged 18-24 are twice as likely to get killed by police.” That’s almost true, and would be true if the “twice” was changed to the less dramatic “more.” It’s also the only age group where more blacks than whites are being killed.

    I guess this comes down to expectations.

    When I’m told that “not getting shot” is a white man’s privilege, I expect that to see that reflected in the data. When I’m told that black men are twice as likely to get shot, I expect to see that in the data.

    I do not see that in the data.

  142. mtar says:

    There are a lot fewer black people in the US than white people; if their killings were proportional to population it should be something like 66/8.

    It’s true that black men are statistically more likely to be convicted of crimes, but even after you control for that the number of killings by police isn’t proportional. And there are studies showing that cops are more likely to perceive a black man of a given height and weight as “dangerous” than a white man of similar build, and quicker to pull the trigger during shooting simulations when the target is black. All this is out there via Google; or Vox.com is a good place to start.

    Also, a question: if twice as many unarmed white people are killed by police, why aren’t their videos going viral and attracting outrage? No doubt videos exist. Speculation: because of the long history of police discrimination against black Americans – I’m talking about cultural memory that goes back generations, which I hope no one with any knowledge of history will deny – perhaps black Americans are *more* likely to follow instruction and surrender promptly when confronted by the police.

    We’ve all likely heard about “the talk” that black boys get from their parents at a certain age, advising strict cooperation in order to avoid getting killed by the police. As a white man I’d never heard about it until recently, but every one of the black men I’ve talked about these issues with says yes, “the talk” is a thing that is close to universal for black Americans, especially boys. Did the white men who are getting killed benefit from the same strict advice, or are whites more likely to defy and challenge police? Are we not seeing more videos of questionable shootings of white people, proportionate to the numbers actually killed by police, because more of those shootings are obviously justified? Which would mean that questionable shootings of black men are even more disproportionate than the numbers already show?

    As I’ve posted above, I believe the police kill too many Americans of all races, and their training and doctrine need to be reconsidered. And Michael is right that the proliferation of guns is a big contributor to that problem. But it’s clear there’s a racial element as well; maybe the BLM movement that’s been awakened by it will lead to better policing for everybody.

  143. Jenos The Deplorable says:

    @mtar: You know what would really help your case? Actual cases, not just statistics. The current shootings (Tulsa and Charlotte) were ambiguous at best, and more likely justified.

    Focus instead on cases like Walter Scott and Levar Jones. Or John Crawford III, who was shot because someone did exactly several commenters here have recommended — if you see someone with a gun (even if it’s a toy gun), call the cops and say you feel threatened by the scary person with the scary gun.

    Arguing with cases like this tend to hurt your argument more than they help.

  144. Bob@Youngstown says:

    @@Jenos The Deplorable:

    More officers arrived, drew weapons, and repeated the orders to stop moving.

    Does your video or any video/audio establish that while he was moving back towards the vehicle the police “repeated orders to stop moving” ?

  145. Jenos The Deplorable says:

    @Bob@Youngstown: The video shows the guy walking slowly, hands over his head, back to his vehicle, and several cops pointing weapons at him. The officers say that they told him to stop moving. To borrow a term from one of our hosts (in what was not one of his finer moments), “it’s inconceivable” that none of those cops actually did NOT tell him to “freeze.”

    So no, there’s no actual audio of them saying “freeze,” but given the video, the conduct of the officers and the guy shot, the statements of the officers, and pretty much everything we know about police training and conduct (where telling someone to stop moving is almost their first response to any situation), I feel pretty safe assuming that

  146. Mikey says:

    @James Pearce:

    When I’m told that black men are twice as likely to get shot, I expect to see that in the data.

    I do not see that in the data.

    Because you keep going on with raw numbers and ignoring probabilities.

    If a black man and a white man are confronted by police, and all other factors (behavior, surroundings, whether they’re armed, etc.) are equal, the black man is still more likely to be shot.

    In fact, in any given interaction with police, any black person has a greater chance of being killed than any white person. It doesn’t matter who or what or where or when or why.

    I’m not sure how to make it any clearer than that.

  147. Mikey says:

    @Jenos The Deplorable:

    But on the main topic — one factor that I believe you haven’t controlled for is behavior of the person who is shot. In these two cases, there is incontrovertible proof that both shot men were not only disobeying the lawful orders of police officers, but acting in ways readily perceived as threatening.

    Whether a black person is acting in a threatening manner or not has been controlled for, and they’re still more likely to be shot. Blacks shot by police are no more likely to be threatening than whites, yet blacks are far more likely to be shot.

  148. Jenos The Deplorable says:

    @Mikey: Blacks shot by police are no more likely to be threatening than whites, yet blacks are far more likely to be shot.

    Got any documentation for that?

    Just from casual observation, I’d say that there is an interesting correlation between the justification of the shooting and the intensity of the riots. In cases where the shooting was more than likely justified, the riots are the worst. In cases where it’s far more questionable (if not outright bogus), there are far fewer protests.

    The examples I cited above tend to bear that out.

    Where are you getting your information, anyway?

  149. James Pearce says:

    @mtar:

    if their killings were proportional to population it should be something like 66/8.

    Why should police killings be proportional to population? Police don’t kill people based on census data, nor should they.

    Can someone explain to me why this idea has taken hold?

    if twice as many unarmed white people are killed by police, why aren’t their videos going viral and attracting outrage?

    Progressive lefties and BLM activists are not outraged by police killing white men.

  150. Grewgills says:

    @James Pearce:
    Probabilities matter more than raw numbers when population size is very different. In ANY other situation you would acknowledge this.
    This is how institutional racism, sexism, etc work. One can always say why should hiring, pay, selling houses, school admissions, etc correlate to census data. One can always choose to ignore the data that points to systemic bigotry and claim that there is not privilege gained from not being in the groups that bigotry is aimed at, but that requires a certain amount of willful blindness.

  151. James Pearce says:

    @Mikey:

    Because you keep going on with raw numbers and ignoring probabilities.

    Yes, I have a preference for data over rhetoric.

    This is rhetoric:

    In fact, in any given interaction with police, any black person has a greater chance of being killed than any white person.

    In any given interaction with police, no one is going to be killed.

    In any fatal interaction with police, the person killed is most likely going to be white.

  152. Jenos The Deplorable says:

    @Grewgills: @James Pearce: How the hell am I ending up as the attempted peacemaker?

    In my opinion, neither of you are being dishonest or deliberately obtuse. You are coming at the topic from different perspectives.

    Grewgills, you’re seeing a pattern you don’t like, and you’re looking for ways to demonstrate that pattern to others to convince them of the problem.

    Mikey, you don’t care for pattern-recognition in these things. You want hard data, numbers and facts that can’t be disputed. So you prefer absolute numbers, not proportions and percentages.

    Again, in my opinion.

    Looking at you two discuss has given me a notion of my own. I generally prefer treating people as individuals, not as part of groups. Especially groups defined by vague terms that often don’t represent a significant factor, or not a very significant factor. Race is one of them. In one of these cases, the officer who fired the fatal shot was himself black, which ought to complicate the whole racial angle, but apparently doesn’t.

    Anyway, “police interactions” aren’t generally random, so there is an opportunity for diverging from statistical norms of the population, as defined by whatever way you choose to segregate the population (race, age, sex, national origin, whatever). But we already know one of the primary factors for how police interactions are skewed — and it’s such an obvious way, that most of us don’t even think of it.

    Police most often tend to interact with people they suspect have broken the law.

    I’ve had interactions with the police. Sometimes as a potential witness to something illegal. A couple of times as a victim of an alleged crime. Sometimes through my work at the time.

    But most often when I was suspected of breaking the law.

    I’m proud of never having been arrested in my life, let alone convicted. But I have still been suspected of breaking the law enough to get the attention of the police. Granted, nearly all of those were traffic laws, but the principle is the same: my most common interaction with police was when they thought I had broken the law.

    And yeah, a few of those times I had broken the law.

    So anyway, that’s one element that is one of those things that is so essential to the discussion that no one even thinks of it. The main job of the police is to interact with people they believe may have broken the law. And that is going to skew any analysis of things.

    Again, just my opinion.

  153. Bob@Youngstown says:

    @Jenos The Deplorable:

    I feel pretty safe assuming that

    So , at least in part, your discussion is based on your assumptions?

    I hope that you understand that facts are demonstrably true, assumptions are not facts, inferences are not facts.

    I’d go on but (I conclude) that it’s a waste of time.

  154. Bob@Youngstown says:

    @Jenos The Deplorable:

    Police most often tend to interact with people they suspect have broken the law.

    As in Stop & Frisk? How did that work out in NYC? How often were the police suspicions prove to be erroneous?
    Maybe this is another of your assumptions?

  155. James Pearce says:

    @Grewgills:

    willful blindness

    I have provided actual data to support my arguments. I’ve heard your arguments. Where’s your data?

  156. Jenos The Deplorable says:

    @Bob@Youngstown: As in Stop & Frisk?

    You wanna play stupid games? Fine. You chose it.

    The police who do “stop and frisk” suspect that the person being stopped and frisked is violating some law by possessing something they should not. So, yes, that counts.

    Now, past the stupid game, and on to you being stupid: I said, and you actually quoted accurately, “Police most often tend to interact with people they suspect have broken the law.” That was covering the totality of their interactions with people. Your choosing to focus in on one particular type of interaction is a really pathetic attempt to divert the discussion.

    Really, really pathetic.

  157. Jenos The Deplorable says:

    I dunno if I’d say “destroys,” but this bit of journalism puts a HUGE dent in the whole “he was just reading a book” lie in the Charlotte case.

  158. HarvardLaw92 says:

    @Bob@Youngstown:

    How did that work out in NYC?

    Among other things, the crime rate dropped. Just saying.

  159. Grewgills says:

    @James Pearce:
    Your data suffice for my argument as do the data other people have presented in this thread and others. You continually say that higher rates of police interaction with and higher rates of police killing of African Americans tell us nothing. You continuously point out that about twice as many white Americans are killed by police as black Americans as though this proves your point. You then diminish that fact that 63.7% of the population is non-Hispanic white and 13.7% is African American, meaning that the RATE of death by cop for African Americans is 2.3 times as high as for white Americans. This isn’t some minor statistical deviation from the census data. African Americans are more than twice as likely to be shot and killed by a police officer than are white Americans. There is no data that can reasonably account for this high a disparity other than the one you refuse to admit. You know there is a history of systemic racism in this country. You know that this systemic racism persists, though at a lower level than in the past. You have yet to offer any reason other than hand waving for why the RATE of police killing of African Americans is so much higher than for police killings of white Americans. All you can do is repeat that more white people are killed by police while ignoring the context of our history, ignoring the history of disproportionate enforcement, ignoring the history of laws targeting African Americans (response to crack etc), ignoring the history of systemic discrimination, and ignoring that rates matter more than raw numbers when looking at populations with radically different raw populations. YOU are the one ignoring the relevant data, not me.

  160. Loviatar says:

    @HarvardLaw92:

    Among other things, the crime rate dropped. Just saying.

    There you go let that inner bigotry roar.

  161. James Pearce says:

    @Grewgills:

    There is no data that can reasonably account for this high a disparity other than the one you refuse to admit.

    To be clear, this is the crux of our disagreement. I don’t think that there is any reason to think that police shootings should be 63.7% white or 13.7% black because the population is 63.7% white and 13.7% black.

    The discrepancy you notice (and I acknowledged while also minimizing it) may not actually be due to “institutional racism,” especially after over 50 years of civil rights advances. Some (not me) might chalk this discrepancy up to black people’s propensity for crime.

    I chalk it up to a general disregard that police have for criminal suspects as well as the Blue Shield of Silence that protects police from misconduct. Do you not see how that explains both the high number of black deaths (relative to their population) as well as the high number of white deaths? The race angle doesn’t explain anything.

  162. Bob@Youngstown says:

    @HarvardLaw92:

    Among other things, the crime rate dropped. Just saying.

    While that might be, my point is that approximately 85% of those that were considered suspicious and therefore stopped and frisked were never arrested or charged.

    85% of the time their suspicions were unfounded. Doesn’t seem like a good track record.
    @Jenos The Deplorable:

    and on to you being stupid

    Personal attack, final refuge of the ——–
    I don’t dispute your original statement on it’s face, that “police most often …..”, what I’m suggesting is that the police ability to correctly detect criminal activity based what they believe to be suspicious activity is questionable. Evidence the ‘criminal activity’ detection rate in the stop & frisk program as practiced and measured in NYC

  163. HarvardLaw92 says:

    @Loviatar:

    So anybody who doesn’t jump onto your emotionally driven crusade is a bigot. Got it …

    Oh, and not for nothing, but it’s recently come out that the wife of the shooting victim in Charlotte filed a domestic violence complaint less than a year ago in which she asserted, among other things, that her husband threatened her with a gun and should be considered a danger to law enforcement – because, and I quote “he carries a 9mm black”.

    Was she lying then, or is she lying now?

  164. HarvardLaw92 says:

    @Bob@Youngstown:

    85% of the time their suspicions were unfounded. Doesn’t seem like a good track record.

    You’re missing the point. It’s not to actually discover illegal activity, although that does sometimes happen and is an added benefit. The primary point is to create an environment of fear among potential wrongdoers such that they are motivated to take their activities elsewhere. It worked.

    Now that they have scaled it back, violent crime rates in the city are ticking back up.

  165. Grewgills says:

    @James Pearce:

    To be clear, this is the crux of our disagreement. I don’t think that there is any reason to think that police shootings should be 63.7% white or 13.7% black because the population is 63.7% white and 13.7% black.

    No reasonable person expects an exact match to demographics. However, when the discrepancies become stark and 2.3x the rate for one race over the other is pretty stark, it’s time to look for reasons.
    The general disregard that some police have for criminal suspects and the Blue line explain why police shootings in general are high. It doesn’t explain the discrepancy in fatal shooting rates between races. There has to be some other factor at play. Others have pointed to data that negate crime rate over all or violent crime rate specifically to account for that VERY large difference in rate. There has to be some other reason. We both acknowledge a long history of systemic racism in the US that despite recent advances still persists. Why can’t you accept that the remaining systemic racism is probably a large part of that disparity. You haven’t forwarded any other reasonable explanation for the disparity. Absent another reasonable explanation, it seems that systemic racism is all that remains.

    The race angle doesn’t explain anything.

    The ‘race angle’ explains the disparity.
    Systemic racism and racism against African Americans in the US includes both the idea of African American inferiority in intelligence and work ethic while simultaneously holding African Americans to be devious criminals and physical supermen capable of acts of physical violence much greater than white men. That idea that black men are capable of superhuman feats of violence goes some way towards explaining the ‘feared for my life’ excuse making when facing an African American that doesn’t arise in similar circumstances with white folk.

  166. Grewgills says:

    @HarvardLaw92:

    The primary point is to create an environment of fear among potential wrongdoers such that they are motivated to take their activities elsewhere. It worked.

    The point was to create an environment where cops could harass anyone they felt was undesirable to the point that they would stay away. The issue is what cops find undesirable. The fact that there was an 85% rate of stop and frisk that found nothing points to cops finding things other than actual criminal misconduct undesirable. Those reasons can vary from cop to cop, but it looks like most of those stopped and frisked weren’t white.

  167. Bob@Youngstown says:

    @HarvardLaw92: As to the crime rate ticking up, apparently there are some “studies” that confirm that, but there are also some that dispute that assessment. Maybe the best you can say at this moment is that there is insufficient data to really suggest that scaling back S&F is causing any crime rate change.

    As to the motivation you suggest “creating a environment of fear” , I’m hopeful that the justice system would not accept that as a reasonable rationale to justify warrant-less detention and search. Doesn’t the 4th Amendment suggest that searches need to be justified by probable cause (as contrasted with “to achieve an effect” – move out of the area).

    But then again, you are the lawyer, not I; so I might be very misguided.
    Interesting discussion – thanks

  168. HarvardLaw92 says:

    @Grewgills:

    Crime rates went down. That’s good enough for me.

  169. HarvardLaw92 says:

    @Bob@Youngstown:

    Simple external pat downs pursuant to a short-term detention do not constitute searches within the context of the 4th Amendment. The standard for effecting such a stop is simply reasonable suspicion. Settled law in this country for decades now [Terry v. Ohio, 392 U.S. 1 (1968)]

    Short version:

    Probable cause is not necessary to stop you – just reasonable suspicion (which is a very broad term in practice). Probable cause is relevant only when an substantiating a warrant for an actual search (turning out your pockets, searching through your vehicle, etc.) / effecting an arrest come into play.

    In the course of a Terry stop, police officers are allowed to conduct an external pat down pursuant to ensuring their own safety. They may not turn out your pockets, etc. without your consent, but anything in open view is fair game.

  170. James Pearce says:

    @Grewgills:

    You haven’t forwarded any other reasonable explanation for the disparity.

    It may have several small causes, not one big one.

    For instance, according to the Guardian’s count 13 states have managed to kill zero black people by police. Zero. Here’s the list: WY, UT, SD, ND, NM, NH, MT, ME, ID, HI, DE, CT, AK. These are some very white states, right? It makes a certain amount of sense that they would have no black deaths. There are fewer black people.

    But then you look at states with large black populations and high police death counts. There are over 2 million black people in CA, and 17 of them were killed by police. (For comparison’s sake, CA police killed 37 white people.)

    Now take those 2 million black residents of CA and swap them out with the whole population of NM, a state with a comparable population size. NM police have killed 21 people this year. And yet, our hypothetical CA-in-exile state has suffered 17 deaths.

    In other words, considering the whitest states aren’t killing any black people and the blackest states are killing black people with the same disregard that a mixed state kills its residents, maybe the discrepancy isn’t actually due to institutional racism at all.

  171. Grewgills says:

    @HarvardLaw92:
    So, if segregating certain parts of town lowers the crime rate you are ok with that?

  172. Grewgills says:

    @James Pearce:
    1) Hawai’i is right about the least white state in the US, less than 25% of the population is white. Hawai’i also has the lowest rate of gun deaths period. Tighter gun control than most states and a 2000 mile plus moat that prevents easy importation helps on that front.
    2) California is almost 80% white and less than 8% black. Your stats indicate a very high disparity there; a little over twice as many white deaths and nearly 10x the white population. That is pretty stark. Do you have any reasonable explanation for that that doesn’t involve institutional racism?
    3) You have still proposed no reason other than institutional racism for the radical disparity. All you have is, well maybe it’s not. Without some other explanation that isn’t near good enough. On virtually any topic that didn’t touch on race if there was long historical precedent to explain something and no other compelling explanation you would go with the long historical precedent as the explanation. On this one topic you steadfastly refuse despite not being able to forward a single reasonable alternative explanation, why is that?

  173. Bob@Youngstown says:

    @HarvardLaw92: Stop & Frisk practice in NYC was ruled unconstitutional.
    As my nephew likes to say “the law is whatever the judge says it is – until and unless overruled”.

    So, Terry stop argument notwithstanding, the S&F practice was ruled to be unconstitutional as practiced by NY.
    Isn’t that the reality?

  174. James Pearce says:

    @Grewgills:

    Hawai’i is right about the least white state in the US

    I listed 12 others states. At any rate, HI may not be majority white, but white people outnumber black people 10 to 1. And yet, there were zero black men killed by police. The point stands.

    You have still proposed no reason other than institutional racism for the radical disparity.

    Yes, I have. And I have asked repeatedly for evidence of institutional racism.

    Again, the whitest states killed almost no black people and the blackest states killed very few of them. The blackest state in the union –Georgia– killed 7 black people. Seven out of over 3 million.

    This country has seen actual institutional racism. This is not it.

  175. HarvardLaw92 says:

    @Bob@Youngstown:

    Actually a federal district judge ruled that it was unconstitutional, only to see the Second Circuit Court of Appeals block her order and remove her from the case. It remains on appeal and in diminished use in the city. As of today Terry remains the ruling precedent with regard to the program.

  176. HarvardLaw92 says:

    @Grewgills:

    That happens regardless without any official intervention required

  177. HarvardLaw92 says:

    @Grewgills:

    Non-Hispanic whites actually make up only 38% of California’s population.

  178. Bob@Youngstown says:

    I should know better than to argue with a JD, but my recollection was that her ruling on constitutionality was not overturned or vacated, what the was blocked was her order requiring the NYPD to adopt new practices.

    Subsequently the city asked the Federal Appeals Court to vacate her orders. In November 2013 that Federal Appellate court rejected the city’s motion.

    The city has since declined to further their appeal.

    Isn’t that the correct chronology?

  179. HarvardLaw92 says:

    @Bob@Youngstown:

    The parties reached an agreement to adopt the remedial agreement, which is limited to trespass stops around TAP buildings. It doesn’t affect the larger practice itself.

  180. Bob@Youngstown says:

    @HarvardLaw92: I hope that you will bear with me just a bit longer.
    The Stop and Frisk program as practiced in NYC has been suggested by the Trump campaign as a practice that ought/might be emulated by other US cities.

    The Clinton campaign responded with: “it was ruled unconstitutional”. The Trump campaign responds with “no, it’s not”. Locally (here in Ohio), the Trump campaign is saying that Clinton’s saying that S&F was ruled unconstitutional is just another example of Hillary’s Lies.

    So what I’d like to hear from someone who is “learned in law”, is simply who is telling the truth.

    It seems to me that it boils down to this: either a judge ruled it unconstitutional and that ruling (on constitutionality) still stands OR no judge ruled it unconstitutional or alternatively an unconstitutional ruling has been reversed on appeal.

    I understand that it’s not the label “Stop and Frisk” that was being adjudicated, rather it is how it was practiced in NYC at the time the lawsuit was filed.

    So who is telling the truth?

  181. Grewgills says:

    @James Pearce:

    Yes, I have. And I have asked repeatedly for evidence of institutional racism.

    1) No, you haven’t. You have hand waved about which states kill more black people without making any suggestion as to why a higher rate of black people are killed than white people, while dismissing the more than 2x greater rate as somehow irrelevant.
    2) You know institutional racism exists, you have admitted as much. You know the results of the follow up by the feds in Fergussen. Institutional racism accounts for higher adversarial police contact with minorities. Do you really think otherwise? Higher incidents of adversarial contact with police goes a long way towards explaining the disparate rates of death by police.

  182. Grewgills says:

    @HarvardLaw92:
    Whether or not that happens on its own, your previous statement implied that you were fine with police enforced segregation if that lowered crime rates or at least violent crime rates. Are you really ok with that?

  183. HarvardLaw92 says:

    @Grewgills:

    Actually I didn’t say that at all. I said I was fine with stop and frisk as a concept because it reduces crime rates. You layered on a racial implication which I never espoused.

  184. HarvardLaw92 says:

    @Bob@Youngstown:

    A district judge in NY ruled it unconstitutional AS IMPLEMENTED by the city of New York. In other word, the specific manner in which NYCPD carried it out she found problematic. Her ruling has no effect outside of the state of NY, is applicable only to a single department and it doesn’t overrule Terry. The city’s response was to agree to change its program, not to eliminate it.

  185. James Pearce says:

    @Grewgills:

    You have hand waved about which states kill more black people without making any suggestion as to why a higher rate of black people are killed than white people, while dismissing the more than 2x greater rate as somehow irrelevant.

    I have tried repeatedly to explain it.

    And you continue to make statements like ” a higher rate of black people are killed than white people,” even after I demonstrated that twice as many white people are getting killed.

    If your neighbor the dentist was getting paid twice as much as you, you would definitely be aware he’s getting paid at a “higher rate,” even if he said, “Compared to other dentists, I don’t make that much.”

    What you’re forgetting when you focus on population counts is that the black population is not spread out evenly. They are clustered in a band of states that go from TX up to MD, with sizable minorities in CA and NY and some of the midwest states with larger cities.

    You’ve exhaustedly pointed out that black people are 14% of the national population, which is true, but you conveniently ignore this clustering. In MS, for instance, black people make up 37% of the population, not 14%. LA is 32% black, not 14%. GA is 31% black, not 14%.

    On the other end of the spectrum, MT is less than 1% black. Oregon is 2% black.

    Now let’s look at MS because this illustrates PERFECTLY what I’ve been trying to argue these past few days.

    Fact: Black people make up 37% of the population of MS.

    Fact: 8 people were killed by police in MS, 5 white people and 3 black people.

    Fact: 37% of 8 is 3.

    So if the question is, are black men being killed “at a higher rate” than white men, the answer is no. Twice as many white men are being killed than black men.

    If the question is, are the killings of black men “disproportionate” to their distribution in the population, the answer is not if you look at how that population is actually distributed in the states.

    I do agree that institutional racism still exists, but I no longer believe that race plays a very big role in very many police shootings. (Leaving the possibility open that it plays a role in some.)

  186. Bob@Youngstown says:

    @HarvardLaw92: Thanks, I believe that you have answered my question, the Clinton camp is speaking the truth. Stop and Frisk (as implemented at the time of the complaint) was ruled unconstitutional, and no subsequent court ruling has changed that.

    Admittedly, a new or different version of S&F might meet a constitutional test, but Trump was not advocating for a new of different version (or at least he failed to make that distinction).

  187. HarvardLaw92 says:

    @Bob@Youngstown:

    S&F as previously implemented by NYCPD. The agreement is time limited and honestly is more show than go. Make a few tweaks to placate the plaintiffs, but keep the overall program itself intact. Truthfully, the program as implemented in the city was relatively mild. I can think of several places in Nassau & Suffolk, among others, which are quite a bit more aggressive.

  188. Bob@Youngstown says:

    @HarvardLaw92: I believe that Trump was suggesting that other cities emulate the Stop & Frisk practices of NYC under the Giuliani and Bloomberg administrations.
    Trump:”In New York City it (Stop & Frisk) was so incredible, the way it worked. Now, we had a very good mayor…..” Notice he’s speaking in past tense.

  189. Grewgills says:

    @HarvardLaw92:
    My original comment was

    The point was to create an environment where cops could harass anyone they felt was undesirable to the point that they would stay away. The issue is what cops find undesirable. The fact that there was an 85% rate of stop and frisk that found nothing points to cops finding things other than actual criminal misconduct undesirable. Those reasons can vary from cop to cop, but it looks like most of those stopped and frisked weren’t white.

    To which you replied

    Crime rates went down. That’s good enough for me.

    So, the implication is pretty clear that you don’t care if cops are harassing people for not being white as long as the crime rate goes down.

  190. Grewgills says:

    @James Pearce:
    So your hypothesis is that for some reason states with higher African American populations have cops that shoot people at a high enough rate to skew the national data to the point that African Americans are killed at more than two times the rate of white people?

  191. HarvardLaw92 says:

    @Grewgills:

    The implication is that I mostly don’t care if cops are harassing people for any reason whatsoever as long as the crime rate goes down. Again, you’re the one trying to layer some sort of dislike of certain racial groups onto that opinion, which in reality plays no part in it. They could be solely harassing Caucasians and my opinion of the practice wouldn’t change in the least. If it reduces crime, and the evidence makes it pretty clear that it did, then I’m fine with it.

    The part you’re evidently missing is that is doesn’t bother me – because it benefits me but doesn’t impact me. Regardless of who they target, I can be damn near certain it 1) won’t be me and 2) will reduce the chances that I’ll get mugged. You’re trying to conflate being self-absorbed (which isn’t remotely a secret and for which I make zero apologies …) with being a racist. No joy, sorry.

  192. Grewgills says:

    @HarvardLaw92:
    1) It was shown to have disparate racial racial impact and you don’t care because you perceive a benefit to you.
    2) If it did impact you you would care.
    That doesn’t necessarily make you a racist, just someone so self absorbed that they don’t care about racism as long as it doesn’t effect them.

  193. HarvardLaw92 says:

    @Grewgills:

    Bingo

  194. Grewgills says:

    @HarvardLaw92:
    So, you are perhaps not personally racist, but a tacit supporter of any institutional racism that might benefit you. That is quite the ethical position to stake out.

  195. HarvardLaw92 says:

    @Grewgills:

    but a tacit supporter of any institutional racism that might benefit you

    I’m a tacit supporter of crime control tactics which work. Who those tactics impact, be they black, white, brown, purple, or plaid, is not my concern so long as I’m not personally inconvenienced and I don’t get mugged.

    That is quite the ethical position to stake out.

    I’m a Wall Street attorney. Have we met? What did you expect? 🙄

  196. Grewgills says:

    @HarvardLaw92:

    What did you expect? 🙄

    At least a modicum of concern for justice and decency.

  197. James Pearce says:

    @Grewgills:

    So your hypothesis is that for some reason states with higher African American populations have cops that shoot people at a high enough rate to skew the national data to the point that African Americans are killed at more than two times the rate of white people?

    My hypothesis, to be blunt, is that the left is full of shit on this issue.

    Black people are not killed “at more than two times the rate of white people.” There is not a single state in the union where this is occurring. Not one.

    to skew the national data

    To be clear, I do not suggest the national data is skewed. I suggest it’s being misinterpreted.

    There is not a single state in the union where white people are so privileged that they do not get shot by the police. To the contrary, most of the people being shot by police are white.

    There is not a single state in the union where black people are being killed “at a higher rate” than white people, whether that state has 3 million black people (GA) or 4000 (MT).

    This is actually a pretty good illustration why one should not get their ideology from celebrities and activists. The celebrity has no expertise, and the activist has no objectivity.

  198. Grewgills says:

    There is not a single state in the union where black people are being killed “at a higher rate” than white people, whether that state has 3 million black people (GA) or 4000 (MT).

    That is simply false. I’m looking at graphs here and don’t have the time to track down exact numbers, but am comparing them to demographic information.
    CA ~38% NHW ~8% AA and roughly 2x as many non-hispanic whites killed as blacks. That is a higher rate for black people.
    TX ~52% NHW ~12% AA and roughly 2x as many NHW killed as AAs. That is a higher rate for black people.
    The same holds true for FL, IL, LA, MD, and for most states. In fact you seem to have cherry picked some of the few states where your assertion is true. You could also have mentioned WY, SD, MS (surprisingly), ID, MN, or ND.
    Care to rethink your position in light of the facts not lining up with your assertions?

  199. Grewgills says:

    @James Pearce:

    There is not a single state in the union where white people are so privileged that they do not get shot by the police. To the contrary, most of the people being shot by police are white.

    1) No one has argued that privilege is a complete and total freedom from any negative outcome. Quit with the straw men in your privilege arguments.
    2) There is no state in the union with a majority black population.
    3) Whites make up a FAR greater percentage of the population than any other ethnic grouping, so that statement means very little.

  200. James Pearce says:

    @Grewgills:

    CA ~38% NHW ~8% AA and roughly 2x as many non-hispanic whites killed as blacks. That is a higher rate for black people.

    Listen to yourself. Twice as many whites killed as blacks, and yet you still say that blacks are killed at a higher rate? Why, because you have this idea in your head that demographics and police shootings should be so perfectly correlated? Because in your interest for “social justice” you’re willing to overlook the fact that police are killing twice as many white people to make the “you’re killing me at a higher rate” complaint? What, you guys thought you could reduce police shootings for black people while leaving the issue of police shooting white people completely unaddressed?

    Ultimately this is why I have no use for the social justice movement, though vaguely sharing the same goals.

    Point out that police shoot twice as many white people and they don’t go, “Hmm, this ‘police shootings’ problem is bigger than I thought.”

    Rather, their instinct is to go, “No one suffers more than my people!” It becomes this pissing contest of suffering, the Pain Olympics where 400 mothers weeping for their sons get the silver medal because they’re white and privileged and their ancestors owned people. It’s absurd.

    Also:

    “No one has argued that privilege is a complete and total freedom from any negative outcome.”

    No one? Please inform the rest of the folks in the movement then.

    I have personally endured multiple lectures from people who only know that I’m a white male, nothing else, only informing me of just how privileged I am but also excoriating me for not even noticing.

    Now there’s supposedly some nuance?

    I mean, these kind of deficiencies are why I’m a liberal interested in actual justice and not a progressive interested in “social” justice.

    I do not feel comfortable pretending the problem of police shootings is actually two problems: systemic racism for black people and “who cares” for white people. No, it’s all the same problem affecting the same people with the same amount of severity.

    Gold medals for all.

  201. Grewgills says:

    @James Pearce:

    Listen to yourself. Twice as many whites killed as blacks, and yet you still say that blacks are killed at a higher rate?

    Do you understand how rates work? If there are roughly 5x as many non-hispanic whites as blacks and they are killed at 2 x the rate (rather than 5x) then there is a remarkable difference in rates, over 2x the rate for blacks. This goes directly against the assertion you made in your previous comment and rather than acknowledge this glaring error of fact in your argument you go back to doubling down on demographics don’t need to match police shootings.
    There is more than one problem here. You are focused on one so entirely to the exclusion of the other that you try to say it doesn’t exist. Everyone that has argued this point with you here acknowledges that there are at least two problems: excessive police violence and institutional racism in law enforcement. Why can’t you see this?

    I have personally endured multiple lectures from people who only know that I’m a white male, nothing else, only informing me of just how privileged I am but also excoriating me for not even noticing.

    I have seen at least several of your interactions on this topic and even Loviatar doesn’t live up to your caricature. I’m not sure who these movement people are that you are referring to, but from my experience it is your denial of the obvious fact that white privilege exists* that leads to people lambasting you and your perception that your caricature is their argument.

    I do not feel comfortable pretending the problem of police shootings is actually two problems: systemic racism for black people and “who cares” for white people.

    It is two problems, just not the two you named. It is excessive police violence for everyone and an even higher rate of police violence against poc because of systemic racism. It appears that your discomfort in being told you are privileged in some way has cut off your ability to see this.

    No, it’s all the same problem affecting the same people with the same amount of severity.

    It isn’t affecting all people with the same amount of severity. I linked you the rates and you are dead wrong on that front.

    * despite your admitting to nearly every particular that makes up the frame

  202. James Pearce says:

    @Grewgills:

    Do you understand how rates work?

    Do you understand we’re talking about human beings and not statistical abstractions?

    Do you really think the proper “rate” we should be discussing is correlated to population counts rather than “rates of incidence?” Is this your preference because it supports the conclusion you have already reached? Are you sure you’re not noticing a correlation and mistaking it for a causation?

    Also:

    the obvious fact that white privilege exists

    This conversation would be much different if you tried to persuade me with your argument instead of tried to get me to accept the doctrines of your faith.

    Perhaps it’s not so obvious? Perhaps it’s more of an impression than a fact? And perhaps its existence can be disputed or questioned?

    At any rate, I’m done on this one. I leave you with this, the latest gem from the social justice movement:

    Tim Burton blasted as racist for not featuring black or Asian kids in Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children

    He’s not accused, mind you, of saying or doing anything racist. But he’s racist cuz he’s a white guy making white people movies. Blegh.

  203. Grewgills says:

    @James Pearce:

    Do you understand we’re talking about human beings and not statistical abstractions?

    Yes, people are being killed at a higher rate than they should be. Some people are being killed at a considerably higher rate because they were born black instead of being born white. Both of these things are a problem. You have made assertions that the rates aren’t different if you look at it state by state and you have been shown to be wrong. You have yet to acknowledge this.

    This conversation would be much different if you tried to persuade me with your argument instead of tried to get me to accept the doctrines of your faith.

    We’ve been through this. I have brought up to you and you have acknowledged every particular of what constitutes white male privilege in a previous thread. You acknowledge that institutional racism exists. You acknowledge that institutional racism negatively impacts minorities when looking for work etc. You have acknowledged the existence of institutional sexism and the negative impacts it has on women when looking for work etc. That is all privilege is, not having those additional barriers. So, yet it is obvious. You just have a visceral dislike of the term and a visceral dislike of people labeled SJWs. This visceral dislike seems to drive your every argument on this topic.
    Every time some SJW or group of SJWs goes a bit overboard you chalk it up as more proof that every SJW and everyone who uses any of their frames is wrong about everything. You need to take a step back and look at the arguments actually being made by people here instead of framing everything as though you are talking to some college freshman that just took their first ____ studies course and is fired up to set the world right.

  204. James Pearce says:

    @Grewgills:

    Some people are being killed at a considerably higher rate because they were born black instead of being born white.

    What utter bullshit.

    Sorry, but this has taken on the aura of “fact” in your mind and I’m afraid nothing can dislodge it. Tamir Rice wasn’t killed because he was born black instead of being born white. He was killed because he was trying to sell loosies and the police didn’t like that and in this country you must do what the police want or they’ll kill you, black, white, Hispanic, or other; your race doesn’t matter.

    Police state authoritarianism. Full stop.

  205. Grewgills says:

    @James Pearce:
    The one alternative explanation you have come up with for the gross (over 2x) racial disparity in police killings, that it is just a disparity between states, has been shown to be ”utter bullshit”. I provided the link that shows the disparities remain within the majority of states. You have yet to acknowledge that your only alternative explanation was completely false and only supported with cherry picked data. You have no other explanation other than institutional racism. You are reduced now to the equivalent of putting your fingers in your ears and singing lalalalalala.

  206. James Pearce says:

    @Grewgills:

    You are reduced now to the equivalent of putting your fingers in your ears and singing

    Because I don’t buy your “higher rate” BS when police kill 2 white people for every black person?

    How bout this? It seems like a white man’s “privilege” is to be shot by the cops twice as often, and have no one –not Colin Kaepernick, not Beyonce, not you– give a crap. Social justice indeed.

  207. Grewgills says:

    @James Pearce:

    Because I don’t buy your “higher rate” BS when police kill 2 white people for every black person?

    Again, you don’t understand what rates are. Yes, twice as many (or thereabouts) white people are killed by the police as black people and people, including me, certainly do care. What you can’t wrap your head around is that there are less than 1/4 as many black people as white people, so even if twice as many white folk are killed, black folk are being killed at more than twice the rate. For some reason you can only see one problem here, when virtually everyone else here can see two. So, yes, repeating twice as many white people killed while ignoring the relative populations sizes is the keyboard equivalent of sticking your fingers in your ears and going lalalalalala. And your ‘police killings don’t need to exactly match demographics’ when one demographic is being killed (yes real flesh and blood people being killed) at an alarmingly higher rate than another is more of the same. Your fervent desire to explain away white male privilege (because I assume you don’t feel privileged) has blinded you to statistical realities that have real human consequences.
    I’m pretty sure that if white folk were being killed at twice the rate as black folk (that would be more than 4x as often as they are being killed now) you would be shocked and would all of a sudden understand how rates work as a function of population and your arguments that demography doesn’t matter when looking at these statistics would vanish.

  208. Grewgills says:

    @James Pearce:

    There is not a single state in the union where black people are being killed “at a higher rate” than white people, whether that state has 3 million black people (GA) or 4000 (MT).

    Remember this. I do.
    That was your single explanation for the disparity in police violence across racial demographics. When you were shown that was wrong, you simply ignored it and moved on to your current people aren’t statistics and people don’t complain enough about white people getting killed by police arguments.