Now, Back To The Madness

Oh. My.

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13 Comments

  1. Don’t forget that supporting Hillary “Superpredator” Clinton means supporting the death penalty, which means even if police don’t shoot black people, they still end up getting killed by the justice system anyway. That’s what real racism looks like.

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    • Clinton does not support the death penalty, she says, except in rare federal cases. And it sounds like she is moving away from any support for it. In any case, she has spoken out, time and again, against the way states have handled the issue and the injustices associated with it in too many cases, especially cases involving black people. So calling her a “superpredator” may make you feel better, but it is entirely false. As usual.

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      • King Beauregard

         /  July 23, 2016

        Tige isn’t saying that Clinton is a superpredator, Tige is saying that Hillary said all black people are superpredators. Another falsehood, but consider the source.

        Not that Bernie was honest about it either, but of course he is a pandering demagogue piece of crap and one should not expect any decency out of him. Back in the day he was right on board with the concept of “superpredators” too, even if he didn’t actually use the word (or at least we don’t have video of it):

        http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/bernie-sanders-superpredator_us_56bd00b9e4b08ffac124806b

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  2. Smart-phone photography has already changed the world, and will change it further as time goes by. Is this a good thing? One could make a case that it is not, but it is unstoppable. In a nation of over 300,000,000 people, bad stuff is going to happen somewhere. In this case, a cop, knowing that cops are ambushed nowadays, got scared and did the unthinkable. Maybe he had insufficient training. In every class there’s always someone at the bottom. Shit happens, not that that’s any excuse. This example is egregious, but it’s just one case, not a tidal wave of change. Somehow, people need to get this stuff in perspective. Maybe it just takes time.

    In this new reality, in almost every situation, the world is watching through a lens. It isn’t the screw-ups that have changed, it’s the awareness, the evidence, and it makes it look like it’s likely to happen anywhere, any time. My son remarked the other day that he was apprehensive about going to the mall to take a walk. Joplin hasn’t had a terrorist event ever, to my knowledge.

    Crime is actually down, nationwide. The National Review reported this last year:

    Today, the national crime rate is about half of what it was at its height in 1991. Violent crime has fallen by 51 percent since 1991, and property crime by 43 percent. In 2013 the violent crime rate was the lowest since 1970. And this holds true for unreported crimes as well. According to the National Crime Victimization Survey, since 1993 the rate of violent crime has declined from 79.8 to 23.2 victimizations per 1,000 people.

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    • President Obama tried to make that point about crime today. Perception is reality and people these days base their perception on what they see on social media, etc. And what they are seeing is mostly bullshit.

      I think, though, that this particular case is confirmation of what Black Lives Matter people have been trying to say. Black people don’t seem to get much benefit of the doubt in many encounters with the police. That second-grade teacher incident in Austin is horrific in that it clearly shows what was in the mind of the officer because he told us.

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  3. Just had an op-ed published this morning – July 21 – in the Globe. Surprising since I just sent it in yesterday. Anyway the topic is a discussion about race. You will recognize some of the verbiage since I have used it recently in some of your posts here. http://www.joplinglobe.com/opinion/columns/herb-van-fleet-the-conversation-about-race/article_d103e5f4-f0c0-5196-9b66-aa7fd0506edc.html

    The takeaway, based on my research, is that the problem in the black community is not white cops, it’s the blacks themselves. And trial by cell phone video is unhelpful and only adds more fuel to make a small fire bigger than it needs to be. Some good graphics on this point can be found at https://infogr.am/Black-34991937313

    Space did not permit discussion of the role of the news media and its complicity in promoting racial tensions. And then there is political correctness, where the race of the victims and the victimizers are rarely mentioned.

    If the “Black Lives Matter” movement is truly about protecting black lives, they need only look as far as their own back yards.

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    • I guess I should clarify that I did not come to my conclusions lightly. In fact, I didn’t want to, effectively, “blame the victim” at all. Furthermore, the vast majority of African Americans want everything every other American wants – to be left alone and to make their own path in the pursuit of happiness. It’s just that a disproportionate number of them are living in poverty and in bad neighborhoods. And it’s mostly in those areas where there is a breakdown of the traditional family; specifically, absent fathers. These are the breeding grounds of crime.

      In my research, I found that 80% of the criminals in our crowded prisons – again with a disproportionate number of blacks – grew up without a father or with a father who was mostly absent. As a result, there is not much guidance handed down as to right and wrong. Single moms are too busy, sometimes working several jobs, trying to hold the family together. And to the extent fathers are authority figures but out of the picture, well, there are consequences to that.

      The forgoing considered, it’s the blacks who need to move in and help clean up the mess more than any others. They shouldn’t have to, and it’s grossly unfair, but tragically that’s where it is. They can blame the whites all they want for their conditions, but the whites can’t put the toothpaste back in the tube. That’s why I say that the Black Lives Matter groups should look in their own backyards, or at least start there.

      It’s also frustrating to see that too many whites have remained racists since the civil rights movement. Hate groups continue apace – simpleminded, gun-toting bigots. And their sympathizers are interspersed throughout the white population; in schools, at work, and yes, in our justice system, including racist cops. And those conditions, together with the white privilege I described in my Op-Ed, puts the black community in tough spot, which is obviously a gross understatement.

      There is more, of course, and the problem of racism will not be resolved in a few paragraphs. In fact, it won’t be resolved by words at all. Somehow all the races need to get together and agree on mutually beneficial courses of action to help mitigate the racial problems. Echoes of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

      Herb

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      • Herb,

        I am glad you wrote to at least attempt to clarify your remarks and to admit that there is still racism among whites that makes it harder to live black lives. We have, I think, been down this road before. I wish I had more time to explore the issues involved in depth, but I can’t right now. But let’s start with a couple of things you said:

        It’s just that a disproportionate number of them are living in poverty and in bad neighborhoods.

        Single moms are too busy, sometimes working several jobs, trying to hold the family together.

        Both of those situations are related to past racist practices. And both are fixable. And since white people largely control the tools that can fix them, it is white people who have to step up and mitigate the damage done to neighborhoods through redlining practices and see to it that single moms don’t have to work two jobs.

        But then there is this you also wrote:

        And to the extent fathers are authority figures but out of the picture, well, there are consequences to that.

        I will simply post this again:

        black-fatherhood.png

        Given what we know, it is something of a myth that black fathers aren’t involved in their kids lives, whether they are directly in the home or not.

        In any case, I hope you got to see the video of the autistic boy and the man trying to help him in the street, a man who was shot lying down with his hands up. Do you think that happened because of poor neighborhoods and bad schools? Because of some single mom working two jobs? Because of a missing father? Nope. It happened because black people scare white people, especially white police people.

        And I hope you got to see the video of the second-grade teacher getting manhandled by a cop in Austin, Texas, who then told her, recorded on police audio and video, that black people have “violent tendencies” that make white people naturally afraid of them.

        If you think black people should ignore such things, shouldn’t protest such things through groups like Black Lives Matter, then you are asking for too much from black people. They are citizens and when they feel like their lives are systemically valued less than white lives, that hurts us all.

        Duane

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        • Duane,

          Thanks for your good comments. I just have a couple of responses.
          You say, “. . . since white people largely control the tools that can fix them, it is white people who have to step up and mitigate the damage done to neighborhoods through redlining practices and see to it that single moms don’t have to work two jobs.”

          But whites have stepped up. It was whites who integrated schools, whites who passed civil rights law, whites who set up equal opportunity for employment and education, whites who developed housing assistance programs and neighborhood improvement districts and much more. The infrastructure to help blacks improve their lot in life is there and has been since the 50’s and 60’s and has even expanded. There is just this damnable color barrier we just can’t seem to get over. These programs are often sabotaged by whites, redlining being one. And enforcement is spotty at best. Jim Crow, it seems, is still alive and well.

          Then there is the perception problem. Some whites resent expending resources in black communities because they haven’t seen many positive results. They see blacks as presenting themselves as victims, and getting a small return on the investment in those areas. But, again, you and I know that more progress could be made if it weren’t for, you know, racism. On that point here’s a perspective from a black conservative woman http://conservativeblackchick.com/blog/2016/07/12/what-is-wrong-with-black-america/

          Thanks for chart on fatherhood. Had no idea such a thing was available. My only observation here is that, while the numbers look good for black dads overall, it the other black dads, the remaining 30% or so, who are MIA where the problem arises. When you have a high poverty rate area and absent fathers, combined with black teen pregnancies, there is a substantial increase in crime rates. See http://www.fathers.com/statistics-and-research/the-consequences-of-fatherlessness/

          And, yes, I’ve seen the video of the guy getting shot in the leg. Couldn’t miss it as it has been played at least 2 million times on the TV. (Makes me wonder why there’s no camera around when black cops shoot unarmed whites.) Anyway, yes, that incident is a tragedy. But it, like a handful of similar videos, is in no way an indictment of the 765,000 cops that DON’T shoot unarmed people. And we shouldn’t ignore such things (my god how can we in this day of instant news.)

          All of these ugly incidents should be taken in the context of the entire, though complex, actions by law enforcement officials. All I’m suggesting is that there is more to what’s going on here than what we see on cable and network news. As such it is becoming a red herring; much to the determent of the blacks who are seeking to reduce their fear of our police.

          Herb

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  4. If you extrapolate from the Jim Crow days, at which time it was “OK” to lynch black people in some locales in America, to today’s treatment of black people, I think you can see the extent to which black people have been persecuted unfairly. Has it “improved”? Yes, I guess so. It is not yet acceptable to anyone with a modicum of justice or empathy in their mental makeup. I can dimly understand (dimly because I haven’t lived through it) how black people must feel about the unjustified persecution they suffer. Are all black people automatically “not guilty” because they are black? Of course not, no more than they are automatically guilty because they are black. Until Justice gets her thumbs off the scales of justice for black people, and people of color, we will continue to see events that, in microcosm, appear to be senseless. Only the people who have the power to do it can change things (mostly, if not entirely white people) and they are clearly not ready to change. If the events of the last year has not prompted meaningful action, I’m not sure (and I am fearful of) what will.

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    • Well said, Michael. I especially appreciated your saying that the power to change these things rests mostly with white people. White people created most of the problems we see and white people should make it their business to fix them. If every bit of racism disappeared tomorrow, we would still have the legacy costs of past racism. That is just a fact. And white people need to at least acknowledge that fact before anything of consequence will get done. In the mean time, it is proper for black people to speak out, loudly, about the injustices they see as they attempt to live their lives.

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    • Thanks for linking to that article. Ryan Grim is one of my favorite writers. He almost always strikes the right tone. About the way officers in too many cases seem to ignore the wounded or dying, he wrote,

      It’s this nonchalance that gives weight to claims that too many police officers are operating more like law enforcement warriors than like public servants dedicated to the protection of others. Couple this with officers’ unwillingness to publicly shoulder any moral responsibility in these deaths, and we can only conclude that they believe victims have invited death upon themselves.

      If police officers want to convince the public they value black lives as much as any others, they need to start acting like the lives they’ve just taken matter.

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