Words of Advice:

"We have it totally under control. It's one person coming from China. It's going to be just fine." -- Donald Trump, 1/22/2020

“We will not see diseases like the coronavirus come here..and isn't it refreshing when contrasting it with the awful presidency of President Obama."
-- Trump Press Secretary Kayleigh McEnany, 2/25/20

"I don't take responsibility for anything." --Donald Trump, 3/13/20

"If Something Seems To Be Too Good To Be True, It's Best To Shoot It, Just In Case." -- Fiona Glenanne

"Flying the Airplane is More Important than Radioing Your Plight to a Person on the Ground Who is Incapable of Understanding or Doing Anything About It." -- Unknown

"There seems to be almost no problem that Congress cannot, by diligent efforts and careful legislative drafting, make ten times worse." -- Me

"What the hell is an `Aluminum Falcon'?" -- Emperor Palpatine

"Eck!" -- George the Cat

Tuesday, April 28, 2015

A Couple of Thoughts About Balmer

First, I'd suggest you read BadTux's piece on what the cops call "black dog runs".

Second, one thing I keep thinking of is that, back during the debate on Obamacare, one would see no shortage of posts from Wingnuts, along with protests, promising "Second Amendment Solutions" and crap along the lines of watering the tree of freedom with blood. Some rancher grazes his cows on Federal land, the Feds get upset, and before you know it, busloads of angry old white dudes are out there with rifles, pointing them at the cops. Same sort of folks, promising revolution and so on and so forth.*

But then you have places where the oppression of the population by the cops is not theoretical or a construct of the minds of those who put tinfoil linings in their ballcaps. The harassment and abuse of people who are guilty of no more than going about their business with skin darker than a sheet of cheap typing paper, harassment that takes place in city after city, need hardly be related here. One need only reflect on the fact that when police forces act so far outside of the law that the Department of Justice steps in and consent decrees result, those are almost never brought about by the cops abusing white folk.

The Baltimore cops killed a man whose sole crime was not wanting to talk to them. They denied him medical attention, then they not only tuned him up a little in the back of a paddy wagon, they crushed his larynx and snapped his spine.

And people aren't happy with being beaten by the cops and yes, they don't believe that they'll get a fair shake from the justice system. Because they don't. When the cops don't act according to the rule of law, only a fool would expect that the people on the other side of the batons, the tasers, and the guns will respect the rule of law. Too many people, including cops, seem to confuse the meaning of the words "respect" and "fear".

Stopping a guy from grazing cows merits an armed response. Murdering a man in the back of a paddy wagon doesn't, at least, if one pays any heed to the Right on this. The former is a response to oppression. The latter is criminal action, if you buy their line.

Yes, a lot of what goes on in any riot is opportunism and hooliganism. Yet, one should not lose sight of how well the ground was prepared for it.
* Protesting other abuses of the powers that be, well, that's off-limits. One need only review the response of the Wingnuts to the Occupy Wall Street protests, a response that tended towards "give them a whiff of grapeshot".


mikey said...

When people are oppressed, beaten, robbed, killed, harassed and their families tormented, and they have no power, no agency, no ability to ask for redress, whether it be in Ferguson, Baltimore, East Jerusalem, Prague or the Bastille the time comes for violent resistance.

America is engaged in a multi-decade low level urban civil war, a kind of de facto apartheid, and almost all of the violence has been in one direction - against the occupied population. Now, with ubiquitous cameras the nation as a whole is beginning to learn what it's like to live inside the wire in places like Baltimore, and we'll either get real policy changes or more violent resistance...

B said...

THe difference is, of course, the rioting.

Protests are ok. Demanding the trial of the cops is ok. Sit-ins or blocking of the courthouse or even the lobby of the police station are Kosher.

Burning and looting, not so much.

CenterPuke88 said...

So B, after all those things, plus over 100 lawsuits lost or settled for millions in the last 4 years, are done, nothing happens. You simply expect "those" people to say, we must have more sit-ins?

Portions of the U.S. are now close to what South Africa was in the 70's and 80's. As we hire more and more cops who view the citizens as the enemy, this will get worse. Cameras may, just may, get us out of this spiral, but I wouldn't count on it.

Murphy's Law said...

The "innocent youth" who died in Baltimore had a criminal record that included 18 prior arrests. He was a known drug user/dealer observed in a known drug sales area, which was why the police were contacting him. He was no better than Mike Brown, Eric Garner or Trayvon Martin. Call me when someone truly innocent and involved in no wrongdoing whatsoever is killed. Meantime, the rioters in Baltimore need to be utterly and totally crushed by a massive police response that sends every single looter and rock-thrower to jail or the hospital.

Oh, and before the usual poster starts calling me a racist again in lieu of any actual attempt at discussion, I also think that the Bundys and their whack-job supporters should have been put down equally hard. Skin color doesn't play a role in how the forces of law and order should respond to you when you're a violent anarchist who threatens others for your own gain.

Peter said...

Thanks for posting this, Comrade Misfit. I've taken the liberty of quoting from it in my own perspective on Baltimore:


Comrade Misfit said...

Since when, Murphy, is running from the cops a death penalty offense? They crushed his windpipe and broke his neck over that.

And none of that bugs you?

The unwarranted brutality that has the city paying out six-figure settlements time after time, none of that bothers you?

Sport Pilot said...

CM, your making a blanket statement of police wrongdoing at face value. Something isn't right in all of this and the truth's going to have to be ferreted out. No, running from the police doesn't justify an offenders death. I'm of a suspicious nature but experience has imbued caution in immediate blame games.

Murphy's Law said...

We don't know what happened yet. The Usual Suspects didn't wait to find out despite the process suspending the officers involved and starting an investigation. But then this rioting isn't about the dead guy--it's about scumbags wanting free stuff and seeing an excuse to steal it.

CenterPuke88 said...

Murphy, I'll cut to the chase:

1) Read a recent story by a classmate and teammate of Freddie Gray and see how being white resulted in a lesser sentence for a more serious set of crimes.

2) The police were NOT "looking" for Freddie, and had no legal reason to chase and detain him.

3) The police have already admitted misconduct.

4) Drag your soft, pale butt off the chair in front of your computer and out into a community like that Freddie and the rioters live in. I lived in New Orleans and I know the hopelessness that exists in these places. When the police ARE the enemy, when NO ONE will believe you, when education is underfunded and cheapened, when there is NO WAY OUT, you will respond with rage.

5) You are a racist (happy?). As a note, I refuted your arguments and you declined to respond, who isn't discussing again?

Comrade Misfit said...

Comment Rule 1, people.

In short: Arguing is fine. Personal attacking is not.

Play nice, people.

w3ski said...

Well Said.
Thank You.

Anonymous said...

When the cops don't act according to the rule of law, only a fool would expect that the people on the other side of the batons, the tasers, and the guns will respect the rule of law. Too many people, including cops, seem to confuse the meaning of the words "respect" and "fear".

That is soooo true. Except I'd say that the police conflate the meanings of fear & respect, and if you aren't showing fear, then you are disrespecting them. And once disrespected, they feel free to act out in a way to regain the fear, and therefore, the 'respect'.

I'd also note this video, which shows what goes on, when you call the cops.


CenterPuke88 said...

Steve, another issue occurs because "respect" is often viewed differently depending upon the person. As Badtux frequently notes, those uppity teens are expected to behave in a manor far more deferential than a monied businessman. To think for a second this isn't noticed is foolish.

A good bit of the issue is that the police deal, everyday, with scum and villains, and thus slowly start to view all civilians as such. The numbers that show police rights violations and issues may actually increase after an office has about 14 years on the force bring this home.

My apologies to Comrade and Murphy.

Murphy's Law said...


You haven't refuted a thing with anthing resembling a fact. Let's take your points by the numbers:

1. Your acendotal offering about sentencing fails to account for prior arrest history or pre-sentence reports. Gray had 18 prior arrests. That tends to result in higher sentences, as does a poor pre-sentence report.

2. How do you know that the police had no legal reason to detain him? seriously, were you there? Do you have access to their reports? I doubt that they just decided to go jack the random black guy. They obviously had a reason to attempt to contact him. But if you have PROOF to the contrary...

3. They admitted that they should have gotten him medical treatment sooner--for his alleged BREATHING problem. That doesn't equate to them beating him or admitting to same.

4. You don't know me so I'll give you a pass here. Suffice it to say that I have more time in scumbag communities than you ever have. I lived and worked in New Orleans. And Detroit. And Washington DC. And I was on the streets in the worst neighborhoods regularly, doing things that you'll never do. So don't try to patronize me because you lived in New Orleans once. I've seen places in the Crescent City that you'll never see, and same goes for the other cities, too. And I've gone "hands-on" with more mutts than I can count in those cities.

5. Out of respect to the sit'e owner--and just out of a sense of maturity--I won't bother with this one. Some advice: It's not personal so don't take it that way.

Comrade Misfit said...

I will hazard a guess that, if the cops had wanted Mr. Gray for something, that information would have been released sometime between ten nanoseconds and three hours of the story first breaking.

If now, after all this time, they come up with a reason for wanting to detain him, I will assume that it was an after the fact rationalization.

Mr. Gray's spine was snapped and his larynx crushed. I have yet to hear any solid explanation on how such an injury, to a man who was in handcuffs and leg-irons, could be self-inflicted.

And with all due respect, how many priors he had is completely immaterial.

Murphy's Law said...

HIs priors are relevant only in terms of the specious argument that he got harsher sentencing than some white guy. As to what happened during or just prior to his arrest...that's why there's an investigation going on. And as far as I know, official autopsy results have not been released and all we have are the claims of his family. Personally, I'll wait for the official report.