You're right, there are two subjects, at least. One is black motorists being pulled over more than whites for nothing, black pedestrians being 'questioned' for nothing, and sometimes arrested for nothing and prosecuted for not having the right fellow in custody. That's a real problem.
But my problem is fear of cops being too macho to follow the law. I don't trust the highway patrol, I don't trust cops coming to my home to check out anything, and most cops are fine people who want to help me. When official policies protect cops who use their power to demand respect and arrest those who don't respect them, we live in a police state.
not to mention the political power and voice that comes from being organized. I'd bet union women would be pushing for single payer too, something that would both work and be fiscally responsible. It may be up to us to change the direction of our nation, and unions are building blocks for power. unions are the special interest groups who especially want to help workers.
not clever, they always do that, they're trained to trick people into leaving their walls. The time i opened my door to a bunch of police guys on my porch, they first shined the flashlights in my eyes blinding me, and second asked me to step outside, as if that would save me from them entering my home. Fortunately I knew enough to stay put, and I challenged them politely, I think you have the wrong address, I asked.
LIghts in eyes and step outside please are part of the training, and if you don't step outside, they are trained to make the request sound reasonable.
If you get stopped and they ask to search your car, say no. They'll pretend to have the right to arrest you if you say no, but they don't always tell the truth.
in the short term maybe no, but in the long term it's long overdue. Now there is a public debate about ordinary police abuse of power, and we find that some citizens think disrespecting the police is against the law, or that the police have a right to make up laws on the spot and if they're not obeyed they can cuff em.
I've been troubled about the lack of oversight in some police departments, that is completely unlike what i experienced as a child, when the neighborhood policeman was there to look out for me. Granted I'm white and black citizens never had this experience.
I think one needs to have some empathy for a people who've had it up to here, and will no longer suck up. Cops scare me, even more when they have dogs. I've experienced a police officer lying, I think anyone who drives with friends has had that experience. I'm extra deferential, and that's not a class issue, it's a fear issue. Gates is standing up for me when he demands his rights.
it's not, linfar, it's legal to call anyone any name. In a particular context, when there has been a crime, and when the perp may be inciting a crowd to help him escape, then it could be disorderly conduct, but that's based on the result of the name calling, not the fact of it. This does explain however why some think Gates was the one at fault. If you think it's against the law, then you think disrespecting the cop was breaking a law. We do have cops that think so too, apparently. They're supposed to know.
sorry, I didn't keep track of your personal blogging record, and leaped to the conclusion that you don't think the history of slavery is behind some entrenched 'beliefs' and you do think that we're now post racial. I do tend to wonder about why bloggers weigh in on one issue or another, with passion. But that was based on not knowing your opinions about what black Americans have had to endure, and assuming you think we're all treated alike. Many of my observations were formed by getting treatment that was special for a white girl, cause my same age sometimes better educated and more affluent friends didn't share my experiences, the contrary actually.
Empathy is putting yourself in the other guy's shoes, not putting him into yours. I wasn't thinking empathy when I thought, what a weird question, how is it the answer isn't well known to any liberal blogger?
good point, we are all in danger of rogue cops who may arrest us for not being 'properly deferential.' It's scary, for all of us, although it's mainly teenagers and people of color who get to experience it first hand.
not blatant, but perhaps wrong. Today's police have been shown to repress more than just black Americans. We'll never known if he'd been a white professor, if his neighbor would have called the police or if the officer would have been prone to believe that the fellow really did live in that nice house. I think calling people names isn't nice, it Gates had called him whitey or if he'd disbelieved that the fellow was a police officer after he'd refused to identify himself because he was white and he thought white people were more likely to impersonate police officers, you'd be on stronger ground for your blatant racism opinion. The fact that he jumped to the conclusion that he would have been believed and would treated with respect had he not been black shows that he has the idea that cops may give people of color a harder time. Statistically he'd have been right, but in this case he could not know who else this cop would arrest for no crime. I think he should have accused the fellow of fatheadism.
sure. for 400 years black men, women and children were considered to be property, and in order to justify this idea they had to be seen as inferior, not as 'human' as others. After slavery ended there were still those people who had bought on to such ideas and were loathe to give them up. If you see racism as wrong, and you once profited by it, then you have to see yourself as being capable of the worst of human behaviors, and so it was easier to justify your ideas by continuing to see black Americans as inferior. Black Americans have always been perplexed by the idea that as a race they are inferior. Fast forward to today, when it's all too easy to see the same arguments, for why blacks are more represented in prisons, why school performance is lower, all the race based genetics ideas of survival of the fittest depend on seeing one race as inferior. Therefore we can have statistics that show 1/3 of all black males will be arrested or incarcerated at least once in their lifetimes and have people saying that's not a sign of racism, it just means black men are more criminal, or dumber, or whatever the new word for inferior happens to be. Or you can have a cop not believing a black man's id, if he lives in a mainly white neighborhood. or a black man driving an upscale car, which is what always happened to my friend, when she was pulled over for any excuse while i was never pulled over. I've gone through sobriety check points after i've had wine at dinner and I wasn't tested to see if I were over the limit. I'm always presumed innocent, not so some of my friends. Cause they deserve it? Cause they are merely exceptions and as part of an inferior race they need to be watched more closely? Get it?
Actually study Gates ,and you'll get a clearer picture of this legacy. The fact that you resist seeing it for what it is is of itself suspicious. Are cops in danger of black professors? Why do you care so much about the rights of that cop to arrest whomever he likes. Just askin'
that's not in dispute, he was on his own property. That's what Barack referred to in characterizing the arrest as stupid. If they hadn't immediately dropped the charges they would have been liable for wrongful arrest. I expect the police guy's superiors are not happy that he defended his actions to the press. I expect he'll be apologizing, and that Gates will let it go with that. It's been educational for some.