The Independence Day Boat Parade

Today I attended an Independence Day Boat Parade. It was beautiful and ended with a man dressed in Colonial American attire reciting the Declaration of Independence. There were many patriots there cheering the boats and their many flags. There were also protestors there from Black Lives Matter. The protestors were very well behaved–noisy, but well behaved. There was no violence and no litter left behind. But I have some questions.

The chants were the usual–no justice, no peace; black power salutes and chants; and ‘what do we want? dead Trump.” I thought the last chant was a bit much since President Trump has done more for the black community than all of the Presidents before him–he has instituted prison reform, he has increased funding to black colleges, and he has increased black employment to new highs. So I guess I am not sure exactly what they want. It did cross my mind that they might not be sure of exactly what they want. At one point they were yelling something like give us what we want or we will burn everything down. That sounds more like spoiled children than a political movement.

America was in unity believing that the death of George Floyd was a horrible thing. The policeman who was responsible for that death was charged with murder. It was made clear that the policeman’s behavior was totally unacceptable. Was the looting and destruction that followed acceptable? Did the destruction of stores in black neighborhoods accomplish anything? Protest is legal in America and should remain so, but protest should have a point and a goal. We can work together to make things better. We will never be a perfect country, but we can make things better.

There are areas of unity we can build on. It is up to all of us whether we want to unify and accomplish things or simply destroy the country we have.

Protection For Me, But Not For Thee

Ed Morrissey posted an article at Hot Air today about a recent move by the Minneapolis City Council. The article reports that yesterday the council voted unanimously to pursue a still-ambiguous plan to dismantle the Minneapolis Police Department and replace it with a more politically correct “Department of Community Safety and Violence Prevention.” However, there are some problems with that vote.

The article reports:

The council voted unanimously to advance a proposal that would create a new Department of Community Safety and Violence Prevention. Within that, the city could create a division that includes “licensed peace officers,” though it would not be required to do so.

It’s unclear how many, if any, officers would continue to be employed by the city if the proposal passes.

Council Member Cam Gordon said it’s consistent with the pledge from council members to fundamentally alter local policing in the wake of George Floyd’s killing by Minneapolis officers.

“Those things that we called the police department are gone,” Gordon said. “Certainly, there is a provision in here that would allow this council or future councils to maintain a Division of Law Enforcement Services, but I think what we need to do is have that possibility there and talk to people about what the future should look like.”

The article explains the problem with that vote:

Maybe we should know what the “future” looks like before changing the present. The city council can’t actually change the present anyway, thanks to a city charter that requires them to maintain a police department with precise staffing levels. The best they can do under the charter is impose a cut of around 20%, but even that would fall afoul of the collective bargaining agreement with the police union. (Agreements negotiated and signed by a succession of progressive city councils, I might add here.) That makes yesterday’s vote an exercise in pusillanimity; there’s no cost to it at all.

It gets worse:

The City of Minneapolis is spending $4,500 a day for private security for three council members who have received threats following the police killing of George Floyd, FOX 9 has learned.

A city spokesperson said the private security details have cost the city $63,000 over the past three weeks.

The three council members who have the security detail – Andrea Jenkins (Ward 8), and Phillipe Cunningham (Ward 4), and Alondra Cano (Ward 9)– have been outspoken proponents of defunding the Minneapolis Police Department.

So while the Council votes to get rid of the police department as it currently exists, the City is paying for private security for three council members. Protection for me, but not for thee. These are the people the voters of Minneapolis elected. I think it might be time to unelect them. We need to remember that the voters have the power to determine leadership. In 2018, the turnout of registered Minneapolis voters was 76%. That is a solid turnout. The voters need to learn to make better choices.

Is It Really About Fixing The Problem?

Townhall posted an article today about the efforts of Congress to pass a bill that would  address the issue of police reform. The article is behind the pay wall, so the link goes to a transcript of the original article.

The article reports:

Over the past two weeks, Republican Senator Tim Scott, a black man from South Carolina, extended the olive branch of bipartisanship to Democratic House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer on police reform.

On June 17, Scott introduced the JUSTICE Act as a way to tackle what he believes are needed reforms in cities across the country. He quickly gained 50 co-sponsors and opened the door to the “conversation” Democrats regularly claim America needs to have about race, communities and policing. But it turns out, the talking points about “having a conversation” weren’t stated in good faith. After Scott accepted 20 amendments on his legislation from Senate Democrats, they still voted it down, not even allowing debate on the bill.

But what’s even more egregious than playing politics with this issue is how Pelosi and Schumer framed their arguments without Scott in them.

Instead of discussing the content on the bill, the Democrats decided to attack Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell.

The article notes:

The day before Democrats blocked opening debate on the bill, Pelosi accused Republicans working on Senator Scott’s police reform of murder. She did this while advocating for the partisan House version of police reform legislation.

“So far they [Republicans] were trying to get away with murder, actually, the murder of George Floyd,” she claimed during an interview with CBS Radio.

When confronted about her words during an interview with MSNBC, Pelosi shamelessly pivoted away from the mention of Senator Scott and back to Mitch McConnell.

“Will you apologize?” MSNBC anchor Peter Williams asked during an interview.

“Absolutely, positively not,” Pelosi said.

“Is Tim Scott working in good faith?” he followed up.

“I’m sorry?” Pelosi asked as if she had no idea who Senator Tim Scott was.

“I’m talking about Mitch McConnell,” she said.

The article concludes:

Washington D.C.’s most partisan Democrats are attempting to write Senator Tim Scott out of the conversation. They’re doing it on purpose for political reasons and to continue their false narrative that Republicans are “racists.” It is despicable.

We have reached the point where it’s more important for many in Congress to gain political advantage than to solve a serious problem. It’s time to change the composition of Congress. If your Congressman voted against debate on this issue, it’s time to elect a new Congressman.

Commentary From Someone Who Knows

The following was posted at CNS News today by Lt. Col. Allen West:

In the aftermath of the George Floyd incident, everyone seems to want to have a conversation about race in America.

Just recently, presumptive Democrat presidential nominee, former Vice President Joe Biden, asserted that if you couldn’t decide whether to vote for him or President Trump, “you ain’t black.”

So, let me clarify something: I was born in February 1961 in a “Blacks only” hospital, Hughes Spalding, in Atlanta, Georgia. I was raised by a proud Black man, Herman West Sr. and woman, Elizabeth Thomas West in the historic Old Fourth Ward neighborhood in Atlanta. My Mom and Dad are buried, together, in Marietta National Cemetery because of their service to our Nation.

The Old Fourth Ward is the same neighborhood that produced Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., and where the American civil rights movement emanated, “Sweet Auburn Avenue.”

There is a high possibility that I have forgotten more black history than some may ever learn — or certainly know. I just authored a book titled, “We Can Overcome, An American Black Conservative Manifesto.”

I do not need to “qualify” my being Black based upon some pre-determined ideological agenda. I was raised to believe that I was an individual who could think and believe as I determined. I was taught that America is a place where regardless of where you were born, where you came from, there was an equality of opportunity.

That equality of opportunity has enabled me to attain immense success for myself and set the conditions for the success of my two daughters. My wife Angela, an accomplished former marketing professor and financial adviser, and I now teach our daughters about the perils of equality of outcomes, and those who cleverly disguise that intent within the cries of social justice.

With this being stated, I am tired of our Nation cowering, appeasing, acquiescing, and surrendering to this absurd organization calling itself Black Lives Matter (BLM). There is nothing true or sincere about this ideologically aligned progressive socialist, cultural Marxist organization.

BLM is just another leftist organization created by the same ilk of progressive socialists who created the NAACP. When one reviews the goals and objectives of BLM, they have nothing to do with the real issues facing the Black community in America. The focus of BLM is to cleverly advance the leftist ideological agenda under the guise of a witty name that forces people into guilt, shame.

I do not need any white person in America to kneel before me, apologize, wash my feet, or as the insidious comment of Chick-fil-A CEO, Dan Cathay, shine my shoes. I did a doggone good job of shining my own boots during my career in the US Army — that was my individual responsibility, in which I took great pride.

I am tired of these businesses and corporations being shaken down by BLM to the tune of some $464M, $50M right here in my home of Texas. Why?

Black Lives Matter does not support the critical civil rights issue of this day. The major civil rights issue in America today is educational freedom. How many young black kids are relegated to failing public schools in failing neighborhoods? Where does BLM stand on that issue? They stand with the progressive socialist left and the teachers unions. Ask yourself, has BLM ever condemned the action of Barack Obama in April 2009 to cancel the DC school voucher program?

Yesterday was Father’s Day. How many young black kids are growing up without a father in the house, a strong positive role model, like my Dad, US Army Corporal Herman West Sr.? The policies of the progressive socialist left decimated the traditional two parent household in the black community. What does BLM say about the traditional, nuclear, two parent (man and woman) household? They say that is a tool of white supremacy.

If there is to be a conversation about the rule of law in America and the black community, let’s have that honest conversation. However, BLM wants us to believe that there is some focused, dedicated, intentional genocide being enacted against the Black community by law enforcement.

In 2019, there were a total of nine white law enforcement officer shootings of unarmed black men. Yet, how many blacks have taken to the streets to kill other blacks? And where is the outrage from BLM?

But, even worse, since 1973 there have been over 20 million unborn black babies murdered in the wombs of Black mothers. The organization mostly responsible for the industry of murdering unborn babies is Planned Parenthood. Planned Parenthood was founded by a known white supremacist, racist, a woman who spoke at Ku Klux Klan rallies — Margaret Sanger. Planned Parenthood has over 70 percent of their “clinics” located in black communities across America.

I have never heard Black Lives Matter speak up, speak out, or speak against Planned Parenthood. Why? Simple, the white progressive socialist masters who fund, resource, and enable Black Lives Matter don’t give a darn about the lives of Black children.

I could go on, but I think you get my point. Black Lives Matter is an oxymoronic and disingenuous organization. As a proud American Black Man, I find Black Lives Matter an offensive and condescending organization whose hypocrisy is blatantly evident. Yet, thanks to the lucrative support of the white progressive socialist collective elitists, it survives, and extorts financial support from the useful idiots in our corporate structure.

All lives matter, but this radical organization, Black Lives Matter, is the ultimate Trojan Horse. The consistent purveyors of systemic racism in America is the Democrat Party. They have smartly devised this organization to enable their ends, the proliferation of the 21st century economic plantation. Black Lives Matter serves as overseers on this plantation, stoking the irrational emotionalism and angst to support their agenda, their purpose.

What is the purpose? Simple. The new plantation of the left is not about producing cotton. It is about creating victims who will be dependent, and produce the new crop — votes.

Just in case you are not familiar with Allen West, he is a retired Lieutenant Colonel in the United States Army. During his 22-year career, he served in Operation Desert Storm and Operation Iraqi Freedom, receiving many honors including a Bronze Star. In 2010, West was elected as a member of the 112th Congress representing Florida’s 22nd District. He is a Fox News contributor and author of “Guardian of the Republic: An American Ronin’s Journey to Faith, Family and Freedom” and his latest book from Brown Books Publishing Group, “Hold Texas, Hold the Nation: Victory or Death.”  Mr. West writes daily commentary on his personal website theoldschoolpatriot.com and is a Senior Fellow at the Media Research Center to support its mission to expose and neutralize liberal media bias.)

Just one more note–the two-parent family is the backbone of American society. Before Lyndon Johnson’s “War on Poverty,” the majority of black and white families were two-parent families. The government programs in the “War on Poverty” undermined first the black family and then the white family. The “War on Poverty” could be described as the gateway to the crime and poverty we find today in our inner cities.

Is The Destruction Related To The Cause?

Destruction of other people’s property is not constructive, whatever the cause. In recent weeks we have seen total insanity in terms of the destruction of our history. It really doesn’t accomplish much–it simply gives vandals a chance to vent their general anger. We all agree that the killing of George Floyd was awful. Most of us don’t agree with much of what happened next. Protest is legal. When the first brick is thrown or the first person attacked, it is no longer a protest.

John Hinderaker posted an article at Power Line Blog today about some recent actions by the rioters that simply betray what they claim is their cause.

The article reports:

So much for the idea that “Confederate monuments” are under attack. Last night in San Francisco, left-wingers pulled down a statue of Ulysses Grant, the man who did more than anyone except Lincoln to preserve the Union and abolish slavery. Grant also, as President, did all he could to enforce Reconstruction and protect blacks in the South. He sent the military after the Ku Klux Klan in South Carolina, worked to ensure passage of the 15th Amendment, and signed the Civil Rights Act of 1875.

Of course, the Left knows little and cares less about any of this. Leftists hate the Union and hate men like Lincoln, Grant, Sherman and Sheridan for preserving it. Slavery is only a pretext. The United States and our constitutional democracy are the targets.

The article notes that Grant at one point was given a slave and was so against the idea of slavery that he freed the slave within a year. It seems as if Grant would be someone they would approve of. The fact that they tore his statue down gives weight to the fact that the riots have a deeper purpose than protesting racism.

The article concludes:

Every four years it is said that the current election is the most important one in our lifetimes. This time, it is actually true. Not a single Democratic Party official, to my knowledge, has condemned the anti-American madness that is sweeping across the nation. Chuck Schumer and Nancy Pelosi are fully on board with the extremist elements in their party–I am starting to wonder whether there is any Democratic Party apart from the extremist elements–and the Democrats’ presidential nominee is a senile nonentity who, in office, would be controlled by the radicals. It is absolutely essential to our country’s future that Donald Trump be re-elected.

Standing Strong Against The Mob

Hillsdale College is unique in many ways. Its students are required to study the founding documents of America and its Constitution. The College accepts no federal money and operates with only private funding. It also offers many free online courses dealing with American history and the founding documents of America. Yesterday The Federalist posted an article about the College that included some recent comments by the College administrators.

The article reports:

The nationally recognized liberal arts institution Hillsdale College has a history of defying political pressure in order to uphold what is good and true. Its recent refusal to give in to the demands of those who think a public statement is necessary to fight social injustice is just the most recent example.

Some of the college’s alumni publicly pushed their alma mater to comment on the recent controversies regarding the death of George Floyd and the ensuing protests and riots. When a petition began circulating calling on the college to release a statement, arguing that its “silence” supported violence, the college responded in an open letter.

“The College is pressed to speak. It is told that saying what it always has said is insufficient. Instead, it must decry racism and the mistreatment of Black Americans in particular. This, however, is precisely what the College has always said,” the letter says.

The letter signed by the college’s administration argues the institution’s steadfast devotion to fighting for the truth that all men are created equal is proven by its actions rather than empty words. Hillsdale was founded by abolitionists in 1844 and has, since its inception, pledged to educate all students, “irrespective of nation, color, or sex.” Such strong anti-discrimination practices were viewed as fiercely radical at the time, and made Hillsdale among the first in the nation to grant education to black Americans and the second in the nation to provide four-year liberal arts degrees to women.

This education produced students who care about the dignity and equality of all people. When the Civil War broke out, a higher percentage of Hillsdale students enlisted to fight for the Union than from any other college. It stood as an anti-slavery symbol during this time, such that the revered abolitionist Frederick Douglass came to deliver a speech on campus.

“The College founding is a statement — as is each reiteration and reminder of its meaning and necessity. The curriculum is a statement, especially in its faithful presentation of the College’s founding mission. Teaching is a statement, especially as it takes up — with vigor — the evils we are alleged to ignore, evils like murder, brutality, injustice, destruction of person or property, and passionate irrationality” the administration writes in the letter. “… And all of these statements are acts, deeds that speak, undertaken and perpetuated now, every day, all the time. Everything the College does, though its work is not that of an activist or agitator, is for the moral and intellectual uplift of all.”

The article concludes:

The college’s commitment to its principles has never wavered. In the 1970s when the federal government attempted to require the college to discriminate against potential students based on their race, the college refused. This meant the loss of all federal funding to its students as well as the institution. Hillsdale has instead generated private funding to continue its mission.

The college operates today as it always has, educating another generation of students to aspire to the great principles animating the Declaration of Independence and Bill of Rights. Statues of Douglass and Abraham Lincoln adorn campus as students study, reminding them of the virtues the college upholds.

While other companies are busy regurgitating statements capturing whatever ideas are trendy at the time, Hillsdale is busy fulfilling the same mission they set forth 176 years ago.

Actions speak louder than words.

Three Things We Are Being Told That Are Simply Wrong

On Friday, Heritage Action posted an article titled, “Three False Charges Against America’s Police Officers.”

This is the article:

Many of the events following George Floyd’s death have only perpetuated injustice and led to violence and crime. Thousands of rioters across the country have destroyed private property, looted businesses, attacked police officers, and have even taken the lives of innocent Americans.

Amidst the lawlessness, some on the left are using George Floyd’s death as an opportunity to push for extreme leftist agendas. Many of these agendas distort the truth about the role and efficacy of our nation’s police departments and propose radical “reform” measures that could potentially contribute to more crime and chaos in our country. These radical proposals from the left are based on lies and must be countered with truth.

Here are some of the fictitious claims liberals make against police officers… and the facts to counter them.

FICTION: “American police departments are systemically racist.”

FACT: Allegations of systemic racism are false and harmful.

While it is important to address grievances caused by the nation’s police departments, broad, all-encompassing accusations of racism completely disregard years of intentional training, diversification, and reform in police departments. Police are deployed based upon the location of crime, calls for service, and other data much of which is centered in minority communities. Additionally, research suggests that officers take longer to discharge their weapon when confronting African American suspects compared to confrontations with white or Hispanic suspects. Accusing the country’s police departments of inherent prejudice only feeds the extreme liberal narrative that police departments should be disbanded altogether.

Additional Resources

Policing in America: Lessons from the Past, Opportunities for the Future

Confronting Police Abuse Requires Shifting Power From Police Unions

Reform of Policing: What Makes Sense—and What Doesn’t

FICTION: “Police officers increase the likelihood of violence and crime against Americans.”

FACT: Simply put: the more policing there is, the safer America is.

Take the example of New York City which had its peak homicide rate in 1990 after several decades of pursuing a policing system which pushed officers into the background and relegated them to simply responding to crimes. In 1990, New York City had 2,245 murders. After switching to community-based policing with the goal of preventing crime, New York City has seen a dramatic decrease in both shootings and murders (down to 292 in 2017), resulting in a safer city. This is in large part due to officer training, increased police diversification, and improved policing methods. The fact is that American communities are overwhelmingly safer with police than without police.

Additional Resource

Cops Count, Police Matter: Preventing Crime and Disorder in the 21st Century

FICTION: “To stop police violence we need to defund the police.”

FACT: This argument is simply irrational. America needs police officers to maintain law and order.

Defunding our nation’s police departments would only lead to more crime and chaos and would directly harm the communities who disproportionately suffer the most. Additionally, defunding police departments will only lead to tighter budget constraints and less well-equipped police officers, making it even harder for police officers to do an already difficult and stressful job. However, in instances in which police officers use force outside the bounds of their training or even unlawfully, often union contracts stand in the way of appropriate discipline. Therefore, to stop unlawful police violence it is important that we reform the police union contract system.

I Really Do Wonder How We Are Going To Look Back On 2020

Yesterday The National Review posted an article about some recent statements by Boston Mayor Marty Walsh.

The article reports:

Boston mayor Marty Walsh declared racism a “public health crisis” on Friday, and announced a proposal to transfer funds from the police department’s overtime budget to social services.

Walsh said $3 million would be immediately transferred from overtime for city police to the Boston Public Health Commission. The mayor will also propose that the City Council divert 20 percent of the polices’s overtime budget, or around $12 million, to other programs.

Is there anyone who actually believes this is going to make Boston safer?

The article concludes:

However, Walsh also praised the city police department, noting that use of force complaints dropped by 50 percent from 2013 to 2019. Over the same period, the crime rate dropped by 30 percent and the number of arrests dropped by one third.

“They have made this progress…by lifting people up, not locking people up,” Walsh said. “They, too, want to be a part of the solution, and they continue to deserve our respect and gratitude.” 

Calls have grown to “defund” police forces across the country following the death of George Floyd, an African American man killed during arrest by Minneapolis officers. Massive demonstrations protesting Floyd’s death have spread across the country, devolving into riots and looting in some cities, including Boston.

At the same time, African Americans have also seen a higher mortality rate from coronavirus infections than in the general population.

This is pandering. The Mayor knows that moving the money away from the police department is not going to make anyone safer–in fact, it may put some neighborhoods in danger. This decision is bowing to the pressure of the mob that is currently running wild.

The Presidential Campaign Of Joe Biden Continues To Sadden Those Of Us Who Are Watching Closely

I’m sure Joe Biden is a nice man. He definitely has a beautiful smile. But I truly believe that he is not the man he was even five years ago. He has always been known for gaffes, but he seems to have taken that to a new level since campaigning for President.

Townhall posted an article yesterday about the latest questionable statement by the former Vice-President.

The article reports:

Joe Biden on Thursday compared the death of George Floyd to the assassination of Martin Luther King Jr. in 1968, saying Floyd’s death had a bigger global “impact” than King’s.

At an economic reopening roundtable in Philadelphia, the former vice president spoke of how the advent of smartphones had precipitated global participation in the movement against police brutality and racial injustice.

“Even Dr. King’s assassination did not have the worldwide impact that George Floyd’s death did,” Biden said.

“It’s just like television changed the Civil Rights movement for the better when they saw Bull Connor and his dogs ripping the clothes off of elderly black women going to church and firehoses ripping the skin off of young kids,” he continued.

“What happened to George Floyd — now you got how many people around the country, millions of cell phones. It’s changed the way everybody’s looking at this,” he continued. “Look at the millions of people marching around the world.”

There is a lot to unpack in that statement. First of all, the civil rights movement has been part of America since the 1950’s. Martin Luther King, Jr., was a pioneer in that movement. There have been great strides made in that movement, many as a result of the peaceful manner in which Dr. King conducted himself. George Floyd was not working to further the rights of black America. He really had not accomplished a whole lot in his young life. His murder simply provided an excuse for the culture of outrage to mobilize. My second point is that Joe Biden has been in Washington since 1973. If things are so bad, what has he been doing for the past forty-seven years?

The death of George Floyd was horrible. It should never have happened. However, I am not sure that in the heat of the moment we have begun to put his death in context. The bad behavior of one policeman should not be used to condemn all police, just was the bad behavior of the protesters who have decided to riot should not be used to condemn all protesters. How many people have been killed by the protesters? What does that accomplish?

Would You Vote For This Person?

Yesterday The Washington Examiner posted an article about retired Air Force Col. Kim Olson, a Democratic candidate in a closely watched House race in Texas.

The article reports:

“What the hell you got snipers on the roof for in a peaceful march? Even if people loot, so what? Burn it to the ground, you know, if that’s what it’s going to take to fix our nation,” retired Air Force Col. Kim Olson said during a live digital event on Tuesday, shown in a clip obtained by the Washington Examiner.

“I don’t think people want me to say that,” added Olson, a Democratic candidate in Texas’s 24th Congressional District, which covers much of the suburban area in between Fort Worth and Dallas.

Olson, 62, made the comment during a several-minute answer to a question about what she thought about far-left calls to disband or defund police departments.

Olson started by saying that while “defunding” is a “tough word,” explaining that she supports prioritizing funding services such as rehab centers and social workers.

“You can’t just tackle the police, you’ve got to tackle some of the social injustice issues that are going on within our justice system,” Olson said. “You can’t train racism out of folks.”

The article provides some information about her military career that indicates that she would probably play the Washington game very well:

Her military career is a highlight of her resume — she was one of the first women to attend and graduate from military flight school — but it is also a potential liability. In the early 2000s, when she was stationed in Iraq, the Pentagon accused Olson of directing contracts to a private security firm that she helped operate. While Olson denies personally profiting from the arrangement, she pleaded guilty to charges that included creating the appearance of a conflict of interest, paid a $3,500 fine, and was permitted to retire with an honorable discharge. That history has not been a major issue in her campaigns or line of attack from her opponents.

There seems to be an inference in her statements that everyone is a racist. I object to that statement. There are some (ignorant) people among us who are racists. I have encountered a number of them in my life. I have no idea why they are racist. The best way to deal with them is to understand who they are and treat them accordingly. Keep them out of positions where they can exercise their racism. I don’t know whether the policeman who killed George Floyd was a racist or simply an out-of-control policeman. From the information coming out now, there was a personal vendetta involved that may or may not have included racism.

At any rate, burning down businesses solves nothing. It puts the people the rioters and looters care about at a disadvantage when stores in their neighborhoods refuse to reopen. The best thing we could do to fight racial injustice would be to improve our schools in neighborhoods with failing schools and set up mentoring programs for children without fathers in their homes.

 

This Needs To Be Dealt With Quickly And Forcefully

The Gateway Pundit today posted the list of demands made by the Antifa group that has taken over a six-square-block section of Seattle. Before I get to the list, let that sink in a minute–an anarchist domestic terrorist group has taken over a portion of an American city. Can you image the experience of the people living within that area?

The article lists the demands:

Given the historical moment, we’ll begin with our demands pertaining to the Justice System.

    1. The Seattle Police Department and attached court system are beyond reform. We do not request reform, we demand abolition. We demand that the Seattle Council and the Mayor defund and abolish the Seattle Police Department and the attached Criminal Justice Apparatus. This means 100% of funding, including existing pensions for Seattle Police. At an equal level of priority we also demand that the city disallow the operations of ICE in the city of Seattle.
    2. In the transitionary period between now and the dismantlement of the Seattle Police Department, we demand that the use of armed force be banned entirely. No guns, no batons, no riot shields, no chemical weapons, especially against those exercising their First Amendment right as Americans to protest.
    3. We demand an end to the school-to-prison pipeline and the abolition of youth jails. Get kids out of prison, get cops out of schools. We also demand that the new youth prison being built in Seattle currently be repurposed.
    4. We demand that not the City government, nor the State government, but that the Federal government launch a full-scale investigation into past and current cases of police brutality in Seattle and Washington, as well as the re-opening of all closed cases reported to the Office of Police Accountability. In particular, we demand that cases particular to Seattle and Washington be reopened where no justice has been served, namely the cases of Iosia Faletogo, Damarius Butts, Isaiah Obet, Tommy Le, Shaun Fuhr, and Charleena Lyles.
    5. We demand reparations for victims of police brutality, in a form to be determined.
    6. We demand that the City of Seattle make the names of officers involved in police brutality a matter of public record. Anonymity should not even be a privilege in public service.
    7. We demand a retrial of all People in Color currently serving a prison sentence for violent crime, by a jury of their peers in their community.
    8. We demand decriminalization of the acts of protest, and amnesty for protestors generally, but specifically those involved in what has been termed “The George Floyd Rebellion” against the terrorist cell that previously occupied this area known as the Seattle Police Department. This includes the immediate release of all protestors currently being held in prison after the arrests made at 11th and Pine on Sunday night and early Saturday morning June 7th and 8th, and any other protesters arrested in the past two weeks of the uprising, the name Evan Hreha in particular comes to mind who filmed Seattle police macing a young girl and is now in jail.
    9. We demand that the City of Seattle and the State Government release any prisoner currently serving time for a marijuana-related offense and expunge the related conviction.
    10. We demand the City of Seattle and State Government release any prisoner currently serving time just for resisting arrest if there are no other related charges, and that those convictions should also be expunged.
    11. We demand that prisoners currently serving time be given the full and unrestricted right to vote, and for Washington State to pass legislation specifically breaking from Federal law that prevents felons from being able to vote.
    12. We demand an end to prosecutorial immunity for police officers in the time between now and the dissolution of the SPD and extant justice system.
    13. We demand the abolition of imprisonment, generally speaking, but especially the abolition of both youth prisons and privately-owned, for-profit prisons.
    14. We demand in replacement of the current criminal justice system the creation of restorative/transformative accountability programs as a replacement for imprisonment.
    15. We demand autonomy be given to the people to create localized anti-crime systems.
    16. We demand that the Seattle Police Department, between now and the time of its abolition in the near future, empty its “lost and found” and return property owned by denizens of the city.
    17. We demand justice for those who have been sexually harassed or abused by the Seattle Police Department or prison guards in the state of Washington.
    18. We demand that between now and the abolition of the SPD that each and every SPD officer turn on their body cameras, and that the body camera video of all Seattle police should be a matter of easily accessible public record.
    19. We demand that the funding previously used for Seattle Police be redirected into: A) Socialized Health and Medicine for the City of Seattle. B) Free public housing, because housing is a right, not a privilege. C) Public education, to decrease the average class size in city schools and increase teacher salary. D) Naturalization services for immigrants to the United States living here undocumented. (We demand they be called “undocumented” because no person is illegal.) E) General community development. Parks, etc.

We also have economic demands that must be addressed.

    1. We demand the de-gentrification of Seattle, starting with rent control.
    2. We demand the restoration of city funding for arts and culture to re-establish the once-rich local cultural identity of Seattle.
    3. We demand free college for the people of the state of Washington, due to the overwhelming effect that education has on economic success, and the correlated overwhelming impact of poverty on people of color, as a form of reparations for the treatment of Black people in this state and country.
    4. We demand that between now and the abolition of the SPD that Seattle Police be prohibited from performing “homeless sweeps” that displace and disturb our homeless neighbors, and on equal footing we demand an end to all evictions.
    5. We demand a decentralized election process to give the citizens of Seattle a greater ability to select candidates for public office such that we are not forced to choose at the poll between equally undesirable options. There are multiple systems and policies in place which make it impractical at best for working-class people to run for public office, all of which must go, starting with any fees associated with applying to run for public office.

Related to economic demands, we also have demands pertaining to what we would formally call “Health and Human Services.”

    1. We demand the hospitals and care facilities of Seattle employ black doctors and nurses specifically to help care for black patients.
    2. We demand the people of Seattle seek out and proudly support Black-owned businesses. Your money is our power and sustainability.
    3. We demand that the city create an entirely separate system staffed by mental health experts to respond to 911 calls pertaining to mental health crises, and insist that all involved in such a program be put through thorough, rigorous training in conflict de-escalation.

Finally, let us now address our demands regarding the education system in the City of Seattle and State of Washington.

    1. We demand that the history of Black and Native Americans be given a significantly greater focus in the Washington State education curriculum.
    2. We demand that thorough anti-bias training become a legal requirement for all jobs in the education system, as well as in the medical profession and in mass media.
    3. We demand the City of Seattle and State of Washington remove any and all monuments dedicated to historical figures of the Confederacy, whose treasonous attempts to build an America with slavery as a permanent fixture were an affront to the human race.

Transcribed by @irie_kenya and @AustinCHowe. Special thanks to Magik for starting and facilitating the discussion to create this list, to Omari Salisbury for the idea to break the list into categories, and as well a thanks to Kshama Sawant for being the only Seattle official to discuss with the people on Free Capitol Hill the night that it was liberated.

Bringing in the National Guard would not look good, but I believe it needs to be done. This is the equivalent of a foreign entity taking over a portion of an American city. This cannot be allowed to stand.

When Science Becomes Political

Yesterday Hot Air posted an article titled, “Here’s three examples of why public trust in the scientific community is waning.” Taken together, these examples illustrate how ridiculous some members of the ‘scientific community’ have become in their statements against President Trump and in their support of all things of the political left.

The first example:

The protests over the death of George Floyd have brought to the surface a good example of why so many in the general public no longer trust what public health professionals are saying about the coronavirus pandemic. The information being given to us is confusing and ever-changing. Now the information is being filtered through the lens of social justice activism.

…An open letter signed by 1,300 epidemiologists and public health experts says that “protests against systemic racism, which fosters the disproportionate burden of COVID-19 on Black communities and also perpetuates police violence, must be supported.” These professionals specifically say that their support of racial injustice protests does not mean they endorse other gatherings – you know, like protests about stay-at-home orders. The open letter actually says that “COVID-19 among black patients is yet another lethal manifestation of white supremacy.” Wow. Take that, white people.

The second example:

Example two is one of the scientists from the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative (CZI). They, too, have written a letter. Scientists from the philanthropic organization funded by Zuckerberg but separate from Facebook are none too pleased that the evil Orange Man is allowed to post freely on Facebook without censorship. They long for some authoritarian action (stricter policy enforcement) to be taken against the President of the United States because he spreads “inaccurate information and incendiary language contrary to CZI’s mission to “build a healthier, just, and more inclusive future.”

The third example:

A third example comes from Dr. Fauci and the CDC. Separately they have sent messages that large protests will likely produce a spike in coronavirus cases. Fauci said Friday that protests are “the perfect set-up” for spreading COVID-19. Fauci was sure to put into his warning that the protesters have a constitutional right to do so “because the reasons for demonstrating are valid.” Thanks, Doc. Validity doesn’t override the danger to the public though, does it? Also, he mentions that tear gas and pepper spray make people cough and sneeze, thus increasing the possibility of transmitting the virus.

Somehow I seem to remember that there were a lot of people very concerned when business owners were protesting. There were some serious questions asked about whether the pandemic overrode constitutional rights. It seems as if those questions have disappeared now that the political left is protesting (rioting and looting).

Please follow the link above to read the entire article. There are a lot of details that are very interesting.

I think all of us are beginning to wonder if we can trust anyone who claims to be an expert.

Excuses, Excuses, Excuses…

On Wednesday, The New York Post posted an article about a recent statement by New York Times reporter Nikole Hannah-Jones.

The article reports:

New York Times reporter Nikole Hannah-Jones argued that rioters destroying property is “not violence” — and referring to the crimes as such goes against what’s moral.

“Destroying property, which can be replaced, is not violence. To use the same language to describe those two things, I think is really not moral to do that,” Hannah-Jones, who is Pulitzer Prize winner, told CBSN.

Hannah-Jones, who writes for the Times Magazine, said the language should be reserved for crimes such as the killing of George Floyd, a black man who died in Minneapolis after a white cop, Derek Chauvin, held his knee on Floyd’s neck for several minutes.

“Violence is when an agent of the state kneels on a man’s neck until all of the life is leached out of his body,” Hannah-Jones told the outlet.

Her comments come as cities across the nation have been locked in days of heated protests over the death of Floyd — some of which have resulted in vandalism, looting and arson.

“Any reasonable person would say we shouldn’t be destroying other people’s property, but these are not reasonable times,” she said.

I wonder if she would make that same statement if her family had a business that was destroyed or if the looters came to her residence. What happened to George Floyd was a crime. Committing another crime does not make it right.

An Interesting Twist To The Story

Unfortunately we have reached the point where the truth about the actual cause of George Floyd’s death is somewhat irrelevant. George Floyd has pretty much been left behind in all the current chaos. His death was simply an excuse to commit mayhem by people who commit mayhem. I remind you of the past protests by antifa and the like at the various G-7 conferences. The anarchists have been with us for a while, and unfortunately we have generally chosen to ignore them rather than arrest them.

On June 3, a website called lawofficer.com posted an intriguing article. I am not familiar with the website, so I can’t vouch for its veracity, but it raises an interesting question.

The article reports:

And if you aren’t careful you would believe it but Michael Baden is a hired gun and he is used by attorneys to say what needs to be said to drive pubic opinion and drive the civil lawsuit settlement higher.

The truth is Michael Baden didn’t do an autopsy.

He couldn’t have because if he did, he would not have been able to give the opinion that was needed by the media and the attorneys. You see, the determination of asphyxia or strangulation is not difficult to see. It takes just a few seconds of looking at the eyes and Baden may be a hired gun but he’s not stupid and he proves that in his carefully crafted statements.

On Fox News, he spoke about the George Floyd case in terms that seem ridiculous to any professional pathologist. As he discusses what the “autopsy” showed he said “in the video” several times.

“There was compression, you can see in the video…

“The video of the pressure of the neck and back goes along with his statements that he couldn’t breathe.”

And it goes on and on and on.

There is little doubt that the actions of the police officer were a major contributing factor in the death of George Floyd. However, I do wonder if the charge of murder will stick. It looks as if this policeman had a history of excessive force and should have been fired a long time ago. He was simply an incident waiting to happen. If the murder charge against the officer (and the charges against the other officers) do not hold up, we can expect more riots. This is definitely a lose-lose situation.

One Of Many Reasons Why Elections Matter

Issues & Insights is a website started by the people who used to write the editorial page of Investor’s Business Daily. Today they posted an article explaining what is happening to the people who are rioting and destroying property in many of our major cities. Keep in mind that many of the prosecutors in these cities were elected with money supplied by organizations funded by George Soros.

The article reports:

St. Louis is a case in point. There, prosecutor Kim Gardner let 36 people arrested for looting and rioting go scot-free, according to the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. Gardner’s office used the pathetic excuse that it needed “essential evidence” from the police, implying it had none.

One wonders how people caught in flagrante delicto could simply be released. The answer is, Gardner is a far-left acolyte of Soros, having been the recipient during her 2016 election of no fewer than three separate donations from a Soros-backed political-action committee.

It’s not the only example of Soros’ malign influence. Philadelphia District Attorney Lawrence Krasner, who was elected with Soros money, reportedly “has no interest” in prosecuting rioters in the city. As infuriating as this and other instances of prosecutorial misconduct are to many of us, it’s likely we’ll see more of it in the future.

“Financier and left-wing philanthropist George Soros contributed large sums to progressive candidates running for district attorney all around the country, apparently in hopes of changing the law enforcement system at the county or district level,” according to a December 2019 report from the Capital Research Center.

Beginning in 2015, the CRC report notes, Soros doled out more than $17 million “on district attorney and other local races in swing states such as Pennsylvania, Virginia, and Arizona, but also in large, predominantly left-of-center states such as California and New York.”

The article further explains the goal of the political activists connected to George Soros:

What’s behind all this? An attempt to undermine the American justice system at every level. Soros and his followers believe our court system and police procedures are so corrupt, so hopelessly racist, that justice is literally impossible.

In 2014, Soros gifted the ACLU with $50 million to fight “mass incarceration.” Since then, using his own Open Society Foundations and donations to other Soros-linked organizations, such as the Tides Foundation, he has continued to fund his attack on America’s justice system.

Yes, there are rare incidents of racist and illegal behavior on the part of police and prosecutors. None of our politically directed institutions is infallible. And when such things take place, as now seems in the tragic death of George Floyd, the perpetrators should be punished.

But a system that refuses to lock up those who commit criminal acts out of some sense that it’s karmic compensation for “racism” and “injustice” is no system at all. It is legal chaos.

And, taken a step further, the linking of justice to mob-imposed outrage is dangerous. That’s why the statue of Lady Justice, once found in so many courts around the nation, is always blindfolded. Justice isn’t about politics; it’s about the law. Justice is blind, as the saying goes.

The mainstream media go out of their way to downplay the 89-year-old Soros’ role in trying to “transform” the American justice system. It’s to be expected, given the fact that much of the media now simply follow the progressive left’s script in “reporting” the news.

The article concludes:

But like so many others on the far left who have gotten fabulously wealthy in America’s free-market system while protected by our laws and Constitution, Soros hates America. He wants to tear it down.

And no, that’s not an exaggeration. As he himself has said, “The main obstacle to a stable and just world order is the United States.” He believes that, and is acting on it.

So it’s not surprising he’s funding American extremists to do the job. By seeding local justice agencies and courts with far-left lawyers, Soros is helping to hollow out our justice system, once the envy of the world. Those who are the supposed protectors of the rule of law are actually its enemies.

Just as with recent revelations of misconduct at the FBI, Justice Department and CIA, Americans would be well-advised to pay close attention also to their local races for judges, district attorneys and other positions of power in the justice system. Any interference by Soros is a red flag, pun intended, that your local justice system is being subverted.

I wonder what the people who are being used by the leftists and anarchists fueling the riots think there is to gain. Do they believe that they will prosper in any way in the ‘new’ system they are espousing? Have they considered that fact that the goal of those fomenting the riots is tyranny?

The People Responsible Should Be Charged With Attempted Murder

Yesterday The Gateway Pundit posted an article about a truly despicable act by people ‘protesting’ the killing of George Floyd.

The article reports:

The chief of the Richmond, Virginia, police department told reporters Sunday that Black Lives Matter and antifa rioters set fire to a multi-family home with children inside and then blocking access for firefighters to get through to save the children.

Richmond Police Chief William Smith broke down while speaking about the horrible burning deaths of a children after their occupied building was torched by rioters.

The people responsible for this need to be charged with attempted murder and put in jail for life.

The article continues:

Richmond Police Chief William Smith: “One incident that is particularly poignant, that truly illustrates the seriousness of the issues we’re facing. Last night protesters intentionally set fire to an occupied building on [West] Broad Street. This is not the only occupied building that has been set fire to in the last two days. But they prohibited us from getting on the scene. We had to force our way to make a clear path for the fire department. The protesters intercepted the fire apparatus several blocks away with vehicles and blocked that fire department’s access to the structure fire. Inside that home was a child.”

There is good news:

For the record, police on the scene were able to save the children.

This is not protest. This is not civil disobedience. This is simply lawlessness using a horrible event as an excuse.

When ‘Real’ Security Is Present

As the riots continue, the violence continues. The ‘protestors’ have been involved in beating innocent people, looting stores, and shootings. On Sunday, PJ Media posted an article that provides some good news.

The article reports:

In Seattle, riotous thugs “honored” the memory of George Floyd, who was killed while in Minneapolis police custody earlier this week, by blocking Interstate 5 for most of the day in the busiest downtown portion of the freeway. They looted a Nordstrom store, smashed windows of downtown businesses and set cars on fire. It was part of a nation wide series of riots that began in Minneapolis and quickly metastasized to the West Coast and all the way to the White House gates.

Somehow in the melee, KING 5 News, captured video of bandanna wearing antifa dirtbag who stole an AR-15 type rifle from one of two smashed up police cars. The cars, one of which was burning, was tagged with the Left’s favorite anti-cop epithet ACAB – All Cops Are Bastards.

Knowing antifa’s thuggery and how cops are too busy to protect anyone, one TV news station had the foresight to hire what they called a “security guard.”

This was no mall cop.

George Orwell famously said “People sleep peaceably in their beds at night only because rough men stand ready to do violence on their behalf.” And thank God a Seattle TV station hired one.

As the mayor ordered police officers and National Guard troops to corral the protesters, fetch them water and and cut their meat for them, there was this guy.

This is what happened next:

He moved on the antifa boy and his buddies so fast, grabbed the stolen AR-15 and ejected the magazine so quickly and efficiently, without looking, that it impressed this retired cop friend who told me he was duly impressed.

The article at PJ Media includes a video of the incident. Had this man not acted swiftly there is a high probability that innocent lives would have been lost.

The Problem With Justice In Minneapolis

The death of George Floyd is a tragedy. There is no doubt that he would still be alive if he hadn’t been held down on the ground by the police for as long as he was. However, the autopsy does not give asphixiation as the primary cause of death. So where do we go from here?

Andrew McCarthy posted an article at The National Review today that might provide some answers.

The article notes:

For one thing, contrary to most people’s assumption, Mr. Floyd appears not to have died from asphyxia or strangulation as Chauvin pinned him to the ground, knee to the neck. Rather, as alleged in the complaint, Floyd suffered from coronary-artery disease and hypertensive-heart disease. The complaint further intimates, but does not come out and allege, that Floyd may have had “intoxicants” in his system. The effects of these underlying health conditions and “any potential intoxicants” are said to have “combined” with the physical restraint by three police officers, most prominently Chauvin, to cause Floyd’s death.

As I’ve noted in a column on the homepage, Hennepin County prosecutors have charged Chauvin with third-degree depraved-indifference homicide. Now that the complaint has been released publicly, we see that a lesser offense was also charged: second-degree manslaughter. This homicide charge involves “culpable negligence creating an unreasonable risk” of serious bodily harm, and carries a maximum sentence of ten years’ imprisonment.

It is easy to see why prosecutors added this charge (and why they shied away from more serious grades of murder described in my column). The case is tougher for prosecutors if there is doubt about whether Chauvin’s unorthodox and unnecessary pressure on Floyd’s neck caused him to die. Had he been strangled, causative effect of the neck pressure would be patent. But if the neck pressure instead just contributed to the stress of the situation that triggered death because of unusual underlying medical problems (possibly in conjunction with intoxicants Floyd may have consumed), it becomes a harder murder prosecution.

Stay tuned. This is going to get complicated. I believe that the police force was correct to fire the officers involved. However, getting them to pay a more serious price for their abuse of power is going to be difficult. Even with video evidence, they are innocent until proven guilty and have to be convicted ‘beyond a reasonable doubt.’

 

There Has Been An Arrest

The Gateway Pundit is reporting today that Derek Chauvin, the fired Minneapolis police officer who was seen on video kneeling on the neck of George Floyd, has been arrested. The other three officers were not arrested.

CBS Minnesota is reporting:

Fired Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin has been arrested four days after George Floyd’s fatal arrest that sparked protests, rioting and outcry across the city and nation, and Hennepin County Attorney Mike Freeman announced he has been charged with murder and manslaughter, with the charges scheduled to be released shortly.

Every American is entitled to a trial by a jury of his peers. Therefore, despite the video and what appears on it, we need to withhold judgement until Mr. Chauvin has been tried. However, it is encouraging to me that he has been arrested and charged with murder in relation to the death of George Floyd. Hopefully this will provide closure for the family of George Floyd and might help calm some of the protestors that have created so much havoc in Minneapolis.

 

 

What Is The Next Step?

On Monday night George Floyd was pronounced dead after he was taken into custody by police in Minneapolis. There is a video of Mr. Floyd being pressed to the ground by a policeman despite Mr. Floyd’s stating that he could not breathe. This is a horrible abuse of power by the policeman and by the other policemen and people standing around watching it happen. So where do we go from here?

The answer is not rioting, looting, and burning down the neighborhood businesses. There is never any excuse for that behavior. Part of the answer is arresting the policeman who had his knee on Mr. Floyd’s neck and the policemen who stood by as Mr. Floyd was murdered. There needs to be a trial. Probably a change of venue for the trial would be in order. The charge needs to be appropriate to the crime–the video is evidence. I don’t know if a murder charge would hold up, but I suspect an involuntary manslaughter charge would.

We can’t judge the motives of the policeman. We don’t know if he knew his actions would result in death. We don’t know why he simply did not place the man in the backseat of the police car. These are things that I hope would come out in a trial.

Most of our policemen are honest, hardworking men and women. It is a shame when a man charged with upholding the law does something this horrible. According to various sources, the policeman involved had other questionable incidents in his record. This should be a wake-up call to all supervisors of policemen to remove any policeman who cannot handle the responsibility of the job without acting in ways that bring disgrace on their profession and create situations where people feel they have the right to riot. People never have the right to riot, but unfortunately some people have been told that they do.