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Sunday, June 7, 2020

Chauvin being viewed through the wrong lens

America's attention for the past two weeks has been completely riveted by the George Floyd killing, just as for the previous two months it was dominated completely by the coronavirus. Most of the discussion of the Floyd killing, with the strong encouragement of the media, has centered on race. But it can't really be fully understood until viewed through the prism of sociopathy.

Derek Chauvin (and his recent counterpart, the semi-forgotten Amy Cooper, the "Central Park Karen" whom I'll get to in a bit) are both almost certainly sociopaths.

When I first saw that video of Chauvin with his knee on Floyd's neck, I found Chauvin's utterly depraved indifference to human life infuriating. Floyd had his hands cuffed behind his back at the time, and it's easy to keep a suspect prone on the ground without kneeling on his neck. And Chauvin did it despite Floyd saying he couldn't breathe twelve separate times, despite being questioned by his fellow officers, and he continued to do it for three minutes after Floyd had lost consciousness.

My second reaction was: oh no, if I get angry seeing this video, how are black people going to react? You couldn't possibly ask for a worse visual metaphor than a white man in a position of power with his knee on the neck of a defenseless black man, slowly killing him. It was the ultimate in inflammatory imagery.

Almost every interpretation of this event since has, of course, centered on race. But how much of Chauvin's behavior was actually motivated by racism, as opposed to just being a function of his sociopathy?

A look at Chauvin's history is instructive. He had moonlighted by working security at a Hispanic nightclub, el Nuevo Rodeo. There he had evidently gained a reputation for being quick to pull out the pepper spray at the slightest provocation. In his 19 years on the force, Chauvin had received 18 complaints. Given Chauvin's reputation at the nightclub and his treatment of Floyd, it's a safe bet that at least some -- if not all -- of those complaints were warranted. Did this behavior stem from dislike of other races, or just from a generalized sociopathic dislike of all humanity?

It also came out recently that Chauvin had committed voter fraud by voting in Florida while living in Minnesota. Voter fraud, while not proof of sociopathy, is probably a yellow flag for it.

Chauvin had married a Hmong woman, certainly not something one would associate with what the media likes to refer to as a "white supremacist." Of course, it's entirely possible to harbor no particular ill will towards Asians while being suspicious of, and possibly afraid of, blacks.

A big part of the problem with blacks and the police is that any cop who works in an area with a lot of blacks, no matter what his attitudes when he starts out, will almost inevitably become leery of young black men. A quick look at the statistics shows why. In an average year, blacks, despite being only 13% of the population, commit 53% of the murders in this country, and the rates for the three other major categories of violent crime (assault and battery, armed robbery, and rape) are roughly commensurate. The majority of those crimes are carried out by males between the ages of 15 and 40. So any cop who's been on the job for a while is inevitably going to become wary of that roughly 3% of the population. (And so would you, if you were a cop.)

If the cops rousted old black church ladies on a regular basis, I'd be the first to condemn them; but they don't do that. And when the police are constantly told what horrible racists they are because they are more leery of young black men or because they arrest blacks disproportionately, that's going to breed resentment. (By the way, I also don't blame law-abiding young black men for being resentful about being viewed with more suspicion when they've done nothing wrong.)

In any case, I don't doubt that Chauvin's attitudes on race followed a similar trajectory. Many would say that Chauvin's action was due to a combination of racism and depraved sociopathic indifference. But it's more complicated than that.

One of the things that struck me when first watching that video was how thin -- how downright wimpy -- Chauvin's arms looked. He must have undoubtedly been aware of the fact that there were plenty of black men who in any sort of fair fight could easily overpower him. So fear, which is a distinctly different emotion than contempt, must have entered the equation as well. Add to that the fear of being humiliated in front of his fellow officers.

Obviously if Chauvin had had any idea he was actually killing Floyd, he wouldn't have done it, given that it now basically means the end of his world. He looked several times in the general direction of the videographer while kneeling on Floyd, so he must have been aware he was being taped. And these days, any cop knows that killing a black man comes with potentially greater consequence than killing a white man. (Year in and year out, the police kill roughly twice as many whites as blacks; but when was the last time the killing of a white man got nearly this much publicity or public reaction?)

So, Chauvin was stupid as well as depraved. And while there's no denying his depravity, to really understand his crime it must also be viewed through the prism of stupidity.

(Neither the fear nor the stupidity are an excuse for his crime. But recognizing them does help explain his mindset.)

Chauvin's three colleagues are a different matter. The mob is howling for blood right now, and in the heat of the moment, they want all three of Chauvin's colleagues' heads as well. But a more dispassionate view of them is warranted.

J. Alexander Kueng, 26, a light-skinned black man, was only sworn in as a Minneapolis police officer three months earlier, and was working in only his third street shift. Kueng tried to find a pulse on Floyd, but was unable, and informed Chauvin of this.

Thomas Lane, 37, had been on the police force for exactly four days on the day Floyd was killed. He evidently asked Chauvin twice if they shouldn't roll Floyd over on his side, but was ignored by the senior officer. Lane had been a volunteer tutor to Somali students in math and science.

Tou Thao, 34, had been a police officer since 2012. He appeared to have his back turned to Chauvin during most of the video.

If you've ever worked in a hierarchy, you know how difficult it is to question and criticize your boss. If he's had nineteen years on the job and is your supervising officer, while you're just starting out, it's even harder. The junior officers' thought processes during those fateful eight minutes was undoubtedly something along the lines of: I wish he wasn't kneeling on that guy's neck like that, but he's had nineteen years of experience and I've had none, so, gee, I dunno, maybe that's just the way things are done. And if I piss him off he's going to have it out for me and get me fired, and I need this job.

Add to that the fact that Chauvin is almost certainly a sociopath, which means that the other three cops were probably instinctively afraid of him, sensing that if they crossed him he'd be utterly uninhibited about getting revenge on them. Yet even with all that backdrop, two of them evidently remonstrated with him.

Do you think that if one of those other three officers had tried to intervene with Chauvin more forcefully, there was anything Chauvin wouldn't have stooped to to get back at him? Chauvin would have yelled at that officer, questioned his masculinity, questioned his ability to be a police officer, and questioned his loyalty (while being completely disloyal himself). Then he would have tried to get that officer fired.

I hope they throw the book at Chauvin, and treat his colleagues with mercy.

I've long felt that policing is a profession which attracts not only those who join for the right reasons, but also those who are looking for legal cover to kick ass. The serial killers who've attempted to join police departments is proof of that: Edmund Kemper (the Santa Cruz hitchhiker-strangler) and Kenneth Bianchi (one of the two Hillside Stranglers) both tried to become police, but were rebuffed. Omar Mateen, the Pulse nightclub killer, also tried to become a law enforcement officer, but did not make the grade. (He was a mass murderer, not a serial killer, but he showed similar disregard for human life.)

I take comfort from the fact that those sociopaths were rejected by the police departments.

But, some sociopaths inevitably slip through. Joseph DeAngelo, the Golden State killer, and Gerard Schaefer, a Florida serial killer, are prime examples.

It's unfortunate that Chauvin also slipped through the cracks. I've written before about how most big city police departments guard against sociopaths entering their ranks by using the Minnesota Multiphasic Personality Inventory as a screening tool. But, somehow, Chauvin got past the psychological testing.

(DeAngelo's police career lasted from 1972 to 1979, when he was fired. Schaefer's career only went from 1971 to 1972, when he was arrested for abduction. Both men were hired before use of the MMPI became widespread.)

Amy Cooper's case had a much more overtly racial component than Chauvin's. When black ornithologist Christian Cooper asked Cooper to leash her dog, since they were in an area for bird-watching where dogs were supposed to be leashed, she refused. Instead, she threatened to phone the police and tell them that an African-American man was threatening her life.

The word "racism" is way overused these days, but that was racism.

As with Chauvin, a quick look at her history indicates that she, too, is a likely sociopath. She had previously stalked a co-worker named Martin Priest and tried to ruin his life when he showed no interest in her. He filed police reports against her twice, once for harassment and once for breaking and entering. She responded with a lawsuit saying that he had stolen $65,000 from her and threatened her life. Her suit was dismissed as baseless, but Priest still lost his job as a result.

The point being, a sociopath will use any trick they can to get their way. There's absolutely nothing they will not stoop to. So my guess is that Cooper was motivated less by racial animus than by fury at someone she felt had crossed her, and, like any sociopath, she has a no holds barred way of dealing with people. With Christian Cooper, the obvious tactic was to take advantage of his race.

The intersection of sociopathy and race is a strange and somewhat surprising one. I once asked a sociopath if he ever went to watch NBA basketball games. He answered, in a tone that managed to combine contempt (for me, for asking such a stupid question), indignation, and annoyance, "Why would I pay to go watch a bunch of baboons run up and down a court?" And he made plenty of other similar comments. But, as a sociopath, he pretty much hated everyone who crossed his path. He could find a reason to hate anyone. He would mock those above him in the organization behind their backs, and mock those below him to their faces.

Here's the surprising part: I never once heard him express quite the same level of antipathy for any individual black that he expressed for a large number of individual whites. I don't doubt that if he'd had more contact with individual blacks, he would have hated them too. But all of the most passionate hatred I ever heard was reserved for whites.

It only gradually dawned on me that he was, in a weird, roundabout way, one of the least racist people I knew. For all his negative comments about blacks in general, he was really an equal opportunity hater. (Compare his behavior to that of the average white liberal, who says all the right things, but would never dream of living in a black area, or sending his child to a majority black school.)

A parallel: this same guy also made a lot of disparaging comments about women in general. (An example: "I've never met a woman who wasn't a pain in the ass. Not one.") But once again, I never got the impression he actually disliked most women any more than he disliked most of the guys he knew. So, in that same weird way, he was actually one of the least sexist guys I knew, as well.

This sociopath was far smarter, better-looking, and richer than either Chauvin or Cooper. But all three of them have basically the same character, which means they're going to perceive most of the people they meet as either obstacles or annoyances. To understand any of them -- and how they relate to all people, not just blacks -- you have to view them through the lens of sociopathy.

So, while both the George Floyd killing and the "Central Park Karen" incident have been defined in the public mind as racial affairs, they're really more about sociopathy. A sociopath never stops being a sociopath, whether he's dealing with whites or blacks.

Thus is something that every black person needs to be told: yes, you will run into unpleasant white people from time to time. But don't make the mistake of thinking that unpleasant white person is perfectly pleasant to other white people. Because he or she is almost certainly not.

On a related note, much of the rioting and looting that has gone on has also been viewed through a racial lens. (Though in fact, while most of the looters have been blacks interested in getting free stuff, most of the Antifa types are whites bent purely on destruction.) However, these things, too, cannot be fully understood until viewed through the same two prisms through which we should view Chauvin: sociopathy, and stupidity.

20 comments:

Anonymous said...

I read Cooper and Priest had an affair, making her an Other Woman and him a Cheater. I think cheating is an act of narcissism and the lying that it takes to cheat is abusive towards the spouse. So, both Cooper and Priest were cluster Bs to me and my understanding of it.

John Craig said...

Anon --
Thank you for that; what I read was tat he denied having an affair, but of course that doesn't mean much.

Cluster B's are maybe, what, 15-20% of the population? Roughly 60% of married people stray at some point during their marriage. The fact that Priest had an affair doesn't by itself make him a Cluster B personality.

Anonymous said...

Here’s the dialog before the recording according to the bird-watcher (not included in most of the articles):

ME: Ma’am, dogs in the Ramble have to be on the leash at all times. The sign is right there.
HER: The dog runs are closed. He needs his exercise.
ME: All you have to do is take him to the other side of the drive, outside the Ramble, and you can let him run off leash all you want.
HER: It’s too dangerous.
ME: Look, if you’re going to do what you want, I’m going to do what I want, but you’re not going to like it.
HER: What’s that?
ME (to the dog): Come here, puppy!
HER: He won’t come to you.
ME: We’ll see about that…

Elsewhere he explains his tactic of feeding dog treats he carries to unleashed dogs to get the owners to leash them.

But, the words “I’m going to do what I want, but you’re not going to like it.” could fairly be interpreted as a physical threat to her or her dog. So I think there is some gray area.

Re the police officer, we’re seeing kneeling on the back of resisting people’s necks is fairly common, uncomfortable but not impeding circulation or breathing. I surmise the man refused to get into the police car because he was having a heart attack and that made him feel claustrophobic. The cops didn’t realize they were now dealing with a medical emergency, not a “boy who cried wolf” situation.

And hopefully the “front for counterfeiting, targeted assassination” theory gets explored (and debunked but who knows these days).

John Craig said...

Anon --
Good points. Yes, I suppose when someone says "I’m going to do what I want, but you’re not going to like it," that could be interpreted as a threat. But there's a counterargument to that: Christian Cooper's demeanor was calm and unthreatening. I saw that video, and while his manner was civilized, Amy Cooper's was strident and semi-combative throughout (and look at how she handled that poor dog -- she was choking him almost as badly as Chauvin was choking George Floyd, even if not for as long). I've also seen Christian Cooper in another interview, and he comes across just like what he is: a well-spoken, pretty obviously gay, well-educated ornithologist. I don't blame whites for being afraid of blacks in general; but it's fairly easy to tell the ones who are threats from the ones who are not; and he falls in the latter category. (How many soft-spoken gay black bird-lovers do you know who are also muggers?) Anyway, I still see Amy Cooper as a likely sociopath.

I"ve seen pictures of other police officers kneeling on necks before, and true enough, it doesn't ordinarily result in. death. But Chauvin did it for eight minutes, during which Floyd is supposed to have said "I can't breathe" 12 times, and he kept kneeling on his neck for three minutes after Floyd was unconscious, which is inexcusable. Plus, in most of the pictures I've seen of cops kneeling on someone's neck, they don't seem to be putting all their weight on their knee (as best I recall), whereas Chauvin seemed to have a lot of weight on his knee.

I just heard that counterfeit ring targeted assassination theory today; there does seem to be a lot fo coincidence around the fact that el Nuevo Rodeo has been in business for something like 26 years, which is an awfully long time fo ra nightclub to survive, and that Floyd and /chauvin had both worked there as security (Chauvin for 17 years). And it would make sense that what with the quarantine Floyd might have needed to dip into his illicit supply of money, whereas Chauvin had a regular job unaffected by the quarantine and wouldn't have needed to dip into any such supply of his. And the fact that Chauvin had a realtor's license in Florida makes no sense unless it was somehow a way to launder money. But what doesn't make sense to me is that if someone had told Chauvin to kill Floyd, that he would do it in such a public manner. (That's the argument I made to the person who told me the theory, anyway.) But, yes, there may be some interesting stuff that comes out in the trial.

Martin Black said...

John

I'll have to say that you are one of the most reasonable and fair minded blogger that I have come across.

When you write about topics like these on your blog, that's when I notice the closet and sometime un-closeted racists come out. One example, is focusing on the comment that Christian Cooper that she won't like what he might do (paraphrasing here) while completely disregarding her aggressive behavior and animal abuse at the same time. I do agree that she is a sociopath, I believe she was also high up at her company. I couldn't find the original article, but she has been suspected of having Munchausen by proxy before the Central park incident (https://twitter.com/TomArnold/status/1265185811806384128).

One part of your post that I'll disagree on is Christian Cooper using his race to his advantage and it is also understandable why you may think that. A black person or any minority using their race is a very high wall for them to scale to get the advantage. If I were to agree with you, I would say maybe just MAYBE (hehe) after his interaction with Amy Cooper...way after they parted ways, not during their interaction where if the police had shown up things could've gone sideways for him VERY FAST. So in a way you saying that he was using his race to his advantage which is exactly what Amy Cooper was doing at moment, I consider to be race-splaining ("black-splaining"). Minorities all understand how the situation could've turned out badly for him, this is nothing uncommon to us...at all.

As for Chauvin, again people (read: whites) don't realize that this is more than George Floyd...this a a movement started by his murder at the hands (or knee) of police officers. Blacks and other minorities have been complaining and reporting police brutality for years now. This is not limited to falsified reports from other whites and people officers, which are much more common than you would think. Again it is like race-splaining, if you haven't been through you may think it's not happening, but it happens everyday and if we leave with our lives we sometimes have to just go home and suck it up (and live with the PTSD depending on the severity). Even if you are minding your business they will find a reason to harass you and bait you into mouthing off or a physical altercation, and unfortunately some do fall for it and get arrested. By the way, this is not limited to blacks, it happens to Hispanics a lot as well.

Anyways, this is what the death of George Floyd has triggered, as well as the rest who have been killed unjustly and inhumanely.

Here's a police brutality on an old white man 3 years ago: https://www.reddit.com/r/PublicFreakout/comments/gy9xa7/this_was_3_years_ago_in_florida/

and here's another all white guy being punished:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6X4PUwrq8tA

What you see in the video above happens to minorities much more frequently. The links above are both white males being brutalized, If I wanted I could easily a dozen videos of minorities within the same week.

In summary, police brutality against minorities and people in general need stop along with whites being silent or dismissive about it.

Martin Black

John Craig said...

Martin Black --
Thank you very much re: your "reasonable and fair-minded" comment.

You misinterpreted something I said: "With Christian Cooper, the obvious tactic was to take advantage of his race." Take another look at that paragraph and you'll see that I was referring to Amy Cooper having taken advantage of Christian Cooper's race; the sentence in isolation could be interpreted either way, but in context, I think it's pretty obvious what I meant. The whole point of the paragraph was that sociopaths take advantage of whatever they can. But I'll change it.

I wouldn't call the commenter before you a "closeted racist." I think he or she is making a good point about how Christian Cooper's words could be interpreted in a threatening light. Yes, his tone was soft-spoken and polite throughout, as I pointed out, but another aspect of that interaction was that he was far bigger and stronger than her, and that has to be taken into account too. (From the pictures I've seen, he looks pretty jacked, whereas she looks soft, and that's on top of the normal male-female difference.) Anyway, people misinterpret stuff all the time (as you did with me, though I suppose I could have been clearer.)

In cases like this, I try to put myself in the other person's shoes, and as I said in the post, I don't blame young black men whom the police are leery of for no other reason than that they're young black men. But I think more people should put themselves in the shoes of the police, too. They have a tough job, they have to deal with the worst people on a regular basis, and after a while, they develop a harsher outer shell, and I think I would too. (And btw, though most of the cops I've met have been polite, I've had the experience of dealing with rude ones a couple times, and it's possible that in one of those cases that may have been because I look Hispanic, so was therefore under more suspicion.)

I'm glad you included those videos, I took a look at both, and both illustrate the point of my post. With the old guy, I think the cop was way too harsh; not sure what was going on with the other white guy, he seemed pretty drugged out. In both videos, as you point out, the people being arrested were white; had they been black, a huge furor would have resulted (at least in the second case, where the guy died) and the media would have made a huge deal about it and interpreted it as an example of racism. But really, it was just the nature of the job, and the nature of certain cops, and it had nothing to do with race, even as the media would tell us otherwise.

Martin Black said...

John

I understood what they meant about how Christian Cooper's words could be interpreted. I was simply saying that a lot of people when focus on that and not the whole story which shows that she's being the aggressor, she clearly walked up to him and then backed away when she called the police.

So I'm basically saying, whites can point of one thing that a minority does and the rest including police will swarm on that one thing while needing explicit video proof of a white person's ill intent. And even then videos don't surface until later.

I did misinterpret "With Christian Cooper, the obvious tactic was to take advantage of his race." line in isolation, good catch :), I did point out that you are reasonable and fair-minded.

Glad to send those videos your way. My reason of including them were to show that police brutalize all races, but this line that I mentioned in my previous comment is the reason why minorities are outraged:

"What you see in the video above happens to minorities much more frequently. The links above are both white males being brutalized, If I wanted I could easily a dozen videos of minorities within the same week."

Due to the color of our skin, the police seek us out, bait and/or come up with reasons for arrests. That is the part that whites are not getting...the harassment level from the police are A LOT higher. Which leads me to believe that crime statistics are 20% higher for minorities (barring the obvious and serious crimes).

Targets:
- Blacks
- Hispanics
- Asians
- Poor whites
- Native Americans

Video with whites being framed: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UANRvFNc0hw
Video with blacks being framed: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u89eBpcuYio

John Craig said...

Martin --
Honestly, I just don't see the police baiting police and coming up with reasons for arrests for minorities. Yes, blacks and Hispanics are arrested and incarcerated at higher rates, but that can only be viewed realistically in the context of crime rates. Blacks commit on average 53% of the murders that take place in this country every year, yet every year the police kill roughly twice as many whites as blacks. (Take a look at that link in the post.) The media chooses to focus on the deaths of blacks at the hands of the police and ignore the deaths of whites, so people get the impression that the police are targeting minorities; but if blacks commit over half the murders in this country (and the rate of the other major categories of violent crime are roughly the same), why is it that the police kill over twice as many whites?

Also how can the police distinguish between poor whites and rich whites? Yes, there are some indicators. But a lot of the time they can't tell. If you're making the case that money buys justice (via expensive lawyers), I'd agree with that. But it sounds as if you're making a different point. Also, Asians actually get killed by the police at a much lower rate than whites, and that too has to do with their lower crime rate. (If the police were looking for other races to bait and set up, why would they kill Asians less often than they do whites?)

Anyway, we see this differently, but I appreciate you being reasonable about the subject too.

Martin Black said...

John

Your reply makes sense. You won't see how police are baiting and coming up with reasons to arrest minorities...it's an experience thing.

And the media and law enforcement are two different entities. I agree with that some whites are being ignored by media while blacks are shown more frequently.

I am saying that it happens a lot more than you think and it's not reported for minorities as well. You're only seeing what gets reported by the media for blacks and from your frame of reference you see that as a lot, but to black people what the media reports is not a lot (it's a drop in the bucket).

The impression is right, minorities are being targeted by the police, not that the media is giving everyone the impression, it is true.

I'm also familiar with the statistics that you pointed, it gets mentioned a lot, but again there is a lot more under reporting on the police side and over reporting on the media side. And those statistics are specific about being killed, not police brutality and other types of police misconduct that minorities experience. This is what the black community and others are upset about not just the killing but all the in-betweens.

Police can distinguish by asking where are they from or what are you doing around here. Also I think you misinterpreted how I use the word bait, I simply meant whenever they apprehend someone they use aggressive tactics to encourage the person to fight back and then it's downhill from there.

Baiting: https://www.reddit.com/r/PublicFreakout/comments/gxuhqk/police_officer_detains_guy_after_getting_in_his/

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6080222/

https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/post-nation/wp/2016/07/11/arent-more-white-people-than-black-people-killed-by-police-yes-but-no/

https://www.statista.com/chart/21872/map-of-police-violence-against-black-americans/

No problem at all, it is a tough subject to discuss and not everyone is comfortable doing it, I appreciate your responses.

John Craig said...

Martin --
That last Statista article saying black Americans are 2.5 times as likely to be killed by the police than white Americans is typical of the misleading mayor media talks about this. That statistic is meaningless without context, and the context is the violent crime rates. Black Americans are also 8 to 10 times as likely as whites to commit murder, rape, assault and battery, and armed robbery than white Americans. So when you look at those statistics together, it appears that if anything, the police are much harder on whites.

A friend sent this article to me just yesterday; it analyzes the nature of interactions between blacks and the police, and brings up a number of angles the media won't:

https://leiterreports.typepad.com/blog/2020/06/the-sociology-of-police-violence.html

europeasant said...

Everyone has their own opinion on how they view the world outside their doors. I have mine and it has changed my original world view. I used to think all people were created equal until I went outside and encountered the world. My father came to this country from a eastern European nation, with three children and a wife. BTW prior to the year 1800 my descendants were Serfs. He had only a second grade formal education and spoke very little English but worked his ass off doing manual labor jobs. Yet his children (me) where upon leaving the US Army and qualifying for all jobs was told by HR at a fortune 500 company that they were only hiring minorities, well that changed my world view. Hint I no longer vote for Democrats although many Republicans are full of Shit. Hint Bush the younger among others.
My children. Think about this; a new high school school opens up in my town where acceptance as I was told would be based on grades and test scores. When the school rulers found out that 75% of the incoming freshman class was going to White children then the rulers ruled that entrance for White children would be no more than 35%. Think about that. The school system was only 8% White children so I guess we can't have that. Itz at this point I became a race realist. Some would say I became a racist but still I treat all people as individuals but as groups it's a different story.
SO who exactly is being discriminated against?

Itz time to reread the novels "1984" and "Brave new World" to see what out future will be like.

John Craig said...

Europeasant. --
I think most people end up race realists, whether they admit it or not. Even the most diehard white liberals, as I mentioned in the post, would never dream of living in a black area or sending their children to a majority black school. Which means that even while they pay lip service to all the "right" values, they know in their heart of hearts what they have to do to remain safe.

So true about affirmative action. I know a white girl who got 800 on her math SATs and 781 on her verbal SATs. She was rejected by half the colleges she applied to. Had she been black or Hispanic with those scores, she would have had her pick. Affirmative action causes a lot of resentment, and the worst part is, for the most part it doesn't help the "downtrodden": it helps middle class blacks over middle class whites. I'd have no problem with giving a leg up to anybody (of any race) who comes from a poor background -- as you evidently did. But that's not the way it works, and we all know it.

Couldn't agree more about Bush the Younger.

Hate to say it, but "1984" and "Brave New World" aren't about the future; they're about the present.

Alter Ego said...

John, I'm glad you're writing again. While we're on the topic of cops, did you see this? https://bit.ly/30Gxk6j

John Craig said...

Alter Ego --
Will only be blogging extremely sporadically, but thank you.

I had seen something about that in passing, though I haven't paid too close attention to the Breonna Taylor case. Those sexual assault accusations certainly add to the dark cloud around Hankison. (One such accusation could easily be false; but two separate ones from different people make it seem extremely likely that they're true.) Hadn't seen a picture of Hankison before; he's a handsome guy, but also seems to have aggression written right into his features. (I know, it's unfair to judge people on appearances, but sometimes character does seem to be reflected a face.)

Alter Ego said...

Here's some more food for thought: https://www.usatoday.com/story/opinion/2020/06/11/floyd-killing-police-must-change-former-detroit-chief-column/5341884002/

John Craig said...

Alter Ego --
Thanks for that. There's no question, what happened to him was inexcusable, but the worst part of it is what happened in 1957 and 1967, which was a different era. But whenever I hear a story like that, or have to be reminded of Emmet Till yet again, I think, we're living in a different era now. And there's been far more black-on-white than white-on-black violence in the past 50 years. I've quote this statistic a number of times on the blog, but for the past 30 years or so, when a black commits a violent crime, he chooses a white victim 47.7% of the time; when. white commits violent crime, he close a black victim 3.9% of the time. And add to that the fact that according to D of J statistics, blacks commit murder at a rate 8 to 10 times higher than the white rate. Those are the most salient facts facing us, yet you never hear them. Instead, whenever there is an egregious case of white cops killing a black, the media focuses on that for weeks and leaves us all with the impression that white cops are out to kill blacks, which simply isn't true. There are cases of black cops killing whites, too, as with that Somali cop in Minneapolis a few years ago who shot the Australian woman who called for the police, and knocked on their car window when they arrived. Those types of cases get very little publicity, and when they do, there is no public outcry for reform. One of the four cops involved in the George Floyd killing was black, but the media never mention that. Or when Freddie Gray was killed in Baltimore, at least three of the six officers involved were black, yet most of the media wouldn't shows their pictures for the first week of coverage. (I remember being surprised when I saw them for the first time.) The media's agenda is to give a skewed impression of things, even if they have to go back to 1957 or 1967 to do so.

europeasant said...

"And there's been far more black-on-white than white-on-black violence in the past 50 years. I've quote this statistic a number of times on the blog, but for the past 30 years or so, when a black commits a violent crime, he chooses a white victim 47.7% of the time;"

That's why almost all people will move farther and farther away until there's no place to move to. A new dystopian novel is in the works. Sure to supplant the escape movies "Escape from New York" etc. We are seeing the future and it isn't too pretty. The savages are taking over.

BTW I'll be long gone by then.

John Craig said...

Europeasant --
Where are you planning to go?

BTW, after that reference to your serf forebears in your earlier comment, it finally dawned on me what "Europeasant" refers to, other than European ancestry.

Anonymous said...

Finally someone in the media room uncovering some facts, explaining dispassionately and in depth:
https://medium.com/@gavrilodavid/why-derek-chauvin-may-get-off-his-murder-charge-2e2ad8d0911
So did Keith Ellison purposely overcharge to cause future unrest when a not-guilty verdict comes in?

John Craig said...

Anon --
That's a great article, thanks for sending. That guy is far better informed than me. I thought Ellison was overreaching when he asked for a murder two charge (there was no way Chauvin was killing him on purpose, especially in public like that), but it seemed to me that Ellison was covering his bases by also charging him with murder three and manslaughter. Given that he made all three charges like that, I doubt he wants to lose the use on purpose in order to foment more discord.

But that article was really illuminating. I knew about the various drugs in Floyd's system, but I hadn't realized that he'd said he couldn't breathe even before he was on the ground. I also hadn't realized that that neck restraint was approved by the Minneapolis PD. And I'd never even heard of that syndrome; hearing the EMTs talk about it was enlightening. Another thing I hadn't realized until recently, I read somewhere that Floyd was 6'6" and one of the pictures I saw of him in that sleeveless tank top made him look absolutely jacked. I can see why the cops might have been afraid of him, especially since that excited delirium syndrome gives you added strength and endurance.