Monday, June 29, 2020
July 23, 1965: The Day Detroit Died A riot broke out, a riot lasting 48 hours, resulting in 43 deaths, 1,189 injuries, and over 2,000 buildings destroyed. The riots were under control by July 26. Detroit died that day. Let that be a warning to Minneapolis, Portland, and Seattle. Gordon Lightfoot’s Black Days in July, depicting the Detroit Riots, was denied airplay on 30 stations. Detroit’s population peaked at 1,849,568 in 1950, the fourth largest in America. The city was one of the wealthiest in the country. The population dropped to 1,670,144 in 1960. Detroit, for all its wealth, is a one-trick pony, the auto industry, the other “Detroit.” Three of America’s largest companies, GM, Ford and Chrysler, were Detroit companies. Several manufacturers, Packard, Studebaker, and Hudson, dropped out of the industry, as did several smaller companies. GM in 1970 was by far the largest and most profitable company, not just in the United States, but globally. Detroit’s police on July 23, 1967 raided an unlicensed, after-hours bar. That was the spark that ignited rioting by the black community living in one of the most racist, discriminatory northern cities, with crime, poor schools, and a heavy police boot. An intense 48 hours of rioting ensued. The President pursuant to the Insurrection Act of 1807 dispatched elements of the 82nd and 101st Airborne Divisions to join the Michigan National Guard, Michigan State Police and Wayne County Sheriff’s Office in fighting the riot. The result of the race riots was White Flight to the suburbs and the death of downtown Detroit. Black flight also occurred for those who could. Say hello to McComb, Oakland, and St. Claire counties, and the rest of Wayne County. I was in downtown Detroit in early 1972. Much of downtown was desolate. The J.L. Hudson Department Store, which once vied with Macy’s Herald Square as the country’s largest, was open, but the inventory was sparse. The store subsequently closed. The building remained for several more years, until demolished, leaving a symbolic hole in the ground. I entered the last record store in downtown Detroit. An armed guard was at the door and the records behind the counters. You had to ask the clerk to pull out the albums you wanted to see. I assume the store closed soon after. Detroit’s population dropped to 1,514,063 in 1970, and then to 1,203,368 in 1980. The population continued to drop to 667,272 in 2020. Almost 80% of the population is African American. 36.43%, over 1/3, live below the poverty rate. Then came the collapse of Detroit, the industry, in the mid-1970’s. The two Arab Oil Embargoes of the 1970’s changed American car purchasing habits. Gas mileage and quality became primary factors; neither of which was Detroit’s forte. Detroit, the industry, collapsed. GM with 60% of the market in 1970 now hovers between over 17-18%. Factories were closed and mammoth layoffs ensued. I see flight out of the cities that were wracked by riots. Minneapolis and Seattle are not one-trick cities. The toleration of lawlessness by the city leaders sent a message to the economic Community, especially to the looted and torched merchants. Strips of empty and burnt out stores will remain. Businesses will move outside the cities, perhaps even to other states. Drip, drip, drip, one by one, businesses will leave. Drip by drip, the middle class will move to the suburbs. It’s no longer retirees leaving New York for Florida. Seattle has Amazon, Nordstrom’s, Starbucks and the University. Only the UW cannot pick up and leave. Nordstrom’s downtown Seattle store was looted. The Macy’s across the street closed before Covid-19 and the riots. Downtown, overwhelmed by homeless, and Capitol Hill are losing their allure. Boeing, for inexplicable reasons, moved to Chicago in 2001. Distance work occasioned by Covid-19 has shown employers not every employee needs to work in a cubicle in a high rise downtown office building. Amazon’s rapid growth revitalized the South Union area. Defund the police, tolerate looting, watch the exodus. May 25: Minneapolis May 30: Seattle The days Minneapolis and Seattle lost control.
94% of 1500 Democrats surveyed who are college students said Defund the Police. Yes, Defund the campus police at USC and every university in poor neighborhoods. Defund the campus police who investigate sexual assaults on campus. Defund the campus police who have to handle violent, drunk, and drug induced violent students. Defund the campus police who would be the first responders on campus shooters. Defund the campus police. See how long that lasts! Where do these clueless students get their wisdom? From faculty, the internet, and social media. Justice Louis Brandeis once wrote “States are the laboratories of democracy.” Today it might be a few progressive cities, led by Minneapolis., Seattle, San Francisco, Portland, Chicago and New York. Defund the police? The killing of George Floyd by Officer Derek Chauvin hit America in the gut. Cries for reform and justice justifiably rang out throughout the country A few simple reforms would reduce excessive force. Ban chokeholds and other pressures on the neck and back, Require officers to take action to prevent illegal conduct by fellow officers, transparency on the use of force, and disclosures of misconduct investigations. Require bodycams to be ON. The Los Angeles Sheriff’s Office still does not have bodycams for the deputies. Turning off the body cam in an incident should create a presumption of excessive force. Another reform, receiving little attention today, is restricting the use of the baton/nightstick/billyclub. Videos showed officers wildly swinging their nightsticks at protestors or rioters. A close friend, a San Francisco Police Officer, told me decades ago that officers should keep both hands on the nightstick. Officers swinging their nightsticks with one hand project an image of being wildly out of control. That certainly seemed the case during the riots. A more difficult problem is removing bad cops from the force because of provisions in the employment contract between the communities and police unions. Removing an officer absent a felony is difficult; so too with similar union contracts protecting teachers. Yet, bad cops, such as Derek Chauvin with 18 incidents in 19 years, should not carry a badge and gun. Defund the Police! Let’s start with eliminating the police protection of governors and mayors: Governor Newsom of California and Governor Cuomo of New York, and Mayors Eric Garcetti, of LA, New York City’s Mayor Bill De Blasio, Philadelphia’s Jimmy Kenney, San Francisco’s London Breed, Oakland’s Libby Schaaf, and Boston’s Marty Walsh. Why not Speaker Pelosi as well? Does Joe Biden really need Secret Service protection in his basement? Do we defund the Sheriff’s Department, School Police, Housing Police, and Transit Police? They all have badges and guns. Defunding the transit police is not going to improve security on the New York City subway system. Defunding the police is a counter-intuitive solution to rising crime rates, but that’s what you expect from a dolt like Mayor De Blasio of New York City. That also speaks poorly of the mayors and council members who are blinded by politics. The New York City crime rates have soared under Mayor De Blasio. His solution is to cut $1 billion from the police budget. Police shootings in New York City have substantially declined from 810 in 1971 to 72 in 2016. Deaths dropped from 93 to 23. Even one wrongful killing, be it by a shooting or chokehold, is one too many. Black Lives Matter arose in the outcome of police killings. All black lives matter, including the lives that will be lost, sexually assaulted or mugged without police to enforce the law. We know without police crime will explode in the inner cities. Chicago from May 29-31 witnessed 23 homicides out of 84 shooting incidents. New York City, DE Blasio’s pride and joy, had 55 shootings with 74 wounded from June 15-21, compared to 18 shootings last year. Not one was by police! The numbers are rising from a mere 100 in May, the first time in five years. Baltimore has seen 159 homicides to date, ahead of last year’s pace. Detroit is up 30% so far this year to 129 killings. Defunding, dismantling, demonizing. decimating the police will not solve the inner city problems of crime, dropouts, drugs, failing schools, joblessness, payday loans, and single parents. The only argument for defunding the police is the recognition the police have been defanged, handcuffed, neutered, and paralyzed by politicians and judges. Officers stood by and watched looting in Minneapolis, Santa Monica, Long Beach, and elsewhere. A judge in Denver said no tear gas, no rubber bullets. Seattle’s mayor said no tear gas, pepper spray or flash bombs. The Minneapolis and Seattle mayors let the mobs seize police stations. When they arrest looters, they’re back on the streets in 3 hours in NYC while the social justice DA’s of St. Louis County and Philadelphia refuse to prosecute. The Defund Police advocates have no clear, viable alternatives. Mayors, such as New York’s De Blasio, ran on an anti-police platform. Let us recognize that the mayors, city councils, and governors of these states believe police are the problem, always the problem. Anything to deflect attention away from their incompetence. If the police are not permitted to do their job, why do we have them? If police are not allowed to use non-violent force, then the only alternative is violent force. That is not a legal or realistic use of force in many situations. The police were simply not going to mow down the rioters. Yes, let’s get rid of the police, until we need them! Andrea Mitchell and D.C. Representative Eleanor Holmes Jordan were talking in the new D.C. Black Lives Matter street a week ago, when a crazed woman came running at them. One of the two, the witnesses differ, screamed out “Where are the Police when you need them?” They will not be anywhere in some of these cities. Minneapolis council members have received death threats, an unfortunate phenomenon in today’s wired world for celebrities, public figures, and public officials. Most of them are probably specious, but the threatened should take them seriously. The City of Minneapolis has now hired private security three council members at a daily cost of $4,500 for the taxpayers. The City explained the Minneapolis Police were needed elsewhere in the city. Where? Doing what? The rhetoric is leading indirectly to defunding the police. An increasing number of officers are resigning or retiring, up 49% in New York City. Police take an oath to serve and protect, but that gets frustrating, and even impossible, when the ones you serve and protect, are trying to defund you My suggestion is to defeat the mayors and council members in the cities that defang the police. Put it up to a vote by the people. If they vote to defund the police, they can live with the consequences.
Saturday, June 27, 2020
Minneapolis 911 911: Welcome to Minneapolis 911 Holistic Response Center: How can we be of service? If you know your extension, you can dial it directly now Listen carefully to our menu, which is changing as we move to a police free city. If you are calling about a domestic violence dispute, dial 1 for our counseling center. If you are calling about child endangerment, dial 2 for social services. If the dispute is between neighbors, contact your local mediator. If a homeless encampment has sprung up in your neighborhood, please hang up. We have been unable to resolve the homeless problem for a decade. If it is a non-violent property crime, hang up and hire private security If it is a stolen vehicle, hang up; we do not respond to non-violent crime.. If it is a medical emergency, go to the nearest emergency hospital. If it is about drugs, drugs are legal now. You will have to go to nearest emergency hospital. If it involves problems at a school, hang up, dial the school directly and ask for the principal. We no longer have school resource officers. If it is a fire, please contact the fire marshal. If you are white and being mugged, than you are a victim of white privilege to which we cannot respond. If it is gang related, we do not get involved with their freedom of expression. If it involves a homicide, it’s too late. For bank robberies, contact the FBI. For kidnappings, contact the FBI. If the case involves excessive force by a police officer, I will put you through now to Internal Affairs. If you are unsure, please dial O or remain on the line. The expected wait time is 45 minutes. If you cannot wait, call Ghostbusters. Thank you for calling Minneapolis 911; Have a good day.
Thursday, June 25, 2020
The videos of the recent destruction of our nation’s monuments show mostly young whites engaged in the demolitions. President Trump’s biggest hurdle in reelection is demographics. The Millennials and Generation Z’ers are 37% of the electorate. They are woke, nihilistic, democratic socialists. A survey showed the 18-24 age group prefer socialism to capitalism. This generation is different from the Baby Boomers. The post-World War II generation knew they could work hard and achieve the American Dream. The Civil Rights Era during this time achieved legal equality with the passage of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the Voting Rights Act of 1965. The Teachings of the Millennials and Z’ers The past decade has seen escalating Wokeness, White Privilege, Microaggressions and Safe Spaces coupled with intolerance. The youth question the existence of America as we know it. They have been educated, indoctrinated that America is an oppressive country, built on slavery, oppression, and exploitation. You are either an oppressor or oppressed. The instruments of oppression are the military, police, and capitalism. Capitalism is oppressive because of failures, and thus losers under capitalism. It is contra to equality. Western Civilization, which is White Western Civilization, is equally oppressive. The world’s problems are caused by white (Christian) males, and sometimes females. The oppressed are Blacks, Hispanics, Native Americans, Asian Americans, LGBTQ, and often women. We are witnessing the deconstruction of American History, excising American Heritage, and trashing traditional American values. E Plubus Unum: Out of many, one. Not now! Now out of many, many. The New York Times 1619 Project encapsulates the learning of the younger generation. America was built on slavery when England brought slaves to the American colonies in 1619. The Declaration of Independence and the Constitution are fundamentally flawed because they were penned by slave owners. The Constitution recognized slavery and the slave trade. Hence symbols of America’s past are flawed. America’s original sin was slavery followed by the genocide of First Nations. The nation’s founders were slavers and racists who committed genocide. They believe therefore that the must destroy the past, and its monuments, to create A BRAVE NEW WORLD, whatever that may be, maybe Chaz. 1619 has become a rallying cry for many. One young African American woman was yelling “1619” as she was rioting. The thesis is America’s “greatness” is built on oppression, suppression, and exploitation of others. America was never great; therefore is not great today. Governor Andrew Cuomo said “America was never that great.” No wonder New York is declining. America from 1619 was an oppressive country. The oppressors were white males. If you are a white today then you have succeeded because of White Privilege. The young whites are befuddled with guilt over white privilege. I remember the past iterations of middle class guilt and ancestral guilt. Now it’s White Privilege. If you’re White, you succeeded because of the built-in advantages of whiteness. Whiteness, not hard work, created your success. You should feel guilty if you’re white. The Woke do not understand that the only place success comes before work is in the dictionary. Hard work leads to success. Every country over centuries has sins in its past. Slavery was an abomination. So was Jim Crow. The treatment of the Native Americans was reprehensible, throwing them in reservations “out of sight, out of mind.” The internment of Japanese Americans in concentration camps in World War II is equally reprehensible. That America no longer exists, except in history books. An African American served as President for eight years. An African American is a Republican Senator from South Carolina, That is not a nation of systemic racism. The KKK doesn’t lurk hidden in every police officer, waiting for the chance to murder an African American. The Declaration of Independence is aspirational and inspirational: “We hold these truths to be self-evident…..All men are created equal” was factually untrue in 1776. Slaves were unequal as were women. The vote was limited to roughly 5% of the population, property owning white males. 41 of the 56 signers of the Declaration of Independence owned slaves. It is thereby flawed as an instrument to cover oppression. 25 of the 55 delegates to the Constitutional Convention were also slaveowners; so it too must be flawed as an instrument of perpetuating slavery. Such is the thought process of the American Levelers. The ignorance of these Levelers is astonishing. Many have degrees from prestigious universities. Therein lies the underlying problem. Colleges were cathedrals of learning, opening up students’ minds to critical analysis and critical reasoning. The traditional humanities were designed to fulfill the individual and provide a well-rounded education. Too many of today’s courses and programs close minds by indoctrinating students. They’ve learnt to blame the problems of the world on colonialism and white males, who have oppressed women and all other races in history. Their education emphasizes what’s wrong with America. They’re ignorant of history, except on Jimmy Kimmel and Comedy Central. The Greatness of the Revolutionary Declaration of Independence and Constitution The Woke Generation is woefully ignorant of the founders and founding documents of the United States and civics. The woke are so sure of themselves and ignorant of history that they cannot see the greatness and bravery of the founding documents of the United States of America. Let us remember Joe Biden’s classic “We choose truth over facts.” The White founders of the United States created the framework that led to the affluence and freedom of speech of the woke generation. Capitalism brings them the products and services they enjoy and take for granted. The Declaration of Independence was a revolutionary statement in the history of man. Equally revolutionary, the Constitution laid out the rights of the people. These revolutionary documents liberated the people from the divine rights of kings and queens. The Declaration of Independence for the first time in history set out the rights of the people in seeking freedom. Individuals, the people, have rights! The signers would have been hung by the British if the Revolution failed. The Constitution protects the rights of the people against the government by limiting the powers of the federal government to enumerated powers. The most critical provision in the Constitution is Article V which provides a mechanism for amending the Constitution. The first ten amendments are the Bill of Rights, again a revolutionary concept in the history of civilization. The First Amendment provides for Freedom of Religion, Freedom of Speech, Freedom of the Press, the right of assembly, and to petition government for a redress of grievancee; The fourth Amendment protects against unlawful searches and seizures, including the requirements for warrants, requiring probable cause; The Fifth Amendment provides for Due Process of Law and protects against Double jeopardy and Self-Incrimination; The Sixth Amendment mandates a speedy and public trial and the right to counsel; The Eighth Amendment bars cruel and unusual punishment; The 13th Amendment banned slavery; The 15th Amendment granted the freed slaves the right to vote; The 19th Amendment granted women the right to vote; The 24th Amendment eliminated the Poll Tax. On Slavery and the Slave Trade I will not in any way defend slavery or the Middle Passage. It was an abomination embedded in millennia of history. Slavery was not an institution unique to America. The global practice predates the Old Testament (Torah) which tells us the Jews were enslaved by Pharaoh. The Spartans had helots. The Spanish actually preceded England in bringing slaves to America in 1565 to St. Augustine. England (1807) and the United States (1808) led the world in ending the slave trade and then slavery itself. England ended slavery in 1833 by compensating the Caribbean slaveowners. The United States ended slavery through the Civil War. Every northern state had abolished slavery before the Civil War. An estimated 110,100 battlefield casualties for the Union occurred during the Civil War with another 224,500 dying from disease. The disproportionate disease to battle death toll was very common until last century. The vast majority of the casualties were white. In other words roughly 300,000 Whites died to free the slaves. That is the real White Privilege. They shed their red blood for the slaves. Both slavery and the human sex trade still exists in the world today. Both Nazi Germany and the Soviet Union employed slave labor. The Intolerance of the Left They espouse tolerance, but are intolerant to those they disagree with. An example of their ignorance of American values is a 2017 Survey of College Students. 70% favor open campuses with all types of speech. 56% say protecting free speech Is extremely important for society. Sounds good, but both are way short of 100%. The survey results continued. They do not value free speech. 64% believe the Constitution should not protect hate speech. 73% support policies to limit offensive slurs, and 34%, 1/3, said it could be appropriate to shout down speakers. In short, these generation are characterized by intolerance. Hate speech seems to be anything that conflicts with their core beliefs. Nikole Hannah-Jones, the New York Times writer who created the 1619 Project, received a Pulitzer for it. Free Speech is not her mantra. The New York Times published an Op-Ed, “Send in the Troops”, by Senator Tom Cotton. The Times’ staff rebelled. Nikole tweeted: “I’ll probably get in trouble for this, but to say nothing would be immoral. As a Black woman, as a journalist, as an American, I am deeply ashamed that we ran this.” She also said: “So this adherence to even-handedness, both sideism, the view from nowhere doesn’t actually work in the political circumstances that we’re in. And what a lot of people said is that, you know, it is fine. We as a news organization must air the opinion of someone like Senator Tom Cotton, but in a news article where we can check the facts, where we can push back, that you just hand over your platform to someone that powerful making assertions that might have been unconstitutional and, most certainly, some of them were not accurate.” The truth is that Senator Cotton was constitutionally and factually correct. The same is not true about her 1619 Project. Free speech to the Woke, but not all. Socialism Capitalism is viewed as oppressive because it has winners and losers. Socialism is seductive; it promises equality to everyone, and succeeds with equality of poverty, except for the privileged few. The Bolsheviks seized the villas of the rich. The Commissars then lived in them. Our generation read Animal Farm. They should. The equality of communism and socialism is poverty. Check out Cuba and Venezuela as well as China and India before they discovered capitalism. Socialism sends out a Siren call to the Woke; Free, Free, Free! Free Tuition! Democratic socialism is an oxymoron. Socialism has to oppress the individual in the name of the masses. Socialism cannot succeed if it is democratic. It has to take from those who have. Democratic socialism seems the solution because they confuse “socialism” with social progress. Democratic socialism seems attractive because of their ignorance of Economics and history. AOC was an economics major. We must wonder what she was taught. Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez is an example of a young entrepreneur who failed in her first effort. Rather than learning from her mistakes, she turned to Democratic socialism, not realizing it is an oxymoron. Social justice is not socialism. It cannot be; social justice favors some classes over others. The Woke are increasingly anti-Semitic. Miscellaneous Secular Humanism and affluence have taken their toll. The youth have lost faith in God. Yet an emptiness exists. Apple, Facebook, Google, and Microsoft are not God. Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter are not Angels. Wikipedia is not the Gospels. The internet is their universe, but it is not the Universe. Environmentalism and fighting climate change have become a religion to many. They watch Al Gore’s An Inconvenient Truth and view it as Gospel, not realizing the famous hockey stick was factually flawed. Just coincidental, the looting occurred in Democratic cities where the looters knew the mayors would restrain the police. The governors removing statues are also Democrats. The Others You have the clueless dolts (is that an oxymoron?) such as Mayor Be Blasio of New York City and Representative Ilhan Omar. She can say “Some people did something.” The “something” was 9/11. The Obamas spent 20 years of imbuing the Liberation Theory of the Reverend Jeremiah Wright: “Not God Bless America, But God Damn America.” Thus Senator Warren and President Obama can say “You didn’t build it.” Mayor Frey of Minneapolis is an example of a Millennial who still has much to learn. Some, such as Seattle’s Mayor Durkan, are in denial. They cannot believe what they see with their own eyes. The Democratic mayors and governors are scared of upsetting the Black note. They will not turn on their constituency. Final Comments The past month proves the maxim that is easier to destroy than create. Two and a half centuries of American history, 2 1/2 centuries of creating modern America are being destroyer, eviserated and trashed. They Woke can erase history, but not expunge it. Erasing history makes us ignorant, or increases the ignorance of the Woke. Life is too short to be consumed by hate over the past. Hatred blinds the actor to reality, the facts and the truth. Hatred prevents moving ahead.
Monday, June 22, 2020
Civilization is a this veneer which barely contains the true nature of people. A similar phrase is “Civilization is just a thin veneer in the absence of law and order. In the absence of law and order, man quickly revert to savagery. Seattle is testing the veneer. I wasn’t sure whether to satirize or condemn the occupation of Capitol Hill. I lived on Capitol Hill at one time, but on the opposite side facing Lake Washington, the Arboretum and a slice of Mt. Rainier. Capitol Hill is an affluent community. Nothing farcical exists about the seizure of a part of an American city. Seattle’s East Precinct Police Station was under seize for 11 days, protected by barricades, police and the National Guard. Suddenly they abandoned the station, and the mob rushed in, quickly claiming a six block area, to be named The Capitol Hill Autonomous Zone (Chaz), and now renamed the Capitol Hill Occupied Protest area. One consistency is that it remains a No Cop Zone, with the foreseeable results. Seattle Mayor Jenny Durkin explained she “wanted to demilitarize the posture” and thus ordered the police to abandon their station. Washington’s Governor Jay Inslee had an interesting take when asked about the occupation of Capitol Hill. He claimed ignorance. He knew nothing about it. He was either duplicitous or incompetent, or both. No one’s admitting to ordering the police to abandon their precinct. Police Chief Carmen Best denied giving the order. Mayor Durkin soon called it a patriotic block party. I’ve never been to a block party with men toting AK47s acting like Toy Soldiers. She even added it could be a Summer of Love. I was in San Francisco in 1967, the Summer of Love. I never saw armed men playing toy soldiers, toting AK47’s. Stoned, Yes; Armed, No! Summer of Love? or Shooting Gallery? Law and Order or Lawless Anarchy. What is CHAZ? It seems to be an unorganized, unplanned commune of the Far Left that is acquiring a despotic organization. Anarchy rules. When will Mayor Durkin or Governor Inslee decide, if ever, enough id enough? One young male was shot to death Saturday evening and a second seriously wounded. A third was wounded Sunday. This 17 year old male claimed the Mafia Code of Omerta and refused to talk to the police. Seattle Police holding their revolvers attempted to enter the peaceful summer of love zone Saturday and were encountered by the mob. The Seattle Officers only had two choices: retreat or shoot. The mob knew the police would not shoot. They also knew Mayor Durkin had disarmed, defanged is a better the term. By barring them from using tear gas, pepper spray or smoke bombs to disperse protesters. Between the homeless occupying downtown Seattle and the CHOP mob, the thin veneer of civilization is severely frayed in Seattle.
Saturday, June 20, 2020
As you read this blog, please understand that I am pointing out the lunacy and contradictions in our Orwellian search for historical purity. I personally hold no brief for the Confederates except to the extent it is a critical part of American history. George Orwell must be rolling over in his grave. The murder of George Floyd has set off a tsunami of removing any symbols of a racist past: slave owners, slavers, slave merchants, racists against blacks, American Indians, Columbus, Conquistadores, sexists, and proponents of Eugenics. America is trying to catch up to its history of racism. People become Orwellian unpersons. Trotsky would say they’ve been condemned to the dustbin of history. Monuments are to be removed, destroyed or drowned; busts and names removed from schools and buildings; and history rewritten. Apparently omitted to date from the opprobrium list are anti-Semites. Humans are complex organisms. None of us are perfect. We are all flawed. Yet for most of us, the good outweighs the flawed. We make mistakes. However, today’s nihilists see only the flaws. No balancing is allowed. No matter how great a person was, taints of racism dooms him or her in today’s world. Eleven United States Presidents owned slaves: George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, James Madison, James Monroe, Andrew Jackson, Martin Van Buren, Benjamin Harrison, John Tyler, James K Polk, Andrew Johnson, and Ulysses S. Grant. To be fair to President Grant who abhorred slavery, he inherited a slave in 1857 and freed him in 1859. We definitely need to add the Virginia born President Woodrow Wilson to the list. He was as racist as any President. Berkeley already removed Washington and Jefferson from schools. Vandals on Monday in Portland toppled a statue of President Jefferson in front of the Thomas Jefferson High School. The pedestal had painted on it “SLAVE OWNER” and “GEORGE FLOYD 846.” Earlier today they set a statue of George Washington on fire. The same mentality and mindlessness painted “Committed GENOCIDE” on the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier of the American Revolution in Philadelphia. The Lincoln Memorial was similarly defaced by in the D.C. riots by mindless ignoramuses. 400 vandals last night in San Francisco’s Golden Gate Park gleefully toppled President Grant, Francis Scott Key, and Fr. Junipero Serra. All President Lincoln and General Grant did was win the Civil War and free the slaves. Doesn’t mean a thing to the mobs. Even President Abraham Lincoln, the Great Emancipator who loathed slavery, had degrading remarks about the slaves. He said during the Lincoln-Douglas Debates on September 18, 1868: “I will say then I am not, nor ever have been, in favor of bringing about in any way the social and political equality of the white and black races.” He opposed giving them voting rights. He later changed his mind on the voting issue. About 7,000 people have signed a petition to remove a 100 year old monument entitled Emancipation in Boston. Abraham Lincoln is standing over a freed slave who’s on his knees. Broken manacles are on his freed hands. The objection is the kneeling black. 41 signers of the Declaration of Independence owned slaves as well as 25 of the 55 delegates to the Constitutional Congress. Justice Hugo Black, the great civil libertarian on the Warren Court, was active in the KKK for several years. Patrick Henry (“Give me liberty, or give me death”) was a slave owner as was Benjamin Franklin. John Jay, the first Chief Justice of the Supreme Court, owned slaves. The fabled Chief Justice John Marshall owned slaves. His successor Roger Tawney not only owned slaves before joining the Supreme Court, but has also been eternally damned for penning the despicable Dred Scott decision. The justice was the brother-in-law of Francis Scott Key. Francis Scott Key can be dammed on several counts. First, he was a slave owner. Second, he prosecuted abolitionists as United States Attorney in Washington, D.C. Third, his solution to the slave problem was to send free blacks to Liberia. Fourth, his contribution to America was penning the Star Spangled Banner, America’s National Anthem. We only sing the first stanza. The third stanza has controversial lines: “No refuge can save the hireling and slave from the terror of flight, or the gloom of the grave ….” Two long-deceased university presidents have been removed from campus buildings. U.S.C. stripped the name Rufus Von KleinSmid off the building hosting his institute. Rufus was President of USC from 1921 to 1947 and built up USC’s academic reputation. He was also a strong backer of the eugenics movement, as was Clarence Cook Little at the University of Michigan, president from 1922-25. C.C. Little was undistinguished during his Michigan presidency. Unpersons! Eugenics is a despicable movement popular with “right thinking” people a century ago. The goal was to improve the genetic quality of the human race through selective breeding, which clearly involved racial discrimination. Sounds a lot like the Nazis. One aspect of Eugenics was the forced sterilization of men and women. Justice Oliver Wendell Holmes, writing for the Supreme Court in the 1927 case of Buck v. Bell, upheld the practice of involuntary sterilization for the mentally disabled, penning one of the most despicable lines in Supreme Court history: “Three generations of imbeciles are enough.” Then we come to law schools. The University of California Berkeley School of Law for most of its existence called itself Boalt Hall in honor of Judge Boalt. The judge is now almost a unperson, except for a funded endowment. Judge Boalt’s sin was being an outspoken backer of the Chinese Exclusion Act. Across the bay is the University of California Hastings College of Law. Serranus Clinton Hastings, the founder of Hastings Law School, financed Indian hunting expeditions, killing Indians like Buffalo, for sport. However, the University of California shows no inclination of removing Earl Warren’s name from the law School. Chief Justice Earl Warren in his earlier life as an ambitious attorney general was one of the two most responsible for interning Japanese Americans in concentration camps during World War II. He never apologized for his actions. Franklin Pierce Law School at the University of New Hampshire is facing renaming because President Franklin Pierce was not sufficiently anti-slavery. He signed the Kansas-Nebraska Act of 1854, which allowed slavery into the western territory. Brown University, named for a slaver, has done everything short of renaming itself. Yale University got much of its start from the slave trade. Many of the Robber Barons of the Nineteenth and early 20th Century have colleges named for them. Money can but a lot. Pittsburgh’s Andrews Carnegie and Mellon have Carnegie Mellon University. J.D. Rockefeller, founder of Standard Oil, funded the startup of the University of Chicago, but his name lives on with Rockefeller University. James Buchanan Duke, the tobacco magnate monopolist, and purveyor of cancer sticks, established a trust. Trinity College changed its name to Duke University. Commodore Vanderbilt provided the funding for Vanderbilt University We clearly need to reconsider Stanford University. Leland Stanford, Sr. was a Robber Baron, but even worse as Governor of California he solicited volunteers during the Civil War for campaigns against the Indians. He further signed appropriation bills funding the expeditions. Stanford dropped its Indian Mascot in 1972. America bemoaned the heroic death of George S Custer at Custer’s Last Stand for about a century. We respect Sitting Bull and Crazy Horse today. Custer’s 7th Calvary seven years earlier on November 26, 1868 attacked the Cheyenne in their encampment. The massacre became known as the Battle of Washita. The Army commander in charge of the campaign against the Plains Indians was General Phil Sheridan, whose name is spread through the West. General Sheridan is reported to have uttered the phrase, which we know as “The only good Indian is a dead Indian. He denied it but the legend persists. The General supported the extermination of the buffalo, which forced the Plains Indians into reservations. He was however the prime mover in the creation of Yellowstone National Park. Sheridan’s name appears from New York City and D.C. through Chicago and the Great Plains across the Rockies into Oregon. Both Custer and Sheridan were heroes of the Civil War. That is probably irrelevant in this time of intellectual cleansing. John C. Calhoun, one of the most prominent public figures in the pre-Civil War Era and avid advocate of slavery, has suddenly become a nonperson, even in his South Carolina. He may still receive a footnote in history books. Confederates are rapidly falling into Trotsky’s dustbin of history. Jefferson Davis and Robert E. Lee are biting the dust. Support is rising to redo Stone Mountain outside Atlanta. It has large carvings of Jefferson Davis, Robert E Lee, and Stonewall Jackson on their horses. That brings us to Mount Rushmore with the carvings of Presidents Washington, Jefferson, Lincoln, and Theodore Roosevelt. Two were slave owners while President Lincoln mouthed racist statements against blacks. The fourth, President Roosevelt, was an unabashed imperialist. The days are numbered for the Cecil Rhodes statute at Oriel College at Oxford. What happens to the Rhodes Scholars? Christopher Columbus is finished because he unleashed the European colonization of the Americas. He was beheaded in Boston with statues removed in St. Louis and San Francisco City Hall. He still has a holiday, for now. The Spanish Conquistadores are no longer celebrated. The Sutter Medical Center in Sacramento removed its 8’ statue of John Sutter, but is keeping its name, at least for now. San Francisco’s Asian Art Museum warehoused the bust of Avery Brundage who donated the museum’s initial 8,000 art pieces. Avery Brundage made a fortune in construction in Chicago and collected Asian art pieces. He headed the International Olympics Committee from 1952-1972. He was also a Nazi sympathizer, racist and Anti-Semitic. Let us not forget Phelan Hall, the main dormitory, seemingly forever, at the University of San Francisco. James Phelan was a graduate of USF (St. Ignatius College at the time). He was an esteemed Mayor of San Francisco, a U.S. Senator from 1915-1921, and a civic leader. He was also a racist, a strong supporter of excluding Chinese and Japanese from the United States. He lost reelection in 1920 to the Senate. He railed against (TRIGGER WARNING) “The Yellow Peril.” A 1920 campaign poster said “Keep America White.” The dorm is now the Burl Toler Dorm, named for an esteemed alumnus who was the star of the fabled Undefeated, Untied, Uninvited 1951 USF football team. He was more significant as the first African American NFL official. The University of Texas is being pressured to drop “The Eyes of Texas” because of links to Robert E. Lee. Ten military bases are named for confederate military officers and officials, including Forts Benning and Bragg. President Trump refuses to rename them. Congress may do so anyway. The Obama Administration refused to rename the bases. Brigadier General Malcolm B. Frost issued a statement: “Every Army installation is named for a soldier who holds a place in our military history. Accordingly, these historic names represent individuals, not causes or ideologies. It should be noted the naming occurred in the spirit of reconciliation, not division.” Reconciliation! Not Division! If the bases go, then so did should the names of two aircraft carriers. John Stennis and Carl Vinson, who were rabid segregationists in Congress. Brand names suddenly lost value. Pepsico announced it was dropping the Aunt Jemima name and Mars said Uncle Ben is now history. Eskimo Pie needs a newname as these three brand names join the Land of Lakes Indian Maiden in the dustbin of history. The original, and last, Sambo’s in Santa Barbara decided to change its name. The argument for decades was that Sambo’s was a combination of the names of the two founders, Sam Battistone, Jr. and Newell Bohnett. That may be true, but I remember eating a couple of times at a Sambo’s in Tacoma, Washington. The restaurant was decorated with scenes from The Story of Little Black Sambo. They couldn’t have it both ways. France is standing tall. President Emmanuel Macron said France will not take down any statue; it will not erase its past. Belgium has tried to excise the memory of King Leopold II, who looted the Belgium Congo and caused the death of an estimated 10 million Africans when he owned the Congo outright a century ago. He was by far the most brutal of all the colonists. Edward Colston, a slave trader, built Bristol, England. His statue was tossed into the river last week. Attempts were then made in London to remove Churchill and Gandhi. The petition said Gandhi was a “fascist, racist and sexual predator.” The young Gandhi had strong disparaging remarks against Africans when he practiced law in South Africa. 4,000 signed a petition to remove Gandhi’s statue from Leicester, England. Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s response: “Statues teach us about our past, with all its faults. To tear them down would be to lie about our history, and impoverish the education of generations to come.” Memo to Gandhi’s wannabe destroyers: He believed in non-violence! What about you? He freed 390 million Buddhists, Hindus, Muslims and Sikhs! Who have you freed? HBO pulled Gone With The Wind to relabel it. We’ll getting close to book burning. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. preached and acted non-violence. Where is your non-violence. He said in his I Have A Dream Speech : “ I have a dream that my four little children will one day in a nation where they will be judged not by the color of their skin but by the context of their character.” MLK demanded equality – not reparations. We are entering a dangerous period in American history when ignorance takes over and the mob rules. Justice for George Floyd, YES! But justice for George Floyd is not accomplished by obliterating the nation’s past. When will reason return?
Tuesday, June 16, 2020
The Protests, Demonstrations, Marches, Looting, Rioting, and Arsons Over George Floyd, et al Do Not Address the Underlying Problems of the Inner Cities
George Floyd was maliciously murdered by a bad cop. Ahmaud Arbery was murdered by 2-3 racist whites, perhaps linked to the local police in Glynn County, Georgia. Breonna Taylor was shot 8 times by Louisville Police bungling the execution of a no-knock warrant at the wrong address. Rayshard Brooks was killed in a split second decision by trigger happy Atlanta Police Officer Garret Rolfe. All these are tragic, unnecessary killings. The anger in the African American community by the video of Office Derek Chauvin brutally killing George Floyd is palpable. They were joined by Americans of all stripes, especially the young woke generation, in the protests. Enough is Enough! Unfortunately they were also joined by looters, rioters and arsonists taking advantage of the peaceful protestors. Police are evil. APAB! Cries to defund the police sprung out. Defanging is more likely. Monuments and place names are being excised in America and to a lesser extent globally. All brings joy to some. Unfortunately, the inner cities will be in even worse condition after the euphoria ends. Defunding, dismantling, demonizing, decimating the police will not solve the inner city problems of crime, dilapidated housing, dropouts, drugs, failing schools, inadequate medical care, joblessness, payday loans, and single parents. The communities need hope, opportunity, and especially jobs. The looters and arsonists destroyed scores of minority owned businesses, which provided employment to the local community. Not all will rebuild or reopen. Police will reduce policing. That sounds like a good idea to some, but cities such as Baltimore show us when the police back off from the inner cities, violent crime rises. DA’s in Chicago, Minneapolis, New York City, and Seattle refused to prosecute the arrested protesters and looters. Yet, individual officers have been singled out for excessive force. Police get the hint. Ignore the non-violent crimes, and only respond to the greater crimes when necessary. Homicide rates climb in Baltimore and New York City. Chicago has been a disaster for years. 18 were killed in Chicago on May 31. Not one was by a police officer. 238 so far this year, up from last year. Baltimore has 75 homicides to date this year, up from last year. Police killings of blacks are a small percent of black on black homicides. Black on black crime rises when the police back off. That is a tragedy for the inner city residents. Money will be diverted to the inner cities after the Floyd outrage. The only job creation will be public employees in new or increased agencies. Private capital will stay out. The trillions invested in the inner cities since LBJ’s War on Poverty and his Great Society have not changed the conditions in the inner cities. The South Bronx is still the South Bronx. South Central LA is still South Central. The failing schools will not turn around, but the Democratic leaders fight charter schools to appease the teachers unions. By all means remove bad cops, but understand the contractual provisions the police unions put in their contracts to protect officers are the same provisions in teacher union contracts that prevent the removal of bad teachers. The public should not be shocked when police use force to break up unlawful assemblies. Innocent parties should not be standing nearby when the police ask them to leave. The Los Angeles teachers union wants to defund the Los Angeles School Police Officers, and reallocate the $70 million to the schools, meaning the teachers. So much for union “solidarity forever.” 470 School Police/Resource Officers and civilians will be disbanded. The quality of education will not improve. Pillory the police; villify, denigrate and trash them. Police understand that when their mayors, councils, and even superiors no longer have their backs, but now trash them, they will back off policing, often going through the motions. That will not affect Beverly Hills, but will hurt South Central Los Angeles. NYPD Officers always knew Mayor de Blasio despised them, but are now shocked Manhattan District Attorney Cy Vance, Jr., dropped charges for “low level offenses.” He even dismissed the charges against the three arrestees who defaced St. Patrick’s Cathedral. Graffiti will return to the Big Apple. Eliminate qualified immunity. Sounds good, until scores of police officers decide not to enforce the law or arrest fleeing felons, who will be free to commit more crimes. Refine police training. Teach them that what they learn on the street, street policing, but not in the academy is probably bad, and if it results in excessive force or death, could be a ticket to jail. The families of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor and Rashard Brooks will receive substantial settlements from the cities. Money cannot undo a wrongful death, but it’s the best civil liability can do. Derek Chauvin will spend the rest of his live in prison. Capital punishment awaits Ahmaud Arbery’s killers in Georgia. Justice awaits them, but maybe not for the Louisville and Atlanta officers.
Wednesday, June 10, 2020
Troubling Questions about Derek Chauvin We’re troubled by Officer Derek Chauvin’s murder of George Floyd. We know what we saw. We know police departments have trouble removing bad cops. We know old school police officers "educate" suspects who resist arrest. Something about the 8 minutes 46 seconds on the neck just doesn’t make sense. Even if Derek Chauvin is racist, the intensity of his violence still doesn’t make sense. Question 1. Was it personal? We know both Chauvin and Floyd worked security at the El Rodeo Nuevo Nightclub, which was torched in the looting. Maya Santamaria, the former owner, didn’t think they crossed paths at the Club. Chauvin worked outside and Floyd inside. She said though that Chauvin would excessively use mace if there was a fight on nights with predominately African American events. He would mace everyone and not just the fighters. She said he acted differently with Latinos. David Pinney, a former coworker recently said Floyd and Chauvin “bumped heads” on many occasions when Floyd complained to Chauvin that he was excessively rough on blacks. They had “a history.” If so, we have first degree murder. The excessive force was personal and malicious. Question 2: What is in his personnel file? We know 18 incidents, 3 involving shooting, were investigated in his 19 years on the force. That is almost one/year. That seems excessively high! These files are undoubtedly in the hands of the FBI and federal prosecutors as well as the Minnesota Attorney General’s Office. They know what’s in them. Question 3: Do these files show a pattern of excessive force? Question 4: Tied into Question 3, does Derek Chauvin have an anger management problem? Question 5: Do the files show a pattern of racism, at least anti-black racism? Derek Chauvin may or may not be totally or partially racist. I say that only because his soon to be ex-wife is a Laotian American Question 6: What does his estranged wife have to say? Kellie Chauvin originally said he was gentle under his exterior. What does she say now? Question 7: Why was he on the streets? I understand that pursuant to union contracts the disciplining of police officers is difficult, short of a felony in some states, but why wasn’t he riding the desk? Question 8: Why was he teamed up with Tao Thao, who also had a history of complaints (6 complaints in 8 years? Question 9: Why was an officer with his record a training officer? Question 10: The most critical question of all: What the Hell was he thinking? My answers as a not even amateur psychologist is that he is a bad cop, racist, at least to African Americans, with an anger management problem.
The New York Times and Philadelphia Inquirer have crossed the line from objective reporting to abject wokeness. The mainstream media has leaned liberal for decades. President Nixon well-understood and felt the media’s bias. He once said to the media after losing the California governorship election in 1962 to incumbent Pat Brown: “You don’t have Nixon to kick around anymore!” Of course they did, with Nixon proving the maxim: “Just because you’re paranoid, doesn’t mean they aren’t out to get you.’ The editorial pages are expected to be partisan, but the news section independent. The Wall Street Journal still maintains that wall. Op-eds could present alternative views. The New York Times and LA Times decided Donald Trump was unacceptable as President. They dropped any sheen of objective news, not yet reaching the depths of CNN and MSNBC. They crossed the Rubicon with the horrific homicide of George Floyd. The vast majority of Americans support the protests, marches, and demonstrations calling for Justice. But not riots, looting, arson, and violence. The riots were out of control in Minneapolis, Chicago and D.C. Senator Tom Cotton (R. Ark) penned an op-ed, published in the New York Times: “Send in the Troops.” His view was that under the Insurrection Act of 1807 the President has the power to call out the military to restore public order, a power which has been exercised scores of times in the nation’s history. James Bennet, the Opinions Editor of the New York Times, authorized the publication to present both sides in informing the public of the issues. That was not good enough for Times’ staffers. Bennet defended the publication, as did A.G. Sulzberger, the publisher of the Times, and Dean Baquet, Executive Editor. A.G. emailed the staff: “I believe in the principle of openness to a range of opinions, even those we may disagree with, and this piece was published in that spirit …. But it’s essential that we listen to and reflect on the concerns we’re hearing, as we would with any piece that is the subject of significant criticism. I will do so with an open mind.” A wonderful statement of a free and open press. The staff rebelled and subscribers cancelled subscriptions. Over 800 staffers signed a protest letter. Over 160 planned a virtual walkout. Staffers tweeted “Running this puts black @NYT staff in danger.” The staffer's missive said: “We believe his message undermines the work we do, in the newsroom and in opinions, and violates our standards for ethical and accurate reporting for the public’s interest. It also jeopardizes our journalists’ ability to work safely and effectively on the street.” Bennet, once a rising star at the Times, resigned. Sulzberger and Baquet apologized. The Times stated the op-ed’s editorial process did not “meet our standards.” Senator Cotton responded: “The New York Times editorial page editor and owner defended it in public statements but then they totally surrendered to a woke child mob from their own newsroom that apparently gets triggered if they’re presented with any opinion contrary to their own, as opposed to telling the woke children in their newsroom this is the workplace, not a social-justice seminar on campus.” He also tweeted “Does@nytimes have any standards left, beyond keeping the woke mob happy.” Senator Cotton, a Harvard Law School grad, is now a rising star in the Republican Party. Erik Wemple, media critic of the Washington Post, wrote: “Crisis of conviction at the New York Times.” He said that in only two days the Times had ‘alienated staffers, readers, liberals, conservatives, free-expression absolutists of all political persuasions and Tom Cotton.” “Standards”? The Times has published op-eds from the Taliban, Vladimir Putin, and Recep Erdogan. “Standards”? The Times bought into the bogus Russian Conspiracy Theory hook, line, and sinker. It has never apologized. It’s now official the Times has gone woke. The Woke Age of trigger warnings, safe spaces, micro aggressions, and White Privilege of the younger generation has taken over the media. They do not understand that there are two sides to every story and reasonable minds can disagree. For them, only one side exists; their’s is The Truth. Today’s educational system no longer exposes, much less teaches, critical analysis and critical thinking. Their education may be at the nation’s most prestigious institutions, but large gaps are missing, such as history and the Constitution. One of the challenges of a law professor today is getting law students to understand there are at least two sides to every story. Here’s the mindset of some of the Times staffers. New York Times Pulitzer Prize Winner Nikole Hannah-Jones in a CBS interview said: “I think we need to be very careful with our language. Yes, it is disturbing to see property being destroyed. It is disturbing to see people taking property from stores, but these are things. Violence is when an agent of the state kneels on a man’s neck until all of his life is leached out of his body. Destroying property, which can be replaced, is not violence.” Tell that to the minority business operators whose business has been destroyed. Her claim to a Pulitzer is the 1619 Project which posits America is built on slavery, which began in 1619. Bari Weiss, writer and opinion editor of the Times, explained the younger staff’s perspective: “The civil war inside the New York Times between the (mostly young) wokes the (mostly40+) liberals is the same one raging inside other publications and companies across the country. The dynamic is always the same. The Old Guard lives by a set of principles we can broadly call civil libertarianism. They assumed they shared the worldview with the young people they hired who called themselves liberals and progressives. But it was an incorrect assumption” She talked about the Times motto “all the news fit to print.” She said one group emphasizes “news” and the others “fit.” Let’s remember Jack Nicholson’s Line in A Few Good Men “You can’t handle the truth.” Stan Wischnowoski, editor of the Philadelphia Inquirer, also fell on his sword. He spent 20 years at the paper, helping it navigate through treacherous financial times. Doesn’t matter – no loyalty. Don’t let the door hit you on the way out. Inga Saffron, architecture critic, wrote an article on the future of Philadelphia’s buildings and civic infrastructure in light of the riots. He attached “Buildings Matter, Too” as the article’s headline. That was a mistake in these charged times. The staffers rebelled. They sent a letter to management: “An Open Letter From Journalists of Color at the Philadelphia Inquirer.” The gist “Things need to change.” Stan’s resignation accompanied by editorial apologies followed. The senior editors posted the headline was “offensive” and never should have run. All the News That’s Woke to Print!
Monday, June 8, 2020
Minneapolis Mayor Jacob Frey is Grossly Incompetent Cities run through a gauntlet of mayors: conservative, progressive, competent, builders, imaginative, entrepreneurial, dull, conciliators, facilitators, incompetent, frugal, profligate, lazy, corrupt. New Yorkers elected Republican Rudy Giuliani after years of incompetent Democrats who drove up crime and rode the city into bankruptcy. He was succeeded by Michael Bloomberg, otherwise a progressive, but who knew New Yorkers needed law and order. We sometimes referred to as Democratic candidates decades ago as "Blow-dried liberals;" They all seemed to emerge from the same studio. Many of the candidates today are young, telegenic, empathetic, social justice warriors, full of promises. Several have been community organizers. Minneapolis Mayor Jacob Frey is one of them, as Mayor Pete Buttigieg of South Bend. Many are ill-equipped mentally to handle a major crisis. Not ready for prime time. The question is: who’s the worst in at least modern American History. Contenders are many. The decision was close: Mayor Jacob Frey of Minneapolis or New York Mayor Bill De Blasio. Who will go done in history with London Lord Mayor Thomas Bloodworth as the worst in history? Mayor De Blasio wins hands down as worst in New York City history, but he’s been consistently incompetent. New Yorkers expect the worst from Warren Wilhelm, Jr. He has underachieved expectations. Lord Mayor Thomas Bloodworth of London sets the mark globally. The young, inexperienced Bloodworth was Mayor on September 2, 1666 when a fire broke out in a bakery. The old cities built on wood were highly combustible. The preferred method of stopping urban fires was to form a firebreak by destroying structures in the fire’s path He refused to order the demolitions. Indeed, he thought the early fire was so weak that “Pish. A woman could piss on it.” He was worried about the costs of compensating owners whose houses would be destroyed. The result of his decision was the Great London Fire of 1666 which burnt for 73 days over 75% of London. 13,200 houses, 87 parish churches, and the great St. Paul’s Cathedral were destroyed. 70% of the city’s residents lost their homes. King Charles II ordered demolitions the next day, but it was too late. The mayor’s inaction was condemned in Samuel Pepy’s Journal. History has called his decision an “Act of Damnable Folly.” Ironically, Londoners had just survived the Great Plague of 1865. The Lord Mayor was responsible for destroying London. Mayor De Blasio has simply run New York City into the ground. The young, inexperienced Jacob Frey did not cause the protests; that was Derek Chauvin. The Mayor’s inaction set loose a paroxysm of national looting and rioting. The toll is still being added. The police have kept a tight boot on the inner cities for decades. The pressure builds, like a presser cooker. When it blows, it blows. The question is not why? We know why. The question is when! Mayor Frey’s immediate reaction to the killing of George Floyd was to condemn the homicide, promise reform in Minneapolis, and demand the four officers be arrested. So far, so good. But then riots and looting joined the protests. Rioters threatened Minneapolis’ Third Precinct Police Station on Wednesday. Police drove them off with tear gas, rubber bullets, and smoke bombs. The Mayor was asked by a reporter earlier that day: “What is your plan?” The Mayor had no answer. The rioters showed up the next night in greater strength. Mayor Frey had to make a decision – the most significant and consequential of his life. He ordered the police to abandon the Precinct as it was under attack. The mob quickly entered the station, looted it , and then torched it. The message was quickly sent throughout America. The police will not stop you! Go for it! And they did. The mob becomes explosive, frenzied, irrational, crazed, a force of its own. I wanted to add senseless and meaningless, but a lot of the looting is directed through the internet with flash mobs. The toll is still being totaled: Lives lost, police dead and injured. buildings torched, businesses destroyed, scores of police cars burnt, Molotov cocktails thrown at police, cars, and buildings. Here’s the significant toll in Minneapolis. The peaceful protestors for Black Lives Matter and Justice were swamped by the mob – an estimated $500 million in rebuilding costs. A large percent of the destroyed businesses were minority owned as was a $30 million low income structure under construction. Minorities are often the victims of urban riots. Thomas Bloodworth burnt London. Jacob Frey unleashed the mob across America. His explanation: “The symbolism of a building cannot outweigh the importance of life, of our officers or our public. We would not risk serious injury to anyone. “You know brick and mortar is not as important as life.” The Mayor had also blamed the riots on "white supremacists and outside agitators." The white supremacist claim got some initial national airplay, but it was clearly false. Governor Walz had to call out the National Guard on Thursday, taking Mayor Frey out of the picture. And now the cry to defund the police, starting with Minneapolis. A veto proof majority of the Board of Supervisors has vowed to dismantle the Minneapolis Police Force over the objections of Mayor Frey. Derek Chauvin will spend the rest of his life behind bars. The young, inexperienced Jacob Frey has to relive his decision. Even Mayor Frey’s constituents booed him the other day, but for not going far enough in dismantling the Minneapolis Police.
Thursday, June 4, 2020
General Jim Mattis, former Secretary of Defense, has become the latest, media popular critic of President Trump. He said “President Trump is the first president in my lifetime who tries not to unite the American people – does not even pretend to try. Instead he tries to divide us …. We are witnessing the consequences of three years without mature leadership.” He viewed unconstitutional the President’s threat of using military force. The Trump Presidency is divisive, especially to the Democrats, media, academia, and Hollywood. President Trump says and Tweets things even his ardent supporters wished he wouldn’t. Donald Trump is who Donald Trump is: a New York City streetwalker who will not back down, but fights back. His statements about using military force, if necessary, against the looters and rioters, is mostly divisive to the looters, rioters, and torchers. President Trump has clearly, unequivocally expressed his support for peaceful demonstrations. President Trump has clearly, unequivocally stated his outrage over the brutal killing of George Floyd. You probably don’t know it. Why? The media will not report anything favorable about President Trump. The media will not print anything outside their narrow view of the President. In case you missed it, this is the transcript of a ten minute expression of outrage and sympathy to the family, an expression of unity: Donald Trump: (00:00) I want to thank our great Vice President for your fearless and tireless commitment to fulfilling America’s destiny in space. Thank you very much, Mike. Great job. Great job. We’re all so grateful to Mike’s wonderful wife, Karen, for being here and for all she does for our country. Thank you. Thank you, Karen. Before going further on this exciting day for all America in space, I want to say a few words about the situation in Minnesota. The death of George Floyd on the streets of Minneapolis was a grave tragedy. It should never have happened. It has filled Americans all over the country with horror, anger and grief. Yesterday, I spoke to George’s family and expressed the sorrow of our entire nation for their loss. I stand before you as a friend and ally to every American seeking justice and peace and I stand before you in firm opposition to anyone exploiting this tragedy to loot, rob, attack and menace. Healing, not hatred, justice, not chaos, are the mission at hand. Donald Trump: (01:41) The police officers involved in this incident have been fired from their jobs. One officer has already been arrested and charged with murder. State and federal authorities are carrying out an investigation to see what further charges may be warranted, including against sadly, the other three. In addition, my administration has opened a civil rights investigation and I have asked the Attorney General and the Justice Department to expedite it. I understand the pain that people are feeling. We support the right of peaceful protestors and we hear their pleas, but what we are now seeing on the streets of our cities has nothing to do with justice or with peace. The memory of George Floyd is being dishonored by rioters, looters and anarchists. The violence and vandalism is being led by Antifa and other radical left wing groups who are terrorizing the innocent, destroying jobs, hurting businesses and burning down buildings. Donald Trump: (02:59) The main victims of this horrible, horrible situations are the citizens who live in these once lovely communities. The mobs are devastating the life’s work of good people and destroying their dream. Right now, America needs creation, not destruction, cooperation, not contempt, security, not anarchy and there will be no anarchy. Civilization must be cherished, defended, and protected. The voices of law abiding citizens must be heard and heard very loudly. We cannot and must not allow a small group of criminals and vandals to wreck our cities and lay waste to our communities. We must defend the rights of every citizen to live without violence, prejudice, or fear. We support the overwhelming majority of police officers who are incredible in every way and devoted public servants. They keep our city safe, protect our communities from gangs and drugs and risk their own lives for us every day. Donald Trump: (04:22) No one is more upset than fellow law enforcement offices by this small handful who failed to abide by their oath to serve and protect. My administration will stop mob violence and we’ll stop it cold. It does not serve the interest of justice or any citizen of any race, color, or creed for the government to give into anarchy, abandoned police precincts, or allow communities to be burned to the ground, won’t happen. Those making excuses or justifications for violence are not helping the downtrodden, but delivering new anguish and new pain. From day one of my administration, we’ve made it a top priority to build up distressed communities and revitalize our crumbling inner cities. We fought hard with Senator Tim Scott ___ and many others to create opportunity zones, helping to draw a surge of new investment to the places in our country that need it most. Donald Trump: (05:45) We must all work together as a society to expand opportunity and to create a future of greater dignity and promise for all of our people. We must forge a partnership with community leaders, local law enforcement and the faith community to restore hope. Radical left criminals, thugs, and others all throughout our country and throughout the world, will not be allowed to set communities ablaze. We won’t let it happen. It harms those who have the least, and we will be protecting those who have the least. The leadership of the National Guard and the Department of Justice are now in close communication with state and city officials in Minnesota and we’re coordinating our efforts with local law enforcement all across our nation. In America, justice is never achieved at the hands of an angry mob. I will not allow angry mobs to dominate, won’t happen. It is essential that we protect the crown jewel of American democracy, the rule of law and our independent system of justice. Donald Trump: (07:15) Every citizen in every community has the right to be safe in their workplace, safe in their homes and safe in our city streets. This is the sacred right of all Americans that I am totally determined to defend and will defend. My administration will always stand against violence, mayhem and disorder. We will stand with the family of George Floyd, with the peaceful protestors and with every law abiding citizen who wants decency, civility, safety, and security. We are working toward a more just society, but that means building up, not tearing down. Donald Trump: (08:03) But that means building up, not tearing down, joining hands, not hurling fests, standing in solidarity, not surrendering to hostility. Moments ago as we went and just the launch of two great American astronauts into space, we were filled with the sense of pride and unity that brings us together as Americans. That same spirit, which powered our astronauts to the moon has also helped lift our country to ever greater heights of justice and opportunity throughout our history. So today, as we mark a renewed commitment to America’s future in space, a tremendous commitment it is. Let us also commit to a brighter future for all of our citizens right here on earth. When Americans are united, there is nothing we cannot do. From day one of my administration, we put America first. Does not sound like a President preaching divisiveness! The New York Times and Los Angeles Times clearly, unequivocally expressed their opposition to President Trump right after the election. The media basically said they would not just do anything to oppose, but also destroy his Presidency. If Donald Trump were the second coming of Jesus Christ (I don’t think he is), they would call him Satan. They took out Nixon. They think they can take out Trump. Whatever it takes: Edit comments out of context Ignore history and facts Provide a forum to Representative Adam Schiff, the 21st Century Tail Gun Joe McCarthy. Never apologize for a mistake The New York Times, Washington Post, and the New York Times with CNN and MSNBC led the media cheerleaders for Trump’s impeachment and removal of office. So what if the Constitutional requirements weren’t met! The LA Times made clear in 2016 “He is unfit to run the country.” Donald Trump had to go. They vilified Reagan and the two Bushes. They would get rid of Trump. Russia Ukraine Obstruction of Justice Abuse of Power Taxes Emoluments Clause 25th Amendment Whatever? It didn’t matter. Slime Trump. Trash Trump. Defame Trump. Vilify Trump Denigrate Trump The unconstitutionality claim is typical of the false information being told the public. A reporter on NBC 4 in Los Angeles was irate, saying he knew of no instance in which the military was used in domestic disturbance. Rank ignorance. President George H. W. Bush sent 4,500 federal troops in Los Angeles, yes the same Los Angeles, to help suppress the 1992 LA riots. President Eisenhower sent nationalized the Arkansas National Guard and dispatched federal troops to Little Rock, Arkansas to suppress race riots and escort 9 African-American students into Central High School. President Kennedy in 1962 sent federal troops to Mississippi to suppress another race riot trying to prevent integration of the University of Michigan. The President has the power to use the military to prevent insurrections, broadly defined. Presidents have invoked the Insurrection Act over 100 times. The Preface to the Constitution provides: “We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility ….” Domestic Tranquility!!!!!
Tuesday, June 2, 2020
First Amendment Protections Speech “Hate” Speech Stupid Speech Writing Press Religion Demonstrations Parades Marches Picketing Siting on the grounds of state capitols and city halls Political Speech Gestures Movies and TV Songs Art Cartoons Obscene Language Posting Billboards Bumper Stickers Placards Armbands T-Shirts Flyers Hanging in effigy Hanging flags and banners Yardsigns Burning the American Flag Porn, except children porn Editorials Campaign Contributions Video Games Lawler Advertising Note; The test is not good taste nor bad taste Reasonable time, place, and manner restrictions are fine Here’s What Not Protected Defamation Fraud Inciting Violence Trespassing Looting Arson Rioting Vandalism Assault Battery Violence Throwing bricks at police officers Throwing Molotov Cocktails into police vehicles Throwing other projectiles Blocking traffic on roads and freeways Discrimination against religion Contempt of a judge in court
Monday, June 1, 2020
Even the Video of George Floyd’s Murder Doesn’t Tell All Full Picture The video of Minneapolis Police Officer Derek Chauvin killing George Floyd is gripping, graphic, riveting, and profoundly sad. We know what we saw. A police office brutally, excruciatingly, sadistically murdered George Floyd while three fellow officers looked on. Officer Chauvin is damned by the video. George Floyd repeatedly cried out “I can’t breathe,” but the officer kept pressing his knee on Floyd's neck, lying on his stomach handcuffed. Some said George could obviously breathe because he could speak. Representative Peter King (R. N.Y.) said the same thing about Earl Garner when Officer Daniel Pantaleo was choking him on July17, 2014 on Staten Island. They’re wrong; I am an asthmatic. I know how it feels of not being able to breathe – the chest feels so tight, but my peak flow might be 700-750 and the oxygen level 97. I can’t breathe, but I can talk. Minnesota doesn’t have capital punishment and the federal government lacks it for civil rights violations. Former Officer Chauvin will though be spending the rest of his life in jail, getting out only for court appearances, medical needs, and his funeral. The appropriate punishment would be a monitor outside his cell playing 24/7 an endless loop of the carnage he caused. An eye for an eye, a tooth for a tooth penalty would be George Floyd's bother pushing his his knee on a handcuffed, face down Derek Chauvin for 8 minutes and 45 seconds. Those though would be cruel and unusual punishment. Defense attorneys may be able to come up with a sound defense, but from all angles it looks like Chauvin, maliciously, sadistically murdered George Floyd while 3 fellow officers looked on. The Rodney King beating was the first where videos were damning, but the first trial resulted in acquittals of all four officers. The second trial, a federal civil rights trial, resulted in two convictions. Police violence and keeping the boot on minority communities is a historical reality. DWB, driving while black, still exists. The black community in many cities has a well-earned, well-deserved anger towards the police. Every once in a while the lid on the pressure cooker blows off. The times have changed. Public values and mores have changed for the better. Mayors, police chiefs, and prosecutors are increasing African American, Hispanic, and female. They bring different leadership to law enforcement. Most police probably are not racist today. Some still are with tragic results. The omnipresent cell phone, and the increasing use of body cams, show excessive force in many incidents. They also often show the police officer acted reasonably, even that accusations of police misconduct may be false. Sometimes the videos shown on the media do not show the full story. Defense attorneys will break down videos frame by frame to present a different picture. The George Floyd videos creates evidence beyond a reasonable doubt. Juries are sympathetic to police officers even when the videos seem damming, which is why prosecutors are often reluctant to prosecute police. Not with Derek Chauvin. The videos are too conclusive. Officers throughout America are shocked by it, usually reluctant to criticize fellow police in apparent police misconduct on a video; not this time! The video is so graphic and clear that police academies should show it as an example of what not to do. Videos can also show indisputable evidence of guilt. Michael Slager, a North Charleston Police Officer claimed he had to shoot a fleeing Walter Scott in the back. He claimed self-defense because Walter was struggling for the Officer’s taser. Unbeknownst to the officer, a bystander’s video showed Officer Slager dropping the taser on the ground after shooting Walter Scott. Slager pled guilty two years later and was sentenced to 20 years. The city settled for $6.5 Million. Another example is a chase, a high desert horse chase, reminiscent of the old West. Francis Jared Pusok, a fleeing suspect, jumped on a horse and rode off into the sunset into rugged terrain. He finally surrendered at which point several San Bernardino deputies repeatedly kicked and beat him. They were out in the wilderness, figuring no one was watching. They should have looked up. A TV4 helicopter broadcasted the chase on live TV during prime time. Three deputies were prosecuted. One was convicted of felony assault. The jury was deadlocked on the other two, who subsequently pled to “disturbing the peace.” The recent shooting of Ahmaud Abbey in Georgia by two private citizens of a fleeing African American suspect is another example of culpable homicide. Even if the deceased had trespassed in a house under construction, the police would not have been privileged to use deadly force. A private citizen had no greater right making a citizen arrest. Two large riots ensued in two cases where no video is available. Baltimore police arrested Freddy Gray on April 12, 2015. He was placed into a van for transportation to the station. Somewhere along the way he suffered severe injuries and entered into a coma. He died a week later. Videos showed the arrest but not what happened in the van. Protests began on April 18 and quickly turned into riots and looting. Viewers watched live a CVS being looted and torched while a platoon of officers stood by in formation. They had been ordered to stand down and not interfere. The looting and rioting intensified until the Governor ordered the National Guard in. The District Attorney arrested six officers, three of whom were Black, as was the Mayor and DA. Three of the six were acquitted and charges dropped against the other three. The case causing the most looting, rioting and arson in recent decades until now was Ferguson, Missouri Officer Darren Wilson killing Michael Brown, the Gentle Giant, on August 9, 2014. Brown and his companion Dorian Johnson were accused of theft and assault. No video was available. Dorian claimed Michael Brown had surrendered with his hands up saying “Hands Up, Don’t Shoot.” The mantra, even seen in today’s demonstrations and protests, is “Hands Up; Don’t Shoot.” Dorian lied. Even the Obama Justice Department agreed Officer Wilson acted in self-defense when Michael Brown went for the Officer’s gun. Where does this leave us with video of Officer Chauvin murdering George Floyd? It’s clear, unequivocal. Or not! The coroner’s preliminary report said George Floyd did not die of “traumatic asphyxiation or strangulation.” The coroner said his death was the result of a “combined effect of being restrained, his underlying health conditions, and any potential intoxicants in his system likely contributed to his death.” Of course the coroner in the Staten Island death of Eric Garner said the same thing. A second, private autopsy today revealed death was caused by asphyxia caused by sustained neck and back compression, leading to a lack of blood flow to the brain. The deceased also had meth and fentanyl in his system. My point is that defense counsel will have a sliver to argue.
The Only Solution for Looting is Policing – Not More Looting Derek Chauvin’s intentional, malicious, sadistic murder of George Floyd justifiably engendered demonstrations and protests. Justice for George Floyd became the rallying cry. So too with Ahmaud Abbey in Georgia (Not technically a police shooting), Breoona Taylor in Louisville, Eric Garner on Staten Island and a host of others. Racism should be damned. Justice for George Floyd – Yes! Looting and burning the businesses of minority owners is not justice. Looting the College Hall of Fame in Atlanta is not Justice for George Floyd! Looting Nordstrom’s is avarice – not justice. Burning banks and pharmacies is not justice – just mad rage. Stealing a cheesecake from the Cheesecake Factory in Seattle is not justice – just greed. Looting SoHo is not justice but a five finger discount. Throwing Molotov cocktails in police cars in New York is not justice for George Floyd in Minneapolis. Burning churches is not peace - it's mindless, reminiscent of Nazis burning synagogues and white racists in the South bombing and burning black churches. Riots, looting, and arson quickly followed. That is not justice for Floyd. That is anarchy, nihilism, and rank opportunity. The peaceful demonstrators and protestors should be protected, respected, and honored. NYPD officers kneeled in sympathy with the protestors. Other police marched with peaceful demonstrators – all for the good. Many Americans are bitter and upset. The criminals should be prosecuted. The looting started in Minneapolis and quickly escalated throughout America. The police are unfortunately handcuffed, handcuffed by governors, mayors, and legal precedence. The historic way of policing looters was an order to “Shoot looters.” That is constitutionally and morally wrong today. Police would use their batons and Billy clubs as they waded into mobs, smashing heads. Litigation and court decisions made that costly for cities. Arrests are still legal. However several mayors and police chiefs have barred arrests, letting looting and arson continue. A classic example occurred yesterday in Long Beach, California. Looters were cleaning out an Urban Outfitters in a mall when the LBPD arrived, all captured on live TV. A score of officers showed up and blocked the exits, one of which was a second story broken window. The assumption was that the officers would arrest the looters and stop the looting. Nope, the looters simply ran through the officers, who made no attempt to arrest any of them. Then the looters came back and grabbed any loose garments lying on the ground by the officers, who remained frozen in place. They then marched away. Why were the police officers there? The looters quickly realized that the officers had no in terrorem effect. The Long Beach Police Chief had the hubris last night to go on TV and expressed his dismay at the looting! A Nordstrom’s at the Grove in Los Angeles was looted with TV cameras rolling the day before. No police were in sight. I understand the Thin Blue Line cannot be everywhere at once. I understand authorities have to prioritize their limited resources. I do not understand Mayor Jacob Frey of Minneapolis ordering the police to abandon their station which was then looted and torched. I do not understand how police can stand by and watch looters loot, as they did in Long Beach yesterday. I do not understand someone in authority in Baltimore telling the police to stand in place and watch a CVS looted and torched in the Freddy Grey riots. These acts empower the lawless. I understand that over 4,000 have been arrested to date, but police could easily have arrested thousands more. President Trump talked to the nation’s governors today. He told them “You have to arrest people; You have to get much tougher.” He told them they had to dominate; they had to control the streets. They have to get much tougher. Not everyone appreciated his remarks. The hapless Michigan Governor Whitmer found his remarks “deeply disturbing. Presumptive Democratic Nominee Joe Biden finally emerged from the basement. He called President Trump “somebody in power who breathes oxygen into hate into the rocks, it comes out from under the rocks.” Let us mourn George Floyd and celebrate the Americans who have come out to clean up their neighborhoods. The solution for looting is effective policing – not more looting!