I mean holy shit. The guy has car trouble and he is clearly standing with his hands up talking to the cops. He goes back to his car for some reason (arms still up) and they shoot him.
Now, the good news is that this is being treated like a criminal investigation because the officers murdered someone. The bad news is the inevitable backlash that will come as people say things like “well, he shouldn’t have been walking back towards the car” or “I wasn’t there so even though there is video, there is no way for me to really understand happened” or, of course “I’m going to withhold judgement until we have all the facts.”
We do have all the facts. He was unarmed. He had car trouble. He was black.
And now he’s dead.
Oh yeah, and people have dredged up his criminal record that does not include any capital offenses as a means to justify the fact he was sentenced to death without benefit of a judge or jury.
How many more times does this need to happen until people stop trotting out the same bullshit arguments instead of acknowledging that there is a systemic problem?
This is not about that police officer friend or relative of yours who is a great person. They probably are. This is about a clear problem with the training of police officers when it comes to escalation and a problem with how our justice system is set up to excuse this kind of behavior when it occurs.
It isn’t that police officers are sometimes exonerated. It is that they are almost never charged and even when they are charged, they are almost never convicted of doing anything wrong.
If your plans in the event of a Donald Trump Presidency include moving to Canada, let me just remind you that there are a few assholes north of the border and at least one of them is a judge. For now.
Federal Judge Robin Camp is currently in a hearing to determine if he should keep his job. When you learn a little more about how he has been executing his job, you might wonder why the review is needed.
In addition to asking a nineteen year old rape victim why she didn’t just keep her knees together, he also mused that “Young women want to have sex, particularly if they are drunk.” He also suggested that sex and pain go together so maybe it isn’t so bad that her rape was painful. Because, I guess, that’s how sex is supposed to be. Consensual or not.
In the end, he let the accused walk free and told the rapist he needs to be “more careful.”
The ruling was overturned on appeal.
Which is the only thing about this that makes sense.
I’ll tell you another thing that doesn’t make sense. This happened two years ago.
Judge Camp is originally from South Africa and his basic argument seems to be “I was really new at criminal law so I blew it because I didn’t really understand how to be a caring human being and a judge.”
I hope the first question they ask him in the hearing is “when you first thought about asking the victim why she had been such a victim, why couldn’t you just hold your lips together?” Read More…
For regular readers of my Shit that Pissed me Off column, I did something a little different last year. For the first time since I began writing, my birthday fell on a Friday. I opted to reflect on the good things I saw in the world rather than the bad ones.
Obviously, my birthday isn’t on a Friday this year. It is on a Sunday. But I’m still going to focus on the good things. I turn 49 on Sunday. It is something of a personal year for me because my dad died when he was 49 years old and I can’t help but think that soon, every day I’m alive will be one more day than he ever had.
The challenge for me today, of course, is to write about 49 things that don’t piss me off and that are different from the 48 things I wrote about last year.
Never fear, I’m going to post Shit that Pissed me off on Monday! You still get a full helping of negativity. I’m just going to make my birthday about the good things.
So here, my friends, are 49 things that do not piss me off.
1) I don’t know if it’ll happen. I certainly hope it will. But whether it does or not, we have the opportunity to put a woman in the oval office. I’ve heard all the arguments about “not this woman” and everyone has a right to make their own decisions. For me, though, the simple fact a woman could win is a gigantic step.
2) Speaking of women, that Ghostbusters remake was pretty fucking awesome. I don’t feel like I have to make excuses for liking it. How amazing is that? If you want me to make excuses, you can shut up and stop harassing my squee.
3) As I write this column, I am looking at a shelf that holds a LEGO Millennium Falcon, a LEGO Ecto 1, and a LEGO Han Solo frozen in carbonite.
Jana Shortal has written about the fashion expectations surrounding women in news so it seems strange that Star Tribune gossip columnist C.J. chose to spend several paragraphs lambasting Shortal for the clothing she chose to wear while reporting on the discovery of Jacob Wetterling’s remains.
CJ’s fashion sense is, of course, her own and her column is not a hard hitting section of the paper. She has been quick to point out she is a columnist and not a journalist.
Seems to me that it shouldn’t matter. If you are an insensitive jackass, you can give yourself any label you want and you’ll still be an insensitive jackass.
Now CJ has since issued a notpology for her column that confirms she is, indeed, an insensitive jackass. She claims she was so upset by the Wetterling news that she was just thinking about the family’s feelings when she commented on Shortal’s fashion choices.
Her tweets immediately following the posting of the original article would suggest something entirely different but hey – if Donald Trump can change what he means every time he opens his mouth, so can the rest of us.
Now nobody is arguing that Saudi Arabia is a haven for those who value free speech. It is a monarchy that relies on the hardline religious leaders (and oil money) for power. As such, it should surprise no-one that they have draconian laws when it comes to expression.
If you doubt me, please refer to this week when they sentenced a man to 10 years imprisonment and 2000 lashes for Tweeting that he was an atheist.
Please note that in America, a young man just finished serving three months in jail for viciously raping an unconscious woman.
At least he didn’t tweet about it, I guess.
If you think that thought crimes didn’t exist, I give you Saudi Arabia where stating you don’t believe in god has you branded as being a terrorist and put in jail for a decade. If you can’t get behind the Koran after that, well you are just a stubborn asshole.
I’m not going to pretend I don’t have issues with any religion (or interpretation of religion) that tells women they must keep their bodies covered. It is an act of body shaming and subtle oppression meant to make women feel ashamed of their own identity.
However, women also get to make their own choices regarding what they want to wear. And if they want to wear a head scarf at the beach, that ought to be completely fine. It’s their fucking head and their fucking scarf. You shouldn’t be handing out tickets (she was given a fucking ticket) based on the fact they have put on too much clothing.
That this is being done in the name of secularism (her ticket was for failing to wear “an outfit respecting good morals and secularism”) is equally disgusting. There is nothing about secularism that suggests anyone should be judged for what they choose to wear.
French courts seem to agree so far as they have struck down the ban on burkinis in the last few days.
You can understand the concern about terrorism in France given recent horrific attacks. It makes a lot more sense than the concern in other countries like, say, the United States.
However, swimwear is not a sign of terroristic intent. It is a sign of someone who believes that they have a right to cover their bodies because it is their fucking body.
It is ironic that France has many topless (and even nude) beaches implying that you can’t wear too little at the beach, you can only wear too much.
Trump says alarming things and then smugly points out that everyone is talking about him.
He’s right. But the good news, for now, is that it doesn’t seem to be working. Trailing in every national poll, Trump has shaken up his campaign leadership again. Maybe this time it will work. I expect not because no matter how many smart people he has around him, he is still going to keep saying alarming things.
In this case, there seems to be some sort of suggestion that even though voter fraud of the level Trump is suggestion is basically impossible, Hillary could pull it off.
Now voter fraud is no joking matter but if Clinton could pull off fraud at that level, she deserves to be President because her organizational skills are fucking amazing.
Although, one has to wonder how she could be so organized as to steal an entire state from Donald Trump but not organized enough to manage her e-mails properly.
If Clinton wins this election, she won’t have to cheat. At this point, it would seem that all she needs to do is shut up and let Donald do most of the talking.