Student vice-president at University of Houston punished and publicly shamed for posting “all lives matter”

Most people who post or cry “All Lives Matter” in response to the “Black Lives Matter” (BLM) slogan are, I think, either obtuse or bigoted. What “Black Live Matter” really means is “Black Lives Matter Too“—that African-Americans are marginalized in society. That is, despite the big gains in civil rights over the last fifty years, there is still residual racism in society, and sometimes it’s among the police.

I don’t know whether white police are any more bigoted than white Americans in general, but when a policeman is bigoted (I’ll use the masculine term since women are rarely involved in the inflammatory incidents), it can have far more serious consequences than if a regular citizen is bigoted. The police have power, and they’re armed.

In general, “All lives matter,” then, has the effect of dismissing the justifiable accusations of bigotry raised by the BLM movement.  While I often disagree with that movement’s tactics, and feel that they’ve unfairly tarred American police as a whole, I think in the main BLM has called needed attention to bigotry on the part of some police, and, in the case of my city, of the Chicago’s tendency to cover up what seem to be racially motivated murders by the police. Without outside pressure, there would be little examination, and any needed reform, of police departments.

Now there are some folks who say “All lives matter” or “Blue lives matter” (the latter to support police who are themselves targets) as a general sign of compassion, and aren’t dismissing the concerns of African-Americans. But I think such people are few compared to those who use those phrases to minimize the concerns of black people.

Which brings us to the case of Rohini Sethi, vice-president of the University of Houston’s (UH’s) Student Government Association (SGA). Sethi is a chemical engineering major and of Indian ancestry, which, I suppose, qualifies her as a “person of color.” But that didn’t help after Sethi put up a Facebook post following the shooting of five Dallas Police Officers (See reports on this story at various places, including here, here, here, here, and here; they’re mostly, but not all, from conservative websites). Here’s Rohini’s post, which was removed when the outcry began but archived by offended students:

Rohini-dos

Source: The Daily Cougar (UH student paper)

Although this may have been meant in a spirit of expansive empathy, it was surely unwise, especially for a student government officer. However, the ensuing fracas was, I think, disproportionate. Here’s a bit of the outcry (quotes below are taken from the five sources above):

Wesley Okereke, a psychology senior and the UH NAACP president, said he hopes that the University and SGA will “respond to the issue accordingly.”

“I am deeply disappointed in the comments made by our student body VP, Rohini Sethi,” Okereke said. “To say, ‘Forget #BlackLivesMatter,’ as if we were not a factor in her getting voted into office is a slap in the face to the entire student body. Also, with this school being the No. 2 most diverse university in the nation, comments such as these are unacceptable because it misrepresents the large minority student body here at UH.”

. . . For accounting senior Alexis Sanders, Sethi’s words weren’t just harsh, they were incendiary. She doesn’t feel like Sethi can fully represent her, and therefore, shouldn’t be in student government.

“Being a black woman, her comment was an insensitive, disgusting, thoughtless, and blatantly disrespectful remark,” Sanders said. “Her comment proved she lacks sympathy for her constituents, and if she lacks sympathy for a portion of the students she represents, then she cannot represent the student body as whole. To say, ‘Forget #BlackLivesMatter,” is to say forget all the injustices we face and have faced for years as an African-American race. We are just supposed to simply forget systematic racism, unjust sentences, police brutality and the unlawful killings of the African-American race.”

Rohini apologized profusely and at length, both to a local television station and on Facebook, saying that “I’m very sorry to my community and for the emotions, anger, and pain that I caused.” (Go here to see her full contrition.)

I would have thought that the apology would be enough. But no, the hounds were already baying for blood. Nothing short of a strict and public punishment would do.

There followed a #RemoveRohini hashtag movement, but that would be difficult: removing an SGA officer requires not only a 3/4 vote of the SGA, but also a trial by the student Supreme Court. Therefore the SGA voted on a unprecedented special bill to allow its President, Shane Smith, to decide unilaterally on Rohini’s punishment. Smith’s letter outlines these five sanctions (summarized below by the Daily Caller):

  • A 50-day suspension from SGA starting August 1. This suspension will be unpaid (she currently receives a stipend of about $700 a month).
  • A requirement to attend a three-day diversity workshop in mid-August.
  • A requirement to attend three “UH cultural events” each month from September through March, excluding December.
  • An order to write a “letter of reflection” about how her harmful actions have impacted SGA and the UH student body
  • An order to put on a public presentation Sept. 28 detailing “the knowledge she has gained about cultural issues facing our society.”

I would have thought that, although Rohini’s posting was unwise for a student representative, her apology would suffice. It’s for sure that, given the outcry, she would never have said anything like that again!

But the punishment seems draconian—almost Orwellian—in its requirement that Rohini be “rehabilitated”. Remember, she not only has to go to 21 cultural events as well as attend a diversity workshop, but she is also suspended for nearly two months and, as well as having to write her “letter of reflection,” must make a public pronouncement of contrition. I find that unconscionable: it’s like putting her in the stocks for public shaming. Only the hurling of rotten vegetables is missing. And this is came from the Facebook post above.

I frown on those who say things like “All Lives Matter,” but perhaps Rohini was acting in the heat of her sorrow for the slain cops, and isn’t really a bigot. Motives do matter—except to the Offended Crowd for whom words are sufficient to put you beyond the pale. Say the wrong words, and you’re expelled, forever to be a figure of denigration and suspicion.

192 Comments

  1. Reginald Selkirk
    Posted August 1, 2016 at 10:04 am | Permalink

    “I don’t know whether white police are any more bigoted than white Americans in general”

    I don’t see a need to specify the color of the police, the available data clearly show that police are biased against blacks.

    • Posted August 1, 2016 at 10:08 am | Permalink

      Can you point me to the data showing this? (Genuine question.)

      • Posted August 1, 2016 at 10:12 am | Permalink

        Yeah, I’d like to know that, and any data showing a disproportionate amount of killing of blacks by white cops compared to other combinations (controlling for population sizes).

        • Thanny
          Posted August 1, 2016 at 10:55 am | Permalink

          Just population? Are you looking for an accurate answer, or one that fits a predetermined conclusion?

          The police kill two white people for every black person. Overall, blacks represent about 30% of police killings.

          If you’re just interested in justifying BLM (which is shaping up to be a terrorist organization, what with parading down streets chanting, “What do we want? Dead cops! When do we want it? Now!”, then actually producing dead cops), that should be enough for you. After all, blacks are around 13% of the population, which is far less than 30%.

          But blacks also account for more than 50% of the violent crimes, which means they’re going to have more interaction with the police. Suddenly that 30% figure looks too small, if you’re being honest.

          There’s at least one study (http://www.nber.org/papers/w22399) which claims blacks are more than 20% less likely to be shot by the police than whites. That is, per interaction with the police, they are less likely to be killed than whites.

          And just to shortcut any nonsense replies by others, I am not saying black people are racially more prone to violence. The shortest way to put it is that poor people are more prone to violence, and blacks are more prone to be poor. That for a host of reasons that include negative black cultural elements (such as the belief that education is “white”, which is considered negative).

          The upshot is, there is no evidence of systemic racism against blacks in the nation’s police forces.

          Responding to BLM with “All lives matter.” is entirely reasonable, and not motivated by bigotry. Well, not bigotry on the part of the person saying it, but maybe by bigotry on the part of many BLM activists.

          This is not the 1960’s. There is no systemic or institutionalized racism (towards blacks) in the US anymore. The occupant of the Oval Office since 2009 should make that amply clear to anyone not determined to feel aggrieved.

          • Posted August 1, 2016 at 11:10 am | Permalink

            By “population”, I meant ethnic population. And I don’t appreciate your snark that either of us are looking for some conclusion to buttress our preconceptions (I have no such preconceptions, and have no interest in justifying the claims of BLM.) We were aaking for data, and your response was snarky–snark that you could have avoided. It might behoove you to apologize.

          • jay
            Posted August 1, 2016 at 11:28 am | Permalink

            I would say that it’s not so much poverty (which might breed low level crime like burglary) but the toxic culture that has developed in many of our inner cities (where almost all of this violent disparity exists) that is the key factor.

            People accustomed to reacting violently at much more likely to aggressively respond to police which will escalate the situation.

          • jacoxnet
            Posted August 1, 2016 at 11:37 am | Permalink

            Black lives matter is hardly a terrorist organization, and it borders on intentional misrepresentation to say so. One of the best things President Bush (W) ever said was after the Dallas police shootings. “Too often, we judge other groups by their worst examples while judging ourselves by our best intentions.” There are a few bad examples of supporters of the black lives matter movement, but there are thousands and thousands of well intentioned ones. The purpose of the movement is to protest police misconduct that targets blacks, and that is a very good and necessary cause.

          • Michael Waterhouse
            Posted August 1, 2016 at 6:10 pm | Permalink

            The study by Freyer may show otherwise.
            Not Killings but definitely other types of police abuse.

            The DOJ study into Ferguson showed massive systemic racially directed abuse of police power. And state power.

          • Michael Waterhouse
            Posted August 1, 2016 at 6:11 pm | Permalink

            New York stop and frisk?

        • George Millo
          Posted August 1, 2016 at 10:57 am | Permalink

          The Washington Post published an article claiming that the data show the opposite: http://www.wsj.com/articles/the-myths-of-black-lives-matter-1455235686

          (Non-paywall link: https://imgur.com/aSUWd6M)

          • Historian
            Posted August 1, 2016 at 12:12 pm | Permalink

            The article is in the Wall Street Journal, not the Washington Post, although the author does reference data collected by the Washington Post.

            • George Millo
              Posted August 2, 2016 at 5:20 am | Permalink

              Oops, haha. Typo.

        • Geoffrey Howe
          Posted August 1, 2016 at 11:22 am | Permalink

          http://www.nytimes.com/2016/07/12/upshot/surprising-new-evidence-shows-bias-in-police-use-of-force-but-not-in-shootings.html?_r=0

          This is a study showing that while about 20% more likely to have non-lethal force used against them, blacks are no more likely to be shot at by cops than whites, after controlling for all circumstances.

          I believe there was also a small (but not statistically significant) disparity with whites actually getting shot at more often than blacks.

          Now, I’ll admit I haven’t given this study a proper look just yet, so I can’t say if the methodology is sound, but given that it was written by a black Harvard professor who seems surprised by his results, I’m betting these are reasonably legit results, and not doctored to further a political point.

          • aljones909
            Posted August 1, 2016 at 6:42 pm | Permalink

            A study in New York showed blacks were 85% more likely than whites to be charged with resisting arrest. The category of crime in the study was minor drug possession. The racial make up of the police in New York (according to Wikipedia) “Of 22,199 officers on patrol, 53% (11,717) were black, Latino (of any race), or Asian or Asian-American, and 47% (10,482) were non-Hispanic white. “

        • Reginald Selkirk
          Posted August 1, 2016 at 3:10 pm | Permalink

          Whoa – change in question noted. You have gone from “bigotry” to “killing”. I will not be asked to hit a moving target.

          THE SCIENCE OF JUSTICE
          RACE, ARRESTS, AND POLICE USE OF FORCE

          How a controversial study found that police are more likely to shoot whites, not blacks
          – study by Fryer.
          “On the one hand, the study shows that, nationwide, black and Hispanic civilians are indeed more likely to be manhandled, handcuffed or beaten by the police — even if they are compliant and law-abiding. Fryer writes that prejudice in law enforcement is real and harmful in many ways, causing cynicism and disillusionment especially among boys of color.”

      • ison
        Posted August 1, 2016 at 11:15 am | Permalink

        I am certainly no expert so please consider everything I say on that condition – and I would encourage you to seek out various studies on this on your own.

        Different studies sometimes seem to lead to conclusion that are different in details. But, as far as I can tell majority of them seem to point to bias of some sort (be it in the extreme cases involving police shooting or in the cases of proportional frequency of routine stops). A partial compilation of studies is found here. (Note, I haven’t myself gone through any of the links in details nor the veracity of the claims made about the conclusions of each paper. I am including it as on the surface of it, seems like a good launch point for further investigation if desired): http://www.vanityfair.com/news/2016/07/data-police-racial-bias

        My main point here will be to point to the difficulties facing studies that address potential existence or non-existence of systematic police bias. The trouble is primarily due to limitations of available data. This problem is succinctly summarized in recent paper by Cody T. Ross – a UC Davis anthropologist. (http://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371%2Fjournal.pone.0141854)

        “While other databases on police shootings have been published by the government, for example through the FBI’s Supplementary Homicide Report [3], or the CDC’s National Vital Statistics System [4], these records are often censored of critical information (such as the names of the officers involved), lack independent evaluation of the justification for the shooting, and are selectively published. The FBI data, for instance, are not only incomplete, but may be structurally biased by the reporting behaviors of police, as the majority of the 17,000+ police departments in the United States do not file fatal police shooting reports, or do so only selectively [5].”

        His paper attempts to address the data problem by using crowd-sourced database collecting reported incidents of police shootings which is publicly open to scrutiny – US Police Shootings Database (found at https://us-police-shootings-database.silk.co/). It should be noted that even this database is problematic as the verification process is ongoing as their site clearly indicates.

        Further trouble with data collection is well explained by Brian D’Alessandro in the article linked below via scrutiny of recent working paper by Roland Fryer, Jr.

        https://mathbabe.org/2016/07/19/race-and-police-shootings-why-data-sampling-matters/

        The bias sampling problem is a widely recognized problem in statistical analysis, and if for no other reason, that post is a decent description of an example of inference made from biased samples.

        So I guess the conclusion is – most studies seem to find some form of racial bias in police practices (even the paper by Roland Fryer, Jr. finds bias of some form, although not in extreme case of police shootings). At the same time, there is a real problem with availability of data to do reliable and robust statistical study. I would say that it’s a good working hypothesis but nothing conclusive can be said.

    • mordacious1
      Posted August 1, 2016 at 10:19 am | Permalink

      Let’s do an experiment (I am assuming you’re white). Get in your car tonight and drive 90 mph through town*. When a cop (doesn’t matter if he’s a white cop, but would be better if he was) pulls you over, argue with him. Then punch him in the face a few times and try to take his gun. Don’t worry, he won’t shoot you because you’re white. Report your results.

      *You may have to do this several nights in a row, because being white, you may not get pulled over right away.

      • Kevin
        Posted August 1, 2016 at 1:23 pm | Permalink

        I think this is called suicide (by cop).

        It must be scary to be a cop. If I were a policeman I would take a photo or the car and cite the person over the internet. If they do not pay, they lose the right to drive that car for several months (booted while driver is not around).

        I would minimize all contact with potentially lethal interactions. Justice can be distributed without interaction.

        • Simon
          Posted August 2, 2016 at 12:04 pm | Permalink

          Good ides. Take a photo and hope the guy doesn’t kill anyone with his car while you are messing around on the internet.

    • George Millo
      Posted August 1, 2016 at 10:56 am | Permalink

      “Clearly”? I don’t think it’s as cut-and-dry as you think: https://imgur.com/aSUWd6M (Imgur link to get around WaPo’s paywall.)

      I don’t know if the WaPo article is right; In fact I’ve never been sure what to think about the BLM movement. But I think the link is worth sharing.

  2. jacoxnet
    Posted August 1, 2016 at 10:06 am | Permalink

    I think you’re ignoring the first part of the post you’re discussing. She didn’t just say “All lives matter.” She also said “Forget Black Lives Matter.” Doesn’t saying “Forget Black Lives Matter” put her down as not just tacitly, but explicitly, subordinating the importance of black lives to others? And as a representative of students, that’s a really bad thing.

    • Posted August 1, 2016 at 10:14 am | Permalink

      Agreed, but again one could write that off as the emotionality of the moment rather than bigotry. And yes, it was unwise. What I’m saying is that I think the outrage and punishment were disproportionate. The apology should have sufficed, but they wanted blood.

      • jacoxnet
        Posted August 1, 2016 at 11:35 am | Permalink

        I think it is compelling to make a broader point about people who criticize the slogan “Black Lives Matter” as somehow excluding the possibility that non-black lives matter (or matter as much). This reading borders on an intentional miscomprehension, and I can only attribute it to bigotry. We constantly hear statements of affirmation of or support for specific groups, and no one ever seems to take these statements to mean that other groups don’t have the same rights. From “Israel has a right to exist” to “Women’s rights are human rights” to many others. When hearing these things, no one ever seems to assume that it’s intended to mean that other countries don’t have a right to exist, or that men’s rights aren’t human rights. But that’s not true for “Black Lives Matter.”

        • ison
          Posted August 1, 2016 at 11:48 am | Permalink

          I think this is exactly correct as far as “Black Lives Matter” as a slogan is concerned. There are probably legitimate criticism to be made about specific tactics used by some central figures in the BLM movement (caveat, I haven’t paid too much attention to any of it), but attacking the slogan itself seems poorly thought out.

        • Diane G.
          Posted August 2, 2016 at 10:34 pm | Permalink

          Good analogies.

      • jacoxnet
        Posted August 1, 2016 at 11:43 am | Permalink

        In my view, you are too indulgent of clear bigotry in this case. I find it impossible to “write [anti-black bigotry] off as the emotionality of the moment.” That could excuse a great many things that should be excuded. This is someone who is supposed to be representing all the students. Her punishment isn’t too harsh.

      • eric
        Posted August 1, 2016 at 7:11 pm | Permalink

        I fully agree with Jerry. If the student government finds her comment offensive, write op-eds to that effect, and don’t re-elect her. Get the 3/4 vote needed and have the trial to remove her from office. That’s the extent of what they should do. Passing a bill so you can punish her in a way not normally allowed by the SGA is ridiculous, and offensive in its own right.

        Its also worth thinking about the fact that the constitution explicitly forbids our government from responding this way; what they passed is called a bill of attainder. I doubt the constitution is legally relevant here, but IMO the fact that such bills are unconstitutional for government to pass should at least make them stop and think about the wisdom of their path.

        Let’s James Madison have the last word (from Federalist #44, 1788):

        Bills of attainder, ex-post facto laws and laws impairing the obligation of contracts are contrary to the first principles of the social compact, and to every principle of sound legislation.

      • Diane G.
        Posted August 2, 2016 at 10:36 pm | Permalink

        “What I’m saying is that I think the outrage and punishment were disproportionate.”

        Couldn’t agree more!

    • Posted August 1, 2016 at 11:25 am | Permalink

      No, it very clearly subordinates the special case of BLM and replaces it with teh more inclusive ALM.

      That may still miss the point of BLM in the context of racism, but it’s going too far to ‘read into’ the ‘forget’ more than is there. That’s the problem with a lot of output from regressives – Cenk Uygur is particularly prone to reading between the lines and seing what isn’t there.

      • jacoxnet
        Posted August 1, 2016 at 11:45 am | Permalink

        We see how you quickly edged from addressing the issue — albeit in an argument that (in my view) ignores the plain language of her statement “Forget Black Lives Matter” — into an ad hominem against “regressives”– whatever that is.

        • Posted August 1, 2016 at 1:01 pm | Permalink

          No, I addressed the issue you raised

          “Doesn’t saying “Forget Black Lives Matter” put her down as not just tacitly, but explicitly, subordinating the importance of black lives to others?”

          I then agreed with the OP that BLM is the main issue, that I agree with, but that reading into some explicit text what you want to get out of it (subordinating BLM) isn’t reading charitably or honestly.

          ” into an ad hominem against “regressives”– whatever that is.”

          ‘Regressives’ is now a well used term, coined first that I know of by Maajid Nawaz regarding pseudo-liberal aopologetics for Islam, but applicable to pseudo-liberal aoplogetics for religion generally – or as often used on this site ‘accommodationism’. It was all well covered in Nick Cohen’s 2007 book “What’s Left?” – he just didn’t have a name for it.

          I even give the example of Cenk Uygur as an exponent of the art.

    • Taz
      Posted August 1, 2016 at 11:37 am | Permalink

      She said “Forget #BlackLivesMatter”. She’s clearly referencing the slogan and/or organization, not black lives in and of themselves.

      • jacoxnet
        Posted August 1, 2016 at 11:47 am | Permalink

        It’s not that clear cut. Black Lives Matter isn’t just a slogan. It’s an affirmation, which she is negating.

        • Taz
          Posted August 1, 2016 at 12:05 pm | Permalink

          If it’s an affirmation than so is #AllLivesMatter, which includes black lives.

          • Diana MacPherson
            Posted August 1, 2016 at 12:52 pm | Permalink

            I think this cartoon explains it perfectly. Black Lives Matter is addressing an urgent situation to do with blacks.

            • Taz
              Posted August 1, 2016 at 2:17 pm | Permalink

              That’s fine, but we were discussing Rohini Sethi’s comment and whether what she meant was “black lives don’t matter”. I don’t believe she did. I was arguing about what BlackLivesMatter means, but against the uncharitable interpretation of her comment.

              • Diana MacPherson
                Posted August 1, 2016 at 2:44 pm | Permalink

                Sure, I think we agree that she probably didn’t mean that black people’s lives don’t matter. And she apologized for how it could be taken and she seemed to learn from her mistake. As I pointed out somewhere in this thread, it’s a shame that people chose to demonize her instead of rejoice that they managed to change her mind and have her see things from their perspective.

            • mordacious1
              Posted August 1, 2016 at 6:12 pm | Permalink

              Oh god, there’s that stupid cartoon again. Notice how the one guy is hosing down his house to keep it from igniting. The house on fire appears to be a total loss, so it seems like a smart thing to do. Then the SJW clown arrives and instead of doing anything to help the situation, he gets into a useless argument with someone who is doing something. It’s never about actually doing something constructive with these people, it’s about complaining about other people’s actions and motives. The epitome of a slacktivist.

              • Diane G.
                Posted August 2, 2016 at 10:39 pm | Permalink

                Meanwhile, I think it’s an incisive comment on why BLM needs to exist.

              • mordacious1
                Posted August 2, 2016 at 11:40 pm | Permalink

                Because annoying someone who is working their butt off to better the situation is better than spending 5 minutes calling the fire department? Yes, that’s apt. You might find that police departments (many made up of officers who grew up on the mean streets they now serve and who are themselves people of color) do more good (through community outreach, volunteering and crime prevention) than all these white color BLM students put together. So, it is apt that it shows the BLM people complaining while someone is doing something productive. As far as BLM needing to exist? Yeah…no. Cops may be more on edge now, after some of them have been assassinated, than ever before.

              • Diane G.
                Posted August 3, 2016 at 12:51 am | Permalink

                You’re reading a lot into that cartoon that I can’t find. Essentially you’re saying that a house on fire is no more worthy of attention than one that is not.

                “Because annoying someone who is working their butt off to better the situation is better than spending 5 minutes calling the fire department?”

                We have no idea whether the guy with the hose is working his butt off to better the situation or selfishly taking care of his property at the expense of his neighbor’s. We have no idea if the fire department has been called or not, yet you’re accusing one of the characters explicitly of NOT calling it. Personally, I take it at face value; a commentary on just why BLM is, unfortunately, necessary.

                (BTW, I agree that there are some idiots in the movement that may in fact ruin it…that seems to be the fate of a great many social movements, sadly enough.)

        • josh
          Posted August 1, 2016 at 12:14 pm | Permalink

          It’s clear cut. She was clearly saying that in light of the violence inflicted on police we need to emphasize respect for all lives rather than focusing on individual identity-based grievances. You may disagree with that as a matter of rhetoric but you can’t honestly claim that her comment implies that black lives don’t matter.

          In fact, you highlight one of the problems with the “movement”: no one disagrees with the slogan taken at face value. The implication that anyone is saying “Black Lives Don’t Matter” is insulting and unserious. It’s the “Why Don’t You Stop Beating Your Wife” of social memes. In real life, people have criticisms of the movement for it’s claims, over-the-top rhetoric and tactics but none of that is a negation of the entirely uncontroversial idea that black lives matter.

          • jacoxnet
            Posted August 1, 2016 at 1:21 pm | Permalink

            Just to take one point on, it isn’t correct to say that “no one disagrees with the slogan taken at face value.” In fact, many people do explicitly argue that “Black Lives Matter” is exclusive and implies or states that other lives aren’t as important. That is the reason for the origin of “All Lives Matter.” Obviously, I think these people are wrong, but they certainly exist.

            • josh
              Posted August 1, 2016 at 2:09 pm | Permalink

              I’m afraid you’ve missed my point, although I don’t know how. No one says “Black Lives Don’t Matter”. No one thinks that. That’s what I mean when I say no one disagrees with the face value, i.e. literal meaning, of the words “black lives matter”. You said it’s not clear cut in response to Taz saying “She’s clearly referencing the slogan and/or organization, not black lives in and of themselves.”

              As a movement “Black Lives Matter” is clearly exclusive in its focus. People have criticized that narrow focus, but no one is criticizing the idea that black people’s lives literally have value, or that they shouldn’t be afforded the same rights and protections as everyone else.

              • jacoxnet
                Posted August 1, 2016 at 2:56 pm | Permalink

                I understand what you’re saying, but I just disagree with you that no one thinks black lives don’t matter. In my view, many people in our country think, and more important, act, in a manner that makes clear they do not value black lives as much as white lives. That is the whole point of the black-lives-matter movement. Its goal is to affirm the importance of the lives of black people in a society that isn’t valuing them. I think you demean the worthy goals of this movement when you say that’s a “narrow focus.”

              • josh
                Posted August 1, 2016 at 4:24 pm | Permalink

                @jacoxnet:
                ” I just disagree with you that no one thinks black lives don’t matter. ”
                But how do you get to that conclusion? You make these sweeping, vague statements that people ‘act as though’ black lives don’t matter and “society isn’t valuing them” but who? And specifically, how does Sethi promoting the more inclusive “all lives matter” equate to not valuing black people? And since when do worthy goals exempt people from criticism?

          • Posted August 1, 2016 at 3:00 pm | Permalink

            Exactly.

        • Posted August 1, 2016 at 1:03 pm | Permalink

          It is if you read charitably and don’t try to find fault with everything someone says. This is just what Happened with Clinton’s speech, #FiremanSam.

      • t
        Posted August 1, 2016 at 12:01 pm | Permalink

        And I’d like to mention that I have a deep distrust of any organization that portrays itself as being above criticism. If the assumption is that criticizing BLM equals racism, then to hell with BLM.

        • Taz
          Posted August 1, 2016 at 12:07 pm | Permalink

          The above by “t” was my comment.

  3. Graham Head
    Posted August 1, 2016 at 10:12 am | Permalink

    Her comment was extremely ill advised but the ‘punishment’ smacks of Mao’s cultural revolution. These days there seems to be a need for anyone who makes a mistake to be publicly humiliated.

    • Ken Phelps
      Posted August 1, 2016 at 10:19 am | Permalink

      You scooped me. It is exactly like that. As a young person I used to wonder where the East Bloc dictatorships got all the people to staff their police states. Now I know. Liberal arts faculties.

      • Graham Head
        Posted August 1, 2016 at 10:24 am | Permalink

        I think it’s just ‘people’.

        • Graham Head
          Posted August 1, 2016 at 10:26 am | Permalink

          Another thought. Some people might be happy to go back to the days of the stocks and public humiliation.

      • Heather Hastie
        Posted August 1, 2016 at 1:15 pm | Permalink

        Please don’t start with the anti-liberal arts stuff. I realize a lot of scientists don’t think much of us, but #HumanitiesGraduatesMatterToo. Some of us are even perfectly normal people! 🙂

    • jay
      Posted August 1, 2016 at 11:38 am | Permalink

      Mao was a lefty. Not surprising.

      • Historian
        Posted August 1, 2016 at 12:17 pm | Permalink

        Mao, a lefty, sent people to “rehabilitation” camps. Hitler, a righty, sent them to death camps. Not surprising. Perhaps there is a difference.

      • Ken Kukec
        Posted August 1, 2016 at 1:07 pm | Permalink

        You’re apparently ignorant of the long history of censorship, some of it brutal, by the right.

  4. chris moffatt
    Posted August 1, 2016 at 10:25 am | Permalink

    I remember from childhood days the Moscow show trials where the accused were not only roundly abused and criticized by the establishment and prosecutors but were also required to abase and criticise themselves before being sentenced to the gulag.

    I thought those days were past but it seems our modern soviet tyrants of the campuses are repeating history. Will college administrators (and these are colleges not universities whatever their pretensions) ever stand up to this or is their integrity so compromised that all they see is paying customers who must be placated at all costs?

    • eric
      Posted August 1, 2016 at 7:14 pm | Permalink

      AIUI, the US parole system is still that way: you must basically abase and criticize yourself before they’ll give you parole.

      Which puts innocent people in a catch-22; they must commit perjury before they’re allowed parole. Maintain your innocence, you don’t get it.

      • Pali
        Posted August 2, 2016 at 5:31 am | Permalink

        Thanks for mentioning that. I’m no fan of our justice system, but that particular injustice had escaped my notice until now.

  5. Diana MacPherson
    Posted August 1, 2016 at 10:26 am | Permalink

    I agree with everything in this post. My blood boils when I hear “all lives matter”. Good grief, this isn’t about you, it’s about black people being killed for having a tail light out!! We would be flipping out of dogs were shot like this so we should rightly be flipping out about humans!!

    And come on, Sethi apologized. Her mind was changed. Isn’t that enough? Shouldn’t that be the goal of all movements?

    • GBJames
      Posted August 1, 2016 at 10:30 am | Permalink

      Indeed.

    • mordacious1
      Posted August 1, 2016 at 10:36 am | Permalink

      Name one person shot for having a tail light out. They get shot for other things. Like having a gun, fighting with the officer or trying to flee and using their car as a weapon.

      • Diana MacPherson
        Posted August 1, 2016 at 11:32 am | Permalink

        Sure. I actually was thinking specifically about Philando Castile who was shot fatally while in his car with his family, including a four year old child.

        He was pulled over for a busted tail light and shot to death because he reached for his ID after telling the officer that was what he was doing. I don’t know about you, but I don’t expect to be shot if I’m pulled over and to top it off, the officer kept his gun drawn on this family and was clearly hysterical. Thank goodness Castile’s girlfriend was able to remain calm. How she managed it I’m not sure, as she watched her boyfriend die before her and her child. If she had panicked (which would have been a reasonable response), I don’t know what would have become of her daughter and her. It was bad enough the responding officers threw her on the ground and cuffed her. Jesus Christ!

        • Craw
          Posted August 1, 2016 at 12:29 pm | Permalink

          I think you have left out a lot here. I believe Castile told the cop he was armed. Might that not be relevent? This is not to argue that the killing was reasonable, only that it’s not as simple as you present it.
          There is an empirical question here. Many in fact. And you just tromp past them.

          • Diana MacPherson
            Posted August 1, 2016 at 12:48 pm | Permalink

            I was only providing the example as asked for. But no, it’s not relevant that this man was executed for carrying a gun either. He had a permit to open carry and he told the officer that. The officer asked for his ID and then panicked and shot him to death. Last I checked, you don’t get to be executed for carrying a gun or for reaching for your ID. And the hysterical reaction of the officer….I think that is more relevant than a black man carrying a gun he was permitted to carry by law. Are you really arguing that this dead man bore responsibility for being killed in cold blood in front of his family?

            • josh
              Posted August 1, 2016 at 2:36 pm | Permalink

              Why doesn’t anyone know what the term “in cold blood” means? You can’t simultaneously argue that the officer was “hysterical” and that he did it “in cold blood”.

              • Diana MacPherson
                Posted August 1, 2016 at 2:49 pm | Permalink

                Fine, I take it back then. He murdered that man in hysteria. Is it okay if I use “hysteria” given that the cop is a male and has no womb? Or do you want to base this argument solely on semantics to justify a murder?

        • josh
          Posted August 1, 2016 at 12:37 pm | Permalink

          You make mordacious1’s point. Castile was shot because he had a gun and the officer believed he was reaching for it, despite the officers instructions not to do so. That doesn’t mean the shooting was justified, all we know for now is the girlfriend’s account, but it puts the lie to the incendiary claim that he was shot for having a tail light out.

          We have no evidence that race played a role in this case.

          • Diana MacPherson
            Posted August 1, 2016 at 12:44 pm | Permalink

            He was pulled over for a busted tail light and shot. And he had a permit to carry the gun and told the officer he had a gun on him and was reaching for his ID. Since when is it okay to be executed this way? Are you really suggesting this man is to blame for being executed as part of a routine traffic stop?

            • mordacious1
              Posted August 1, 2016 at 1:43 pm | Permalink

              Your narrative is outpacing the facts, just as in the Michael Brown case. We should wait until the investigation is concluded before stating that this man was shot because he had a tail light out.

              That being said, having a CCP does not mean that you can ignore the officer’s instructions. If, as the officer stated, he told the driver to keep his hands up and the guy ignored that and reached down where his gun was, there is a better than 50-50 chance he will get shot. You can be a very, very white man and if you go toward your gun when they tell you not to, you might (and probably will) get shot. This isn’t rocket surgery.

              This doesn’t mean that there aren’t race related bad shootings in the US by the police. Those are extremely rare though, considering how many arrests are made each year. In most of these cases, cops have been on the force for years and have never shot a black man before. One day, he decides for no apparent reason to execute some hapless citizen? I don’t buy that.

              As a white guy, when I get stopped, I keep my hands at 10 and 2 on the wheel with all 10 fingers pointing straight up. This is the easiest way for a cop to see your hands. I do this for my own safety. I only move my hands when told to do so.

              • GBJames
                Posted August 1, 2016 at 1:52 pm | Permalink

                It is a sad comment on the US in 2016 when people, in order to to avoid being shot, need to exactly follow a “10 and 2, fingers up, until told to move” rule.

                Sadder, still, that this is seen by some as a reasonable state of affairs.

              • Diana MacPherson
                Posted August 1, 2016 at 2:39 pm | Permalink

                Exactly! It’s just not reasonable that I should fear that there is a real possibility that I will be shot if I’m pulled over and move my hands too quickly. That means there is really something wrong with how cops are treating people.

              • Diana MacPherson
                Posted August 1, 2016 at 2:37 pm | Permalink

                However he did tell the cop that he was carrying a gun and the officer did tell him to get his ID and that got him shot.

                Sorry, not buying that he wasn’t executed because he had a tail light out. Ultimately that was the result of his interaction with the law over a busted tail light.

                Also, as a citizen, I’m not trained in “cop de-escalation”. It’s the officer who is trained to de-escalate. A cop can’t seriously think it’s okay to shoot someone if they flinch.

              • mordacious1
                Posted August 1, 2016 at 6:35 pm | Permalink

                Are you saying that in his career, he executed every black man with a burned out tail light? If not, then what was different in this situation?

              • Diana MacPherson
                Posted August 1, 2016 at 6:43 pm | Permalink

                No.

              • mordacious1
                Posted August 1, 2016 at 7:16 pm | Permalink

                So, what was different this time? He went insane?

              • Diana MacPherson
                Posted August 1, 2016 at 7:19 pm | Permalink

                Don’t know. What do you think?

              • mordacious1
                Posted August 1, 2016 at 7:31 pm | Permalink

                I think, as I stated before, that we need to wait until the investigation is over before we accuse this cop of murder. If it turns out that he did tell the guy to put his hands up and he instead reached down where his weapon was, then the cop might be justified in shooting him. I don’t know what happened but it could have happened this way:

                “Good evening, I need your DL and registration, please”.
                “Okay, I have CCP and have a loaded handgun”.
                “In that case, keep your hands up where I can see them. NO!! I SAID KEEP YOUR HANDS UP! PUT YOUR HANDS UP!!”

                BLAM BLAM BLAM

                Justified shooting. End of story. Having a CCP does not give you the right to put you hand down by the weapon if the cop tells you not to.

                We will have to see what actually happened.

              • Diana MacPherson
                Posted August 1, 2016 at 9:08 pm | Permalink

                The difference is you asked me what only the cop can know. My arguments didn’t delve into the cops thoughts, only his actions.

            • josh
              Posted August 1, 2016 at 2:25 pm | Permalink

              “Are you really suggesting this man is to blame for being executed as part of a routine traffic stop?”

              No, please read more carefully before you reply. I am saying no one was “executed” and we don’t know for sure how to assign blame. Castile was shot by a cop who thought his life was in immediate danger. As I EXPRESSLY said, that doesn’t mean the shooting was justified. It may well not have been, although your belief that it wasn’t seems to be based entirely on the after-the-fact testimony of Castile’s girlfriend, who can’t be treated as necessarily reliable. I don’t know what happened and neither do you. But, we can be rather certain that it happened because of fear about a gun and not for a broken tail light and not as an execution.

              If it happened the way the girlfriend says and a twitchy cop is at fault then no one is saying that is “okay”. It is, however, inevitable in a highly armed society. Cops are sometimes shot at routine traffic stops. Sometimes they are going to shoot correctly in self defense, sometimes they are going to make mistakes. Rarely, they are going to make mistakes that look crazy in hindsight. When they do make unjustifiable mistakes they should be punished/fired/etc. as appropriate. Maybe that is what happened in the Castile case. However, unless further information comes out there is no basis to say this was racially motivated, that it was “for a broken tail light”, that it was an “execution”, etc.

              • Diana MacPherson
                Posted August 1, 2016 at 2:48 pm | Permalink

                I’m basing my evidence on that video with a screaming copy holding a family at gun point while the man he shot several rounds into (almost severing his arm) dies. You may think that isn’t execution. I think it is.

                You say I should read more carefully before replying, but you repeatedly say things like “Castile was shot by a cop who thought his life was in immediate danger. As I EXPRESSLY said, that doesn’t mean the shooting was justified.” You say the shooting may not be justified yet you juxtapose this with something that seems to justify it.

              • josh
                Posted August 1, 2016 at 3:10 pm | Permalink

                As with “in cold blood” above, you are using the wrong words in order to be inflammatory. An execution is premeditated, this was not. And I was quite clear in what I said, the cop evidently feared for his life. That is exculpatory of your reckless accusation that this was an execution or over a broken tail-light. The cop’s fear may well not have been reasonable, in which case the shooting wouldn’t be justified. I do not claim to know whether it was justified or not.

                Look, like you I’m committed to a just and fair society, but it behooves us to be strictly empirical and careful in our claims in order to do that right.

              • Diana MacPherson
                Posted August 1, 2016 at 5:52 pm | Permalink

                Oh I see, so we’re going to have the semantic argument. Here is why I used the word “execution”, because it means: ( Law) the carrying out or undergoing of a sentence of death and that’s what this man got – death. I wouldn’t expect to die if I were pulled over for a tail light being out and he probably didn’t either, but here we are.

                And why do you think that the cop is possibly justified in this shooting because he was fearing for his life? That doesn’t justify shooting and killing someone. That’s murder. You don’t get to kill people because they scare you.

              • Michael Waterhouse
                Posted August 1, 2016 at 6:28 pm | Permalink

                To Diana, apparently cops do get to kill you if you scare them.
                It is not only their life they can worry about, any old boo boo is enough.

                Castille was pulled over because he looked like someone reported to have committed a robbery, allegedly.

              • Craw
                Posted August 1, 2016 at 6:35 pm | Permalink

                Josh, thank you for these comments.
                I am surprised that DM cannot see how terms like “executed” and “murdered” are question begging. Nor how leaving out material facts such as Castile being armed, as she did in a comment I replied to earlier, is slanted.

                This case is not being swept under the rug; we will learn more, dispassionately, as investigations progress. Conclusions need not be jumped.

              • Diana MacPherson
                Posted August 1, 2016 at 6:41 pm | Permalink

                Oh please, I stated several times that he told the officer he was armed. Is it okay to shoot someone simply for carrying a gun he has a licence to carry?

                Did you watch the video?

                Do you think cops can shoot you if you scare them?

              • josh
                Posted August 1, 2016 at 9:08 pm | Permalink

                @Diana MacPherson

                “Oh I see, so we’re going to have the semantic argument. Here is why I used the word “execution”, because it means: ( Law) the carrying out or undergoing of a sentence of death and that’s what this man got – death.”

                There is more than a semantic difference between first degree murder, negligent homicide, self-defense, etc. If you actually care passionately about justice then you need to commit to being as objective as possible about what happened. You’re going to lose the semantic argument as well. “Sentence” is the word you’re ignoring in “sentence of death”. It’s a deliberate punishment issued by a court. Shooting someone in the heat of the moment, especially in self defense, isn’t an execution.

                “You don’t get to kill people because they scare you.”

                You do, it’s called self defense. The question is whether the “defender” had a reasonable fear for their own life. Again, I don’t claim to know if that was true here, but it is important to understand that that is the issue at hand.

                “I wouldn’t expect to die if I were pulled over for a tail light being out and he probably didn’t either”

                No one should, it’s an extremely rare occurrence; you should be more afraid of lightning hitting you. You can further decrease your chances by not carrying a gun and not making sudden movements around cops with their guns out. Nonetheless, tragedies happen and it’s entirely possible the cop was to blame for this one. We await the evidence. However, it is actively harmful to demonize anyone beyond what the evidence supports.

              • Diana MacPherson
                Posted August 1, 2016 at 9:13 pm | Permalink

                I’m referring to your poisoning the well. I used an expression incorrectly and you are taking that to mean that one should not listen to my arguments because if I use “in cold blood” wrong, all my arguments are invalid. That’s what I meant by semantics.

                According to your reasonjng that you can shoot someone if they scare you and that is called self defence, George Zimmerman was justified in shooting Trayvon Martin because a kid in a hoodie was scary to him.

              • aljones909
                Posted August 2, 2016 at 5:06 am | Permalink

                “It is, however, inevitable in a highly armed society. Cops are sometimes shot at routine traffic stops.”
                The difference between the UK and US is stark. UK cops (on the evidence of videos I’ve seen) will go to extreme lengths to calm down a confrontation during a traffic stop. But they know they are in no danger of being shot. It seems absurd to believe that in a heavily armed country of 320 million that tragic mistakes/misjudgement won’t occur.
                This Youtube video shows how suddenly a low key police stop can go dramatically wrong watch?v=bIQ75B_04sM

            • Reginald Selkirk
              Posted August 1, 2016 at 3:18 pm | Permalink

              Castile’s girlfriend did precisely the right thing in live-streaming the encounter. Even though the crucial moment was past, it allows her to control the narrative. She states in the video that Castile was reaching for his license, as instructed. This makes it very difficult for the police to lie about this later.

              Before the ubiquity of video, many people were willing to give the police the benefit of a doubt, and many police used that opportunity unfairly to muddy the waters.

              • Michael Waterhouse
                Posted August 1, 2016 at 6:33 pm | Permalink

                Yep, the old ‘resisting arrest’ cover all.

                The recent one where the teacher was dragged from the car and slammed to the ground had the cop later claiming she ‘took a swing’ at him’. That is shown when other cops are assessing the scene later.

                It is straight up lie to cover his psycho arse.

      • Ken Kukec
        Posted August 1, 2016 at 1:14 pm | Permalink

        So carrying a licensed firearm while black, resisting arrest, and fleeing a LEO are all capital offenses now, no additional process due?

        • mordacious1
          Posted August 1, 2016 at 7:08 pm | Permalink

          You’re right. If you’re a cop and someone, who is twice your size, is punching you in your face while trying to get your gun, the first thing you should do is call a judge for a legal opinion.

          • Diana MacPherson
            Posted August 1, 2016 at 7:12 pm | Permalink

            Thanks for the reductio ad absurdum but how about using non lethal force to stop the attack? I can think of a bunch: taser, night stick, kick to the crotch, punch to the face, punch to the throat, punch/kick in the gut, head butt. I’ve seen police use these methods to great success when confronted with people carrying weapons.

            • mordacious1
              Posted August 1, 2016 at 7:14 pm | Permalink

              You should do police training seminars. I’m sure they’d all learn something from your technique of subduing suspects.

              • Diana MacPherson
                Posted August 1, 2016 at 7:17 pm | Permalink

                Again sarcasm. I was merely suggesting that not every encounter requires deadly force and I think that’s a rational perspective. You see this with many other police forces around the world, many trained in defence like krav maga. Are you suggesting I’m wrong in this? All violence must be met with deadly force? Toward everyone, even the mentally ill?

                Or maybe you’d just like to insult me again.

                Your choice.

    • jay
      Posted August 1, 2016 at 11:51 am | Permalink

      NOT for having a tail light out. Intervening events have all to do with it. 99% of black motorists stopped for traffic offenses (other than DUI etc) get a ticket and go on, like everyone else.

      I am sick of the claim that Sterling was “killed for selling CDs”. NO HE WAS NOT. He had already threatened a citizen who called police. When the police approached he refused to put his hands on the car. He then began fighting with the cops even after being tasered. Video from the store’s security showed the gun visible in his pocket.

      What do you want the cops to do under a circumstance like that? They have an obligation to protect the public, and within reason, themselves. Generally guys who hang out in front of stores are somewhat known to the police (we have a couple in our area that are pretty much unbothered as long as they behave), but he had a felony history (carrying a gun was illegal) including sexually molesting a 14 year old. This is no innocent bystander who was attacked because of his race.

      Now I agree that there were some cases that are quite suspect as to police behavior (Tamir Rice, and the therapist in Florida), but many of the cases cited by BLM are actual criminals who helped create the violence that killed them.

      We had a case near here where a Princeton professor was arrested (professor of ‘black studies’ — funny that cops seem to always target them). Turns out she was stopped for going 20mph over the speed limit on a residential street, and she had outstanding warrants from over a year of unpaid previous offenses. Police demonstrated this was standard procedure for ANYONE under those circumstances. She kept pissing and moaning for a while, but people stopped listening.

      • Diana MacPherson
        Posted August 1, 2016 at 12:56 pm | Permalink

        Did you actually watch the video of this many dying with a copy hysterically screaming while holding a gun on his family? Are you really saying that this was a justified response by police?

      • Reginald Selkirk
        Posted August 1, 2016 at 3:22 pm | Permalink

        He had already threatened a citizen who called police.

        This is a claim made by a person who called the police. And yet you state it as an unquestioned fact.

        When the police approached he refused to put his hands on the car.

        This did not appear on the cell phone video, which started later. How unfortunate that both officers “lost” their body cameras.

        He then began fighting with the cops even after being tasered.

        Again, the start of the fight precedes the start of the cell phone video. In the cell phone video, he is on the ground, post-taser, making no moves to either resist or reach for his gun.

        Video from the store’s security showed the gun visible in his pocket.

        They use X-ray cameras for store security these days?

        • josh
          Posted August 1, 2016 at 5:01 pm | Permalink

          “This is a claim made by a person who called the police…” The point here is that the cops had reason to think Sterling was armed and they weren’t simply after him for sellig CDs.

          “This did not appear on the cell phone video, which started later.”
          There are two cell phone videos. One starts earlier, you can clearly hear a cop yell “Get on the ground!” at least twice and then the shot pans up so we can see Sterling still standing (and without his hands on the car) at which point he is tackled by one officer. The cameras were not lost and apparently footage exists, but they allegedly fell off in the scuffle. As usual, police don’t release stuff like that footage right away.

          “…making no moves to either resist or reach for his gun.”
          Watch the videos, the cops are struggling with Sterling in both and his right arm is under the car, not apparently under control. The cop holding his legs yells, “He’s going in his pocket he’s got a gun!” The one on his left arm says “Hey bro, you fuckin move I swear to God…” then the other yells “Lake, He’s going for the gun!” and shots are fired.

          We can see the gun being removed from Sterling’s pocket in the aftermath.

      • Reginald Selkirk
        Posted August 1, 2016 at 3:26 pm | Permalink

        The Deadliest Jobs in America

        Surprise. surprise! Police officer doesn’t even make the top ten. And yet, when an agricultural worker is killed on the job, you don’t see nation-wide headlines about it.

        • Michael Waterhouse
          Posted August 1, 2016 at 6:37 pm | Permalink

          Exactly, the danger to cops is so overblown compared to many jobs.
          I think it was 27 cops killed feloniously at work in 2012.

          Thousands in other occupations.

    • Posted August 1, 2016 at 11:53 am | Permalink

      I can’t bring myself to be angry over the disembodied phrase. In the context of the tweet above, it’s rudely dismissive. But when BLM protestors disrupted the Toronto Pride parade, just a couple of weeks after the Pulse massacre, my social network feeds filled up with posts denouncing “all lives matter”, because apparently some people were saying it as a rebuke to the BLM protestors. I have a harder time mustering outrage when the context is specifically in reference to diverse victims being eclipsed by street protest theatrics. I guess the phrase is now loaded with too much baggage, but sometimes you have to say “other causes are also important” or perhaps “even though you have a legitimate and important cause, it is still possible that you are being a jerk.”

      • Diana MacPherson
        Posted August 1, 2016 at 12:55 pm | Permalink

        Oh but I agree about the Toronto situation and so does Jerry (where he posted about it earlier) but that’s really a separate issue. BLM exists for a good reason but that doesn’t mean they always do the right thing and stopping the Pride Parade in Toronto until their demands were met was hijacking another cause. And to demand that the Pride Parade stop police participation was really overstepping. If you don’t like that, get involved with Pride and voice your concerns. Don’t try to force your way like that.

    • DiscoveredJoys
      Posted August 1, 2016 at 3:17 pm | Permalink

      Any organisation that passes an ‘unprecedented special bill’ because normal processes are too difficult has already lost my respect.

  6. Randall Schenck
    Posted August 1, 2016 at 10:32 am | Permalink

    I believe the professor has this one about right. But makes me think, what type of punishments would be appropriate to Trump for his comments to the Muslim parents? To bed without supper maybe. Or an assay on real sacrifice and how to define it.

    • Posted August 1, 2016 at 11:12 am | Permalink

      Trump’s punishment will be his defeat in November. And believe me, he doesn’t want to lose!

      • Randall Schenck
        Posted August 1, 2016 at 11:55 am | Permalink

        Yes, I just thought he needed a bit before the loss in November. That one goes without saying but we say it anyway.

      • Dragon
        Posted August 1, 2016 at 4:15 pm | Permalink

        “believe me”… Trump has ruined that phrase. He uses it so often, always accompanied with a lie. I am becoming jaded when I hear anyone else use the phrase.

        • Diana MacPherson
          Posted August 1, 2016 at 5:31 pm | Permalink

          I wish, instead, he used the phrase, “I shit you not.” 🙂

          • Filippo
            Posted August 1, 2016 at 8:08 pm | Permalink

            ‘I wish, instead, he used the phrase, “I shit you not.” :)’

            But if he did, no doubt it would be the BEST and BIGGEST one ever.

            • Diana MacPherson
              Posted August 1, 2016 at 9:15 pm | Permalink

              And you could provoke him on Twitter by suggesting he had “bunny poops”.

  7. rickflick
    Posted August 1, 2016 at 10:36 am | Permalink

    The punishment crew are absolutists in a world of nuance. There is something smug and self satisfying to their call for complete humiliation. They appear to be completely uninterested in trying to listen and understand.

  8. Posted August 1, 2016 at 10:57 am | Permalink

    To me, the events that followed Ms. Sethi’s post prove that she was completely right. I’d say something more: to me, these events are just another proof to my suspicion that the Black Lives Matter movement is an echo chamber of vicious racist bullies. They try to boss others around, to control the society and to smash anyone who expresses even the mildest disagreement. I also suspect that part of their troubles with the police result from trying the same attitude when interacting with an officer. They’d better stick to pack attacks on students and other harmless individuals, which they obviously do very well.

    About her apology: I remember how, after a professor was hounded for comparing some Palestinians to mad dogs, he apologized but it only made things worse. Some people then commented that in such situations, it is better not to apologize.

    • Michael Waterhouse
      Posted August 1, 2016 at 6:44 pm | Permalink

      Never apologies. Unless a magical sweet spot is obtained which includes absolute guilt and absolute contrition and absolute amends, it will never be enough.

      Else it is just an admission of your inherent evil for which you must be further punished.

      A guy called Tim Hunt tried an apology. Not good enough and he was dragged down further.

      Matt Taylor? He cried on TV so it wasn’t too bad, but still not enough.

      And so on.

  9. Posted August 1, 2016 at 11:23 am | Permalink

    The “all lives matter” controversy irks me for one simple reason: it’s a convenient vehicle for online slacktivism and lazy self-righteousness. I have a left-leaning social network, and have seen hundreds (maybe thousands) of posts/shares decrying “all lives matter” and the people who say it. Not one of these has ever been in response to a specific person who said “all lives matter”. In my network, I’ve never seen a single person say it, yet there appear several rebuttals per day, as though it is the single most important issue of our time. Meanwhile nobody seems to care about discussing actual policy reforms, or the specific demands issued by BLM-affiliated groups. I doubt whether many of my friends have so much as written a letter to an elected official. It’s so much easier to shout and shame, but by winning this war against phrases and hashtags, absolutely nothing will be accomplished to improve the lives of real people who are affected by racial disparity.

  10. Geoffrey Howe
    Posted August 1, 2016 at 11:33 am | Permalink

    Here’s my issue with Black Lives Matter, as compared to All Lives Matter.

    You’d be hard pressed to find someone in America who hasn’t had a bad experience with cops. Even if you don’t think there’s a severe problem with the police in the country, you’re going to run into a bad cop sooner or later.

    Now, let’s also accept that blacks are targeted more often than whites, and that we should focus on helping out blacks first.

    So… what exactly is your plan to reduce police brutality against blacks that won’t also reduce police brutality against whites? Talk about body cams has gotten bigger these days, but that would help out everyone. Stricter gun control and training, etc.. I’ve not heard any suggestions that wouldn’t help out everyone who has ever had to deal with a bad cop.

    Black Lives Matter is taking an issue that is a problem for everyone and making it about one racial group. Even if you want to keep this relegated to a cases of police bigotry, and not brutality or abuse of power in general, what about arabs? What about hispanics? What about jews? Why don’t their lives matter too? If “All Lives Matter” is often bigotted, isn’t a refusal to include other colored lives also bigotted?

    It’s a pointless division of people who all share the same problem. There is nothing to be gained from splitting up people with grievances against the police, especially when pretty much all solutions will help everyone. A rising tide lifts all boats, but BLM wants to keep all those arabic, white, hispanic, asian and jewish boats out of the harbor.

    • jay
      Posted August 1, 2016 at 12:15 pm | Permalink

      I read a comment by an undercover cop who would be periodically stopped by police.

      His advice, keep your hands on the wheel, calmly explain your situation and (especially if you have a gun) do not make any moves until instructed.

      The vast majority of these killings would probably not happened if the citizen followed that same guideline.

    • Larry Metcalfe
      Posted August 1, 2016 at 12:18 pm | Permalink

      “You’d be hard pressed to find someone in America who hasn’t had a bad experience with cops”

      I find this statement astonishing and sad. I’m not disputing it at all, but as a Brit I’ve barely had any interaction with the police ever, let alone any bad experience. But then I’ve never seen a British police officer so much as even carry a gun.

      • Heather Hastie
        Posted August 1, 2016 at 1:38 pm | Permalink

        Same here, as a NZer. Our police don’t carry guns either. The cops aren’t perfect, but are generally respected. I don’t personally recall a bad interaction in my entire life.

        There is (which doesn’t seem to happen in at least some parts of the US) a focus on recruiting people who aren’t bullies and genuinely want to help their communities. Also skills like de-escalation are a big part of their training.

        Just yesterday at the 75th anniversary of women being allowed to serve as police officers here, I heard the country’s top cop lamenting that “only” 34% of his officers were female. I suspect that’s pretty good on an international basis.

    • Reginald Selkirk
      Posted August 1, 2016 at 3:32 pm | Permalink

      You’d be hard pressed to find someone in America who hasn’t had a bad experience with cops.

      Eh. I have had very few interactions with cops at all. I am white and tend to avoid trouble. So maybe once, after a tree branch fell and took out a power line, I got annoyed that the cop overstepped his duties and told me which public sidewalk I should stand on.

      I do not compare this to people who have been pulled over on traffic pretexts dozens of times, primarily because they are black.
      Driving While Black and the Art of the Pretextual Stop

      • Geoffrey Howe
        Posted August 2, 2016 at 9:09 pm | Permalink

        Fair point to make on the subject in general. But my point was that what can be done to help blacks out that won’t help out arabs as well?

        You could present me with proof positive that the cops are absurdly 1850s level racist, but that still wouldn’t change the fact that the movement isn’t interested in cops being racist towards hispanics.

        That’s my concern. There is no reason for them to segregate their grievances against the cops. Even if blacks have it worst (and given the current situation with Islamic terrorism, I’d be surprised to find they have it worse than arabs), it would still be a good idea to gather as many aggrieved people as possible to protest against police action.

    • Diane G.
      Posted August 2, 2016 at 10:57 pm | Permalink

      “You’d be hard pressed to find someone in America who hasn’t had a bad experience with cops.”

      Data?

      I’ve never had a bad interaction with a cop.

  11. Christopher Bonds
    Posted August 1, 2016 at 11:46 am | Permalink

    In the 1960s it was “Black Power.” Now it’s “Black Lives Matter.” I think this is evidence that many things in race relations have not changed, but some have gone underground. The present movement seems to be an attempt to uncover them.

    If I think too much about everything that’s wrong with society these days I get kind of a sick feeling. So many people feel marginalized in one way or another, some justified and some not. The latter comes out in large-scale whining, and sometimes in violence, which is aggravated by our culture of guns.

    What I don’t see enough of is serious work aimed at moving us to an inclusive society. It’s all about protecting ourselves from others and asserting our “rights.”

  12. Gregory Kusnick
    Posted August 1, 2016 at 12:04 pm | Permalink

    It’s for sure that, given the outcry, she would never have said anything like that again!

    This misses the point. Even if she never says anything like this in public again, having said it once has caused her constituents to lose confidence in her ability to represent them fairly. Dismissing her from office is entirely appropriate in those circumstances, and if she had any integrity, she would realize that and step down voluntarily.

    (I grant that the other stuff, the essay and the sensitivity training and so on, are just silly.)

    Also: $700/month for a student government gig? That alone is reason enough to question the sincerity of her apology.

  13. Sarah T Williams
    Posted August 1, 2016 at 12:07 pm | Permalink

    Why is it that everyone have a desire to steal a part of the BLACLIVESMATTER slogan. Now everyone some of a different race is using these slogans: BLUELIVESMATTER, ALLLIVESMATTER etc. They love to steal everything that belongs to us as a black race of people and is still not able to comprehend the true meaning of the slogan BLACKLIVESMATTER.

    • Diana MacPherson
      Posted August 1, 2016 at 12:45 pm | Permalink

      I see it this way too – it’s not about you other people!

      • Coco Demio
        Posted August 1, 2016 at 3:26 pm | Permalink

        No one else can say anything, or else it must be somehow taking away from your issues?

        People are stealing slogans?
        Do black people have that slogan trademarked?
        And changing it to alllivesmatter is stealing it? From ‘black’ people?

        So you are saying her concern about police getting targeted and executed and saying alllivesmatters is all about “you other people”?

        Except it wasn’t about her at all. She was concerned about other people.

    • Heather Hastie
      Posted August 1, 2016 at 1:55 pm | Permalink

      I agree as well.

      As an outsider, I still see an enormous amount of racism in the US. Like my own country, they’ve improved noticeably in my lifetime, but they’re way behind. There are still a lot of people, for example, denying the problem of institutional racism is real simply because they have a black president.

      People seem to notice identities like race, gender, sexuality, religion etc more in the US. We’re not perfect in NZ, but mostly people here just get on and such things aren’t used to judge people. Perhaps it’s just because there aren’t many of us and if we didn’t ignore such things we’d never get anything done.

  14. jay
    Posted August 1, 2016 at 12:11 pm | Permalink

    As far as this student is concerned, probably apologizing was a very bad choice. By apologizing he’s blaming himself for their idiocy, and this just fuels their going after more blood.

    As long as they can get a groveling public apology, they will continue this madness.

    • Posted August 1, 2016 at 1:18 pm | Permalink

      + 1

    • Diane G.
      Posted August 2, 2016 at 11:00 pm | Permalink

      Sadly, that’s so true. She needs to take a lesson from Trump.

  15. Taz
    Posted August 1, 2016 at 12:13 pm | Permalink

    Even if she never says anything like this in public again, having said it once has caused her constituents to lose confidence in her ability to represent them fairly.

    Then her constituents can undertake the effort to recall her. I don’t know what percentage of her constituents have lost confidence in her. What shouldn’t happen is for one student to be granted dictatorial powers to dismiss her.

    • Taz
      Posted August 1, 2016 at 12:14 pm | Permalink

      This was in reply to comment #12 by Gregory Kusnick. My comment submitting skills seem to be lacking today.

    • Gregory Kusnick
      Posted August 1, 2016 at 12:32 pm | Permalink

      I agree that it should be up to her constituents to recall her. Jerry apparently does not agree; he seems to think that an apology is sufficient, and a recall attempt would be an overreaction by the Regressive Left.

      • Filippo
        Posted August 1, 2016 at 4:12 pm | Permalink

        I wonder how inclined students would be to run for such a position were there no $700/mo. stipend.

      • eric
        Posted August 1, 2016 at 7:20 pm | Permalink

        Why? A recall using the standard channels set up long before this incident is exercising political speech. Its exactly the right response. Doesn’t mean they’ll win, but if her critics feel so strongly about it, they are absolutely within their rights to try.

        The overreaction in this case is creating a new law with new punishments to punish the conservative (or just thoughtless) opinion. But ‘firing’ a political appointee who doesn’t represent the views of her constituents is entirely appropriate.

      • Diane G.
        Posted August 2, 2016 at 11:06 pm | Permalink

        Can you point out where he said anything about a constituent recall? And how do you know there isn’t a silent portion of her constituents who would, like Jerry, find her apology (apparently an emotional, sincerely repentant one, not one of the “I’m sorry if anyone was offended” notpology types) sufficient?

        • Gregory Kusnick
          Posted August 2, 2016 at 11:54 pm | Permalink

          Jerry said several times, both in the OP and in comments, that an apology should be sufficient. I take that to mean that he thinks any further negative consequences (including, I presume, losing her position) would be excessive.

          Maybe a majority of her constituents agree with him that an apology is sufficient. I don’t know, and neither does Jerry. The point is that it’s not about getting her to stop saying stupid things (as Jerry implies in the bit I quoted at #12); it’s about restoring trust, and only her constituents are in a position to say what that entails.

          • Diane G.
            Posted August 3, 2016 at 1:02 am | Permalink

            I take that to mean that he thinks any further negative consequences (including, I presume, losing her position) would be excessive.”

            IOW, yes, he never said anything about a constituent recall…You are just assuming he’d be against it. One might just as well assume that he’d see that sort of action as an appropriately democratic one, rather than having a subset of the SGA draw up a ridiculously long and humiliating string of punishments. Which, depending on the veracity Jerry’s source for the reason that faction wanted to avoid a recall vote, may in fact mean that the vocal shamers themselves don’t believe they’d garner enough votes to unseat her.

            • Diane G.
              Posted August 3, 2016 at 1:04 am | Permalink

              *…of Jerry’s source*

            • Gregory Kusnick
              Posted August 3, 2016 at 1:23 am | Permalink

              Yes, I made what seemed to me to be a reasonable assumption that Jerry used the word “sufficient” to mean what I understand it to mean. You’re free to make different assumptions about what “sufficient” means; I’m not going to argue that point with you further.

              Nowhere did I endorse the “ridiculously long and humiliating string of punishments”; in fact I explicitly called them silly.

              • Diane G.
                Posted August 3, 2016 at 1:55 am | Permalink

                Sorry. Some time elapsed since the I read the first batch of comments here, and I hadn’t remembered that #12 was by you.

                And it’s just as likely that I’m reading into Jerry’s comments what I’d like to think he meant, as you doing the same thing from you POV. Something about these discussions can really bring out the Devil’s Advocate in me.

  16. Craw
    Posted August 1, 2016 at 12:21 pm | Permalink

    The problem with JAC’s main argument here is that no decent person denies that black lives matter. If you chant “Black Lives Matter” at me, and this phrase is often wielded as a chant or a challenge, there is a subtle but definite implication that I did not realize this. It’s like “read my lips” in that way.

    An example may make this clearer. Let’s say several people chant at JAC the phrase “Mocking rape victims is rude.” Repeatedly. They wave this placard at his talks. Might JAC feel impelled in some fashion to dispute the implicit, invidious premise? What if he replies “mocking any victim is rude”?

    • Diana MacPherson
      Posted August 1, 2016 at 12:49 pm | Permalink

      Maybe only if the thinks it’s all about him. This is the thing with Black Lives Matter – it’s not about you, white people. It’s about a situation that needs fixing with black people.

      • DiscoveredJoys
        Posted August 1, 2016 at 3:29 pm | Permalink

        There’s a problem with ‘identity politics’. Once you self identify with a proportion of the general population you *will* find oppression wherever you look. Typically *some* of it will be real but some of it will appear to be gratuitous victimhood to others. This polarises the debate making resolution even more difficult.

        And then of course one part of the ‘identity’ will fall out with the other part of the ‘identity’ over matters of policy or purity, and the debate becomes even more polarised.

        • Diana MacPherson
          Posted August 1, 2016 at 3:49 pm | Permalink

          I fear you might be right. This is why when something sexist happens to me, I try to get others to see what’s happening versus me telling them because often they will think I’m just being a victim and exaggerating. To my joy, an executive (a man) saw this happen to me in a meeting last week and on his own brought it up to me. You have no idea how happy I was that day!

          I don’t know how we can fix this mess we are all in.

          • GBJames
            Posted August 1, 2016 at 4:03 pm | Permalink

            “I don’t know how we can fix this mess we are all in.”

            We vote for Donald Trump! He alone can fix it!.

          • Craw
            Posted August 1, 2016 at 6:38 pm | Permalink

            I don’t know of any fix that is made better by question begging, inflammatory rhetoric, conclusion jumping, or telling people what to say or do based on their skin colour.

            • Diana MacPherson
              Posted August 1, 2016 at 6:42 pm | Permalink

              Oh I guess that was a sarcastic slam on me. Well, I guess sarcasm solves all arguments then. Good job.

          • DiscoveredJoys
            Posted August 2, 2016 at 10:46 am | Permalink

            I don’t know how we can fix this mess we are all in.

            Unless there is an immediate risk of harm there’s a lot to be said for bearing up under the slings and arrows with impressive equanimity – but requires immense self discipline. One the feelings start flowing both the fixer and the fixee dig in. Good when you can bring non-partisan others into the debate though.

    • Posted August 2, 2016 at 1:38 am | Permalink

      “no decent person denies that black lives matter”

      For some values of “decent”.

      /@

  17. rom
    Posted August 1, 2016 at 12:29 pm | Permalink

    Is it OK to think “All Lives Matter”?

    Might not be politically astute but this is just more of the regressive left … tough to see the difference here.

    • Reginald Selkirk
      Posted August 1, 2016 at 3:37 pm | Permalink

      Is it OK to think “All Lives Matter”?

      Sure it is. Right after you post a couple dozen videos of unarmed white people being shot by the police.

      • rom
        Posted August 1, 2016 at 5:58 pm | Permalink

        I’m not sure of your point.

        Do we defend people’s right to free speech or not?

        I don’t mind either way, but it would be nice if we could demonstrate a coherent and consistent position.

  18. Ken Kukec
    Posted August 1, 2016 at 12:45 pm | Permalink

    Paying lip-service to free speech is so easy almost everyone does it. But few can satisfy the only meaningful measure of one’s commitment to free speech — one’s willingness to defend speech with which one vehemently disagrees. The way the Jewish lawyers who defended the right of Nazis to march on Skokie did, or as Louis Brandeis did in speaking out on behalf of radical syndicalists’ right to organize, or, hell, the way Voltaire himself did.

  19. Ken Kukec
    Posted August 1, 2016 at 12:53 pm | Permalink

    “Dindu” — really? Is that the level of discourse you’re capable of?

    • Diana MacPherson
      Posted August 1, 2016 at 2:41 pm | Permalink

      I had to look that up. I thought it was something to do with Hindus. LOL. Clearly I’m not very hip.

  20. @eightyc
    Posted August 1, 2016 at 1:21 pm | Permalink

    I recommend you read up on the founding of Black Lives Matter. It was founded on 1) a lie (“Hands up Don’t Shoot”) and 2) a Black Supremacist ideology (A. Shakur).

    • Posted August 2, 2016 at 12:00 pm | Permalink

      It does not follow from this, even if the above is true, that the organization is not doing something worthwhile. (Genetic fallacy.)

  21. Heather Hastie
    Posted August 1, 2016 at 1:59 pm | Permalink

    Guess who’s voting for Donald Trump.

    • Salger
      Posted August 1, 2016 at 3:08 pm | Permalink

      SJW found.

      • GBJames
        Posted August 1, 2016 at 3:11 pm | Permalink

        Have you read Da Roolz?

      • Diana MacPherson
        Posted August 1, 2016 at 3:25 pm | Permalink

        Um no.

      • Heather Hastie
        Posted August 1, 2016 at 6:04 pm | Permalink

        You’ve obviously never read my blog. SJWs aren’t too keen on me because I spend a lot of time criticizing their tactics. I posted something new only yesterday doing just that: http://www.heatherhastie.com/air-brushing-islam-wont-stop-the-bigots/

        • Ken Kukec
          Posted August 1, 2016 at 9:23 pm | Permalink

          Jerry’s triggered comments from the dregs of the white-power crowd with this post.

        • Posted August 2, 2016 at 12:23 am | Permalink

          Salger is banned. I don’t know how he/she snuck in her with bile and stupidity, but the person won’t be posting, and I’ve removed most of the comments.

      • Posted August 2, 2016 at 12:20 am | Permalink

        Salger, I just noticed your idiotic comments all over this thread. You won’t be posting here any more.

  22. Posted August 1, 2016 at 4:40 pm | Permalink

    I have thought a lot about this now, and will undoubtedly continue to, but my current feeling is that while I support the BLM movement in certain geographical areas, I do not agree with the broader movement.

    I grew up in Chicago, lived there for 23 years, and I know first- and second-hand that systemic racism is a major problem in Chicago (and much of the Chicagoland area). In many other American cities where black populations are largely separated from other populations, an obvious two-tier system has emerged among how policing operates. The BLM movement has helped bring these issues to the forefront of public and political discussion, to the point that at least one US presidential candidate has promised changes with how American policing is conducted and overseen. That’s progress, and I fully support it (along with very important calls to demilitarize the American police).

    However, the issues that the BLM movement seeks to address are, largely, uniquely American. The immediate response to this point is always that, “racism exists everywhere,” and of course this is true, but BLM is not about combatting racism: it’s about changing the American policing system and its systemic racial biases. This response irritates me too because the speaker is trying to have it both ways. If you want to claim that BLM is about combatting racism broadly construed, then it is far more appropriate to campaign on slogans like “All Lives Matter”. You can’t combat general racism by singling out a certain group for special treatment, for better or for worse. Well, I guess you *can* do this, but I certainly don’t agree with it.

    I have been really bothered by how the BLM movement has crossed international boundaries, and the apparent lack of appreciation and understanding about the context of the movement in its American origin. The BLM protests during the Toronto Pride Parade were idiotic, as were the Vancouver BLM chapter’s demands that the local police force withdraw from our Pride Parade and their refusal to participate when their demands weren’t met. This is mindless conflation of American and non-American problems. Yes, racism exists in Canada, but no, it does not exist anywhere near to the same level as in the US (regarding black populations). Police militarization and disproportionate abuse of blacks is also not a problem that translates exactly to non-American settings.

    I can’t help but feel that these cross-border chapters of BLM are simply engaging in American exceptionalism: if it happens to the US, then it’s gotta happen everywhere. This is false, historically, geographically, empirically, and from what I have personally witnessed living for at least 10 years in both countries. And I find that here in Canada it does little but create problems where there were none, create division where people used to be unified. I do not support singling out any group for different treatment, and that includes police. I do not support banning police from participating in public functions. I call bullshit on those who claim to feel unsafe because of police presence in large Canadian cities (with the exception of First Nations people, where a well-documented history of exceptional brutality does exist). I do not think that the kind of division that BLM promotes improves society. If you want equality for all, and equal treatment under the law, then you aren’t going to accomplish that by treating others preferentially. Yes, it’s hard, but I think you have to rise above the type of behaviour you are trying to dispel.

    Lastly, the hypocrisy of many BLM followers really bothers me. There are many Americans who feel unsafe in the presence of Muslims. I don’t share these feelings and don’t support them in general, but there is no denying that many people feel this way (look at Trump’s polling numbers). So why are these people rightly called out as intolerant when they demand to be insulated from Muslims, while BLM supporters are not classified the same way when they demand to be insulated from all police? The actions of a minority of each group are not sufficient justification for condemning the entire group. The BLM movement’s apparent inability to recognize this is a major problem in my opinion.

    • Diana MacPherson
      Posted August 1, 2016 at 5:40 pm | Permalink

      Well said about the movement in Canada. I felt the same way. And it is interesting to note that the police chief in Toronto is black. I think that means something.

      • Salger
        Posted August 1, 2016 at 5:46 pm | Permalink

        Canada doesn’t have the violent crime levels of the US. It also has a way lower anount of Blacks and Hispanics in it.

        • Diana MacPherson
          Posted August 1, 2016 at 5:48 pm | Permalink

          So?

          • Diana MacPherson
            Posted August 1, 2016 at 5:55 pm | Permalink

            So you’re saying Hispanics and Blacks are intrinsically bad for societies?

            • Ken Kukec
              Posted August 1, 2016 at 9:51 pm | Permalink

              He’s saying blacks and Hispanics are inherently inferior to the master race — although some, he assumes, are good people.

        • Craw
          Posted August 1, 2016 at 6:43 pm | Permalink

          Canada DOES have violent crime rates comparable to the US. Our murder rate is much lower.

    • Diana MacPherson
      Posted August 1, 2016 at 5:45 pm | Permalink

      In Canada, Chinese come after English, French, Scottish, Irish, German and Italian. But if your speaking of non European, First Nations is very close to Chinese.

      I think a major difference in Canadian history as we didn’t have slavery. The US is still dealing with this.

      • Filippo
        Posted August 1, 2016 at 8:03 pm | Permalink

        “Only the United States had slavery.”

        U.S. citizens bloviate about “American Exceptionalism,” “American Values,” and about the U.S. being the “indispensable nation” (Madeleine Albright). Had we not had slavery, and from the git-go had treated women and Native Americans decently and respectfully, that would have given our claim of “exceptionalism” a little more credibility, eh? What citizens of what other countries go around so fatuously bragging on themselves in such a Trumpian way?

  23. Henry Fitzgerald
    Posted August 1, 2016 at 5:45 pm | Permalink

    The best use of “Blue lives matter” was in response to the brouhaha over that X-Men billboard showing Mystique getting strangled.

  24. Posted August 1, 2016 at 6:10 pm | Permalink

    As with all highly emotional issues, there are
    tendencies to go to extremes in presenting
    points of view. Although, being given this forum to “share our thoughts” (and vent politely), if the goal is to come together for equitable, just treatment for all, this approach exacerbates. Doesn’t work toward solutions.

    I respond so emotionally to most of what has been said here that it is difficult to join in with rationality, rather than adding my own experiences and emotions.

    Although, as a child I was taught that policemen are our friends, there are many parts of the country where this wasn’t, and still is not, so. Particularly in black and hispanic neighborhoods, ghettoes. I personally know many cases where people of color were treated differently from white people when
    apprehended for anything; even just on suspicion. And, there are well-known dangers faced by policemen when called into the ghettoes.

    People of color vs. policeman is only the tip of the iceberg. As long as we separate ourselves into “us and them”, or “gangs”, that fight each other, we will continue the internecine warfare to the detriment of us all.

    We must become more inclusive and truly treat all individuals as part of our human family, not divided by the colors of our skins, religions or cultures. We must learn the history of our country to better understand the inequities suffered by slaves and immigrants of all colors in the past (as well as, current slaves and immigrants), and their progeny. Inequities breed inequities. Mistreatment breeds anger and the desire for retribution. Inequities must be limited more and more with the goal of their being eliminated, however unlikely. We must live lives of inclusion, equity and justice. We must teach our children to do the same. And their children. The hatred and mistreatment must stop. Fomenting more anger, separation and division will not achieve this.

  25. jeffery
    Posted August 1, 2016 at 7:14 pm | Permalink

    Sethi, of all people, should have known better than to cross the current “P.C.-madness” meme endemic in so many colleges and universities. Doesn’t she know that “free speech” is only allowed when it doesn’t offend anyone?
    If an organization wishes to bar a member from meetings, censure them, or even attempt to fine them for what they have said, I feel that’s their business; the “re-education” part of it, however, is an insistence that all members be brainwashed into an identical mold (something you’d think people who are so into “diversity” would be loath to do) and seems to be more of a punishment for simply expressing one’s opinions rather than anything to do with what they were.
    Ceiling Cat help us when these fools hit the real world!
    I’d resign, tell them to stick it up their asses, and go find some intelligent new friends.

  26. Posted August 1, 2016 at 7:33 pm | Permalink

    “What “Black Live Matter” really means is “Black Lives Matter Too“—that African-Americans are marginalized in society.”

    You worded that perfectly. I think if the phrase had included the word “too” at the start, maybe there would have been fewer misunderstandings and fewer people correcting it with shouts of “All lives matter.”

    MAYBE.

    • Randall Schenck
      Posted August 1, 2016 at 8:26 pm | Permalink

      Very good. I hope that fine thought settles the discussion.

  27. keith cook + / -
    Posted August 2, 2016 at 4:13 am | Permalink

    Under the banner of all lives matter, we can place, all lives.
    The mistake made was ‘forget’ and that made the difference, even though it shouldn’t have
    because I think she actually meant, black lives are the same and equal too any life no matter what colour, creed, ethnicity simply because all lives matter.
    As it turns out, it was also flippant and casual for a hot volatile topic and organisation and that was mistake too.
    She apologised for making a misconception and as a free speech advocate that is enough. She made a mistake which lessons should be learnt if she wants to hold future positions of representation. Something tells me she will have to make up for it, prove herself.
    Her next x payments should go to a / or, human rights organisations if there has to be punishment or something similar.

  28. Mike
    Posted August 2, 2016 at 6:59 am | Permalink

    The punishment says more about the SGA than the the Tweet said about Sethi.

  29. Posted August 2, 2016 at 9:56 am | Permalink

    Where I live, in Racine, Wisconsin, a black church put up a big sign saying “All lives matter to Him” [i.e. God]. A white church down the street put up a sign saying “Black lives matter”.

  30. Posted August 4, 2016 at 2:04 pm | Permalink

    Three days ago, BLM made efforts to prove their opponents right. They published a platform stating that:

    “…The US justifies and advances the global war on terror via its alliance with Israel and is complicit in the genocide taking place against the Palestinian people… Israel is an apartheid state…”

    Then a demand follows to “Build invest/divestment campaigns that ends US Aid to Israel’s military industrial complex and any government with human rights violations.”

    https://policy.m4bl.org/invest-divest/


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