Third Party & Independents Archives

The Truth in Ferguson

The Justice Department will be there. The FBI is coming. The State Highway Patrol is already there. So is Al Sharpton, and the beleaguered local police have been pushed to the background to provide support presumably. Ferguson has seen night after night of violence - until Thursday evening when protests were peaceful. Democratic Governor Jay Nixon is under critical scrutiny as his past political decisions are being dragged back out into the open to suggest that he has been less than helpful to the state’s African American community in the past, and in the present. President Obama has asked that we find out “exactly what happened” in order to bring justice and order - or order so that justice can then proceed - and resolve what has quickly become a crisis. Unfortunately, those three words, exactly what happened, are going to prove difficult, especially politically.


Already the battle lines are, literally, drawn. Molotov cocktails were launched from within crowds of protester, supposedly in self-defense. Had there not been video evidence, would they have denied ever having thrown them? The right to violent protest has been a touchstone of radical thought arguably since at least the days of early anarchist protests in the mid 1800's. Direct Action as a strategy began early in the 20th century in radical labor movements and focused on using violent means to bring a problem - worker conditions - to the forefront. It also included the suffragette movement and later expanded to include Civil Rights movements, and radical environmental groups. Martin Luther King tried to forge non-violent direct action as a strategy. In other words, there is a heavy load of history that is already being dumped on the vandalism in Ferguson. Did your store get looted? You are collateral damage in the great struggle for freedom. Did Ferguson's police department see about 2 dozen police vehicles destroyed? Merely a rhetorical tactic to enable the issues of prejudice and policing to be clearly sketched out.. Did the officer in question - who now fears for his life - suffer injuries? We don't even know who he is, much less what kind of struggle he had to face, perhaps even inside his squad car.

So, what exactly happened? Will the various investigations clear up glaring discrepancies between police versions and witness versions of the events of that fateful Saturday? The justice system is only as reliable as the participants willingness and ability to "tell the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth." Truth itself, however, is already being filtered through the lens of race and politics according to those who see the history of race relations in America in Ferguson rather than rioting and vandalism. If that is so, then in any investigation, who you are - police or civilian, white or black - matters more than what you did or did not do. How any investigation can proceed impartially and effectively in this cauldron is a disturbing question. But there is no choice; they will have to reconstruct the confrontation in the middle of what, until recently, has been a war zone. And their findings will have to be accepted by the general public along with any judicial decisions that follow. It won't be pretty, but it's the only way forward.

Posted by AllardK at August 15, 2014 12:09 PM
Comments
Comment #382105

“Truth itself, however, is already being filtered through the lens of race and politics..”

Very true and very disturbing. Without facts, many have already made up their minds.

What needs to be done is to get all those lawyers out of the picture. They have an agenda. It’s their job. They are not impartial. Whenever I see witnesses with lawyers before they have been interviewed by investigators, I shudder.

This rush to judgment is madness. It will not end well for any of the parties.


Posted by: Rich at August 18, 2014 7:20 PM
Comment #382106

phx8 already called the cop a murderer in another column. He’s already made up his mind without proof, just as he and others did with the Travon Martin incident.

People like phx8 have to jump to conclusions like that to drive home their political ideology, that race drives the decisions of white people and they need to be punished for it, that Democratics, in this case a black person, can do no wrong. It’s always someone else’s fault, preferably and usually a conservative.

phx8’s comment calling the police officer a murderer illustrates how some will use any excuse to make political points in their favor. It’s truly a never let a crisis go to waste mentality that drives the Democratic Party’s agenda.

Posted by: Weary Willie at August 18, 2014 7:38 PM
Comment #382113

Rich & WW,
Multiple, independent, and consistent eyewitness accounts already provide enough to charge this policeman with murder. Results from today’s first autopsy are consistent with the accounts of eyewitnesses. This was an execution. The cop needs to be charged.

Everyone is innocent until proven guilty in a trial by their peers. In this case, there is more than enough evidence to make the call and bring the shooter to trial in the criminal justice system.

Posted by: phx8 at August 18, 2014 10:47 PM
Comment #382123

Phx8, Sorry, but eyewitness reports that we have are sketchy at best and they are not reliable in the best of cases. As for the autopsy, the one paid for by the family, was there any doubt it would say what they wanted it to say?

There are more facts to come out. We have been told things by the media, mostly MSNBC, that have been proven wrong already and you expect people to just trust them like you do? In a case that is so charged with emotion?

How typical of a progressive.

BTW, take a closer look at the released sketch of the bullet holes on the body. Then move the arm of the over as if it were shielding the face and turn the body just a bit. Doesn’t it seem that the holes start to match up?

You’ve already made up your mind, so scratch that, I know you won’t do that.

Personally, I am watching the evidence and facts and ignoring the hyperbole and emotion, as I always do. You are doing the exact opposite. I wonder if we will come to different conclusions as a result?

Posted by: Rhinehold at August 18, 2014 11:16 PM
Comment #382124

Rhinehold,
Re the autopsy:
Two bullets were fired through the top of his head. There is no way to explain that away.

Posted by: phx8 at August 18, 2014 11:21 PM
Comment #382125

phx8,

I don’t know how you can say that the preliminary autopsy confirmed anything other than the witness statements that he was first shot in the back appear in doubt.

There is also audio from a cell phone video capturing a bystander telling another bystander that he saw Brown advancing on the officer when he was fatally shot. He thought the officer was missing since Brown kept advancing.

“This was an execution.” Maybe, maybe not. I would like to see the full presentation of evidence before making such a categorical statement.

Posted by: Rich at August 18, 2014 11:34 PM
Comment #382126
Two bullets were fired through the top of his head. There is no way to explain that away.

Sure there is, that is where the police officer was aiming.

Your assertion is that it was murder. There is currently no evidence of murder, especially when it comes to police officer behavior. Whether we like it or not, we have authorized the police to use deadly force to enforce laws, all laws, this is what happens when you want to enact a law for every little thing. Now we have to determine if the police office had reason to fear for his life, was trying to protect civilians in some way, etc. There is much more to this than an unarmed man was killed by police.

If you really want to prevent this type of thing from happening again, then join with the Libertarians who have been warning of the militarization of the police force for over a decade and the increasing addition of laws that authorize the police to use force.

BTW, where were these outrages a month ago when an unarmed mad was choked to death by police on tape? This happened in New York… The only difference I can see is that was caught on tape so it was clear cut and that the city is run by Democrats while Ferguson is run by Republicans…

What a second, Democrats couldn’t be that opportunistic, could they?

What did the police, run by Democrats, say then?

“Not wanting to be arrested does not grant an individual the right to resist arrest nor does it free the officers of the obligation to make the arrest,” New York City’s Patrolmen’s Benevolent Association President Patrick J. Lynch said in a statement. “In these cases, justice for all involved demands a complete and thorough investigation of all the facts before any conclusions are drawn.

I guess it’s different here because the city is run by Republicans and we know that they just want to kill black people…

Posted by: Rhinehold at August 18, 2014 11:37 PM
Comment #382127

“Two bullets were fired through the top of his head. There is no way to explain that away.”

Are you kidding, phx8? If you were charging forward and ducking at the same time, you could very well get a bullet in the top of the head. It entered from the forward position not from the back of the head. Have you not ever seen a defensive back make a head on tackle? There is a reason for calling it that.

Posted by: Rich at August 18, 2014 11:41 PM
Comment #382130

So let me get this straight. The UNARMED victim first reached into the police car- or was pulled- then ran at least 35 feet from the car or more (35 feet is the distance his body was from the vehicle)- turned- charged the cop, UNARMED- took up to four bullets from the cop through his upraised arm, or defensively shielding arm- continued charging in a crouch- took another bullet through the top of his skull, which ricocheted out near his eye and down into his upper shoulder- CONTINUED CHARGING, UNARMED- and finally stopped only when he received a fatal shot through the crown of his head, 35 feet from the vehicle.

I see.

And we should disregard the testimony of eyewitnesses. And we should dismiss the results of the first autopsy.

Of course.

Posted by: phx8 at August 19, 2014 12:10 AM
Comment #382132

“we should dismiss the results of the first autopsy”

Nobody is saying that. The results of the family’s preliminary autopsy support either story. Baden said that Brown could have been standing still or moving toward the officer. The initial results seem to dismiss the accounts that Brown was initially shot in the back.

We have virtually none of the forensics evidence. Was there evidence of a discharge in the police vehicle? Where were the shell casings found? How far was the officer from Brown when the fatal shot fired? What was the trajectory of the bullets?

Mob justice is usually not justice at all.

Posted by: Rich at August 19, 2014 7:58 AM
Comment #382134

This is the same exact conversation we had about the Trayvon Martin case. If nothing else we know Democratics are relentlessly persistant. This is just the continuation of the Travon Martin senerio because Democratics were unsuccessfull in their attempts to wound white people in the Martin case.

Posted by: Weary Willie at August 19, 2014 10:27 AM
Comment #382135

Except we have eyewitnesses.

An unarmed man shot up to six times, 35 feet from a police car, with two shots fired through the top of the victim’s head, would be enough for a murder charge by itself.

Posted by: phx8 at August 19, 2014 10:59 AM
Comment #382136

We have video, people on MSNBC telling BS stories about what happened. Then we have people that weren’t even in the area at the time telling what happened. We have some on this blog saying it was murder yet they don’t have any evidence to back them up except what they hear or read. IMO I think we should wait until ALL THE FACTS are presented. Maybe it was murder. Then again maybe it was justified.

Posted by: Rich KAPitan at August 19, 2014 11:16 AM
Comment #382138

35 feet sounds so much further than 10-12 yards, doesn’t it.

Posted by: kctim at August 19, 2014 11:44 AM
Comment #382139

I heard it was 3 to 5 feet, but I’m not paying attention to the specifics of this whole ordeal. There’s a much bigger picture here. The progressives want to make this into another white on black thing. They’re jumping the gun and crucifying anyone who stands in their way without waiting for facts. I believe they won’t wait for facts because they already know they will go against their narrative.

Now, there’s another riot in L.A. because of a police shooting. It’s getting worse. Coming to a town near you! We can thank an out of control liberal media and ignorant comments like phx8’s for this and other riots to come.


Posted by: Weary Willie at August 19, 2014 12:57 PM
Comment #382140
Except we have eyewitnesses.

Yes, and the eyewitnesses that we can verify were actually there and saw what happened CONTRIDICT each other. As I said, eyewitness accounts have never been 100% reliable. Remember the eyewitnesses that said Trayvon Martin was on top of Zimmerman punching him to death? Remember why you said then that eyewitnesses weren’t reliable by themselves?

http://www.cnn.com/2014/08/18/opinion/robbins-ferguson-shooting/index.html

With 50 years of experience (he has conducted some 20,000 autopsies), Baden spoke with calming authority about his findings; he said that the state medical examiner was a trusted colleague who would likely make very similar findings. But since Baden did not have access to Michael Brown’s clothing (to examine gun powder residue), or X-rays, or witness statements, or toxicology reports (and I can’t help but wonder why he wasn’t given access to this), he could not respond to the calls for justice in Ferguson.

He said that Brown was shot from anywhere between one foot and 30 feet away. He said bullet wounds to Brown’s arms could have been sustained by Brown putting his hands up or making a defensive gesture by crossing his arms. From where I sit, six bullets pumped into an unarmed kid in broad daylight is excessive force.

But that only moves us slightly closer to truth. The eyewitness’ accounts vary so widely — and eyewitness testimony is notoriously unreliable, often refuted by the scientific evidence produced at trial. At least one witness, Piaget Crenshaw, told CNN that it “looked as if” the officer tried to pull Brown into the car, then was “chasing after the boy” until Brown turned around and was shot.

But others say Brown was shot in the back.

At the moment, the case hinges on the accounts of two conflicting witnesses: Dorian Johnson and Officer Darren Wilson.

So the eyewitness account you are taking is the one of the friend of Brown who was with him. I wonder if he might be making the case look better for his friend? The other is the officer, I wonder if he might be making the case look better for him?

Neither one is going to be reliable enough on their own. The evidence collected and sifted through will let us know if any of them are not backed up by the facts and if any are. In ANY case like this we would let the investigation continue and look at the evidence and find out what the evidence told us, not accusing anyone of MURDER without proof.

Except in this case because, well, politics. Which is deplorable, but expected, just as in other cases that the progressive movement, looking for political advantage, feels that it can take advantage of the situation for their own political gain.

Posted by: Rhinehold at August 19, 2014 1:07 PM
Comment #382141

It was murder.

That is not in dispute.

Was it a justifiable homicide? That is what a trial will determine. A Grand Jury will convene tomorrow to determine if charges are warranted.

An unarmed man was walking down the street, doing nothing worse than jaywalking, and was shot dead by a policeman. The policeman will claim self-defense, and that he felt threatened. We will not hear from Michael Brown, since he has been deprived of the most fundamental constitutional right of all, the right to his life. There is, however, a raft of evidence and a lot of witnesses.

There was no “rush to judgment.” Indeed, that was the whole problem. There was going to be no judgment at all, it were left up to the Ferguson police. The department took the officer’s deposition, and did not even bother to contact witnesses until days later.

Bet that grand jury moves to place charges at lightning speed. Although Michael Brown was deprived of his most fundamental constitutional right of all rights, there is a lot of forensic evidence and a lot of eyewitnesses. The federal government is riding herd and the media is paying attention. A grand jury will convene, and justice will be served.

Posted by: phx8 at August 19, 2014 2:14 PM
Comment #382142

Maybe it was murder, Maybe it was justified. ^To jump to the conclusion it was murder is pure stupidity phx8. Oregon is quite a distance from Ferguson phx8 and so is Ohio you weren’t there and neither was I what we have is bits and pieces. Wait for the FACTS to come out and then make a call. Til then you know NOTHING as do I.

Posted by: Rich KAPitan at August 19, 2014 3:04 PM
Comment #382143
It was murder.

That is not in dispute.

Actually, this is very much in dispute despite what your overlords have told you to think.

Murder is a legal definition, there are requirements for meeting that criteria.

Was it a justifiable homicide? That is what a trial will determine.

If it is justifiable homicide, IT WASN’T MURDER. I really hate it when uninformed mouthpieces of their respective parties start throwing out terms like they know what they are without having any actual understanding of what those words mean, as in this case. All it does is confuse and conflate the situation because people who DO understand the terms then start arguing things that have different meanings for different people and the result is a frustrating shouting match that gets no one anywhere.

An unarmed man was walking down the street, doing nothing worse than jaywalking, and was shot dead by a policeman. The policeman will claim self-defense, and that he felt threatened. We will not hear from Michael Brown, since he has been deprived of the most fundamental constitutional right of all, the right to his life. There is, however, a raft of evidence and a lot of witnesses.

Actually, you don’t KNOW that. The ‘raft’ of witnesses disagree on what happened, so we have to let the evidence tell us what happened. Some witnesses have said that Brown was in the car, at some point, others say he wasn’t. Your assertion that the was ‘walking down the street doing nothing worse than jaywalking and then shot dead’ isn’t factual, nor is it believable. Several witnesses have said that he tried to get the gun while in the car during a struggle, ran off and then turned and charged the officer. A 6-4” 290 pound man charging you within intent to bodily harm is quite a valid reason for self defense. That’s quite a bit different than he was just in the street with his hands up and shot, isn’t it? Problem is, YOU HAVE NO WAY OF KNOWING WHICH IS TRUE because you aren’t privy to any other information than what you are being told by your controllers.

There was no “rush to judgment.”

This has to be the biggest load of monumental bullshit that I have ever seen you say, phx8… People were rioting within hours of the death without anyone having any real information at all, including death threats against the police officer. Sharpton was booked onsite within hours as well…

So, once again I’m done since your version of ‘reality’ is so far removed from anything that a rational person would have, I have better things to do with my life.

Posted by: Rhinehold at August 19, 2014 3:27 PM
Comment #382144

None of us know what took place on Saturday August 9th in Ferguson Missouri for sure. There is a lot of different information and conflicting stories about what happened. We may never know for sure but I am certain that so far none of this situation was handled properly. I am not sure if anything else could have been done to have a better outcome at this time. Perhaps if the Ferguson PD would have been more forthcoming with information there would have been less uproar however there may have been extenuating circumstances that prevented them from doing that, the integrity of the investigation would be primary. I don’t believe that showing the video of the alleged convenience store robbery helped the integrity of the investigation but I am certain that it inflamed local citizenry. I don’t believe the original show of military force helped the investigation but I am certain that it inflamed local citizenry. I don’t know if the non-release of the incident report and the officer’s name helped the integrity of the investigation but it inflamed the local citizenry. The only thing I think can be deduced by the 3 aforementioned acts is the inability to understand what the local citizenry wanted or maybe that was the intent. This doesn’t necessarily mean that their intention was malicious but it does mean that it wasn’t considered as important as the alternatives in each act. That is a shame and should be something that needs to be addressed. I am not defending the protestors or decrying the police department. It just seems that this could have been diffused by using different tactics in dealing with the public outcry that was bound to happen.

Posted by: Speak4all at August 19, 2014 3:48 PM
Comment #382145

http://adam.curry.com/enc/20140817194136_benshapiroongunsone.mp3

http://adam.curry.com/enc/20140817194136_benshapiroongunsandmoralitry.mp3

There you go, a good explanation of why progressives are totalitarians in see-through disguises…

Posted by: Rhinehold at August 19, 2014 3:49 PM
Comment #382146

Here’s a great example… Event occurred last year:

In the early morning hours of June 27, 2013, a team of Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department deputies pulled up to the home of Eugene Mallory, an 80-year-old retired engineer living in the rural outskirts of Los Angeles county with his wife Tonya Pate and stepson Adrian Lamos.

The deputies crashed through the front gate and began executing a search warrant for methamphetamine on the property. Detective Patrick Hobbs, a self-described narcotics expert who claimed he “smelled the strong odor of chemicals” downwind from the house after being tipped off to illegal activity from an anonymous informant, spearheaded the investigation.

The deputies announced their presence, and Pate emerged from the trailer where she’d been sleeping to escape the sweltering summer heat of the California desert. Lamos and a couple of friends emerged from another trailer, and a handyman tinkering with a car on the property also gave himself up without resistance. But Mallory, who preferred to sleep in the house, was nowhere to be seen.

Deputies approached the house, and what happened next is where things get murky. The deputies said they announced their presence upon entering and were met in the hallway by the 80-year-old man, wielding a gun and stumbling towards them. The deputies later changed the story when the massive bloodstains on Mallory’s mattress indicated to investigators that he’d most likely been in bed at the time of the shooting. Investigators also found that an audio recording of the incident revealed a discrepancy in the deputies’ original narrative: Before listening to the audio recording, [Sgt. John] Bones believed that he told Mallory to “Drop the gun” prior to the shooting. The recording revealed, however, that his commands to “Drop the gun” occurred immediately after the shooting.

When it was all over, Eugene Mallory died of six gunshot wounds from Sgt. John Bones’ MP-5 9mm submachine gun. When a coroner arrived, he found the loaded .22 caliber pistol the two deputies claimed Mallory had pointed at them on the bedside table.

Mallory had not fired of a single shot. The raid turned up no evidence of methamphetamine on the property.

Of course, the police department is run by Democrats and the victim was white.

So, no charges of murder, no rioting, no investigation, no Sharpton, etc.

Do NOT buy into the BS that the left is peddling about caring about people being killed, execution style, by the police. They only care that the victim was black, the officer was white, and the event took place in a Republican district. All other facts and evidence are irrelevant, as you can see by phx8’s responses.

Posted by: Rhinehold at August 19, 2014 4:02 PM
Comment #382147

The federal government is riding herd and the media is paying attention. A grand jury will convene, and justice will be served.
Posted by: phx8 at August 19, 2014 2:14 PM

The federal government has no business “riding herd” or anything else in this instance. Why would anyone believe that the justice system in Missouri is broken or inadequate?

The “media” is unlikely to contribute to justice as it is politics that is dominating the news stories.

I have no great faith in “grand juries” seeking justice but it is the system we have.

I will ask phx8, if all that he says is true, why the continued protests?

I will ask everyone, why must protests include looting and other violence.

Posted by: Royal Flush at August 19, 2014 4:03 PM
Comment #382148

Link for the above article: http://reason.com/blog/2014/02/15/yet-another-example-of-why-americas-drug

BTW, in ZERO of the debate about this incident, there was never the use of the word MURDER, even though it applies much more accurately here.

Posted by: Rhinehold at August 19, 2014 4:05 PM
Comment #382149

Some people will use the most despicable circumstances to turn us against one another. This is something that only someone without morals or ethics would do. Someone who is hell bent on punishing their adversaries. Someone who does not understand the value of adversarial politics and just wants to make it seem that they are right and whoever they disagree with is wrong. A lot of us see through that despicable attempt to make us into enemies instead of fellow citizens attempting to work through a difficult situation.

Posted by: Speak4all at August 19, 2014 4:08 PM
Comment #382150

Speak4,
The response by the Ferguson Police Department was pretty much a ‘how to NOT’ react to this kind of situation. The lack of transparency, initially ignoring accounts of eyewitnesses, and withholding basic information got the ball rolling. Deploying a police force that looked like it was ready to take Baghdad, intimidating citizens with armor and weaponry, hostile actions by the police towards peaceful demonstrators including targeting them with lasers, denying demonstrators the right to assemble, and liberal use of tear gas made matters worse. Then the police chief engaged in character assassination against the victim by releasing a video completely unrelated to the shooting.

It took intervention by the MO Highway Patrol and the federal government to finally restore peace, but there is still a long way to go, and there are bad elements that will continue to try to exploit the unrest.

Hopefully police departments around the country will learn from the mistakes made by the Ferguson PD.

1) Anytime an unarmed person is killed by a policeman, there needs to be more than just an internal investigation. There needs to be an independent, outside investigation.

2) The militarization of the police force is a terrible idea. The DoD program of selling surplus armaments to local police departments should stop asap. What the hell were these people thinking?

3) A police force is there FOR the community, not there to oppress it. Communication and transparency are fundamental for trust to be maintained.

Posted by: phx8 at August 19, 2014 4:12 PM
Comment #382151
A police force is there FOR the community, not there to oppress it.

Wishful thinking but not true at all…

A police force is FOR enforcing laws passed by the community through the use of force. That is their function.

The only way to limit their power is to limit their power by not giving them the power. This is somehow lost on most progressive and conservative people…

Posted by: Rhinehold at August 19, 2014 4:23 PM
Comment #382152

phx8, I agree with your assessment. But what do to do now? I believe that by sending USAG Holder to Ferguson President Obama is hoping to restore faith in the community and order to the police department and law enforcement. Whether this works or not time will tell. The chokehold incident in NY has been declared a homicide and the investigation is proceeding. The unfortunate incident in LA is also being investigated. I don’t doubt that the wheels will turn slowly on all of these investigations and that is something we all have to deal with in our own way. In this day of the 24 hour news cycle we expect outcomes much quicker but that just isn’t how it works. Maybe some day that will change but for now this is what we have to work with. I hope for the best outcome.

Posted by: Speak4all at August 19, 2014 4:26 PM
Comment #382153

Another example: http://reason.com/blog/2014/08/19/new-video-of-assault-by-cop-who-police-t

The man was beaten by police and the prosecutor is refusing to press charges against the policeman in question because the video evidence is ‘too complicated’.

Why was he arrested and then beaten? He was smoking a cigarette outside.

Still think that those laws you pass don’t end up being enFORCEd?

BTW, Speak4all, the LA incident was investigated and the investigation resulted in saying that the killing was justified.

https://docs.google.com/file/d/0B4yeMSpjohd4bEVfUk40YWpIY2s/edit

As the prosecutor stated:

“Age does not preclude somebody from being aggressive toward deputies,”

“The lesson here is… don’t pull a gun on a deputy.”

BTW, the widow (who wasn’t given her husband’s remains, they went to an out of town relative) is suing. Maybe something will eventually come out of it in the case of a monetary award, but the police officer will never serve a day in jail.

Posted by: Rhinehold at August 19, 2014 4:58 PM
Comment #382154

Rhinehold, thanks for the update I don’t follow the news that closely. Unintended consequences from laws, has been a problem that we have dealt with since before the Code of Hammurabi. As citizens we need laws to protect us and keep us as safe as possible but this can be troublesome at times since every law can be construed as preventing someone from doing what they would like to do, it is inherent that laws cause great discord along with protection. Perhaps a more advanced political society will be better equipped to write laws that preclude this from happening but I have my doubts that that can be done to complete satisfaction for everyone concerned. I only hope that we can use what we have now to better understand what will be necessary now and in the future.

Posted by: Speak4all at August 19, 2014 5:16 PM
Comment #382155
As citizens we need laws to protect us and keep us as safe as possible

No, we need laws that protect our natural rights from being violated and otherwise let us live without force being applied. Most issues can be dealt with in other ways but in our society the totalitarians on both sides want to use laws to limit what people can do instead of letting them make those decisions for themselves.

A great example is the interview that was done recently at the 2012 Democratic Convention where they asked people if they were pro-choice and then asking some follow up questions that showed that they were for pro-choice in once instance but in all others they wanted laws in place to protect people from themselves. So they want to use the police power of force to prevent people from doing something that they don’t think they should be doing…

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xwejQBIyjow&feature=player_embedded

“Reason TV talked with Democratic delegates and supporters at the 2012 Democratic National Convention in Charlotte and found that most were on board with the party’s strong pro-choice stance. But when pressed to talk about whether or not they were pro-choice in areas of human activity beyond abortion, delegates and supporters seemed less certain and, at times, outright hostile to the notion of increased choice. “

Do we need laws to tell people not to eat too much salt? Too much sugar? Smoke? Drink? Jaywalk? Etc?

Posted by: Rhinehold at August 19, 2014 5:25 PM
Comment #382156

“we need laws that protect our natural rights from being violated and otherwise let us live without force being applied”

While this sentiment seems noble I am uncertain if it is attainable. Hypothetically speaking my fellow citizen has wronged me and I have decided that because of that guilt that I say they have I should be able to use my natural right to take umbrage with them to the degree that I feel is necessary. Force will need to be applied to stop me since I am very adamant in my belief that they need to be punished. I might have total justification for this, even to the point of being able to (through a judgement of my peers) take license to do with them as I wish. Laws prevent that from happening, I think my fellow citizen is just as fortunate as I am to have that law in place that would prevent me from doing them harm.

Posted by: Speak4all at August 19, 2014 5:36 PM
Comment #382157
Hypothetically speaking my fellow citizen has wronged me and I have decided that because of that guilt that I say they have I should be able to use my natural right to take umbrage with them to the degree that I feel is necessary.

I’m not sure if you are grasping the concept or I am not understanding your concerns… If a fellow citizen has wronged you, you have the option of going to the courts to seek restitution for that wrong.

If you try to harm them yourself, you are violating their natural rights, and yes there would be laws against you doing that. You can’t use force on another, that is a violation of their natural rights.

If you want to be a little more specific of a situation that better represents your concerns here, perhaps we could get into details, as it is now it doesn’t really make sense.

Posted by: Rhinehold at August 19, 2014 5:45 PM
Comment #382158

Sorry it doesn’t make sense to you but that is exactly the point that I was trying to make. I have a natural right just as others do, it is our laws that attempt to define whose right is the more just. But this is a definite over simplification of the interpretation of law. Laws can be much more insidious and downright confusing. Lawyers profit from their ability and knowledge of law to use the law to their or your, if they work for you, advantage. It’s what we have not what we want. It is not the best but it is something that we have been able to use for quite some time. Laws are becoming more restrictive due to recalcitrance. Yes it would be great to live in a world with a minimum of laws but I am unsure how safe we would all be. I like safe, thanks.

Posted by: Speak4all at August 19, 2014 5:55 PM
Comment #382159
Yes it would be great to live in a world with a minimum of laws but I am unsure how safe we would all be. I like safe, thanks.

Those who would give up essential Liberty, to purchase a little temporary Safety, deserve neither Liberty nor Safety. - B Franklin.

The problem is, you aren’t really safer… It’s theater. Run afoul of a law that you aren’t aware of or is being misapplied, and you could end up like these other folks who have been beaten, killed, etc. The police get the address of a drug raid wrong, someone makes a claim against you that is false, try to assert your rights during a police stop either on foot or in a car, etc.

All we have done is make us more fearful, of the police.

Sorry it doesn’t make sense to you but that is exactly the point that I was trying to make.

You made a claim that you had a natural right to harm another, and you don’t. As I stated, laws should be, and are, in place to punish you for doing that. Those aren’t the types of laws we are even talking about…

So as stated, your point isn’t valid. If you want to better make your point, please do.

I have a natural right just as others do, it is our laws that attempt to define whose right is the more just.

Not even close… That’s a basic misunderstanding of what natural rights are. Natural rights exist without any form of government or society. They just are. And no one’s natural rights are more just than another’s.

It’s when you try to invent rights (positive rights) that require the violation of natural rights when you get into that discussion and the trouble it creates.

So, are you talking natural rights or positive rights? Can you provide an example so we can see if we are talking about two different things or if one of us is misunderstanding the other…

Posted by: Rhinehold at August 19, 2014 6:18 PM
Comment #382170
As tension in Ferguson, Missouri shows no sign of dissipating after over a week of clashes between authorities and protesters, another black man in the St. Louis area has been killed by police.

St. Louis police said today that a 23-year-old man wielding a knife was shot and killed by two officers responding to calls about a convenience store robbery. The man had stolen energy drinks and pastry from the convenience store and was pacing around in front of the store when officers arrived, according to police and witnesses.

When confronted with police, the man reportedly told officers to “shoot me now, kill me now” repeatedly.

The incident occurred in the city’s Sixth Ward, only miles east from where Michael Brown was shot on August 9.

https://news.vice.com/article/another-young-black-man-has-been-killed-by-police-in-st-louis-as-tension-remains-in-ferguson

Posted by: Rhinehold at August 20, 2014 8:36 AM
Comment #382172

Well B Franklin’s sentiments while noble are a bit silly. I’ll take safety you can keep the liberty and argue for that if you want. You won’t convince me that I am some how sacrificing my liberty by having safety, don’t try it won’t work on me. I don’t doubt you feel that way but that is you not me.

Until there is a guarantee that we are all born with a moral compass that guides us in our decisions and can be proven beyond a doubt, I also will not believe in these natural rights you speak of. Please don’t try to convince me that they are god given rights, I might be agnostic and not consider any rights given by a god that is indeterminable by my standards. That is my choice in this great country we live in.

If you are looking for examples from me, it tells me that as you correctly stated that perhaps we are not understanding each other and that is OK with me. As I have stated before I do not comment here to convince you or anyone else of anything, I comment here for my benefit. Or maybe you have doubts about these “natural rights” and are looking to argue the validity of these, I won’t do that either.

Posted by: Speak4all at August 20, 2014 9:34 AM
Comment #382174
Well B Franklin’s sentiments while noble are a bit silly.

Silly? They are the basis for our form of government and the underlying point of our society… Not sure why you see them as ‘silly’. *shrug*

You won’t convince me that I am some how sacrificing my liberty by having safety, don’t try it won’t work on me.

So you don’t have a problem with having police cameras installed in your house and monitored 24/7 in order to ensure your safety?

Until there is a guarantee that we are all born with a moral compass that guides us in our decisions and can be proven beyond a doubt, I also will not believe in these natural rights you speak of.

Again, you obviously have no idea what the term natural rights means, yet you are all ready to stand against them… :/ I find that type of logic kind of strange, “I know anything about it, but I’m aggin it”…

Please don’t try to convince me that they are god given rights, I might be agnostic and not consider any rights given by a god that is indeterminable by my standards.

I am not trying to convince you that they are ‘god given’, and I am an atheist, so it wouldn’t make sense for me to do so.

However, they are ‘inalienable’. I am wondering if you have hard of that phrase before?

That is my choice in this great country we live in.

And your right to worship and believe as you want is A NATURAL RIGHT.

it tells me that as you correctly stated that perhaps we are not understanding each other and that is OK with me.

That’s always been my biggest problem with you, Speak… You don’t want to try to understand what others think and believe in, how they view things, get a better understanding of things you may not know about or how your fellow man views the world, no empathy at all… It’s almost narcissistic, to be honest.

And further, to want to comment on a political/civics based discussion area without having the basic knowledge of civics and simply refusing to learn anything that you don’t know seems very strange to me.

But for anyone else who may be reading this and do not know what natural rights are, here’s a little primer to get you started.

Natural and legal rights are two types of rights. Legal rights are those bestowed onto a person by a given legal system. Natural rights are those not contingent upon the laws, customs, or beliefs of any particular culture or government, and therefore universal and inalienable (i.e., cannot be sold, transferred, or removed).

The theory of natural law is closely related to the theory of natural rights. During the Age of Enlightenment, natural law theory challenged the divine right of kings, and became an alternative justification for the establishment of a social contract, positive law, and government — and thus legal rights — in the form of classical republicanism.

Natural rights are those that are considered ‘negative’ rights, meaning that don’t require action for them to exist while legal rights are more in line with ‘positive’ rights.

Under the theory of positive and negative rights, a negative right is a right not to be subjected to an action of another person or group—a government, for example—usually in the form of abuse or coercion. A positive right is a right to be subjected to an action of another person or group. In theory, a negative right forbids others from acting against the right holder, while a positive right obligates others to act with respect to the right holder. In the framework of the Kantian categorical imperative, negative rights can be associated with perfect duties while positive rights can be connected to imperfect duties.

So, you have a right to life, liberty and a pursuit of happiness. Those (and others) exist whether a government exists or not to ‘provide’ it. It can’t be taken away from you without action taken by someone else. These rights are inalienable, because no legal framework has to be in place for them to exist and no government should have the power to take them away.

These rights are protected by the 9th amendment to the constitution.

Contrarily, a right to have an education provided to you requires that someone else provide that education. This is considered a ‘positive’ right, because some action has to be taken by someone else for your right to exist.

Or maybe you have doubts about these “natural rights” and are looking to argue the validity of these, I won’t do that either.

That would be like saying I have doubts about the definition of murder, or that the sky is blue. These are things that have been discussed and decided upon before the founding of this country during the Age of Enlightenment and is the BASIS of what this country was founded upon, the idea that people have inalienable rights that the government does not provide and cannot violate, the first time this belief was put into practice anywhere in the world and is THE reason WHY this country is, as you say, great.

Posted by: Rhinehold at August 20, 2014 12:20 PM
Comment #382175
Libertarians warned for years that America’s police have become too much like an occupying army. We get accused of being paranoid, but we look less paranoid after heavily armed police in Ferguson, Missouri, tear gassed peaceful protesters, arrested journalists, and stopped some journalists from entering the town. Yet leftists still found ways to blame libertarians and advocates of private gun ownership. Since they seem so easily confused, and since there’s plenty of blame to go around, John Stossel breaks down who’s to blame for what in Ferguson.

http://reason.com/archives/2014/08/20/policing-like-an-occupying-army

Although it was government police and government-supplied military equipment that provoked the conflict (plus property-rights-violating looters), leftists still found ways to blame libertarians and advocates of private gun ownership.

Pulitzer Prize-winning cartoonist Tom Toles depicted a sarcastic TV viewer watching news from Ferguson and sniping that “I’m sure the NRA has an interesting solution for this”—as if overzealous police are the fault of people who believe in individuals’ right to defend themselves.

Other pro-big government commentators just questioned the sincerity of libertarians, saying that if we were in power, we would become authoritarians and defend the police.

It’s true that once people are in power, they often grow fond of authority and less interested in liberty. But I don’t see why this is an argument against libertarians—who warn about this problem all the time—instead of an argument against all those who are actually in power and shameless about wielding that power.

But since leftists are so easily confused, and since there’s plenty of blame to go around, let’s list who’s to blame for what:

The police do not have the right to execute suspects, unless there is no other way of stopping them and they pose an immediate threat to the safety of others.

Michael Brown, assuming current interpretations of security footage are correct, robbed and bullied a store clerk right before he was killed by police. That may well mean he was violent and dangerous, but even violent people should be brought to trial, not gunned down.

Individual cops may feel threatened—and may be threatened in the course of doing their jobs—but they still do not have the right to use more force than is necessary. Too often, panicked or angry cops pump multiple rounds into already-wounded suspects, as appears to have happened to Michael Brown.

Yes, centuries of white people abusing the civil liberties of blacks have left many blacks resentful of police power, and in recent years, white police officers have shot, on average, two young black men every week. But none of that justifies violence and looting like that which followed Michael Brown’s death. Criminals who ransack stores are always wrong to violate the rights of innocent third parties.

Peaceful protestors should not be lumped in with looters and subject to curfews by police. Most looters are opportunists, not people making a political statement. Police and angry citizens alike have a duty to distinguish between protesters and criminals.

The Pentagon, the Department of Homeland Security and opportunistic politicians all pushed the idea of heavily arming local cops, even in places more rural than Ferguson.

“Why would cops wear camouflage gear against a terrain patterned by convenience stores and beauty parlors?” wonders the Cato Institute’s Walter Olson. He notes that a man identifying himself as a veteran from the Army’s 82nd Airborne Division reacted to video of police in Ferguson by tweeting, “We rolled lighter than that in an actual war zone.”

If authorities arm cops like soldiers, they may begin to think like soldiers—and see the public as the enemy. That makes violent confrontations more likely.

Posted by: Rhinehold at August 20, 2014 12:24 PM
Comment #382176

I don’t doubt that you are confused and consider others strange. I do too, that is nothing to feel shame or neglect about. We deal with lots in life and not all of it makes perfect sense all of the time.

I have noticed that there are some who make comments here from a perspective of it is “us/them”, “left/right”, “Democrat/Republican” and then there are others who always seem to have a more of a “we” approach to what we are going through and will go through in our lives.

I hope for the best for Ferguson Missouri and the rest of this country and do believe law enforcement has been over militarized. Maybe one way to approach people to try to change this is the cost that has to be associated with the military hardware upkeep and maintenance that must be required even though it comes free of charge initially. Think of those $ that could be spent on other areas that provide more of a benefit to the citizens rather than upkeep on a $300,000 armored vehicle?

Posted by: Speak4all at August 20, 2014 12:51 PM
Comment #382177
Think of those $ that could be spent on other areas that provide more of a benefit to the citizens rather than upkeep on a $300,000 armored vehicle?

Wouldn’t make a difference, they would just raise the money through asset forfeiture, as they have done with the war on drugs that does more harm than help.

The governments want more and more power and people who think they are being kept safe with that power will gladly keep handing it over to them. After all, we all need to be protected from the crazed marijuana user who smokes weed in their homes on a Saturday night… That is why those police departments have that equipment, to fight the war against the citizens who may prefer to use marijuana over alcohol.

Posted by: Rhinehold at August 20, 2014 1:29 PM
Comment #382178

Sadly, I believe you are right about getting the funding for upkeep and maintenance on expensive military equipment. Where there is a will there is a way applies. But that can also apply to the argument against this militarization if enough people acquire the will.

Yes asset forfeiture is used by law enforcement as a tool to bring about the behavior changes they want to conform to laws that should be repealed. This is why I have contributed and continue to contribute to NORML (National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws). This whole war on drugs was invented after the war on poverty took hold. It seems it was a push back by another group in power that wanted to have the same terminology to use as their adversaries, “we’re winning the war”. It hasn’t worked well but neither has the war on poverty by most standards. Maybe some day we will stop having a war on anything and just try to come up with the best ideas to help this country succeed.

Posted by: Speak4all at August 20, 2014 2:12 PM
Comment #382179

Looks like the evidence starting to come out is tending to break in the cops favor. The broken orbital bone would prove that he was punched in the face by the deceased when he allegedly grabbed and fought to take the officers gun.

Posted by: dbs at August 20, 2014 4:25 PM
Comment #382180

dbs,
We have nothing from the Ferguson cops other than a ‘friend’ presenting a second-hand version of the killer’s story, and the release of a video of Brown that has nothing to do with his murder.

To put this into perspective, the incident report from yesterday’s nearby shooting in St Louis has already been released, and the 911 & dispatch recordings are about to come out. It has been 10 days since Michael Brown was executed in the middle of a street with bullets through the top of his head, and the Ferguson police still refuse to make anything available. They did not even bother to interview eyewitnesses until several days after the shooting.

And we are supposed to believe Brown reached into a police car and wrestled the officer for a gun, and that somehow the safety was released and the gun discharged? That Ferguson fled, THEN turned around, and charged the officer?

Uh huh.

There is a good reason the Attorney General and the FBI are getting involved. Murder charges should have been filed within 24 hours. There is no way that cop should be walking around free.

Posted by: phx8 at August 20, 2014 4:53 PM
Comment #382181

We have nothing from Ferguson cops, but yet there are protests, riots, looting and violence. Apparently, it’s wrong to speculate what Brown did, but perfectly ok to speculate what Wilson did.

Love how the argument has gone from an evil racist white cop hunting an innocent black guy, shooting him in the back and executing him in the middle of the street, to the police aren’t giving us information fast enough so it’s a conspiracy.

You guys do know that you wouldn’t have to keep coming up with new excuses, if you didn’t always jump to race based conclusions BEFORE learning any of the facts?

Posted by: kctim at August 20, 2014 5:24 PM
Comment #382182

kct, I think you are misinterpreting what has been said. From the very beginning there has been a call for the Ferguson PD to provide information by both sides except the rabid ends of each argument. The protests, rioting, looting and violence began because there wasn’t any information forthcoming. Not that I would support any of those except for peaceful protests. Perhaps some have attempted to portray the cop as an evil racist but to lump all dissent into that group is being facetious. “Us guys” haven’t been coming up with excuses but just asking to know what happened. Somebody is jumping to something here and drawing conclusions where they are incorrect.

dbs, it’s hard to use the word favor in any discussion about this. An 18 year old is dead and the integrity of an officer of the law appears to be in question because information has been withheld, his career could be ruined and that is a small price compared to the price the 18 year old paid. There is no favor in any of this circumstance. Everything is unfavorable.

Posted by: Speak4all at August 20, 2014 5:34 PM
Comment #382183

kctim,
An unarmed man was dead in the middle of the street with a bullet through the crown of his head.

After interviewing eyewitnesses at the scene (which did not happen), the cop should have been charged and gone to jail within 24 hours.

Don’t worry, the cop will have his day in court. Eyewitnesses will give their testimony. Apparently the FBI sent 40 agents, and they found more eyewitnesses. The forensic testimony is there, and the Ferguson Police will not be able to keep it under wraps forever.

The victim will not there to see it, of course.

Posted by: phx8 at August 20, 2014 6:34 PM
Comment #382184

“…the Ferguson Police will not be able to keep it under wraps forever.”

It’s not the Ferguson Police Dept. that is the lead investigative agency. The Ferguson Police immediately requested that the County take over management of the investigation after the shooting.

Posted by: Rich at August 20, 2014 6:50 PM
Comment #382185

The Ferguson Department does not need to be lead in order to do what they are doing.

Posted by: phx8 at August 20, 2014 7:10 PM
Comment #382187

I strongly suspect that the absence of information from the investigative agencies (who are not the Ferguson Police Dept.} is more a reflection of the conflicting nature of some of the evidence and incomplete forensic analysis than some conspiracy to thwart justice.

Many of the eyewitness accounts publicly aired on the media and a principal source of the call for indictment of the officer have already been found flawed. Eyewitness accounts in general are known to be highly unreliable. Better to wait for the full forensic evidence before judgment. http://nymag.com/scienceofus/2014/08/eyewitnesses-wont-solve-the-michael-brown-case.html

Posted by: Rich at August 20, 2014 7:20 PM
Comment #382188

Rhinehold, really! Stossel’s partisan rhetoric is nonsense. When he tells us it is the “leftist” that wanted the local police to become militarized he tells us he is clueless. Tying this issue into the second amendment for the wrong reasons shows Stossel’s inability to grasp the basics of the problem. It has been conservatives and libertarians defending the militarization of the civilian population and the shooting of unarmed kids by armed civilians not “leftist” after all. It has been conservatives and libertarians defending the actions of the police when they shoot unarmed kids as well, It has been conservatives and libertarians defending the open carry laws, I guess expecting the police to just stand by and not compete in the arms race.


Let me ask you this Rhinehold do you expect the police to bring a knife to a gun fight? You seem to want the citizens of this country armed to the teeth because it is a second amendment right yet you want the police to not be militarized in response to the militarization of these same hunters and sporting enthusiast that need assault rifles for everyday use!

Posted by: j2t2 at August 20, 2014 7:27 PM
Comment #382192

phx8

Were you at the scene? Didn’t think so.
Are you a person who has extraperception ability to see the “facts” that nobody else can? I’m sure you don’t have that ability.

Your hogwash is just pure crap. That is speculation on your part. Just be honest for a change. I know that is a challenge for you, but try it.

All that you claim is such a piece of unadulterated piece of disbelief.

I can’t put any more disclaimers to this. If the situation were not more serious, I would laugh. But I can’t bring myself to do that. You are pathetic.

Posted by: tom humes at August 21, 2014 12:12 AM
Comment #382196
When he tells us it is the “leftist” that wanted the local police to become militarized he tells us he is clueless.

Really? It was LBJ that started this militarization to quell the Viet Nam descent. Nixon used it to attack his political opponents, again during the Viet Nam era. Clinton expanded it with the so-called peace dividend, and then it mushroomed after 9-11.

For the left to claim this is an issue of Republican’s making is simply more of the same lies and subterfuge used for political purposes. It’s more “blame the other guy” tactics.

Posted by: Weary Willie at August 21, 2014 5:08 AM
Comment #382197

phx8

“And we are supposed to believe Brown reached into a police car and wrestled the officer for a gun, and that somehow the safety was released and the gun discharged?”

Most of the pistols carried by police are modern striker fired pistols such as Glock. They have no external safety. We also have the account that Ferguson punched the officer. The broken orbital bone would confirm that. Have you even bothered to read the other account?

“That Ferguson fled, THEN turned around, and charged the officer?”

That would be consistant with his wounds, and other eye witness accounts.So yes.

Posted by: dbs at August 21, 2014 5:32 AM
Comment #382199
For the left to claim this is an issue of Republican’s making is simply more of the same lies and subterfuge used for political purposes. It’s more “blame the other guy” tactics.

Weary, such a shining example of conservatives dodging responsibility for their actions and their ideology. Which of these comments do you actually disagree with-

1.”It has been conservatives and libertarians defending the militarization of the civilian population and the shooting of unarmed kids by armed civilians not “leftist” after all.”

I give you conservative hero George Zimmerman as an example.

2. “It has been conservatives and libertarians defending the actions of the police when they shoot unarmed kids as well,”

I give you this thread as an example.

3. “It has been conservatives and libertarians defending the open carry laws, I guess expecting the police to just stand by and not compete in the arms race.”

I give you ….well…. yourself as an example.

Not to mention The war on drugs with the conservative deity Reagan not waving the white flag but going into battle, by confiscating money and mandatory minimums.

Yep you are the problem Weary you and your ideology IMHO.

Posted by: j2t2 at August 21, 2014 7:41 AM
Comment #382200

Speaks

The shooting happened on the 9th, the protests and everything started on the 10th. It is not uncommon for an investigation to take more than 24 hours, especially in a case such as this.
It has NOTHING to do with not being provided information. The protests, riots, violence and rush to judgement BEFORE any facts are known, is only because the officer was white, and Brown was black.

And sorry, but yes, those people in Ferguson and the political left have been and still are jumping to conclusions and are having to keep altering their reasoning. In mainstream media sources, pundits, blogs and on the streets, the narrative is that a young black boy has been murdered by a racist cop.


Posted by: kctim at August 21, 2014 9:07 AM
Comment #382201

Phx8

You don’t know why that man is dead in the street, or how it ended up that way. That is why there are investigations and they can take days, weeks, months etc… This is not something new, this is how it works.
Your desire for this to be all about race does not trump the duty of the city to conduct an accurate investigation, nor does it trump the officers rights.

I do not worry about the officer having his day in court, I understand how the system works. What I worry about is if he can have a fair trial and what the reactions will be. An innocent outcome will lead to more speculation and further division, a guilty verdict that ignores known facts, will do the same.

“The victim will not there to see it, of course”

Brown will not be there, whether he is the victim or not still remains to be seen.

Posted by: kctim at August 21, 2014 9:28 AM
Comment #382202

kct, excuse me if I don’t consider your comment as any thing to be taken seriously in a very serious matter. There were people gathering at the scene of the shooting within an hour. While Brown laid there for more than 5 hours the unrest intensified to a boiling point that erupted in protests. You seem to live in a black and white world when it is really grey, you are not sorry one bit.

Of course this can’t be a fair trial, no way. The chain of evidence was broken. The officer was not immediately interviewed or photographed and the police car was not impounded and processed as a crime scene. The Ferguson PD is responsible for the integrity of the chain of evidence which now no longer exists. This chain of evidence is done to protect the officer when there is an officer involved shooting and to protect the victim (yes he’s a victim because he was killed). I think a lot of people think that it is strange that this chain of evidence was not secured and investigated as it should have been. There are no do overs when it comes to the chain of evidence and that is why it tantamount in an investigation like this. That the Ferguson PD didn’t follow procedure is their fault, not the St Louis County, not the victim’s family, not the protesters on the street but the Ferguson PD. They have some splainin’ to do and it won’t be easy.

It is disgusting that this thread has turned into a us/them dialogue but somewhat predictable given the volatility of the situation and yet a sad commentary on our abilities to objectively ask questions and seek answers truthfully.

Posted by: Speak4all at August 21, 2014 9:44 AM
Comment #382203

Speaks

Contrary to what you want to believe or what you might think, proper investigations take time. If the officer is guilty, would you want him going free because of simple technicality or missed evidence? You should feel the same way if he is innocent.

I will admit that I have been really busy and could have missed the police report stating that the officer was not interviewed and no pictures of his alleged injuries were taken. Just let me know when that report was released and I will be happy to read it.

If we don’t know what happened, we don’t know who the victim is. When a woman kills the man raping her, is he her victim? Maybe in your world, but not mine.

“It is disgusting that this thread has turned into a us/them dialogue but somewhat predictable given the volatility of the situation and yet a sad commentary on our abilities to objectively ask questions and seek answers truthfully.”

If you actually believe that, then you have a very distorted view of what is actually happening.
On one side, you have people saying we should wait for the facts before coming to a conclusion, and on the other side you have people making claims BEFORE the facts are known. Which of those people are seeking the truth and which are promoting the us vs. them attitude?

Posted by: kctim at August 21, 2014 10:42 AM
Comment #382204

There are plenty of legal instances where a police officer can use deadly force against an unarmed man, can shoot the same in the back if they are fleeing or resisting arrest, and can shoot the suspect several times. To say it was murder, which is an unlawful act, based on just these facts denies Officer Wilson his presumption of innocence (Coffin vs. U.S.).

The standard in Tenn Vs. Garner is “the officer has probable cause to believe that the suspect poses a significant threat of death or serious physical injury to the officer or others.” This incident will probably come down to the facts of the first altercation in/at the patrol car. If it is proven that Brown caused physical injury to Wilson during that incident then Brown would have been both subject to arrest and a threat of serious physical injury. If he resisted or tried to flee, even if it is known he is unarmed, the officer has the right to use deadly force. And if deadly force is authorized, the police are trained to use deadly force until the threat is over (Plumhoff v Rickard).

Lots of “ifs” and facts are unknown here, but just on the facts that are known you can’t say beyond a reasonable doubt that it was murder.

Posted by: George in SC at August 21, 2014 11:04 AM
Comment #382205

kct, in your example they would both be considered victims. Your world seems strange to me but then that is not the first time it has seemed that way.

The facts are no longer there, now for the most part we have hearsay. Since the evidence was not processed properly the investigation itself is suspect. I have not yet determined any blame in this matter and yet you seem certain that I have. You have no basis to make that claim and yes you are making this us/them as you always do.

GSC, someone was killed of that we are certain. The unknown “ifs” and “facts” are now irretrievable for the most part from the crime scene. I feel remorse for the officer and the victim because this did not end well for the victim and now it appears due to bad procedures the officer may be victimized as well. Not by me, I want to get more information and evidence. But I can tell you that the majority of people in this country are not comfortable with someone acting as judge, jury, and executioner whether it is justifiable or not. That’s just not what our moral and ethical standards accept as reasonable. If officer Wilson is exonerated I can accept that but will always be uncertain if the evidence we no longer have would have been helpful in that determination.

Posted by: Speak4all at August 21, 2014 11:21 AM
Comment #382207

Speaks

Our worlds seem strange to each other, but you should at least TRY to understand and respect why they do. For instance, I can understand why you would believe that a dead person is automatically some sort of a victim, no biggie, I just disagree. To me, if your actions bring about you being shot, you are not a victim.

As you did not provide information about the report being released, I can only assume it has not been. If that is the case then we do not know what facts are or are not there. We do not know what evidence has been processed or if it was done properly. That is why myself and so many others are saying to wait for the facts before jumping to conclusions.

I do not know if you have determined any blame, all I know is that you are questioning one side while trying to justify the other.

“you are making this us/them as you always do”

Sigh, no, I am not. I have very clearly said, in a non-personal, non-political, non-confrontational way, that EVERYBODY should wait for the facts BEFORE jumping to conclusions. That is NOT a us vs. them position at all.

Speaks, I freely admit that I have no idea of what actually happened. I will come to a conclusion only when that is known. But I am not going to ignore others who pretend they know what actually happened simply because of the race of those involved.

Posted by: kctim at August 21, 2014 12:26 PM
Comment #382208

kct, you can sigh all you want but you are definitely misinterpreting my words and their meaning as you often do. If you have no idea what happened why are you attempting to criticize my comments based on your incorrect assumptions. That you disagree that when someone is killed they aren’t necessarily a victim is your problem. You see everything as someone is to blame and therefore cannot be considered a victim if they are to blame. You are incorrect in that assumption as you are about someone’s feelings about race being involved as something you need to point out and can judge.

If you run a red light and are struck by another vehicle you are a victim of a car crash. It doesn’t matter if you were doing something illegal at the time you are still a victim of a car crash. Understanding your world is not my requisite no matter your protestations.

Posted by: Speak4all at August 21, 2014 12:50 PM
Comment #382209

Speaks

“Understanding your world is not my requisite no matter your protestations.”

I wasn’t objecting to your unwillingness to understand and respect people with different views and beliefs than your own. It really was just a hope so that perhaps we could have meaningful discussions. I apparently was wrong, possibly naive, to think such a thing was possible.

You have a good one Speaks. Enjoy those grand kids. I will bug you no more.


Posted by: kctim at August 21, 2014 1:52 PM
Comment #382210

kct, thanks will do.

victim: a person who suffers from a destructive or injurious action or agency

I have respect for people with different views and beliefs than my own. I attempt to understand them by coming here reading comments and commenting myself. Understanding their world is not something I want to do since their world is subjective to what they make it. There is a difference.

Posted by: Speak4all at August 21, 2014 2:08 PM
Comment #382213

J2

Conservatives and Libertarians have been screaming about the militarization of our police forces for a loooooong time my friend. Were were called conspiracy theorists and extremists. Still are in fact.

Supporting the facts, rather than rushing to race based judgments, does not mean people support the shooting of unarmed kids, sheesh.

Open carry is nothing new and the protests are nothing more than a reaction to the continued pursuit of disarming Americans. If you don’t want open carry in the city, stop forcing the city way of life onto everybody else.

The war on drugs has been bi-partisan for decades, stop pretending it is some master ideological plan that only Republicans support.

Posted by: kctim at August 21, 2014 2:27 PM
Comment #382215

“The facts are no longer there, now for the most part we have hearsay. Since the evidence was not processed properly the investigation itself is suspect.”

Are you sure of this Speaks? One of the videos taken immediately after the shooting clearly shows crime scene tape roping off the vehicle and extending a considerable distance around the shooting victim. The officer also placed his handgun on the street after the shooting. One of the initial criticisms was that the body was not moved for a considerable time after the shooting due to the processing of the scene. The Ferguson Police asked immediately for the County to handle the investigation. That request may have resulted in a delay due to the need for County detectives to arrive on scene.

If you have information that the investigators did not impound the vehicle and process the site for evidence, please share the source of your information. Quite frankly, I would find it incredible if the crime scene evidence was not processed and rudimentary chain of custody was broken.


Posted by: Rich at August 21, 2014 2:37 PM
Comment #382216

Rich, I do not have more information to provide you. Since there hasn’t been an incident report released, there has been no interview and photographs at the scene of officer Wilson released and there is no information available on whether the police car was secured and processed properly I will continue to contend that it is not there and was not done until otherwise proven incorrect. This contention in no way assigns guilt or innocence just a frustration for ignoring normal procedure. I too find it incredible that the normal officer involved shooting procedures don’t seem to have been followed by the Ferguson PD. I can’t give them a pass because they immediately asked the County to handle the investigation. That in itself seems to me to be an easy way out of doing due diligence where it would seem it was required and rather important. Please let me know if you have any information contradicting my contention, anyone.

Posted by: Speak4all at August 21, 2014 2:50 PM
Comment #382217

This is a must read.


“An Open Letter to Captain Ronald S. Johnson
From a former St. Louis Metro Area police chief”


“Unfortunately, you blew it. After days of rioting and looting, last Thursday you were given command of all law enforcement operations in Ferguson by Governor Jay Nixon. St. Louis County PD was out, you were in. You played to the cameras, walked with the protestors and promised a kinder, gentler response. You were a media darling. And Thursday night things were better, much better.”

“But Friday, under significant pressure to do so, the Ferguson Police released the name of the officer involved in the shooting of Michael Brown. At the same time the Ferguson Police Chief released a video showing Brown committing a strong-arm robbery just 10 minutes before he was confronted by Officer Darren Wilson.”

http://www.lawofficer.com/article/lifeline-training/open-letter-captain-ronald-s-j

Posted by: dbs at August 21, 2014 4:12 PM
Comment #382218

Speak4all,

Just because investigators have not released certain documents or evidence doesn’t mean that they don’t exist or that proper procedures weren’t followed.

As I said before, this may be a very close call and the authorities don’t want the case tried in the press or in public opinion polls. Better that a grand jury hear the totality of evidence without the prior prejudice of piecemeal releases of information and shaping by interested parties.

Posted by: Rich at August 21, 2014 4:15 PM
Comment #382219


Please let me know if you have any information contradicting my contention, anyone.

Your entire comment is an admition that you know next to nothing about this incident. You’re saying it’s the fault of the police that you don’t have the information you need to back up your contention, that contention being the police are guilty of not following procedure. Have you ever considered it to be SOP not to release information until all the facts are discovered?

Your contention is the police did not follow procedure. Yet you insist this contention is based on the lack of information on your part. How do you know it wasn’t followed if you have no information?

What value would more information have if your mind is already made up. Even if they did release more information you would reinforce your contention by saying they had the information and didn’t release it earlier.

You are building a catch-22 situation that leaves the police in an untenable situation. It’s most likely this situation is created to reinforce the militarization aspect discussed here. Just as the open-carry aspect was dwelled upon in the Martin incident so is the militarization of police in this instance. Every cause needs a crisis.

Your side used to be very good at developing a crisis, finding a bad guy that serves your purpose, destroying the bad guy and passing feelgood laws, and then having it all forgotten before actual facts are known. Then It’s a simple matter of letting the facts leach out at a much later date after the incident has been long forgotten.

But, now people have the ability to find their own facts and recognize when they’re being mislead. It’s much harder for your side to pull the wool over the eyes of people who pay attention, who wait for all the facts.

I’m actually surprised how the political class hasn’t adapted to the more instantanous access to information, how they cling to the media one way street and think it still works for them the way it did 20-40 years ago.

If you want to continue to have contentions based on nothing but speculation be our guest, but don’t start being critical of people who point out your contention is baseless.

I attempt to understand them by coming here reading comments and commenting myself. Understanding their world is not something I want to do since their world is subjective to what they make it.

This is what I get out of that comment, Speak4all:

I attempt to understand them
but
Understanding their world is not something I want to do

Don’t wonder why people can’t understand you in turn.

You, phx8, j2t2, the media, Sharpton are just instigators. It was apparent during the discussion of Martin in Florida, and it is apparent during this discussion involving Brown in Missouri. Never let a crisis go to waste.

Posted by: Weary Willie at August 21, 2014 4:16 PM
Comment #382220

I was refering to the Stand Your Ground issue in Martin, not the Open Carry issue.

Posted by: Weary Willie at August 21, 2014 4:21 PM
Comment #382221

ww, you get lots of stuff that I type wrong as you have done in the past. The absence of information is no information. This has been at the heart of the protestations. The information is important. But so is the investigation and the integrity of the investigation. I have stated over and over again but this time I will type slowly since I know you have a problem understanding. I assign no guilt or innocence by holding the contention I do only a frustration that procedures do not seem to have been followed. Until you can prove that my contention is incorrect you really don’t have any way to refute that. My mind is not made up although I can’t say the same for you, obviously. Understanding is something I don’t expect you to comprehend. You only seem to have an I am right and you are wrong approach to any discussions we attempt. I use my understanding to evaluate what I read here, you on the other hand only want to argue. As I have told you before I don’t really care to do that with you as it seems pointless.

Rich, I agree with that however as I say above the absence of information is no information. I have not passed judgement here other than to say I don’t believe the FPD carried out there duties sufficiently to my knowledge. I will wait to see if anything else comes out but prima facie would appear to point to my contention as correct for now.

dbs, oh yes criticism by other law enforcement people is just what we need to not help this situation. Captain Ron Johnson assumed a difficult role and has performed adequately in that role. Seems like Chief Delmore is using his police chief armchair to denigrate a fellow officer and that to me seems like a cheap shot.

Posted by: Speak4all at August 21, 2014 4:50 PM
Comment #382222

”..as I say above the absence of information is no information.”

Correct for you and me, Speak4all. But not necessarily for the grand jury and investigative agencies.

Do you think that we should be given frequent updates on the evidence by investigative agencies? The DOJ has been investigating the shooting for the past week and even conducted their own autopsy. Yet, the DOJ has not released any of the evidence that it has collected. What evidence has Holder released to the public? It is not just the Ferguson department that is withholding information from the public.

I guess the question is whether it is reasonable by any investigative agency.

Posted by: Rich at August 21, 2014 6:05 PM
Comment #382226

Speak4all, since you have no information you assume procedures aren’t being followed. That’s the same as saying the police are doing something wrong.

Like I said, you are an instigator.

I certainly haven’t make up my mind about anything. I’ve said from the beginning that people here are jumping to conclusions. I’ve pointed out the same thing happening in Florida with the Trayvon Martin case. People jumped to conclusion then. They called Zimmerman a murderer then as well. They did it to promote the anti gun, anti stand your ground position.

It’s a shame the left has to instigate such hatred to get their positions adopted and their laws passed. It’s truly a disgusting and cowardly tactic.

Posted by: Weary Willie at August 21, 2014 11:04 PM
Comment #382227

It now turns out NO incident report was filed after the shooting. Ten days later, one was filed with just the name of the officer, the date (8/19), and “homicide.” That’s it.
There was, however, an incident report filed for the possibly shoplifting event with Michael Brown earlier that same day.

It now appears that the Ferguson Police Department turning over the investigation to the County has served as the perfect excuse for a cover-up, and not protecting evidence that might implicate the officer.

It looks increasingly likely that the only way justice will ever be done in this case is through the Feds.

Posted by: phx8 at August 21, 2014 11:37 PM
Comment #382230

It now turns out NO incident report was filed by the Ferguson PD after the shooting.

http://www.nbcnews.com/storyline/michael-brown-shooting/michael-brown-shooting-why-ferguson-police-never-filed-incident-report-n186431

There was, however, an incident report filed by the Ferguson PD for the possibly shoplifting event with Michael Brown earlier that same day since the Ferguson PD didn’t turn tha investigation over to the County and had a report to release.

Posted by: George in SC at August 22, 2014 9:58 AM
Comment #382231

Unlike some of the citizens of Ferguson Missouri I can be patient and wait for all of the facts that are available to come out in this case. If the FPD and St. Louis County officials did not process the officer, crime scene and police cruiser to the best of their abilities they should be held accountable. This has yet to be determined. I don’t believe that what is going on in this area of our country is anything new but it is different now. A little research tells us that the St Louis Circuit Court was the beginning point of the Dred Scott decision handed down by the Supreme Court:

Dred Scott Decision

This decision overturned the Missouri Compromise:

The struggle in this area of the country has been going on for many years. Maybe some of the citizens of Ferguson have lost patience. I cannot. I will wait for any facts that are available to be presented and adjudicated if necessary, what else can I do?

Posted by: Speak4all at August 22, 2014 10:25 AM
Comment #382232

The Missouri Compromise

Posted by: Speak4all at August 22, 2014 10:27 AM
Comment #382250
Conservatives and Libertarians have been screaming about the militarization of our police forces for a loooooong time my friend. Were were called conspiracy theorists and extremists. Still are in fact.

I think you may be able to make a case for libertarians screaming about the DEA and local SWAT teams as it pertains to drug arrests but when else have they complained? Certainly not when it had anything to do guns and police shooting unarmed kids or armed civilians shooting unarmed kids.

As for conservatives I would be surprised since it was the Reagan revolution that upped the ante on the drug war and the confiscation of property and such.

They both may be called conspiracy theorist and extremists but not due to this issue that I am aware of, so kctim enlighten me.

Supporting the facts, rather than rushing to race based judgments, does not mean people support the shooting of unarmed kids, sheesh.

Can you name a time conservatives and libertarians here on WB “supported the facts” in favor of the victim not the gun owner or user? I can’t.

Open carry is nothing new and the protests are nothing more than a reaction to the continued pursuit of disarming Americans. If you don’t want open carry in the city, stop forcing the city way of life onto everybody else.

But Americans aren’t being disarmed kctim. That is conservative propaganda, hell we own more assault weapons now than ever before. Because libertarians and conservatives think citizens can arm themselves against the police without repercussion I have a hard time believing you when you tell me “Conservatives and Libertarians have been screaming about the militarization of our police forces for a loooooong time my friend”. When you tell me the rash of people carrying assault rifles and such into local stores is a reaction to the continued pursuit of disarming Americans I can understand why libertarians and conservatives are considered ” conspiracy theorists and extremists. Still are in fact”.

The war on drugs has been bi-partisan for decades, stop pretending it is some master ideological plan that only Republicans support.

The war on drugs became the war on drugs when Reagan changed from rehabilitation (Nixon Ford and Carter era) to punitive law with mandatory minimums and asset forfeitures. The Obama administration no longer calls it the war on drugs and have boosted the funding for rehabilitation effort.

So suggesting the militarization of the police and the war on drugs is one and the same may be misleading. The police may have wanted more powerful weapons to keep up with drug gangs in the 80’s but with the militias of the 90’s and then the terrorist of the 00’s we have seen the actual militarization of the police in equipment and training.

Posted by: j2t2 at August 22, 2014 3:01 PM
Comment #382253

An incident report has been released by the St. Louis County police department minus the investigative component which the department claimed was standard procedure in all criminal cases. The report only provides information as to when they were informed of the incident and when they arrived on scene.
http://time.com/3159680/ferguson-michael-brown-shooting-police-report/

As for conservatives complaining about the militarization of police, please! It was Nixon’s war on crime and Reagan’s war on drugs that started us on this path. When your at war, what do you expect? In addition, when you advocate availability of all sorts of weapons in the general population, do you expect the police to be satisfied with revolvers and the odd shotgun?

Posted by: Rich at August 22, 2014 5:44 PM
Comment #382255

J2

The right has been talking about government tyranny for as long as I can remember. The police have always been a part of that equation. Instead of mocking them and calling them extremists, perhaps you all should have tried to understand what they were saying.

“Can you name a time conservatives and libertarians here on WB “supported the facts” in favor of the victim not the gun owner or user? I can’t.”

Off the top of my head, I cannot recall anybody posting a topic where the facts favored the “victim” over the shooter.

What has happened is that most conservatives and libertarians on here start out saying we should not rush to judgment without knowing the facts. Then they are called racists.

“But Americans aren’t being disarmed kctim.”

Governments are dictating what arms we can and cannot have. They are banning certain types of guns and accessories. They are requiring registration and are involved in confiscation.
You may think ‘hey, you are still allowed to have a single shot revolver and one bullet, so your not being disarmed,” but you are wrong.

“Because libertarians and conservatives think citizens can arm themselves against the police without repercussion I have a hard time believing you when you tell me “Conservatives and Libertarians have been screaming about the militarization of our police forces for a loooooong time my friend”.”

I think you may have gotten off track here or something. If people are concerned about the militarization, wouldn’t they think citizens should arm themselves against it?

“When you tell me the rash of people carrying assault rifles and such into local stores is a reaction to the continued pursuit of disarming Americans I can understand why libertarians and conservatives are considered ” conspiracy theorists and extremists. Still are in fact”.”

That’s too bad you think that, J2.
IF you were open minded enough to give it some fair thinking, you would see that the protests didn’t start until after all the calls for further infringement on the 2nd Amendment. In fact, you would see that we have had open carry for a long time and not had any problems.
Those two things are fact J2, all you have to do is look.

Seeing how you believe those on the right are nothing but conspiracy theorists and extremists for believing government is taking away rights you don’t care about, why would you expect them to care about your concerns? Militarized cops shooting city folk doesn’t affect me one bit, in fact, maybe it’s nothing more than conspiracy theory that it even happens at all, put out by extremists who hate law and order.

Posted by: kctim at August 22, 2014 5:56 PM
Comment #382257

It was LBJ who started arming the police in response to the Viet Nam protests. I’ll affirm Reagan, and Nixon had a major part in it, but so did Clinton and Bush. Obama made it a campaign promise, so it’s not just a Republican thing.

I also specifically brought to everyone’s attention the story of SWAT throwing a flashbang grenade into the bed of a 5 year old girl. Her grandmother told us how she held her in her arms and watched the life leave her eyes. Don’t get on your arrogant high horse and start this crap about us not trying to bring this issue to the fore.

Posted by: Weary Willie at August 22, 2014 6:46 PM
Comment #382270
I think you may have gotten off track here or something. If people are concerned about the militarization, wouldn’t they think citizens should arm themselves against it?

Really the answer is to continue the arms race with the cops! What do you think this solves? How has that worked for those that have returned fire on police in the past? How many times dos this have to not work before conservatives stop presenting it as being a workable solution?


You may think ‘hey, you are still allowed to have a single shot revolver and one bullet, so your not being disarmed,” but you are wrong.

Well these hardly look like a single shot revolver and one bullet o me, perhaps ,once again, this is why extremist comes to mind kctim.

http://polizeros.com/2013/05/07/open-carry-march-on-dc-july-4-civil-disobedience-rifles-loaded/

http://www.rawstory.com/rs/2014/05/20/burritos-and-assault-rifles-dont-mix-a-nervous-chipotle-suggests-after-texas-stunt/

http://www.guns.com/2014/05/07/open-carry-event-at-texas-jack-in-the-box-draws-police-response-video/


IF you were open minded enough to give it some fair thinking, you would see that the protests didn’t start until after all the calls for further infringement on the 2nd Amendment. In fact, you would see that we have had open carry for a long time and not had any problems.

I would disagree kctim, the far right started during the Obama campaign for president by telling the movement followers Obama would “confiscate your weapons”.

http://hpr1.com/opinion/article/has_obama_confiscated_your_guns_yet/

BTW lets also discuss the myth you have just perpetrated here when you tell us “we have had open carry for a long time and not had any problems”. I would offer the opinion that we have had problems during the long time of open carry. Not that I think open carry laws are the problem , it’s more the extremist who insist upon carry assault rifles around in stores and such and then complain about the militarization of the police!

Seeing how you believe those on the right are nothing but conspiracy theorists and extremists for believing government is taking away rights you don’t care about,

But they are not, once again it is the propaganda of the extremist on the far right kctim who would have us believe this.


why would you expect them to care about your concerns? Militarized cops shooting city folk doesn’t affect me one bit,

First they came for the city folks but I didn’t help cause I ain’t city folks…… Then they came for me and their was no one left to help. I would offer it does affect you kctim.

in fact, maybe it’s nothing more than conspiracy theory that it even happens at all, put out by extremists who hate law and order.

DO you want to see it on Fox New before you believe it kctim?;)

Posted by: j2t2 at August 22, 2014 6:56 PM
Comment #382272

j2t2, you need to tell us that you know why the people in Texas were walking into stores with rifles slung. Do you know why they did that?

Posted by: Weary Willie at August 22, 2014 7:24 PM
Comment #382331


When a Black Cop Killed an Innocent White Man in Utah, the Press Was Silent


Posted by: Weary Willie at August 22, 2014 9:50 PM
Comment #382337

Ok, since you don’t know why they walked into a store with rifles slung over their shoulders, I will tell you.

In Texas it is illegal to carry a pistol, but it is totally legal to carry a rifle. They were demonstrating the absurdity of the law banning the carrying of pistols while allowing the carrying of rifles.

They were obeying the law and making a point.

Try to understand the situation and the reasons why people do things, j2t2. Do more than look at the pictures.

Posted by: Weary Willie at August 22, 2014 10:04 PM
Comment #382385

Weary, it doesn’t matter, the point is they can do it and the weapons are not confiscated. Assault type rifles at that.

Your link seems to ask and answer the question, telling us that no one protested in SLC as they did in Ferguson. Kinda makes my point as well in that conservatives don’t protest the wrongful deaths of innocent children. But then again they run around carrying assault rifles keeping the arms race going and defending the cops that have become militarized.

Posted by: j2t2 at August 23, 2014 8:40 AM
Comment #382401

Why would you expect the weapons to be confiscated if it is legal to do what they were doing?

Posted by: Weary Willie at August 23, 2014 2:18 PM
Comment #382428
Why would you expect the weapons to be confiscated if it is legal to do what they were doing?

I don’t Weary. Conservatives have told us since Obama was first running for president that he would confiscate weapons. It’s been 6 years and no door to door searches by feds for weapons, in fact as we have seen many are carrying them openly into stores and restaurants.

I have also seen other similar incidents as the Utah link making waves in conservative circles, they ask why no one rioted (meaning protested I think) and I answer with “because conservatives don’t care enough about the militarization of the police to protest” but I guess these conservatives think the blacks should come to their neighborhoods and protest for them. They seem to think it is wrong for people to protest the extraordinary level of violence some police use, which is why I have a hard time believing conservatives think it is much of an issue.

I also see, based upon past discussions with you, how you want to use violence to counter act the police violence during drug raids but defend civilians when they use guns to kill kids and get the impression you would return fire on the police rather than protest and work for change to bring he police under control. SO that is some of the reasons why IMHO conservatives policies are behind the militarization of the police.


Posted by: j2t2 at August 23, 2014 6:27 PM
Comment #382430

j2t2,

Rhinehold, really! Stossel’s partisan rhetoric is nonsense. When he tells us it is the “leftist” that wanted the local police to become militarized he tells us he is clueless. Tying this issue into the second amendment for the wrong reasons shows Stossel’s inability to grasp the basics of the problem.

Great way to show that you didn’t bother reading what was written before you condemn it… Stossel wasn’t the one who raised the 2nd amendment issue, it was the progressives like you that he was countering. I see you even miss the part where he, himself, aired a special on a Fox network about the specific issue of police militarization just 2 weeks before the events in Ferguson took place. Can you show me the myriad of shows on MSNBC doing the same thing?

It has been conservatives and libertarians defending the militarization of the civilian population and the shooting of unarmed kids by armed civilians not “leftist” after all.

Had you not decided to add in libertarians in this statement, I might have agreed with you. Unfortunately, you can’t even fathom that what your overlords have told you could be anything but the gospel truth, can you?

It has been conservatives and libertarians defending the actions of the police when they shoot unarmed kids as well, It has been conservatives and libertarians defending the open carry laws, I guess expecting the police to just stand by and not compete in the arms race.

Here’s a little link for you to take a look at…

http://reason.com/archives/1999/11/30/daily-brickbat

It’s the DAILY BRICKBAT. It’s a running commentary that Reason has been posting for over 15 years online (and longer in print) about the abuses of government against unarmed citizens… You can also view their stories that highlight police brutality of all stripes here:

http://reason.com/topics/police-brutality

Libertarians have been fighting against police militarization and brutality since the Age of Enlightenment when the notion of libertarianism came to being. Libertarianism is about the non-use of force, either by citizens or government. That you still can’t understand that is something I would suggest you look into a little bit further…

Let me ask you this Rhinehold do you expect the police to bring a knife to a gun fight?

No, I want the police to bring a gun to a gun fight. I don’t know many citizens rolling around in tanks and using military weaponry…

You seem to want the citizens of this country armed to the teeth because it is a second amendment right yet you want the police to not be militarized in response to the militarization of these same hunters and sporting enthusiast that need assault rifles for everyday use!

The regurgitation of the moronity of the fear of guns…

I do not WANT the citizens to be ‘armed to the teeth’. But if a citizen wants to be, I don’t have the right to use force to stop them from doing that.

I don’t want women to use abortion as a means of birth control, but I don’t have the right to use force to stop them.

I don’t want people spending their money on new cell phones when they can’t afford food, but I don’t have the right to use force to stop them.

etc.

I know this idea of supporting people’s rights to do something that you don’t agree with is foreign to you as a totalitarian, but you should at least be able to accept the fact that others see things differently than you do.

Simply owning a gun is no issue. WRONGLY using a gun is a big deal. Whether it is a citizen or a policeman. There should be no difference between them, but the conservatives and progressives love for the government to be able to use that force to push their totalitarian views. They just disagree on when they want to use it.

You don’t want the police bringing a gun to a gun fight, you want them to bring a HUGE gun to a gun fight. And tanks, and tazers, and flash grenades, etc…

Libertarians want there to be fewer fights.

Posted by: Rhinehold at August 24, 2014 12:59 AM
Comment #382440
Can you show me the myriad of shows on MSNBC doing the same thing?

I can say I saw the same stories (from the police brutality link) on HUffPO at one time or another, does that count?


Had you not decided to add in libertarians in this statement,…

So you didn’t support George Zimmerman! I thought you did, my bad.


Libertarians have been fighting against police militarization and brutality since the Age of Enlightenment…

Wow, I must have missed all those libertarian led protests when the unarmed white kids were killed by police these past few years.

The regurgitation of the moronity of the fear of guns…

From where I sit it is the regurgitation of libertarian and conservatives not wanting to answer the hard questions. With an unlimited view of the 2nd amendment certainly civilians need tanks and flash grenades or at the least have the right to keep and bear them don’t they?

You don’t want the police bringing a gun to a gun fight, you want them to bring a HUGE gun to a gun fight. And tanks, and tazers, and flash grenades, etc…

Well when the bad guys have the assault rifles and such can one blame them for wanting the same?

Libertarians want there to be fewer fights.

We all do but boys and their toys you know if they have them they will eventually play with them. Were seeing it more and more.

Posted by: j2t2 at August 25, 2014 7:29 AM
Comment #382444

The biggest issue with the Zimmerman case wasn’t that he was a POS but that he had the law on his side. He had the legal right to be at that location, to have a firearm, and could defend himself from physical harm. Wilson’s defense ( I assume the Grand Jury will indict) will be either defense of life (Brown charged) or a fleeing felson with reason to suspect Brown would do further harm. Stealing cigars or walking in the road doesn’t make him a felon, but if he punched a cop and tried to take his gun it’s going to be reasonable to consider him a dangerous felon.

http://www.newsweek.com/how-strong-legal-case-against-darren-wilson-265675?piano_t=1

http://www.theguardian.com/world/2014/aug/15/michael-brown-when-can-officers-shoot-ferguson

Posted by: George in SC at August 25, 2014 11:42 AM
Comment #382475
I can say I saw the same stories (from the police brutality link) on HUffPO at one time or another, does that count?

No, not really. Seeing occasional stories that line up with a site’s political motivations is not really the same thing as working for decades to track and change the relationship between the people and their police power, including it being a long time inclusion in the libertarian party platform.

So you didn’t support George Zimmerman! I thought you did, my bad.

As usual, you rarely ever listen to an opposing viewpoint so I expect your mistake.

I supported the law and logic and the rule of who broke the line of the initiation of force. I repeatedly stated that I believed that Zimmermann was wrong on many points, but he did not initiate force and he was being actively beaten when he defended himself. Your inability to separate emotion from your thinking only clouds your judgement.

Wow, I must have missed all those libertarian led protests when the unarmed white kids were killed by police these past few years.

Yes, you did. It is very hard to break through such a strong echo chamber as you have erected, if it doesn’t match the political requirements of your partisan overlords, how would you see it? Did you see the similar cases to Ferguson the past two weeks that happened? Most likely not, because they weren’t good political fodder for the progressive totalitarian leadership, so the likes of Sharpton weren’t dispatched and there was no news coverage.

A perfect example was a couple of years ago when a mentally challenged unarmed homeless man named Kelly Thomas was beaten and killed by police. No Sharpton (he was a white man, so why would a racist like Sharpton care?), no national news, only libertarians and some still principled left wing blogs fought for the story. Despite all if the evidence, the policemen who killed him were cleared of any wrongdoing.

From where I sit it is the regurgitation of libertarian and conservatives not wanting to answer the hard questions.

Lol, that’s funny. It’s not that Libertarians aren’t willing to answer the hard questions, its that the progressive totalitarians have no desire to listen.

Well when the bad guys have the assault rifles and such can one blame them for wanting the same?

When you say such stupid things as this, it’s obvious you don’t know a thing about the guns being discussed or the topic in any depth. If you are going to hate and fear something that much, the least you could do is do son rudimentary reading on the topic.

We all do

Bull. Democrats and Republicans do not have to take an oath of any kind to join their parties, Libertarians do. It states that we reject all initiation of the use of force. Libertarians have a guiding principle that is spelled out and they follow. Republicans or Democrats? Not that I am aware.

If you wanted there to be fewer fights, you wouldn’t be lambasting a congress for passing fewer new laws (along with the new authorizations of the use of force by the police that that entails) as a bad thing. More laws, more convoluted, arbitrary and prone to abuse the penal code us, the greater the violent interactions…

Which is exactly what you and your party support on a daily basis.

Posted by: Rhinehold at August 26, 2014 10:36 AM
Comment #382539
No, not really

Umm really Rhinehold. As I said the stories in your link were also in the Huff Po, it seems to me your so desperate to label me that you can’t deal with the issue.


Zimmerman was armed and stalked an unarmed kid, like a bully with a gun Zimmerman picked the fight then killed the kid. Yet according to you the “initiation of force line” was broken by the kid!

Yes, you did. It is very hard to break through such a strong echo chamber as you have erected…

Coming from the ultimate libertarian that’s just funny Rhinehold, also distracting. With the gibberish you are spewing here are you sure you aren’t a closet conservative? Expecting Al Sharpton a civil rights activist fighting issues affecting black people to go to each and every cop shooting a black guy , which is every 29 hours in this country (but we don’t have a problem) or to every white guy shot by the police is as foolish a strawman argument as I have heard, it is beneath you Rhinehold.

Lol, that’s funny. It’s not that Libertarians aren’t willing to answer the hard questions, its that the progressive totalitarians have no desire to listen.

Yet here you are babbling strawmen and other nonsense. That is what I really don’t have the time to listen to. “Progressive totalitarians” coming from the party that according to you requires loyalty oaths! Special just special Rhinehold.

When you say such stupid things as this, it’s obvious you don’t know a thing about the guns being discussed…. yadayadayada

Jeez Rhinehold change the name to modern sporting rifles from assault rifles and you fall for it?

http://www.slate.com/blogs/crime/2012/12/20/assault_rifle_stats_how_many_assault_rifles_are_there_in_america.html

The fact is there are tons of “modern sporting rifles” out there, so once again the hard question is do you expect the police to fall behind in this arms race? IMHO we can’t expect these guys to patrol, with water pistols when the bad guys are using “modern sporting rifles” can we?

Bull. Democrats and Republicans do not have to take an oath of any kind to join their parties, Libertarians do.

How special yet another reason for joining the libertarians, loyalty oaths. The fact is Rhinehold that I have never registered to vote as either a repub or a dem. I have registered as an independent since the first time I voted many years ago. So rather than using this foolishness why don’t you tell us why libertarians haven’t protested at the same places they would ask Al Sharpton about? Why do libertarians support the militarization of civilians arms race when they reject all use of force?

Posted by: j2t2 at August 26, 2014 9:57 PM
Comment #382543
Umm really Rhinehold. As I said the stories in your link were also in the Huff Po, it seems to me your so desperate to label me that you can’t deal with the issue.

Some of the stories were, but Huff Po does not track those types of stories without their biases.

For example, I pulled a link from the police brutality section : http://reason.com/blog/2014/08/22/alleged-sex-predator-cop-to-hit-the-stre

Yet, when I search for the story on HuffPo? Nothing.

Maybe it’s there if I search harder, but are you seriously telling me that every police brutality case that exists is reported on by HuffPo?

Zimmerman was armed and stalked an unarmed kid, like a bully with a gun Zimmerman picked the fight then killed the kid. Yet according to you the “initiation of force line” was broken by the kid!

Because it was. Up until the point where violence ensued, Zimmerman had broken no laws nor had he done any violence.

I know you want this story to mean something, but it doesn’t. Not legally nor logically. Just because he had a gun on him, legally, for self defense doesn’t make him a bad guy nor does it require that the ‘unarmed kid’ must jump him and start beating him.

Up until the point that Zimmerman was jumped and started to be beaten, he had violated no laws nor had he done anything ‘wrong’. As much as you want him to have.

It’s the ‘you wanting him to have done something wrong’ that is worrisome.

BTW, your version of the story didn’t match up with the actual facts of the case, much like your initial version of the story in Ferguson isn’t matching up to the actual facts. You are told a story that you like and you run with it without even considering if there is more to it. It’s a bias, and some may say racist mindset, that leads you down these roads.

Expecting Al Sharpton a civil rights activist fighting issues affecting black people to go to each and every cop shooting a black guy , which is every 29 hours in this country (but we don’t have a problem) or to every white guy shot by the police is as foolish a strawman argument as I have heard, it is beneath you Rhinehold.

Hardly strawman or irrelevant at all. It’s not that he doesn’t go to every black kid getting killed by police, but that he is only concerned with BLACK civil rights that is the issue. Other races have civil rights too, don’t they? Shouldn’t he be, as a civil rights activist, concerned about civil rights? Or is it ok to just be concerned with the civil rights of one race? If a white preacher did that, what would you call him?

Yet here you are babbling strawmen and other nonsense. That is what I really don’t have the time to listen to. “Progressive totalitarians” coming from the party that according to you requires loyalty oaths! Special just special Rhinehold.

It’s not nonsense or ‘special’. I’m sorry that you have no principles that you can articulate and follow, j2t2, but I’m just not sure how a person can live like that and not turn out to be a blithering hypocrite… Which is often the case unfortunately.

BTW, the oath is not a ‘loyalty oath’. Was that just a mistake or do you really have that bad of a reading comprehension to not understand the difference between requiring people to not initiate violence with a ‘loyalty oath’?

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Libertarian_pledge

“I hereby certify that I do not believe in or advocate the initiation of force as a means of achieving political or social goals.”

Apparently you think that having members of your party that are ok with believing in or advocating the initiation of force as a means of achieving political or social goals is ok… I wouldn’t want to belong to a party that allows that.

change the name to modern sporting rifles from assault rifles and you fall for it?

LOL, who is changing the requirements for what an ‘assault rifle’ is?

http://reason.com/archives/2013/01/30/whats-an-assault-weapon

http://www.nytimes.com/2013/01/17/us/even-defining-assault-weapons-is-complicated.html?_r=0

http://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2013/01/17/us/key-gun-proposals-requiring-congressional-action.html?ref=us

Are you telling me that semi-automatic guns are assault weapons now? If we go with that, then what about single shot rifles and shotguns? Aren’t they assault weapons as well? Isn’t a knife an assault weapon when used as such? Where do you draw the line?

do you expect the police to fall behind in this arms race?

No one I know is suggesting that the police not be allowed to carry semi-automatic guns that fall within the redefined term ‘assault weapon’. You are the one participating in the strawman argument here. That you can’t understand what is being discussed by the term ‘militarization of the police’, which is more to do with tactics, body armor, tank like vehicles, flash grenades, lethal tazers, etc, is just another example that you don’t really know what the actual issues being discussed are.

How special yet another reason for joining the libertarians, loyalty oaths.

Again, not a loyalty oath. Again, you have a reading comprehension problem.

So rather than using this foolishness why don’t you tell us why libertarians haven’t protested at the same places they would ask Al Sharpton about?

They have, but to be honest most prefer more effective means of changing the hearts and minds of Americans. Protesting, like what is going on in Ferguson, rarely has any positive benefits. Remember, it was the Libertarians that pushed this country into accepting legalized marijuana and same-sex marriages. It wasn’t until 2012, when the tide had been turned by Libertarians and other like-minded groups, that the Democratic Party changed it’s party platform to support them instead of working to make them illegal.

But if you believe that those protests do good, you should apply it evenly, shouldn’t you?

Why do libertarians support the militarization of civilians arms race when they reject all use of force?

1) The reject the initiation of force. The support the use of force in self defense.

2) They do not support the ‘militarization of civilians’. But you have to understand what that term means to know what we are talking about, and it is clear that you don’t.

Simply owning a gun isn’t the militarization of anything.

You do realize that at the start of this country many civilians owned cannons, right? In fact, civilians had the same weaponry as the ‘military’ because we were all part of the military.

The militia was every able bodied man over the age of 18.

Richard Henry Lee: “A militia, when properly formed, are in fact the people themselves…and include all men capable of bearing arms.” (Additional letters from the Federal Farmer, at 169, 1788)

George Mason: “I ask you sir, who are the militia? They consist now of the whole people.” (Elliott, Debates, 425-426)

Tenche Coxe: “Who are the militia? Are they not ourselves? Is it feared, then, that we shall turn our arms each man against his own bosom. Congress have no power to disarm the militia. Their swords, and every other terrible implement of the soldier, are the birthright of an American… The unlimited power of the sword is not in the hands of either the federal or state governments, but, where I trust in God it will ever remain, in the hands of the people.” – Tenche Coxe, The Pennsylvania Gazette, Feb. 20, 1788.

Patrick Henry: “Are we at last brought to such a humiliating and debasing degradation, that we cannot be trusted with arms for our own defense? Where is the difference between having our arms in our possession and under our own direction, and having them under the management of Congress? If our defense be the real object of having those arms, in whose hands can they be trusted with more propriety, or equal safety to us, as in our own hands?, 3 Elliot Debates 168-169.

The civilian people should be as equally armed as the police, not more, not less, so that any abuses of an individual or group of individuals in the civilian community can be countered by the police and military and any abuses by parts of the government can be countered by the civilian people.

Unless we are no longer free and self-determining people, but instead just serfs in service to our feudal lords. I had thought we had a war about that and stuff sometime in the past…

But try to get the point… Wanting to pass laws to have other people initiate violence against others is no better, and in fact is much more cowardly, than use the weapons yourself. And wanting to make sure that your use of the weapons is not countered by those you want to subjugate is cowardly still.

Posted by: Rhinehold at August 27, 2014 12:19 AM
Comment #382544

Here’s another example, j2t2.

The first link on the police abuse site at Reason:

http://reason.com/blog/2014/08/26/cops-shoot-suicidal-kansas-teen-sixteen

Jennings’ aunt insists the 18-year-old was unarmed but might have made a movement cops mistook as reaching for a gun. Jennings was suicidal and had just left the hospital three hours earlier—she says she yelled at police not to shoot and that they know the teen, who police dealt with the day before. She says her husband tried to intervene to tackle Jennings but cops wouldn’t let him.

Cops won’t comment while the Kansas Bureau of Investigation investigates the shooting. The county attorney reportedly told Jennings’ aunt they “certainly feel bad for your loss.”

The police chief claims cops were protecting themselves from bodily harm, a condition under which he says it is legal for police to use deadly force.

Of course, I can’t find anything about it on HuffPo…

Oh yeah, the kid was white, so no story there…

Posted by: Rhinehold at August 27, 2014 12:38 AM
Comment #382603
Hardly strawman or irrelevant at all. It’s not that he doesn’t go to every black kid getting killed by police, but that he is only concerned with BLACK civil rights that is the issue.

But by focusing on a specific issue, in this case black civil rights he is helping all of us. To think as one man he is supposed to fight all issues is whacky conservative logic Rhinehold, a reason to find fault where there isn’t any. A means to point the finger at him and say he isn’t doing enough while the other 3 fingers are pointing back at you asking why it is you don’t fill the void created by Sharpton’s choice to focus on one specific cause.


It’s not nonsense or ‘special’. I’m sorry that you have no principles that you can articulate and follow, j2t2, but I’m just not sure how a person can live like that and not turn out to be a blithering hypocrite… Which is often the case unfortunately.

Rhinehold you seem to be confusing party loyalty with principles. You also seem not to believe me when I tell you I have always been and will continue to be an independent voter not attached by oath to a political party, hell they are half the problem. But please don’t be sorry for me as I have articulated many of my principles over the years here on WB. I find it kinda ironic that libertarians need to pledge “I hereby certify that I do not believe in or advocate the initiation of force as a means of achieving political or social goals.” to keep from being identified as a violent extremist group.

I also wonder what other political party needs a pledge of this type when their history tells us they obviously don’t advocate the initiation of force to achieve political goals? DO you guys also “pledge” many other obvious things such as not initiating sexual contact with minors or not initiating robberies and theft of other people property, then bragging about it and calling others hypocrites for not having such “principles”?

But if you believe that those protests do good, you should apply it evenly, shouldn’t you?

Perhaps if one is complaining about someone else not doing it they should fill the void if it is a cause they feel strongly about. It seems it may, at the least, be as productive as keeping a running tally of events for 15 years, not that it isn’t important to do so, but should they be criticizing those like Sharpton for advancing his cause.

But it seems to me you would have Rev. Al be the leader of all protests involving police brutality while you just stand by and make a list. Just doesn’t seem fair to Rev. Al this unwarranted criticism. Yet conservatives take it a step farther they don’t bother to chronicle the police brutality instead they try to justify it and use this strawman against people like Rev. Al for seeking justice.

Gotta go I’ll try to get to the rest of your comment later.

Posted by: j2t2 at August 28, 2014 11:09 AM
Comment #382624
Simply owning a gun isn’t the militarization of anything.

Well it seems we agree on this Rhinehold. Of course I never said owning a gun is the militarization of anything.

You do realize that at the start of this country many civilians owned cannons, right? In fact, civilians had the same weaponry as the ‘military’ because we were all part of the military.

At the start of this country our first 3 presidents were considered traitors now they are hero’s so what does this have to do with anything but fighting the British. Further we are now not all in the military so once again I don’t see why this is relevant. While this may be a surprise weaponry has comes a ways what with machine guns and such but it seems we the people haven’t come as far when it comes to using these higher tech weapons, judging by the number of dead gun trainers and the wrongful use of the weapons.

The civilian people should be as equally armed as the police, not more, not less, so that any abuses of an individual or group of individuals in the civilian community can be countered by the police and military and any abuses by parts of the government can be countered by the civilian people.

Really! I guess this is where we disagree Rhinehold. But answer me this, how as a libertarian can you pledge your loyalty to the party by signing a no initial use of force oath yet promote the use of force against police by insisting upon tit for tat in the arms civilian arms race? Look at your 15 years of data and figure out how the use of force by those brutalized by the police has worked out for them. Ask yourself what has led to the militarization of the police, perhaps it could be the use of violence against them as they performed their duties that is at least part of the problem.

One of the principles I defend is the principle that our governmental system is a good system. I also believe the use of force to stop police brutality will only result in increasing the level of violence which is counter productive. This militarization of the police force, to include the training they now receive, can be fixed by our political system not violence.

Perhaps libertarians are using this oath as a means to hide their violent organization.

Unless we are no longer free and self-determining people, but instead just serfs in service to our feudal lords. I had thought we had a war about that and stuff sometime in the past…

If we were free and self determining people why would your buddies the Koch Bros spend so much to influence the outcomes of our elections? I guess if you determine the self determination of we the people by our level of violence and our propensity towards resolving conflict with violence Rhinehold then we are self determined but why have a political system at all when we can use the bigger gun and blast out problems instead of solve them.

Posted by: j2t2 at August 28, 2014 8:51 PM
Comment #382642

j2t2 is using the current situation to defeat an argument promoting a strategy that works!

j2t2 is saying, “Sinse we have these problems now, there is no way what worked then will work now!”

That’s what j2t2 is saying.

Posted by: Weary Willie at August 29, 2014 1:47 AM
Comment #382643

Weary, Are you suggesting I should use something other than the current situation? If the current situation is the situation we are currently dealing with and it defeats the strategy that worked then how can you say it works Weary? Are you suggesting it worked in the past so it has to work now or it would work now except the situation has changed from the past so maybe it won’t work? Or are you certain it will work except the current situation defeats the argument that it does work?
I’m confused Weary, lets start with what argument am I defeating and what situation am I using to do so.

Posted by: j2t2 at August 29, 2014 2:28 AM
Comment #382791
I also wonder what other political party needs a pledge of this type when their history tells us they obviously don’t advocate the initiation of force to achieve political goals?

What?

You are hopefully joking, I assume. I’ll just go with that one because thinking that you are even the least bit serious with this comment would be unthinkable…

Good One!

for anyone confused, just do a search on:

Iraq War
The bombing of ISIS
Atrocity Propaganda
Gulf of Tonkin
Spanish-American War
American Indian Wars
Homeless Camp Cleanouts
Waco Seige
Ruby Ridge
Race Riots
White Night Riots
Tammany Hall
Klu Klux Klan
Prohibition
War on Drugs
WTO Protests
Eco-Terrorism
US Bombing Syria
etc, etc, etc…

The other parties that are ‘obviously not supporting initiation of the use of force for political means’ sure have an odd way of showing by continually using the initiation of force for political means…

Posted by: Rhinehold at September 4, 2014 4:33 PM
Comment #382792
it seems to me you would have Rev. Al be the leader of all protests involving police brutality while you just stand by and make a list

No, I want him to stand up for civil rights, not just black civil rights, as that is a racist action.

If Rev. Kenneth Copeland had started protesting only white instances of civil rights violations, you would (rightfully) charge that he was a racist. Why is it not the same with Rev Sharpton who, as far as I know, has NEVER ONCE defending the civil rights violations of any non-black individual?

He is not a civil rights protester. He is a black civil rights protester. His description should be changed to reflect his racism.

Posted by: Rhinehold at September 4, 2014 4:38 PM
Post a comment