Ethics Observations On Cincinnati’s Fountain Square Incident And Its Aftermath

At a Fourth of July concert in Cincinnati, police had to fight their way through a mob to rescue a white male who had been nearly beaten to death as the crowd made up primarily of African Americans and Hispanic-Americans mocked him. Here is a video of the scene, if it is still up: YouTube has removed it more than once.


1. What kind of people act like this? How do they get this way?

2. There is a controversy over whether the incident should be investigated as a hate crime. Idiocy. Madness. The discussion itself shows how silly the entire hate crime concept is. Would a group of whites mocking a bleeding white man be any less offensive to community values than a group of blacks doing so?

3. It is especially silly, not to mention offensive, when the government applies the law in a biased fashion—but then, that was always its intent.  Here is law professor Jonathan Turley tripping over his metaphorical tongue to avoid stating the obvious:

“It is not clear if there was a racial component to the crime and I would not immediately expect a hate crime investigation in such a case. Various blogs however are arguing that the Administration and local officials often immediately pledge to pursue such cases involving a black victim and white officers or assailants as a possible hate crime. I have tended to caution that such early framing of cases can have a distortive or dysfunctional impact absent clear evidence of a racial motivation. For example, while some in this crowd may have been celebrating the fact that the victim was white, it does not mean that the original attack was racially motivated.”

Oh, come on, professor. Stop spinning. The Obama Administration, the Justice Department and local officials in many cities have displayed a hair-trigger readiness to automatically consider any incident a suspected “hate crime” where a white police officer is involved in harming a black victim, absent taunting, absent the kind of revolting evidence present in this case. It isn’t “early framing,” it is racial politics and pandering to the mob and the media. On what basis were George Zimmerman and Darren Wilson subjected to federal hate crime investigations, if this video won’t prompt one?

4. For the 1000th time, hate is not a crime. It’s not even unethical. If I hate you while saving your life, my act of compassion is no less virtuous. Arguments have been made by some ethicists that the hate makes my act more virtuous, because it means that I rose above my animus. Who is more unethical, the member of the mob who mocks a man he hates as the man is suffering, or the one who mocks a man he doesn’t hate, just to go along with the group? 

5. The miserable wretches who stood and laughed at a bleeding, perhaps dying man broke no laws. In the United States, it is not merely legal to mock a dying man, but protected speech. The government not only should not punish speech, it should not go looking for hate to punish.

6. Turley properly expresses alarm at YouTube repeatedly taking down this video because of “disgusting content.” It is a private company and can do what it wants, but YouTube has also become a vital means of communication and the conveyance of culturally valuable information.  YouTube profits from this status and has an obligation to do its job fairly and responsibly. The shooting of Walter Scott in the back, by a police officer wasn’t disgusting?

7. Had the colors been reversed in this incident, would the media coverage have been different? Why? I can see no ethical justification for that at all.


Pointer and Source: Res Ipsa Loquitur 1, 2


16 thoughts on “Ethics Observations On Cincinnati’s Fountain Square Incident And Its Aftermath

  1. I find it extremely troubling that the perpetrators/observers so casually record it and feel no need to try to hide their identity. It shows that they don’t expect to face any consequences.

  2. What instigated this?

    Was it the unreported knock out game- a game dominated by African Americans?

    The plain and simple truth is a certain subset of the population feels it can behave with impunity and it can. This is what 3rd world nations look like everybody.

    • Maybe if a subset of this subset were gunned down in the act, the rest would stop.

      What we need to do is to rule by the fear of force, not force itself. We need troops on the streets, ready and willing to gun down anyone who steps out of line. that is what will instill the fear of force.

      • Are you kidding? We need fewer police, more “broken windows” and everybody getting out of jail free because they shouldn’t have been put there in the first place. Police are the problem, not the solution. Aren’t you paying attention?

          • Bah… Responding to the announcer’s terrible interpretation of the video.

            “Pushes his chest away” she clearly punched him in the chest. Her fist was closed. Just because it was ineffectual doesn’t make it a push rather than a punch. He grabbed her arm first, before she grabbed his, but she already had it raised into a fist. I’d really like to see the video segment before he even got to the bar, to judge if she actually had REASON to raise her arm.

              • Michael, you clearly do not understand the psyche of Americans…if we are scared, we lash out. The fear of force will…I say WILL, not might…promote and result in serious violence across the country, possibly, if carried far enough, armed revolution.

                • Dragin… I think when Michael wrote “How else will we be able to rule by the fear of force?” He was being facetious. At least I hope so.

                  • I don’t think he was, but, of course, only he can tell us. However, the tone of his earlier posts and the fact that he is rarely facetious makes me think not.

  3. It is sad, but incidents like these at Fountain Square are hardly rare. Like most such incidents (white on black crime), only a few gain any attention at all and even the most outrageous gets precious little notice by the press. Black on black crime is even worse, with liberal commentators taking for granted that people in mostly black areas will be frequent victims of crime, as if that is acceptable. Incidents like the one above will continue as long as the majority of the press, our legal ‘experts’, and the government insist that behavior like it and the incident below are ‘acceptable’ for some groups of people in society.

    How biased is our society? Let’s look at a what happens to a group of predominantly white people involved in a disturbance. In Waco, a fight between bikers resulted in 9 dead. Basically, everyone in the area was arrested and held, each with a $1 million bond. From the sketchy details, it is possible that all 9 were killed by the police. Of those arrested, it appears that fewer than 10 have a prior criminal history (sorry for the Huffington Post link, but there has been very little press on the aftermath of this at all). This held the press’s attention for about 30 minutes. Would a group of blacks acting the same way be treated like that? Was the Ferguson mob treated like that? Was the Baltimore mob? From these incidents, it appears that blacks actually get PREFERENTIAL treatment from the police and justice system.;_ylt=A0LEV17dj5xVxzQAjQdXNyoA;_ylu=X3oDMTByNXM5bzY5BGNvbG8DYmYxBHBvcwMzBHZ0aWQDBHNlYwNzcg–

    We have set up a system of racial and minority preferences so entrenched, that equality must yield before it. With it is a double standard both obvious, and willfully ignored. It strikes me that the current liberal ‘civil rights’ movement has taken all of the arguments against equal rights and enshrined them as truth. These argument include the idea that blacks need special admission to colleges and always will because they are incapable of competing on a level playing field (because they aren’t as intelligent as whites). The idea that the criminal justice system needs to understand that blacks are incapable of following the law like whites are, so we need to stop holding them accountable for mere misdemeanors and and minor felonies. The idea that, unlike men, abused women must be allowed to murder their abusers because they are incapable of walking away or following self-defense laws like men are (women are too emotional and are incapable of rational thought). The idea that women need special laws to protect them because they are incapable of handling work environments like men are. The idea that women are mostly incapable of consenting to sex, so men must go through rigorous training to determine if a woman is truly capable of consenting to sex at any given moment (since the woman is incapable of knowing this herself). Men are capable of consenting to sex under any circumstances and must face the consequences of their actions even if those consequences were the result of coercion, deceit, or circumstances completely beyond their control. Any conservative who states those things will be instantly branded a racist and a sexist, but a liberal who espouses the same ideas is considered a champion for minorities and women. How can both be true? Only by indoctrinating people to the point that they are incapable of critical thought can both be held to be true.

    As long as we reject the idea of equality of opportunity and equality under the law, things will not get better.

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