As Samuel L. Jackson says (repeatedly) in “Jurassic Park,” “Hold on to your butts!”
An unarmed black man was shot and killed in a confrontation with police last night in Atlanta, and protesters are already gearing up. The Atlanta Chief of Police quickly resigned, which is either smart or cowardly, I’m not sure which. Atlanta Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms already called for the officer who fired the fatal shots to be terminated—no investigation, no due process. This is the procedure Colin Kaepernick favors.
What happened? Oh, nobody knows for sure, but that doesn’t matter any more, right? It’s a black man, shot by police, so there is a presumption of racism. We’re still in the middle of the George Floyd Freakout, so the incident is automatically part of the same narrative. Facts don’t matter, logic doesn’t matter, fairness and consequences don’t matter. Activists are looking for an excuse to protest, or worse. See the photo? The only facts anyone cares about is that a black man was shot by police. It wouldn’t matter if he were rabid and tried to bite the officers like the zombies in “World War Z.”
Last night’s incident began about 10:30 p.m. outside a Wendy’s on University Avenue. Wendy’s employees called the police after receiving a complaint about a man asleep in his vehicle in the Drive-in line, which forced other customers to go around his car to get their food at the window. Responding to the call was the police’s first mistake. They should have asked if the man was black, and upon receiving an answer in the affirmative, should have told Wendy’s, “Sorry, you’re on your own. We’d deal with it if the guy was white, but we can’t afford any situation these where a black guy might get gets hurt. Let him sleep it off. ‘Bye!”
I’m completely serious. Any police department that isn’t under standing orders to let black lawbreakers at any level just go about their anti-social, illegal business without police intervention is asking for a disaster.
The sleeping man, Atlanta resident Rayshard Brooks, was roused by the police and given a field sobriety test. He was drunk. After failing the test, the police spokeswoman said, Brooks was told that he was being taken into custody. NOOOOO! The odds were that he would resist, and this is how so many of these encounters go out of control. Again, the police should have just let him go. Not if he was white, of course. If he was white and they just shot him for the hell of it, there would be no uproar, no riots.
During the arrest, we are told, Brook resisted and struggled with the police. What a surprise. Then the officer took out his taser. According to police, Brooks managed to take the taser away from the officer, and was shot. He later died at the hospital.
Of course there was a cell phone video. A Wendy’s customer’s recording appears to show two officers struggling with Brooks in the parking lot, but Brooks looks like he is running away from them when he is shot. Wendy’s surveillance footage appears to show Brooks turn toward the police and attempt to fire the Taser at them as he runs away. Then he’s shot.
In short, we don’t know exactlywhat happened, and in a sane world, which is certainly not the world of the George Floyd Freakout, everyone would wait for an investigation before deciding what went on, and certainly before protesting or assigning blame and responsibility. That would be fair. That would serve justice. That would be responsible. That would be ethical.
But Black Lives Matter and the anti-police Left have a metaphorical knee on the neck of local governments, whites and police, and they are no more inclined to release the pressure than Derek Chauvin was on the fateful day in Minneapolis.
And no, the facts don’t matter.
UPDATE: “Demonstrators” blocked the nearby interstate, broke windows at the restaurant, and about an hour ago (it’s 10:30 pm as I write this), someone set the Wendy’s on fire.
Sure, that’s reasonable. It’s all the restaurant’s fault.
Might as well end this post as it began, with a “Jurassic Park” quote, this one from Ian Malcolm (Jeff Goldblum):