On May 25, 2020, Minneapolis Police Department officer Derek Chauvin ignited national protests, riots, burnings and vandalism by keeling on counterfeiting suspect George Floyd’s neck until he died. The reaction to the African-American’s death, all captured by a cell phone video, was almost immediately co-opted and exploited by the black anti-police, anti-white activist group Black Lives Matter, which emphatically added Floyd’s death to others it cites to prove the intrinsic racism of U.S. law enforcement and the United States of America itself. The incident has transformed BLM into a national force in the midst of a crucial Presidential campaign, with one party endorsing it (despite the organization’s indisputable anti-US and anti-white, not to mention Marxist, rhetoric, and almost all corporations feeling forced to publicly signal their support in pandering statements. The death of George Floyd even turned professional sports into a massive race-obsessed propaganda machine for Black Lives Matter and its foundational assertion that the United States is built on racism, with the police enforcing white supremacy.
I think the forgoing is a fair, if perhaps unsympathetic summary.
Through all of this, one critical element has been prominent by its absence. Ethics Alarms flagged it on June 9, in a post titled, “The Question That Must Be Asked In Any Fair And Responsible Analysis Of The George Floyd Tragedy…” That question was, “How do we know George Floyd is dead because he was black?”
I wrote in part,
There is absolutely no evidence that George Floyd is dead because he was black, and no evidence that former officer Chauvin had his knee on his neck until Floyd died because Floyd was black. This has been presumed, and no politicians or national leaders, and certainly no mainstream media reporters, have had the integrity or courage to require more than that mandated presumption before accepting the narrative. No evidence of racism among the officers involved has been found, and you know people have been looking. The proposition that any time a black citizen is abused by the police it is per se racism, that is, presumed racism, is logically and ethically absurd, and people should have the courage to say so. …
Of course, virtually nobody on the left wants to consider the possibility that Floyd is dead because he had a contentious confrontation with a bad cop who was a human ticking time bomb. If Floyd had been white, there would have been no protests or riots, although the injustice and the misconduct would have been exactly the same. Especially convenient for activists, and too hard to resist, was the symbolic nature of a white cop having his knee on the neck of a black man: the perfect metaphor for white supremacy.
But if [Floyd’s] death is going to be exploited as the rallying point to justify protests, riots, and unhinged policy recommendations like abolishing police departments, if it is going to be the catalyst for compelled virtue-signaling speech from elected officials, celebrities, sports figures and corporate executives, isn’t it reasonable, indeed essential, to be certain that George Floyd’s death actually was what it is being represented as—a racist police killing?
Apparently that crack investigative journalism organization, the New York Times, realized that it was essential to show this, so it put a team of reporters on it—when, it’s hard to determine. However, tucked away in the lower right-hand corner of its front page on the typically slow news day-reporting Sunday Times, dwarfed by a giant feature on the death of Rep. John Lewis, and under the mandatory above-the-fold story about how the Trump Administration is responsible for the “raging” Wuhan virus, was the report on the results of the Times investigation, headlined, “In Minneapolis, A Rigid Officer Many Disliked.”
Guess what the report doesn’t mention. Go ahead, guess.
Race. Racism. We learn that Chauvin was often over-aggressive in his law-enforcement methods. We are told he was unpopular with other officers, most of whom didn’t want to work with him. We learn he was rigid, and a workaholic. The piece begins with an account about Chauvin pulling his gun on four teenagers who shot a Nerf dart out a car window. All four of the teenagers were white.
The article contains not a single piece of evidence that Derek Chauvin is a racist. The reporters couldn’t find a single individual who recalled Chauvin using a racial epithet, —you know, the evidence that proved that Mark Furmin was a racist and thus O.J. Simpson had to be innocent—or anyone, even from Chauvin’s school days, who could recount an incident in his professional or private life suggesting racism. Chauvin’s wife wasn’t white, she was Asian. The entire article, which took up all of page A-17, runs 2,067 words. Not one of them is “race,” “racist,” or “racism.”
Yet we know, don’t we, that proof of racism is what the Times was looking for. The fact that Derek Chauvin was not a racist (except in the sense that Black Lives Matter tells us, which is that all whites are racists) was the news—rather crucial news, I’d say—to come out of the investigation, but not only did the Times “bury the lede,” it censored it.
I also believe, but cannot prove, that the Times knew there was no evidence that Chuavin was a racist long before it published the results of its investigation on July 19, after nearly two full months of fury over a “racist cop” killing a black man. Racism was the evil we were told had to be expiated by fire, toppled statues, violence and, apparently, revolution. If the metaphorical match that lit the fuse was based on a false assumption, the Times, indeed all of the news media, had an urgent obligation to reveal this as quickly as possible. I believe it did the opposite, intentionally, to avoid publishing anything that might stem the burgeoning insurrection’s momentum. I assume that the investigation into Chauvin began shortly after the incident, and when the expected evidence that the officer was a virulent racist who killed Floyd because of the color of his skin didn’t materialize, the Times first extended the inquiry, and then held off publishing the results.
Sometimes democracy literally dies in darkness.
I asked “How do we know George Floyd is dead because he was black?” on June 9, and the news media took a month and ten days to supply the information that provides the answer, which they still haven’t had the integrity or courage to publish outright.
The news media hid the fact to allow a false presumption of racism crush America’s throat.
18 thoughts on “News Flash: Derek Chauvin Is Not A Racist, And George Floyd’s Death Had Nothing To Do With Race. Let’s Think About That….”
If just once a week (below the fold) The NY Times would print “The Best Of Ethics Alarms.”
Jack’s Post this morning would get my vote.
The left will point to what’s going on and say that this doesn’t matter. It finally sparked a long-overdue reckoning on race in this nation and supercharged the arm that bends the arc of history toward justice. Some may even say this was never about one act of brutality to one black man, it’s about 400 years of oppression and white supremacy. That was the powder keg the white man built. All George Floyd did was light the fuse. Just like Stonewall marked the day the gays said they weren’t taking it anymore, just like the bra burnings marked women saying no more, this is the time the BIPOC community says we aren’t taking it anymore. You white men, your day is over. Your symbols, your statues, your songs, your flag, your holidays, maybe even your Constitution, are all going. We won’t pledge allegiance to them anymore. You can be part of the solution, and have SOME say in the new symbols, the new statues, the new songs, the new flag, the new holidays, the new Constitution, or you can be part of the problem, which we are going to solve, whatever it takes. You can break frybread instead of pizza below the new statue of Tecumseh that replaced the statue of Columbus on Indigenous People’s Day, or you can be broken. You can lift your voice in the new anthem as you pledge allegiance to the new flag, or you can be silent forever. You can help write the new Constitution, or you can be written out of the new Constitution. Your choice. But you need to make it soon or it will be made for you. We’ve already shown we can bring this nation to a grinding halt. Taking the next step is easy.
Well there you have it. Once it is recognized that the anti-racism movement is at its core an anti-White motion or movement, one is pushed to the realization that it becomes necessary — crucial — to define and defend ‘whiteness’. If ‘whiteness’ is what they are fighting against, and if it is their ‘brownness’ or their ‘blackness’ and their non-whiteness that is their primary identification, then it is understood that the End of Whiteness is their conceived goal, whether that is intended or merely incidental.
Bit by bit, day by day, what was hitherto inconceivable to you-pl, what was condemnable and atrocious, now becomes ethically tolerable, at least to some degree.
Just a few days back you said I ‘could only be’ a racist and an anti-Semite — that there was no other option. But that has to do not with me so much as with the limits of your conceptual process. If a person understands that ‘whiteness’ is being attacked, and that the attack will result in fatality (the ‘end of whiteness’), that person *can only be* a racist. Yet it becomes clear that a racialist outlook is different from ‘racism’ in its fair and accurate definition.
[And a Jewish-critical stance, or thinking that touches on critique, is not anti-Semitism but is a realistic, and fair, way to understand some aspects of Jewish reality and activism].
The real question, the hard question, the one difficult to see and foretell, touches on what is going to happen in America? If Trump is reelected this will not, and cannot, represent a solution. Rather the battle raging will intensify and perhaps be compounded by other crises.
Those establishing their opposition do so in terms that are difficult to back down from.
But what will a Biden win produce? Will the various media that, for their own reasons, are stimulating and encouraging rebellion in the streets all on the sudden back down from their intense activism? Will *they* then work as hard as they have been to augment disrputive and conflictive narratives then send out pacifying narratives that stress *unity* and *togetherness* and some mutual agreement about what America is and must remain?
This does not seem likely. The reelection of Trump can only be the sign of new levels of social war and more conflict.
Yet “Diversity is our Strength!”
The left will point to what’s going on and say that this doesn’t matter. It finally sparked a long-overdue reckoning on race in this nation and supercharged the arm that bends the arc of history toward justice.
It looks, to me, not really to have to do with ‘justice’, though this is the idealistic front, but about retribution. About reversal. About revenge. Human motives are always complex. We find ways to justify and rationalize that which we can’t seem to face square-on.
So this is not a ‘reckoning’
as much as it is the establishment of a retributive political and social policy. The question, What will this end in? And when will the ‘reckoning’ be completed? becomes a necessary question.
I would suggest that it won’t ever be completed. By its very nature and according to its definitions it cannot end until there is no more ‘white person’ or that the rôles have been reversed and retribution and revenge have become satisfyingly visible. It may be interesting to mention that now, today, in South Africa, there are poverty-camps of Whites who have been pushed out of the social structure.
Now, it has been clear to me for some years now that *you-pl* have not been able to conceive of the *reality* of what you are facing. You cannot conceive of it. Or (as I often say) you refuse, as an act of will, to allow your self to understand. You refuse to *see*.
But what if the day did really come that you did really *see*? What would you do? What would you say? I mean, how would you then approach the topic of ‘race’ or ‘ethnicity’ or ‘White/European accomplishment’ or some understabding of ‘essential difference’? How could you then approach an ideological or existential/political position of self-defense and of ‘white well-being’?
This is very very tough material. Yet it is not *unethical* to think it through. It is ethical if one thinks of one’s children or the future of one’s culture: literally one’s own position in the world.
It is very curious. What I ask for is people of color (their term of course, this being how they define them self) who instead of attacking and opposing whiteness, and declaring ideological war against it, take completely another tack: who defend it and encourage it.
For example, if some person-of-color could say: “I fully recognize and support the essential right of Poland’s society of Romania’s society to protect them self at a physical, genetic, ideational, identitarian level. They have the right to define them self and to protect them self”. Poland and Romania are clear examples. Somewhat non-problematic because of relative homogeneity.
That would be a marvellous thing. Because by doing so they give them self the same right. (Yet it must be said that POC are in some ways parasitical to ‘White Culture’. They hate it, yet they want it, and need it).
This is all much harder, and infinitely more problematic in America — because of the choices that were made here. Because of the multi-ethnic project that Postwar America chose for itself.
But again, how is this going to resolve itself? I do not mean tell me what idealistic statement you must make, because you have absorbed all of this social engineering policy. I mean tell me, realistically, what is going to happen to the American nation in the developing future?
Sorry, I had corrected this mistake mentally but it did not get through; not them self but their selves, themselves, itself, etc.
I don’t think I’ve mentioned this before, but “BIPOC” is yet another particularly stupid acronym is a list of many… many…. stupid acronyms, portmanteaus, and assorted gobbledygook that comes out of the left from time to time.
“Black, Indigenous (and) People Of Color” Because “People of Color” or “POC” was too simple, or not inclusive enough, or something. Maybe Black and Indigenous are Supercolors, not to be confused with, or inadvertently lumped together with those other, basic, people of color.
On a slightly more serious note, I’m actually not sure why they do this. The most likely reason is that BIPOC is snappy. I’m not kidding, it wouldn’t be the first time progressives traded meaning for marketability. But assuming some kind of actual reason…. It’s definitely not based on the largest demographics in the POC pie, because it doesn’t include Hispanics, or Asians. It’s not based on the latest news trends, because I haven’t heard much on the indigenous front since Elizabeth Warren’s DNA test, or Nick Sandmann’s recent paycheck. It might *might* actually be poverty driven, because (Wikipedia tells me) American Natives are the most impoverished demographic in America, followed neck and neck by African Americans and Hispanics. But I don’t know.
I suspect they wanted to disambiguate themselves from other, meanings of the acronym “POC”, at least one of which is an expression of contempt.
The reason why they do this is essential and critical.
Black people, Indigenous people, and People-of-Color are precisely those people, in those places, that European colonialism encountered and conquered, and in that sense *attacked* (this is how they generally see it). They choose to see all of this according to a negative viewpoint. Another viewpoint is possible, but it involves a decision to *cooperate* and not to oppose.
The ideology that operates among BLM Marxists, for example — who describe themselves as ‘trained Marxists’ — is that of a Post-colonialism in a strange hybrid.
It does include Hispanics insofar as they are *people of color*. Most Mexicans, for example (and this includes Guatemalans, El Salvadorans, Nicarauguans, etc.) see themselves and speak of themselves as Meztizo — a blend of European into mostly Indian.
These are all the victims of historical processes.
When you don’t look in the right places, you don’t find what you’re looking for. When you look for the wrong evidence, you will completely miss the right evidence. If you read that NYT article with a typical white man’s racist view of the world, you would have missed the truth. In that entire article, there is not a smidgen of evidence that Chauvin ever acted in an anti-racist manner. That is proof positive that he is a racist. /S
Having an Asian wife could be considered racist, due to the submissiveness stereotype…
Clearly it’s a case of another line on this chart: https://pbs.twimg.com/media/ECO2JeMXsAIzCc2.jpg
It’s no secret among regulars here that I have a low opinion of law enforcement in the United States. I criticize the gang like culture within policing that considers those raising concerns over other officers a “rat” rather than a hero. I criticize the training that values the life of a police officer as more important than other officers. I criticize the fear based training where officers are put on a high level of alert, where they are told a moments lapse could get them killed at any second; one that is not based on reality and police being killed in a shooting is extraordinarily rare. (BTW, so is people getting shot by cops.. yet cop lovers can point to those statistics but seem willfully incapable of looking up the reverse.) I find the deadly simon says game where failure to accurately follow sometimes confusing and conflicting instructions alone is a valid defense to kill (read Daniel Shaver).
Most of all though, I’m baffled by white people in the United States. Being aware of my bias, I try to be fair, and about 2/3 of the time what BLM is protesting is BS. “Hands up don’t shoot” is a lie. As are many of the cases they tout. But those 1/3 – the Philando Castle case, Breonna Taylor, etc… I fully understand and agree with the rage of BLM. I know part of what is infuriating to black people in the US is that they can’t understand where the outrage of white people is. And I agree with them. Where is the outrage?
The statistics don’t point to a race problem in policing. I think this is an overall policing problem of bad cops never being dealt with that whites are intentionally blind to. From that position, I already immediately jump to the same position as Jack posted last month. This wasn’t race based, it is a symptom of the complete lack of accountability of US policing.
So tell me, are there good officers at MPD? My take: no. Why? “They don’t want to work with him”, not “they wanted him fired” was the position of officers. A powerful, aggressive union is backed by the rank and file and they know if they can’t touch the likes of Chauvin, they are absolutely safe. All they wanted was to not be paired up with the guy and they’re good.
It does make me ponder a bit “what would have happened if”? What if George Floyd had been white? The answer should have been Derick CHauvin was charged with at least manslaughter, but I don’t think that’s likely.
Every now and again, because the left doesn’t often or completely reconcile their positions, two camps of the left go to war, and one camp loses. It’s not always the right camp, but these forced reconciliations are always fun to watch.
As an example, the left had groups that simultaneously believed “Only police should have guns/why do you need those guns/what do you mean government tyranny/haha where’s your tin hat?” and “All cops are bad/defund the police/police are hunting black people”
So…. The only people that should have guns are the people hunting black people, eh? No, this was an irreconcilable difference. And the second amendment argument won. I mean, we haven’t run news stories about the left’s complete concession on the topic, but when’s the last time you heard about a public shooting? Did gun violence in America get a case of COVID? It’s alright lefties, I’m magnanimous, you don’t need to prostrate yourself in front of me or flagellate, I’ll just bask in the glow of being right.
The next irreconcilable position will have to do with police brutality and collective bargaining, and I think that the right of center position wins again: This will break unions, because unions have made it harder and harder to discipline bad actors. While I don’t agree with large swathes of BLM’s messaging, the fact of the matter is that there are bad police, and we do need to have options in dealing with them, and it is not helpful when police unions grieve every disciplinary action that police management make. To an extent, this was still a failure of management, they let us get to this point. But here we are. Buckle up, Teamsters.
I agree on both topics.
I’m pretty confident that the left’s control control argument is lost for a decade now. One of my fears was a shrinking gun ownership rate. For the duration of the Obama administration, there was a massive uptick in purchases of semi-automatic rifle and associate ammunition. It slacked a little but it back. In spite of that uptick in buying, it appeared to mostly be gun owners buying more guns and in particular, buying the guns that people feared being banned. The ownership rate was dwindling down slightly. My fear was that while the gun owning base is very energized, if they shrank too far, the argument might have gone the other way.
I haven’t heard any official statistics yet, but the trend on ownership has most definitely increased. I know for certain every gun shop out there is cleared out, especially in handguns and handgun ammunition. You have to pre-order and wait a while to purchase a handgun. The anecdotes are that many of the purchasers are first time buyers who are freaked out by the riots with the claims of spreading to suburbia, the inability of the police to protect anyone during the riots, and the “defund the police” efforts.
Virginia was going to be the big battleground early this year. I’m doubting that anti-gun is a winning position even there, in spite of the drift leftward by the expansion out of DC.
On the topics of unions – nearly every reform proposal is focused on qualified immunity and union protection reform. Even the other unions are distancing themselves from the police unions.
Jack wrote, “The news media hid the fact to allow a false presumption of racism crush America’s throat.”
So now it’s time to spread the news far and wide….
There is one place that I think race could have entered: the choice to arrest vs. question and release Floyd to begin with. I will ask – would a white person have been arrested in the same position?
My premise remains, however. I personally know more than one person who has unknowingly attempted to pass a bad $20 bill. None were arrested. Their story of taking it unknowingly and attempting to pass it along was accepted and they never saw the back of a cruiser. That didn’t happen in Floyd’s case. He was presumed to be in the business of either laundering counterfeit money or producing counterfeit money. I don’t think we can completely ignore that aspect of the case.
There has been a lack of reporting multiple aspects of this case – I’ve followed it but know that I’ve certainly not read all the cyber ink dumped into this case. Questions I’d have that enter into this include; was it actually a bad bill or a suspected but actually OK bill? What was Floyd’s reaction – run or a “whatever” walk away? What was Floyd’s reaction to the first contact with the police?
Well, the combination of being accused of passing bad bills and being obviously high would get anyone arrested, at least in Northern VA and everywhwere I’ve lived. And he did resits arrest, struggling and saying he could not be in the squad car.
Again, knowing the Times, and their determination to throw gasoline on the episode if they could find any, one has to conclude that they found no sniff or racial; bias. The guy was an asshole, that’s all. When the article began with four white kids being bullied, that was the tell: I thought, “Wow. This is what they use to begin the expose?” They must have found nothing.”
Info that did not last long as things progressed included that additional bills of “questionable origin” were found tucked in or beside the console of the car that George was found in. I would venture the opinion that we have no further information on this, as well as the fate of the other occupants of the car that day due to the support group that immediately gathered. Also, do not discount the ability of that load of illicit recreational drugs the autopsy found to have clouded George’s judgement to the point of seeing the need to leave the area before the cops arrived, or maybe impaired his ability to quickly come up with a story to explain the funny money, or to even deny it was counterfeit.
Many cops quietly thank Goodness for the drugs as they make the criminals so easy to catch. 🙂
Matthew B. commented on the “complete lack of accountability of US policing.”
Nothing could be further from the truth. Of my more than forty years in law enforcement, about twenty years were spent as either a patrol officer, an investigator, or directly supervising those functions. I also spent about twenty years as a trainer and agency administrator. On my own time, I was a part-time police academy instructor for twenty years. I spent a LOT of time teaching officers to be better officers, and holding officers accountable: accountable for their time, for their use of our resources, for the performance of their duties, and accountable for the use of the authority we held as a public trust. I have personally terminated the employment of several officers for abuses of authority far less serious than choke holds or kneeling on someone’s neck. Of those officers I investigated and terminated for misconduct, not a single one showed any racial motivation. They were equal opportunity assholes.
That being said, I have never worked for a unionized police agency nor do I favor police unionization.
Policing in America is primarily a local responsibility. There are about 17,000 state and local police agencies in the United States, employing about 700,000 officers. Almost 90% of police agencies consist of less than a few dozen officers. Many have less than twenty. The sheriff’s office I retired from had just over 100 certified peace officers and 100 correctional officers, making it above average in size. We did not tolerate the abuse of citizens. We tried to screen out as many of the unsuitable candidates as possible during the hiring process, but inevitably some make it further. We depended upon our leaders throughout the organization to help identify and remove the occasional bad apple. Most referrals for misconduct investigations were initiated by peers rather than supervisors. No cop I know wants to end up in federal court explaining to a judge why he or she didn’t take action to prevent someone’s rights from being violated by the abusive cop.
When I talk to people who have a negative view of police, it usually boils down to either (a) they have never had any significant contact with police themselves and are just parroting what someone else told them, or (b) they have had a bad experience with one or two cops or with a particular police agency and are extrapolating that experience to include all police. I have used this to explain to new officers why every contact and every interaction with people is critical to building and maintaining public trust.
Most cities and counties get the quality of law enforcement service that they insist upon and are willing to pay for. If they don’t insist on accountability and good performance, it costs them in many ways. They should choose differently.
I know my experience is not unique, and that is my point. The cops I know have no problem calling out serious misconduct where it exists. On the other hand, I do try to avoid tarring an entire occupational group with sweeping generalizations absent any evidence.
Barack Obama and his phantom son, Travon
Dorian Johnson and his invented “hands up: don’t shoot”
Failing BLM grandstands and George Floyd
What do they have in common?
Opportunists, one and all. The American public, fed by the American news media takes the easy road: whoever gets in with the first story – regardless of its falsity, senselessness or bias.
Had to look up his name again but the story still sends me do-lally. Johnson was Michael Brown’s partner-in-crime, already had a record. While Brown went to play with the police car in the street, Johnson ran home, changed clothes and came back to mingle with the crowd staring at Brown’s dead body. To deflect focus and save his ass, he invented a story of himself as spectator, revving up the crowd, basking in his popularity … until the Grand Jury (months later) uncovered the fraud and he admitted he had seen none of the encounter at all.
Even had Grand Jury doings been publicly arguable — which they aren’t, nor the release of just that much by an anonymous juror provable; even if the medical reports on Zimmerman and the forensic reports on Martin had come out sooner (showing clearly who had been the aggressor; and had NBC not made a (deliberate, I say,) fatal omission in the 9-1-1 recording; or Floyd’s story been a whit less perfect (a complete video fit the BLM “press release” to a T, at last, giving the organization its raison d’etre) … and regardless of the questions Jack keeps asking . . . . as Pogo said: we have met the enemy, and he is us.