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Wednesday, June 3, 2020

Avoiding Future George Floyds

For John, BLUFDecades of Federal Government intervention and we are still miles from solving this problem.  Nothing to see here; just move along.

From Red State Blog, by Sister Toldjah, 3 June 2020.

Here is the InstaPundit except:

“Now, too many see the protests as the problem.  No, the problem is what forced your fellow citizens to take to the streets, persistent, and poisonous, inequities and injustice.  And please, show me where it says that protesters are supposed to be polite and peaceful.”
And, of course, the InstaPundit Blogger, Mr Ed Driscoll, obliged, by quoting the First Amendment.
Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.
So Newscaster Christ Cuomo doesn't really know the First Amendment.  I am not shocked by that.  He seems to be all emotions and little knowledge.

The other place Mr Cuomo falls down is in not acknowledging that this problem of minorities feeling they are not being listened to is decades old and thus falls on his Brother and his Father, with regard to New York State.  Why is he not excoriating his own kith and kin?

The death of Mr George Floyd is an example of a failure of local government.  Not just the police department, which failed to discharge this officer with over a dozen complaints, but also the local States Attorney, who let him slide on a previous complaint.  And she, now Senator Amy Klobuchar, was short-listed for the Democratic Party Vice Presidential nomination.  If she had acted decisively back in the day might we not be here today.

The problems we are facing today, the abuse of civil rights, the lack of trust in government on the part of some groups in these United States, is not for lack of laws.  It is for lack of good law enforcement.  And not just the police.  This includes things like building inspectors and folks enforing zoning codes.  It is about the education of our children and where the sewer lines are being installed.

If we want to fix this we need to elect local leaders who want to make thing fair.  As for legislation, we might consider this tweet:

Jane Coaston  @cjane87 · 21h
1. End qualified immunity.
2. Curtail the power of police unions
And here’s the toughest one:
3. We probably need fewer laws, in general.
The InstaPundit himself, Law Professor Green Reynolds, bumped this, because it is true.

Hat tip to the InstaPundit.

Regards  —  Cliff

Tuesday, June 2, 2020

President Out and About In DC

For John, BLUFProtest is our right.  Riots are an attack on fellow citizens and must be stopped and condemned.  Nothing to see here; just move along.

Here is the sub-headline:

Trump Derangement Syndrome Has Reached Pandemic Status

From PJ Media, by Mr Stephen Kruiser, 2 June 2020.

Here is the lede plus five:

President Trump provided the nation a perfect social media snapshot of why so many of us are way beyond being able to seem the American Left as anything but a bunch for raving lunatics.  Yeah, I may be a little over the top now but I think I’ve been drowned in so much hyperbole and anti-Trump hysteria AMID THE PANDEMIC that I now feel like responding in kind.

It began when he gave a speech from the Rose Garden addressing the violence of the past few days that expressed some sentiments that are difficult to find fault with:

“All Americans were rightly sickened and revolted by the brutal death of George Floyd,” Trump said, adding that “For George and his family, justice will be served.  He will not have died in vain.  But we cannot allow the righteous cries of peaceful protesters to be drowned out by an angry mob.

“The biggest victims of the rioting are the peace-loving citizens in our poorest communities. And as their president, I will fight to keep them safe.

“I will fight to protect you. I am your president of law and order and an ally of all peaceful protesters,” Trump said.

Trump then pointed out what has been plain for all to see: there has been a complete failure of leadership in every city where the violence has gotten hand.  He was polite and didn’t mention that they were all Democrats running those cities.
I don't think there is much of anything the President can do that won't elicit criticism.  But, that is not a promise that he won't win in November.

My take is that it was the right thing to do for the President to walk over to St John's, across Layfette Park from the White House, a church that burned during a riot in DC.

Hat tip to the InstaPundit.

Regards  —  Cliff

Dave Patrick Underwood RIP

For John, BLUFWe know about Mr George Floyd, who died in police custody, in Minneapolis.  Should we not known about this man, murdered by a rioter this last weekend  Yes, we expect higher standards of those who provide us protection, but that does not mean that rioters are not to be held to a high standard.  Nothing to see here; just move along.

From The Federal Times, by Reporter Daisy Nguyen, 1 Jun 2020.

Here is the lede plus one:

A federal law enforcement officer who was shot and killed while providing security at the U.S. courthouse in Oakland, California, during a protest has been identified.

Dave Patrick Underwood, 53, died from gunshot wounds sustained after someone fired shots from an unidentified vehicle Friday night, the FBI said Sunday.

For irony, Mr Underwood was a Black man.

For further irony, he was murdered while providing protection to the Ronald Vernie Dellums Building in Oakland.  Representative Ron Dellums was the first Black Member of Congress from Northern California and served thirteen terms.  He also served as Mayor of Oakland.

Mr Underwood is survive by a Sister, Angela Underwood Jacobs.  Ms Jacobs, earlier this year, ran for the Republican nomination for the US Congress in the California 25th District.  The seat was won by Republican Mike Garcia, who replaces disgraced Democratic Representative Katie Hill (resigned November 3, 2019),

Our condolences to Ms Jacobs and other members of Mr Underwood's family.  He should not be forgotten.

Hat tip to the InstaPundit.

Regards  —  Cliff

Monday, June 1, 2020

Confusion Over Freedom

For John, BLUFNo Church Servics, but it is OK for mobs of people to wander through US Citizes.  Nothing to see here; just move along.

From The Babylon Bee, 1 June 2020.

Here is the lede plus one:

LOS ANGELES, CA—Religious people in Southern California have found a bold, creative solution for in-person meetings in spite of the continuing lockdown.  This past weekend, several area churches attended church services disguised as righteously indignant rioters.

"We already have the righteous indignation thing down," said one church elder.  "Now, we've simply added black balaclavas, hoodies, Guy Fawkes masks, and baseball bats!  We found that when we do this, we can meet in large groups without much interference from the local authorities.  It's been a delightful experience."

Makes sense.

Hat tip to the InstaPundit.

Regards  —  Cliff

Only Twice A Year

For John, BLUFWhat can I say?  Nothing to see here; just move along.

Happy Anniversary

To My Beautiful Wife

Regards  —  Cliff

Sunday, May 31, 2020

The Evil "Qualified Immunity"

For John, BLUFIt isn't like the death of George Floyd is unique.  It is not and that is a blot on our Republic.  Nothing to see here; just move along.

Here is the sub-headline:

There's a legal obstacle that's nearly impossible to overcome when police officers and government officials violate our constitutional and civil rights.

From USA Today, by Opinionators Patrick Jaicomo and Anya Bidwell, 30 May 2020.

Here is the lede plus three:

On May 25, Minneapolis police killed George Floyd. While two officers pinned the handcuffed Floyd on a city street, another fended off would-be intervenors as a fourth knelt on Floyd’s neck until — and well after — he lost consciousness.

But when Floyd’s family goes to court to hold the officers liable for their actions, a judge in Minnesota may very well dismiss their claims.  Not because the officers didn’t do anything wrong, but because there isn’t a case from the 8th Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals or the Supreme Court specifically holding that it is unconstitutional for police to kneel on the neck of a handcuffed man for nearly nine minutes until he loses consciousness and then dies.

And such a specific case is what Floyd’s family must provide to overcome a legal doctrine called “qualified immunity” that shields police and all other government officials from accountability for their illegal and unconstitutional acts.

The Supreme Court created qualified immunity in 1982. With that novel invention, the court granted all government officials immunity for violating constitutional and civil rights unless the victims of those violations can show that the rights were “clearly established.”

I am not against protecting government officials from the consequences of their actions when those actions are taken in good faith and for the public good.  However, it has gone too far and must end, for the sake of our democracy.  What we need to redress the George Floyd (and so many. other cases) case is Responsible Leadership at the Local Level.  Qualified Immunity works against such responsible leadership.

Hat tip to Ann Althouse.

Hat tip to the InstaPundit.

Regards  —  Cliff

Is Speech Still Free?

For John, BLUFIf the sources of information are censoring, where do I go for information?  Is Twitter committing suicide, or at least restricting itself to a much smaller audience?  Nothing to see here; just move along.

From The Chicago Boyz, by Mr David Foster, 28 May 2020.

Here is the lede plus three:

YouTube is run by a woman named Susan Wojcicki.  She has indicated that videos peddling fake or unproven coronavirus remedies will be banned, and also suggested that video that “goes against” WHO guidance on the pandemic will be blocked.

So Ms Wojcicki has established WHO as the ultimate worldwide authority on Covid-19, the imprimatur of said authority being required for dissemination of any relevant information or opinions within Wojcicki’s domains.  One might remind her that on January 23 of this year, WHO decided not to declare that Covid-19 was a global health emergency…hence, had Wojcicki’s present rule been in effect then, any videos asserting that C-19 was, in fact, such an emergency would have been taken down!

What is the thinking behind this sort of effort to clamp down on information flow?  One can certainly understand and sympathize with a desire to avoid the dissemination of quack cures.  But how does this morph into a justification for shutting down discussion of causes, risk levels, and public-policy responses to the epidemic?

If I try to take as sympathetic a view as possible to Ms Wojcicki and those like her, I might view their actions as being motivated by a feeling of responsibility for consumer protection.  But Americans are more that just consumers: we are also (and much more importantly) citizens, participants in the public dialog and political process.   (And an interesting argument has been made that in the American system, citizens are officers of the state.)  And citizens, in order to fulfill their public responsibilities, need unfettered access to information and discussion.

I like this look at Twitter.

I wish the President would stop using Twitter.  And pick a new platform, where I would be happy to follow him.

Hat tip to the InstaPundit.

Regards  —  Cliff