Interview with Former UC Davis Police Chief Calvin Handy

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A few weeks ago, I had the opportunity to interview Retired UC Davis Police Chief Calvin Handy. He currently sits on both the Community Advisory Board (CAB) and Police Advisory Committee (PAC). This interview primarily focused on the PAC which is one of the oversight bodies created by the City Council and the City Manager last year to help with overseeing the operations of the police.

(Due to my own limitations these answers are paraphrased for the most part rather than direct quotes).

Question: Describe for me what the PAC does

Answer: July of 2006 was the first meeting where the three members of the PAC, City Manager Bill Emlen, Interim Police Chief Steve Pierce, and Complaint Unit Officer Gina Anderson all met. The PAC conforms to a specific kind of professional review process. The city is undergoing a number of existing experiments involving a professional independent review process. They were looking at this as an experiment, but this may be the way for us to go. The PAC provides a review and evaluation of completely adjudicated complaints against any employee of the police department. We examine the complaint investigative process. We also have the ability to review and evaluate any department process. We can review training–in order to really look at process or actions–you need to understand process, guidelines, and training. The PAC makes very specific recommendations to the City Manager about a wide range of issue. However, we do not begin our own independent investigation. We can ask any question. It is beyond just a professional audit, review and evaluation. “Rather than auditing I call it an accountability process.”

Question: How does the PAC’s role compare with that of the CAB

Answer: It has less of a direct connection with the CAB. Ombudsman is going to be active, living, tangible point of access for people who have issues and concerns about the police department. It will be a point of interaction with the community. The PAC does not have an interactive role. It has not been decided how the two processes have come together. There is a mechanism that exists that the ombudsman has with complaints and complaint resolution, whereas we also look at and evaluate policy and training as it relates to complaints. This is an effective way to get the process off the ground. No real formal process existed to oversee aspects of the police department before. Seems like this starting process has the ombudsman and PAC working in tandem whereas the CAB was put together to serve as a feedback mechanism and a point of exchange of information about citizens and police department. The CAB and PAC are completely different and really have no overlap. The CAB works directly with the Police Chief or Interim Police Chief and the PAC is more independent.

Question: How closely have you’ve worked with the ombudsman

Answer: I met with him personally as part of his outreach. Meetings with the ombudsman are in the works. The first priority for ombudsman was meeting with the community while forming viewpoint about what his role would be. Communication role between the two at minimum see how this will work. All parties figuring out what the roles are.

Question: What do you think the strengths of the PAC are?

Answer: It is too early to say 100 percent what the strengths are. However, this process exists where it did not exist before. Many of these things ended up at the HRC prior to this. With the hiring of the ombudsman that may now shift. We provide critical and yet professional and intense evaluations of investigations. We communicate with the city manager. We look at process and any aspect of police operation. We have potentially a great deal of latitude to what can look at. We are independent and unbiased—not biased one way or the other. This process not very effective if predisposed to one group over another. Can this be improved on six months from now? Who knows.

Question: What do you think the weaknesses of the PAC are?

Answer: This is the initial establishment of that program and first public report on the PAC was February 20 at city council. There is not much out there in terms of the PAC and what it does. [Note: I told him that as much as I follow this process, I was largely unaware of what the PAC does]. Need to provide as much information as we can. We need to inform the public of the numbers of complaints and how often we meet, this can give people a better understanding about what the PAC is. There is a lot of confusion in the public about what this group is. We need to clarify the role and inform people as to who is a part of the PAC. One suggestion is that the protocols for PAC could be put online. The PAC is not meeting with community groups, rather the ombudsman is playing that role. I do not see the detriment with meeting people on the PAC and I think this will happen at some point

Question: What are your overall thoughts about the Davis police department and its operations

Answer: I am not an expert on the DPD at this point. I think that the DPD is in need of solid open community embracing leadership. If you look at the issues of the past 18 months and perhaps before, the DPD needs a good new police chief with good ideas and build ideas and build some trust, I’m not saying there is completely no trust, but there are areas where trust is lacking and this is where the new chief can made a bigger impact. The new chief needs to be open to community input. This is a good department but the number one need is a good leader who is open and accessible and approachable. Even when things are adversarial. The department could use more friends out there. Over last 13 years, my impression has been that they are trying to be more of a community department—community oriented policing. I think most officers do have a genuine intention of protecting all of the citizens of Davis. When you have communication breakdown, your motives and intentions won’t thrive. Everyone wants to feel safe—safe from crime, good safe environment. Hard to make progress without mending that particular bridge. I am very encouraged with discussions with the city manager that he wants to find a police chief who can run the department and heal the rifts in the community.

Question: Do you believe that there is racial profiling by the Davis Police Department?

Answer: My first act as [UC Davis] police chief here was to meet with large groups, students, staff, and faculty, and they had this consistent belief that racial profiling was happening in the city of Davis. It doesn’t matter what I believe. It matters what they believe. We worked hard to build bridges between students and uc Davis police department. Many think that it exists—regardless of what I think [he repeated himself for emphasis]. Problem is how it has been handled or not handled. We have allowed the issue of racial profiling to divide us and become adversarial. A huge percentage of folks in African American community think that this has happened to them. This requires a critical undertaking and inquiring into this problem. Perhaps police are thinking we are just doing our jobs—but there is a strong perception. When you have such a perception, it exists for them. It deserves more attention, more time, and I think it deserves more effort to get to the bottom of this. Really bringing forth some action. People think they are doing the right thing. I think that the police don’t think they are doing racial profiling, rather they think they are doing the right thing. This is why it is all the more important to interact, talk, and find out what happened. After 12 years it is kind of amazing given how much we engaged in the process that people are saying the same thing. This problem has just gone on for too long and too pervasive.

I thank Chief Calvin Handy for taking the time to sit down with an interview. I learned a tremendous amount by talking to him.

—Doug Paul Davis reporting

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About The Author

David Greenwald is the founder, editor, and executive director of the Davis Vanguard. He founded the Vanguard in 2006. David Greenwald moved to Davis in 1996 to attend Graduate School at UC Davis in Political Science. He lives in South Davis with his wife Cecilia Escamilla Greenwald and three children.

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92 thoughts on “Interview with Former UC Davis Police Chief Calvin Handy”

  1. davisite

    Thank you Cecilia Greenwald and the disbanded HRC! Your “voice” that refused to be silenced appears to have gotten the city “off the dime” and started on a process that could be quite valuable.

  2. davisite

    Thank you Cecilia Greenwald and the disbanded HRC! Your “voice” that refused to be silenced appears to have gotten the city “off the dime” and started on a process that could be quite valuable.

  3. davisite

    Thank you Cecilia Greenwald and the disbanded HRC! Your “voice” that refused to be silenced appears to have gotten the city “off the dime” and started on a process that could be quite valuable.

  4. davisite

    Thank you Cecilia Greenwald and the disbanded HRC! Your “voice” that refused to be silenced appears to have gotten the city “off the dime” and started on a process that could be quite valuable.

  5. Rich Rifkin

    “A huge percentage of folks in African American community think that [racial profiling] has happened to them. … When you have such a perception, it exists for them. … I think that the police don’t think they are doing racial profiling, rather they think they are doing the right thing. … After 12 years it is kind of amazing given how much we engaged in the process that people are saying the same thing.”

    While I agree that perception is important, it does not trump the facts. It seems that to a certain group of people in Davis — led by the erstwhile HRC radicals — no matter what the facts are, they believe that racial profiling is practiced by the police in Davis.

    I am open to seeing or learning new facts or the discovery of old facts. But after many years — I didn’t realize this has gone on for 12 years — of allegations, I would think that there would be some reasonable evidence to prove this heinous charge, if it were true. But still, to this day, there is NOTHING approaching reasonable evidence that suggests that it is the policy of the Davis Police Department to racially profile our citizenry. All that remains, as Chief Handy said, are perceptions (or misperceptions). And those perceptions will never go away, because they are not formed on the basis of rational evidence, they are formed on the basis of emotion and anecdotal hearsay.

    “Your “voice” that refused to be silenced appears to have gotten the city “off the dime” and started on a process that could be quite valuable.”

    I agree with Davisite on this.

    I don’t think it was the intention of the quondom-HRC to bring about the system of oversight and inquiry that we now have. However, it is hard to conclude that but for their hyperbolic actions these improvements to our system would not have occured. Thankfully, though, our council was smart enough to avoid the politicized suggestions made by Mrs. Greenwald and her comrades.

  6. Rich Rifkin

    “A huge percentage of folks in African American community think that [racial profiling] has happened to them. … When you have such a perception, it exists for them. … I think that the police don’t think they are doing racial profiling, rather they think they are doing the right thing. … After 12 years it is kind of amazing given how much we engaged in the process that people are saying the same thing.”

    While I agree that perception is important, it does not trump the facts. It seems that to a certain group of people in Davis — led by the erstwhile HRC radicals — no matter what the facts are, they believe that racial profiling is practiced by the police in Davis.

    I am open to seeing or learning new facts or the discovery of old facts. But after many years — I didn’t realize this has gone on for 12 years — of allegations, I would think that there would be some reasonable evidence to prove this heinous charge, if it were true. But still, to this day, there is NOTHING approaching reasonable evidence that suggests that it is the policy of the Davis Police Department to racially profile our citizenry. All that remains, as Chief Handy said, are perceptions (or misperceptions). And those perceptions will never go away, because they are not formed on the basis of rational evidence, they are formed on the basis of emotion and anecdotal hearsay.

    “Your “voice” that refused to be silenced appears to have gotten the city “off the dime” and started on a process that could be quite valuable.”

    I agree with Davisite on this.

    I don’t think it was the intention of the quondom-HRC to bring about the system of oversight and inquiry that we now have. However, it is hard to conclude that but for their hyperbolic actions these improvements to our system would not have occured. Thankfully, though, our council was smart enough to avoid the politicized suggestions made by Mrs. Greenwald and her comrades.

  7. Rich Rifkin

    “A huge percentage of folks in African American community think that [racial profiling] has happened to them. … When you have such a perception, it exists for them. … I think that the police don’t think they are doing racial profiling, rather they think they are doing the right thing. … After 12 years it is kind of amazing given how much we engaged in the process that people are saying the same thing.”

    While I agree that perception is important, it does not trump the facts. It seems that to a certain group of people in Davis — led by the erstwhile HRC radicals — no matter what the facts are, they believe that racial profiling is practiced by the police in Davis.

    I am open to seeing or learning new facts or the discovery of old facts. But after many years — I didn’t realize this has gone on for 12 years — of allegations, I would think that there would be some reasonable evidence to prove this heinous charge, if it were true. But still, to this day, there is NOTHING approaching reasonable evidence that suggests that it is the policy of the Davis Police Department to racially profile our citizenry. All that remains, as Chief Handy said, are perceptions (or misperceptions). And those perceptions will never go away, because they are not formed on the basis of rational evidence, they are formed on the basis of emotion and anecdotal hearsay.

    “Your “voice” that refused to be silenced appears to have gotten the city “off the dime” and started on a process that could be quite valuable.”

    I agree with Davisite on this.

    I don’t think it was the intention of the quondom-HRC to bring about the system of oversight and inquiry that we now have. However, it is hard to conclude that but for their hyperbolic actions these improvements to our system would not have occured. Thankfully, though, our council was smart enough to avoid the politicized suggestions made by Mrs. Greenwald and her comrades.

  8. Rich Rifkin

    “A huge percentage of folks in African American community think that [racial profiling] has happened to them. … When you have such a perception, it exists for them. … I think that the police don’t think they are doing racial profiling, rather they think they are doing the right thing. … After 12 years it is kind of amazing given how much we engaged in the process that people are saying the same thing.”

    While I agree that perception is important, it does not trump the facts. It seems that to a certain group of people in Davis — led by the erstwhile HRC radicals — no matter what the facts are, they believe that racial profiling is practiced by the police in Davis.

    I am open to seeing or learning new facts or the discovery of old facts. But after many years — I didn’t realize this has gone on for 12 years — of allegations, I would think that there would be some reasonable evidence to prove this heinous charge, if it were true. But still, to this day, there is NOTHING approaching reasonable evidence that suggests that it is the policy of the Davis Police Department to racially profile our citizenry. All that remains, as Chief Handy said, are perceptions (or misperceptions). And those perceptions will never go away, because they are not formed on the basis of rational evidence, they are formed on the basis of emotion and anecdotal hearsay.

    “Your “voice” that refused to be silenced appears to have gotten the city “off the dime” and started on a process that could be quite valuable.”

    I agree with Davisite on this.

    I don’t think it was the intention of the quondom-HRC to bring about the system of oversight and inquiry that we now have. However, it is hard to conclude that but for their hyperbolic actions these improvements to our system would not have occured. Thankfully, though, our council was smart enough to avoid the politicized suggestions made by Mrs. Greenwald and her comrades.

  9. Anonymous

    From Sharla:

    I attended the “Introduction to Police Procedures” class last week. Taught by veteran officers, Pytel and Delaini, the class was very interactive and the information extremely useful.

    We were given information on the levels of contact by the police from consensual encounters to arrest and detainment. The group was able to look at encounters at each stage from the viewpoint of the person being stopped – expectations of conduct and rights – and the viewpoint of the officer – fears, expectations of conduct, intentions, etc.

    The officers described how they are trained to engage in small talk to help reduce the stress and anxiety level of the person being stopped, but this is a skill that is gained after many years of being on the job. Officer Pytel described how, in his early years, he would ask what he thought was a harmless chit-chat type of question only to have the citizen get really upset. After 4 or 5 years of this, he finally learned what things did and didn’t work. It took time. This why our new officers appear rude at times and get complaints as they struggle to learn to do their jobs with as little additional upset as possible. Also, it was interesting to hear that our young officers (and even our veterans) are dealing with a certain amount of fear within themselves when responding to a call – even with simple traffic stops – where situations are unpredictable and normal people would run away (and call the cops).

    Another piece of information that was very valuable was what became named as the “ladder of probable cause.” When an officer contacts someone in a casual encounter, there is around 0-5% suspicion that something is wrong, a stop or detaining the person (where you have to stop and cannot leave – indicated by a red light or a direct order) is only around 15%. Arrest is only at 35% on this ladder of certainty that the person is breaking the law. Then it goes to the DAs office where their actions are dictated by ever increasing percentages of certainty with conviction being around 95% or beyond reasonable doubt. What we learned from this is that the officer is continually measuring information that they are observing and making quick decisions on where they are on this ladder and taking action. It is not an exact science.

    There was a lot more information provided, including department funding, staffing, etc. and I found the training to be extremely valuable. The officers grew up in Davis and were both attorneys as well as police officer and had a broad understanding of law, community policing, departmental issues and the Davis community. The training was sparsely attended which was a dissapointment. Community members should be attending these things more.

    Sharla

  10. Anonymous

    From Sharla:

    I attended the “Introduction to Police Procedures” class last week. Taught by veteran officers, Pytel and Delaini, the class was very interactive and the information extremely useful.

    We were given information on the levels of contact by the police from consensual encounters to arrest and detainment. The group was able to look at encounters at each stage from the viewpoint of the person being stopped – expectations of conduct and rights – and the viewpoint of the officer – fears, expectations of conduct, intentions, etc.

    The officers described how they are trained to engage in small talk to help reduce the stress and anxiety level of the person being stopped, but this is a skill that is gained after many years of being on the job. Officer Pytel described how, in his early years, he would ask what he thought was a harmless chit-chat type of question only to have the citizen get really upset. After 4 or 5 years of this, he finally learned what things did and didn’t work. It took time. This why our new officers appear rude at times and get complaints as they struggle to learn to do their jobs with as little additional upset as possible. Also, it was interesting to hear that our young officers (and even our veterans) are dealing with a certain amount of fear within themselves when responding to a call – even with simple traffic stops – where situations are unpredictable and normal people would run away (and call the cops).

    Another piece of information that was very valuable was what became named as the “ladder of probable cause.” When an officer contacts someone in a casual encounter, there is around 0-5% suspicion that something is wrong, a stop or detaining the person (where you have to stop and cannot leave – indicated by a red light or a direct order) is only around 15%. Arrest is only at 35% on this ladder of certainty that the person is breaking the law. Then it goes to the DAs office where their actions are dictated by ever increasing percentages of certainty with conviction being around 95% or beyond reasonable doubt. What we learned from this is that the officer is continually measuring information that they are observing and making quick decisions on where they are on this ladder and taking action. It is not an exact science.

    There was a lot more information provided, including department funding, staffing, etc. and I found the training to be extremely valuable. The officers grew up in Davis and were both attorneys as well as police officer and had a broad understanding of law, community policing, departmental issues and the Davis community. The training was sparsely attended which was a dissapointment. Community members should be attending these things more.

    Sharla

  11. Anonymous

    From Sharla:

    I attended the “Introduction to Police Procedures” class last week. Taught by veteran officers, Pytel and Delaini, the class was very interactive and the information extremely useful.

    We were given information on the levels of contact by the police from consensual encounters to arrest and detainment. The group was able to look at encounters at each stage from the viewpoint of the person being stopped – expectations of conduct and rights – and the viewpoint of the officer – fears, expectations of conduct, intentions, etc.

    The officers described how they are trained to engage in small talk to help reduce the stress and anxiety level of the person being stopped, but this is a skill that is gained after many years of being on the job. Officer Pytel described how, in his early years, he would ask what he thought was a harmless chit-chat type of question only to have the citizen get really upset. After 4 or 5 years of this, he finally learned what things did and didn’t work. It took time. This why our new officers appear rude at times and get complaints as they struggle to learn to do their jobs with as little additional upset as possible. Also, it was interesting to hear that our young officers (and even our veterans) are dealing with a certain amount of fear within themselves when responding to a call – even with simple traffic stops – where situations are unpredictable and normal people would run away (and call the cops).

    Another piece of information that was very valuable was what became named as the “ladder of probable cause.” When an officer contacts someone in a casual encounter, there is around 0-5% suspicion that something is wrong, a stop or detaining the person (where you have to stop and cannot leave – indicated by a red light or a direct order) is only around 15%. Arrest is only at 35% on this ladder of certainty that the person is breaking the law. Then it goes to the DAs office where their actions are dictated by ever increasing percentages of certainty with conviction being around 95% or beyond reasonable doubt. What we learned from this is that the officer is continually measuring information that they are observing and making quick decisions on where they are on this ladder and taking action. It is not an exact science.

    There was a lot more information provided, including department funding, staffing, etc. and I found the training to be extremely valuable. The officers grew up in Davis and were both attorneys as well as police officer and had a broad understanding of law, community policing, departmental issues and the Davis community. The training was sparsely attended which was a dissapointment. Community members should be attending these things more.

    Sharla

  12. Anonymous

    From Sharla:

    I attended the “Introduction to Police Procedures” class last week. Taught by veteran officers, Pytel and Delaini, the class was very interactive and the information extremely useful.

    We were given information on the levels of contact by the police from consensual encounters to arrest and detainment. The group was able to look at encounters at each stage from the viewpoint of the person being stopped – expectations of conduct and rights – and the viewpoint of the officer – fears, expectations of conduct, intentions, etc.

    The officers described how they are trained to engage in small talk to help reduce the stress and anxiety level of the person being stopped, but this is a skill that is gained after many years of being on the job. Officer Pytel described how, in his early years, he would ask what he thought was a harmless chit-chat type of question only to have the citizen get really upset. After 4 or 5 years of this, he finally learned what things did and didn’t work. It took time. This why our new officers appear rude at times and get complaints as they struggle to learn to do their jobs with as little additional upset as possible. Also, it was interesting to hear that our young officers (and even our veterans) are dealing with a certain amount of fear within themselves when responding to a call – even with simple traffic stops – where situations are unpredictable and normal people would run away (and call the cops).

    Another piece of information that was very valuable was what became named as the “ladder of probable cause.” When an officer contacts someone in a casual encounter, there is around 0-5% suspicion that something is wrong, a stop or detaining the person (where you have to stop and cannot leave – indicated by a red light or a direct order) is only around 15%. Arrest is only at 35% on this ladder of certainty that the person is breaking the law. Then it goes to the DAs office where their actions are dictated by ever increasing percentages of certainty with conviction being around 95% or beyond reasonable doubt. What we learned from this is that the officer is continually measuring information that they are observing and making quick decisions on where they are on this ladder and taking action. It is not an exact science.

    There was a lot more information provided, including department funding, staffing, etc. and I found the training to be extremely valuable. The officers grew up in Davis and were both attorneys as well as police officer and had a broad understanding of law, community policing, departmental issues and the Davis community. The training was sparsely attended which was a dissapointment. Community members should be attending these things more.

    Sharla

  13. Anonymous

    I wonder why the UCD Police seem to generate less conflict than the DPD – maybe Mr. Handy has some ideas?

    I would also like to hear how UCD has addressed the racial profiling issues. I wrote Mr. Handy once about 3-4 years ago over the treatment of a student who had not paid her parking violations around the MU. The student was a female Black student who did a lot of work at the MU and lived at the African American house (I think that is what they call it). Anyway. the campus police went after her for unpaid parking tickets and after they stopped her they (two officers) approached her with drawn weapons. To me it seemed a bit extreme to arrest a student in that way over parking violations. The student felt she had been mistreated also and felt the treatment was due to the color of her skin. I know Mr. Handy was looking into the matter but I never heard the outcome. I wonder if there was any resolution of the event and if there were any policy changes made as a result of the reaction the campus police got.SAH

  14. Anonymous

    I wonder why the UCD Police seem to generate less conflict than the DPD – maybe Mr. Handy has some ideas?

    I would also like to hear how UCD has addressed the racial profiling issues. I wrote Mr. Handy once about 3-4 years ago over the treatment of a student who had not paid her parking violations around the MU. The student was a female Black student who did a lot of work at the MU and lived at the African American house (I think that is what they call it). Anyway. the campus police went after her for unpaid parking tickets and after they stopped her they (two officers) approached her with drawn weapons. To me it seemed a bit extreme to arrest a student in that way over parking violations. The student felt she had been mistreated also and felt the treatment was due to the color of her skin. I know Mr. Handy was looking into the matter but I never heard the outcome. I wonder if there was any resolution of the event and if there were any policy changes made as a result of the reaction the campus police got.SAH

  15. Anonymous

    I wonder why the UCD Police seem to generate less conflict than the DPD – maybe Mr. Handy has some ideas?

    I would also like to hear how UCD has addressed the racial profiling issues. I wrote Mr. Handy once about 3-4 years ago over the treatment of a student who had not paid her parking violations around the MU. The student was a female Black student who did a lot of work at the MU and lived at the African American house (I think that is what they call it). Anyway. the campus police went after her for unpaid parking tickets and after they stopped her they (two officers) approached her with drawn weapons. To me it seemed a bit extreme to arrest a student in that way over parking violations. The student felt she had been mistreated also and felt the treatment was due to the color of her skin. I know Mr. Handy was looking into the matter but I never heard the outcome. I wonder if there was any resolution of the event and if there were any policy changes made as a result of the reaction the campus police got.SAH

  16. Anonymous

    I wonder why the UCD Police seem to generate less conflict than the DPD – maybe Mr. Handy has some ideas?

    I would also like to hear how UCD has addressed the racial profiling issues. I wrote Mr. Handy once about 3-4 years ago over the treatment of a student who had not paid her parking violations around the MU. The student was a female Black student who did a lot of work at the MU and lived at the African American house (I think that is what they call it). Anyway. the campus police went after her for unpaid parking tickets and after they stopped her they (two officers) approached her with drawn weapons. To me it seemed a bit extreme to arrest a student in that way over parking violations. The student felt she had been mistreated also and felt the treatment was due to the color of her skin. I know Mr. Handy was looking into the matter but I never heard the outcome. I wonder if there was any resolution of the event and if there were any policy changes made as a result of the reaction the campus police got.SAH

  17. Doug Paul Davis

    I can tell you from my conversation with Chief Handy that he spent considerable time working with the students, administration, and staff on this problem and he said they made considerable headway for awhile.

  18. Doug Paul Davis

    I can tell you from my conversation with Chief Handy that he spent considerable time working with the students, administration, and staff on this problem and he said they made considerable headway for awhile.

  19. Doug Paul Davis

    I can tell you from my conversation with Chief Handy that he spent considerable time working with the students, administration, and staff on this problem and he said they made considerable headway for awhile.

  20. Doug Paul Davis

    I can tell you from my conversation with Chief Handy that he spent considerable time working with the students, administration, and staff on this problem and he said they made considerable headway for awhile.

  21. Doug Paul Davis

    “But after many years — I didn’t realize this has gone on for 12 years — of allegations, I would think that there would be some reasonable evidence to prove this heinous charge, if it were true.”

    This statement by Mr. Rifkin brings up two very important points that I would like to highlight.

    First, the fact that Mr. Rifkin was unaware that this problem had gone on for 12 years. And in fact, if you talk to people on the HRC in 1986 like Rick Gonzales, Jr., they will tell you it was a problem then. People like Tansey Thomas (sorry to single you out) would probably tell us it has been a problem far longer than that.

    Second, how would you prove it? I ask that not academically or facetiously but because I have come to a dilemma in my relatively brief time dealing with this issue and talking to others who have considerably more experience. What would *prove* that something was racial profiling? I’m not even convinced racial profiling is the right word for it, but it is the common usage term, I’ve also used pretense stops and others use pretext stops.

    Mr. Aaronson and I have kicked this around for quite some time, his suggestion is to get it on tape but unless we get on tape and can demonstrate what the vehicle was doing at the time, it is still tough to demonstrate (let alone prove). Even if we did have that tape, could we prove racial profiling? It seems difficult.

    So it is an illusory term that has quite a bit of anecdotal evidence, but little beyond a reasonable doubt. Meantime, I think every person in Davis who is a minority can tell of a story that they have experienced personally or someone who they know. It is too prevalent and too widespread to dismiss.

    But I still do not know how you would prove it. I’m all ears.

  22. Doug Paul Davis

    “But after many years — I didn’t realize this has gone on for 12 years — of allegations, I would think that there would be some reasonable evidence to prove this heinous charge, if it were true.”

    This statement by Mr. Rifkin brings up two very important points that I would like to highlight.

    First, the fact that Mr. Rifkin was unaware that this problem had gone on for 12 years. And in fact, if you talk to people on the HRC in 1986 like Rick Gonzales, Jr., they will tell you it was a problem then. People like Tansey Thomas (sorry to single you out) would probably tell us it has been a problem far longer than that.

    Second, how would you prove it? I ask that not academically or facetiously but because I have come to a dilemma in my relatively brief time dealing with this issue and talking to others who have considerably more experience. What would *prove* that something was racial profiling? I’m not even convinced racial profiling is the right word for it, but it is the common usage term, I’ve also used pretense stops and others use pretext stops.

    Mr. Aaronson and I have kicked this around for quite some time, his suggestion is to get it on tape but unless we get on tape and can demonstrate what the vehicle was doing at the time, it is still tough to demonstrate (let alone prove). Even if we did have that tape, could we prove racial profiling? It seems difficult.

    So it is an illusory term that has quite a bit of anecdotal evidence, but little beyond a reasonable doubt. Meantime, I think every person in Davis who is a minority can tell of a story that they have experienced personally or someone who they know. It is too prevalent and too widespread to dismiss.

    But I still do not know how you would prove it. I’m all ears.

  23. Doug Paul Davis

    “But after many years — I didn’t realize this has gone on for 12 years — of allegations, I would think that there would be some reasonable evidence to prove this heinous charge, if it were true.”

    This statement by Mr. Rifkin brings up two very important points that I would like to highlight.

    First, the fact that Mr. Rifkin was unaware that this problem had gone on for 12 years. And in fact, if you talk to people on the HRC in 1986 like Rick Gonzales, Jr., they will tell you it was a problem then. People like Tansey Thomas (sorry to single you out) would probably tell us it has been a problem far longer than that.

    Second, how would you prove it? I ask that not academically or facetiously but because I have come to a dilemma in my relatively brief time dealing with this issue and talking to others who have considerably more experience. What would *prove* that something was racial profiling? I’m not even convinced racial profiling is the right word for it, but it is the common usage term, I’ve also used pretense stops and others use pretext stops.

    Mr. Aaronson and I have kicked this around for quite some time, his suggestion is to get it on tape but unless we get on tape and can demonstrate what the vehicle was doing at the time, it is still tough to demonstrate (let alone prove). Even if we did have that tape, could we prove racial profiling? It seems difficult.

    So it is an illusory term that has quite a bit of anecdotal evidence, but little beyond a reasonable doubt. Meantime, I think every person in Davis who is a minority can tell of a story that they have experienced personally or someone who they know. It is too prevalent and too widespread to dismiss.

    But I still do not know how you would prove it. I’m all ears.

  24. Doug Paul Davis

    “But after many years — I didn’t realize this has gone on for 12 years — of allegations, I would think that there would be some reasonable evidence to prove this heinous charge, if it were true.”

    This statement by Mr. Rifkin brings up two very important points that I would like to highlight.

    First, the fact that Mr. Rifkin was unaware that this problem had gone on for 12 years. And in fact, if you talk to people on the HRC in 1986 like Rick Gonzales, Jr., they will tell you it was a problem then. People like Tansey Thomas (sorry to single you out) would probably tell us it has been a problem far longer than that.

    Second, how would you prove it? I ask that not academically or facetiously but because I have come to a dilemma in my relatively brief time dealing with this issue and talking to others who have considerably more experience. What would *prove* that something was racial profiling? I’m not even convinced racial profiling is the right word for it, but it is the common usage term, I’ve also used pretense stops and others use pretext stops.

    Mr. Aaronson and I have kicked this around for quite some time, his suggestion is to get it on tape but unless we get on tape and can demonstrate what the vehicle was doing at the time, it is still tough to demonstrate (let alone prove). Even if we did have that tape, could we prove racial profiling? It seems difficult.

    So it is an illusory term that has quite a bit of anecdotal evidence, but little beyond a reasonable doubt. Meantime, I think every person in Davis who is a minority can tell of a story that they have experienced personally or someone who they know. It is too prevalent and too widespread to dismiss.

    But I still do not know how you would prove it. I’m all ears.

  25. Dave Hart

    Rich Rifkin said: “While I agree that perception is important, it does not trump the facts. It seems that to a certain group of people in Davis — led by the erstwhile HRC radicals — no matter what the facts are, they believe that racial profiling is practiced by the police in Davis.”

    Dang, Rich, you are so white! The same thing can and must be said about too many white folks: No matter what the facts are, they never believe that racial profiling is practiced by the police in Davis.

    You haven’t seen anything because you’re not looking and aren’t on the unpleasant end of it. I’m sure you’ve heard the term DWB (Driving While Black) but apparently you aren’t a believer. Try talking to five black males, picked by yourself, on any day, at the University Mall as an experiment and I’m sure you will get a high percentage of affirmative responses. You will very likely get at least one first hand story and I guarantee you will get second hand accounts of relatives and friends so treated.

    There are none so blind as they who will not see.

  26. Dave Hart

    Rich Rifkin said: “While I agree that perception is important, it does not trump the facts. It seems that to a certain group of people in Davis — led by the erstwhile HRC radicals — no matter what the facts are, they believe that racial profiling is practiced by the police in Davis.”

    Dang, Rich, you are so white! The same thing can and must be said about too many white folks: No matter what the facts are, they never believe that racial profiling is practiced by the police in Davis.

    You haven’t seen anything because you’re not looking and aren’t on the unpleasant end of it. I’m sure you’ve heard the term DWB (Driving While Black) but apparently you aren’t a believer. Try talking to five black males, picked by yourself, on any day, at the University Mall as an experiment and I’m sure you will get a high percentage of affirmative responses. You will very likely get at least one first hand story and I guarantee you will get second hand accounts of relatives and friends so treated.

    There are none so blind as they who will not see.

  27. Dave Hart

    Rich Rifkin said: “While I agree that perception is important, it does not trump the facts. It seems that to a certain group of people in Davis — led by the erstwhile HRC radicals — no matter what the facts are, they believe that racial profiling is practiced by the police in Davis.”

    Dang, Rich, you are so white! The same thing can and must be said about too many white folks: No matter what the facts are, they never believe that racial profiling is practiced by the police in Davis.

    You haven’t seen anything because you’re not looking and aren’t on the unpleasant end of it. I’m sure you’ve heard the term DWB (Driving While Black) but apparently you aren’t a believer. Try talking to five black males, picked by yourself, on any day, at the University Mall as an experiment and I’m sure you will get a high percentage of affirmative responses. You will very likely get at least one first hand story and I guarantee you will get second hand accounts of relatives and friends so treated.

    There are none so blind as they who will not see.

  28. Dave Hart

    Rich Rifkin said: “While I agree that perception is important, it does not trump the facts. It seems that to a certain group of people in Davis — led by the erstwhile HRC radicals — no matter what the facts are, they believe that racial profiling is practiced by the police in Davis.”

    Dang, Rich, you are so white! The same thing can and must be said about too many white folks: No matter what the facts are, they never believe that racial profiling is practiced by the police in Davis.

    You haven’t seen anything because you’re not looking and aren’t on the unpleasant end of it. I’m sure you’ve heard the term DWB (Driving While Black) but apparently you aren’t a believer. Try talking to five black males, picked by yourself, on any day, at the University Mall as an experiment and I’m sure you will get a high percentage of affirmative responses. You will very likely get at least one first hand story and I guarantee you will get second hand accounts of relatives and friends so treated.

    There are none so blind as they who will not see.

  29. Rich Rifkin

    “Dang, Rich, you are so white!”

    I consider this comment completely out of line and inappropriate. You don’t know me and should be able to make a rational argument without personalizing it to me.

    Of course, your comments will never be removed by Greenwald’s gustapo, because they offend me, not him.

    “The same thing can and must be said about too many white folks: No matter what the facts are, they never believe that racial profiling is practiced by the police in Davis.”

    The irony in your comment is that this blog’s author, who in some sense has been pushing this issue, is of the same Ashkenazi ethnic background that I am. And as such, it shows that one’s immutable characteristics don’t define one’s belief on any issues. However, you apparently are not willing to judge me on the content of my character or my argument, but rather you focus on the color of my skin. MLK Jr’s enemies would be proud of you, Dave.

    Further, I have not said that I know that ‘racial profiling’ does not exist or has never been practiced in Davis. I have simply said that it has been alleged without any reasonable proof.

    I now think that these allegations won’t die, because the allegers are not looking for proof, they are looking for revenge.

    “You haven’t seen anything because you’re not looking and aren’t on the unpleasant end of it.”

    It’s not true that I am ‘not looking.’ In fact, I have been looking for some solid evidence of this heinous allegation for years. When you or anyone else finds something reasonable, please show it to me.

    “Try talking to five black males, picked by yourself, on any day, at the University Mall as an experiment and I’m sure you will get a high percentage of affirmative responses.”

    That goes back to Chief Handy’s point about perception. It completely fails an objectivity analysis.

    David Greenwald asks, “But I still do not know how you would prove [racial profiling]?”

    I think there are at least two reasonable approaches. (Perhaps there are others that I have not considered.)

    First, you have to decide if the ‘racial profiling’ is a departmental policy, whereby in writing or in speech or in a wink and a nod a commanding officer has instructed all or some of his subordinates to view blacks, for example, as suspicious and to do whatever it takes to detain them, under the assumption that they are likely guilty of some crime.

    To prove that, one would have to either find documentation which spells out this policy or to get someone from within the police department (or someone who has left the Davis Police Department) to testify that this was in fact the policy, spoken, written or just understood.

    While it seems unlikely that a current officer in the DPD would cross the thin blue line and spill the beans on his colleagues, if this ‘policy’ ever existed, I know from studies of conspiracies that once a conspiracy goes beyond 7 people, it is very likely that the beans will ultimately be spilled. (See for example, Mancur Olsen’s “The Logic of Collective Action.) That is, an ex-officer who knew this was going on when he was with the DPD would attest to it, and others would likely confirm his attestation. That would be proof for one form of ‘racial profiling.’

    A second type of ‘racial profiling’ could be against departmental policy, but done by a small number of rogue officers on their own initiative. That is, one group of Davis Police Officers, under no instruction to do so, determines that blacks, for example, are likely guilty of some criminal or mischievous behavior. Therefore, these rogue officers harrass, detain, arrest and charge black suspects disproportionately, compared with other Davis Police Department officers.

    To prove this second type of ‘racial profiling,’ one would have to compare the statistics of each officer with all others, controlling as much as possible for which shift each officer works and which part of town he patrols. The relevant statistics would not just be the detention and arrest records, but it would include the harrassment complaint records and the numbers of cases where an arrest was made but no conviction was achieved.

    If it is a fact that there are racist rogue cops on the DPD, then they will have arrested far more blacks, for example, than their colleagues, they will have had more complaints of mistreatment by blacks lodged against them than their colleagues and among their arrests of blacks, they will have a lower conviction rate in those arrests.

    Again, it is certainly possible that there is ‘racial profiling.’ It is provable, if it exists. (I don’t think the negative could ever be proven, though.) But so far, I have not seen any rational proof of its existence.

  30. Rich Rifkin

    “Dang, Rich, you are so white!”

    I consider this comment completely out of line and inappropriate. You don’t know me and should be able to make a rational argument without personalizing it to me.

    Of course, your comments will never be removed by Greenwald’s gustapo, because they offend me, not him.

    “The same thing can and must be said about too many white folks: No matter what the facts are, they never believe that racial profiling is practiced by the police in Davis.”

    The irony in your comment is that this blog’s author, who in some sense has been pushing this issue, is of the same Ashkenazi ethnic background that I am. And as such, it shows that one’s immutable characteristics don’t define one’s belief on any issues. However, you apparently are not willing to judge me on the content of my character or my argument, but rather you focus on the color of my skin. MLK Jr’s enemies would be proud of you, Dave.

    Further, I have not said that I know that ‘racial profiling’ does not exist or has never been practiced in Davis. I have simply said that it has been alleged without any reasonable proof.

    I now think that these allegations won’t die, because the allegers are not looking for proof, they are looking for revenge.

    “You haven’t seen anything because you’re not looking and aren’t on the unpleasant end of it.”

    It’s not true that I am ‘not looking.’ In fact, I have been looking for some solid evidence of this heinous allegation for years. When you or anyone else finds something reasonable, please show it to me.

    “Try talking to five black males, picked by yourself, on any day, at the University Mall as an experiment and I’m sure you will get a high percentage of affirmative responses.”

    That goes back to Chief Handy’s point about perception. It completely fails an objectivity analysis.

    David Greenwald asks, “But I still do not know how you would prove [racial profiling]?”

    I think there are at least two reasonable approaches. (Perhaps there are others that I have not considered.)

    First, you have to decide if the ‘racial profiling’ is a departmental policy, whereby in writing or in speech or in a wink and a nod a commanding officer has instructed all or some of his subordinates to view blacks, for example, as suspicious and to do whatever it takes to detain them, under the assumption that they are likely guilty of some crime.

    To prove that, one would have to either find documentation which spells out this policy or to get someone from within the police department (or someone who has left the Davis Police Department) to testify that this was in fact the policy, spoken, written or just understood.

    While it seems unlikely that a current officer in the DPD would cross the thin blue line and spill the beans on his colleagues, if this ‘policy’ ever existed, I know from studies of conspiracies that once a conspiracy goes beyond 7 people, it is very likely that the beans will ultimately be spilled. (See for example, Mancur Olsen’s “The Logic of Collective Action.) That is, an ex-officer who knew this was going on when he was with the DPD would attest to it, and others would likely confirm his attestation. That would be proof for one form of ‘racial profiling.’

    A second type of ‘racial profiling’ could be against departmental policy, but done by a small number of rogue officers on their own initiative. That is, one group of Davis Police Officers, under no instruction to do so, determines that blacks, for example, are likely guilty of some criminal or mischievous behavior. Therefore, these rogue officers harrass, detain, arrest and charge black suspects disproportionately, compared with other Davis Police Department officers.

    To prove this second type of ‘racial profiling,’ one would have to compare the statistics of each officer with all others, controlling as much as possible for which shift each officer works and which part of town he patrols. The relevant statistics would not just be the detention and arrest records, but it would include the harrassment complaint records and the numbers of cases where an arrest was made but no conviction was achieved.

    If it is a fact that there are racist rogue cops on the DPD, then they will have arrested far more blacks, for example, than their colleagues, they will have had more complaints of mistreatment by blacks lodged against them than their colleagues and among their arrests of blacks, they will have a lower conviction rate in those arrests.

    Again, it is certainly possible that there is ‘racial profiling.’ It is provable, if it exists. (I don’t think the negative could ever be proven, though.) But so far, I have not seen any rational proof of its existence.

  31. Rich Rifkin

    “Dang, Rich, you are so white!”

    I consider this comment completely out of line and inappropriate. You don’t know me and should be able to make a rational argument without personalizing it to me.

    Of course, your comments will never be removed by Greenwald’s gustapo, because they offend me, not him.

    “The same thing can and must be said about too many white folks: No matter what the facts are, they never believe that racial profiling is practiced by the police in Davis.”

    The irony in your comment is that this blog’s author, who in some sense has been pushing this issue, is of the same Ashkenazi ethnic background that I am. And as such, it shows that one’s immutable characteristics don’t define one’s belief on any issues. However, you apparently are not willing to judge me on the content of my character or my argument, but rather you focus on the color of my skin. MLK Jr’s enemies would be proud of you, Dave.

    Further, I have not said that I know that ‘racial profiling’ does not exist or has never been practiced in Davis. I have simply said that it has been alleged without any reasonable proof.

    I now think that these allegations won’t die, because the allegers are not looking for proof, they are looking for revenge.

    “You haven’t seen anything because you’re not looking and aren’t on the unpleasant end of it.”

    It’s not true that I am ‘not looking.’ In fact, I have been looking for some solid evidence of this heinous allegation for years. When you or anyone else finds something reasonable, please show it to me.

    “Try talking to five black males, picked by yourself, on any day, at the University Mall as an experiment and I’m sure you will get a high percentage of affirmative responses.”

    That goes back to Chief Handy’s point about perception. It completely fails an objectivity analysis.

    David Greenwald asks, “But I still do not know how you would prove [racial profiling]?”

    I think there are at least two reasonable approaches. (Perhaps there are others that I have not considered.)

    First, you have to decide if the ‘racial profiling’ is a departmental policy, whereby in writing or in speech or in a wink and a nod a commanding officer has instructed all or some of his subordinates to view blacks, for example, as suspicious and to do whatever it takes to detain them, under the assumption that they are likely guilty of some crime.

    To prove that, one would have to either find documentation which spells out this policy or to get someone from within the police department (or someone who has left the Davis Police Department) to testify that this was in fact the policy, spoken, written or just understood.

    While it seems unlikely that a current officer in the DPD would cross the thin blue line and spill the beans on his colleagues, if this ‘policy’ ever existed, I know from studies of conspiracies that once a conspiracy goes beyond 7 people, it is very likely that the beans will ultimately be spilled. (See for example, Mancur Olsen’s “The Logic of Collective Action.) That is, an ex-officer who knew this was going on when he was with the DPD would attest to it, and others would likely confirm his attestation. That would be proof for one form of ‘racial profiling.’

    A second type of ‘racial profiling’ could be against departmental policy, but done by a small number of rogue officers on their own initiative. That is, one group of Davis Police Officers, under no instruction to do so, determines that blacks, for example, are likely guilty of some criminal or mischievous behavior. Therefore, these rogue officers harrass, detain, arrest and charge black suspects disproportionately, compared with other Davis Police Department officers.

    To prove this second type of ‘racial profiling,’ one would have to compare the statistics of each officer with all others, controlling as much as possible for which shift each officer works and which part of town he patrols. The relevant statistics would not just be the detention and arrest records, but it would include the harrassment complaint records and the numbers of cases where an arrest was made but no conviction was achieved.

    If it is a fact that there are racist rogue cops on the DPD, then they will have arrested far more blacks, for example, than their colleagues, they will have had more complaints of mistreatment by blacks lodged against them than their colleagues and among their arrests of blacks, they will have a lower conviction rate in those arrests.

    Again, it is certainly possible that there is ‘racial profiling.’ It is provable, if it exists. (I don’t think the negative could ever be proven, though.) But so far, I have not seen any rational proof of its existence.

  32. Rich Rifkin

    “Dang, Rich, you are so white!”

    I consider this comment completely out of line and inappropriate. You don’t know me and should be able to make a rational argument without personalizing it to me.

    Of course, your comments will never be removed by Greenwald’s gustapo, because they offend me, not him.

    “The same thing can and must be said about too many white folks: No matter what the facts are, they never believe that racial profiling is practiced by the police in Davis.”

    The irony in your comment is that this blog’s author, who in some sense has been pushing this issue, is of the same Ashkenazi ethnic background that I am. And as such, it shows that one’s immutable characteristics don’t define one’s belief on any issues. However, you apparently are not willing to judge me on the content of my character or my argument, but rather you focus on the color of my skin. MLK Jr’s enemies would be proud of you, Dave.

    Further, I have not said that I know that ‘racial profiling’ does not exist or has never been practiced in Davis. I have simply said that it has been alleged without any reasonable proof.

    I now think that these allegations won’t die, because the allegers are not looking for proof, they are looking for revenge.

    “You haven’t seen anything because you’re not looking and aren’t on the unpleasant end of it.”

    It’s not true that I am ‘not looking.’ In fact, I have been looking for some solid evidence of this heinous allegation for years. When you or anyone else finds something reasonable, please show it to me.

    “Try talking to five black males, picked by yourself, on any day, at the University Mall as an experiment and I’m sure you will get a high percentage of affirmative responses.”

    That goes back to Chief Handy’s point about perception. It completely fails an objectivity analysis.

    David Greenwald asks, “But I still do not know how you would prove [racial profiling]?”

    I think there are at least two reasonable approaches. (Perhaps there are others that I have not considered.)

    First, you have to decide if the ‘racial profiling’ is a departmental policy, whereby in writing or in speech or in a wink and a nod a commanding officer has instructed all or some of his subordinates to view blacks, for example, as suspicious and to do whatever it takes to detain them, under the assumption that they are likely guilty of some crime.

    To prove that, one would have to either find documentation which spells out this policy or to get someone from within the police department (or someone who has left the Davis Police Department) to testify that this was in fact the policy, spoken, written or just understood.

    While it seems unlikely that a current officer in the DPD would cross the thin blue line and spill the beans on his colleagues, if this ‘policy’ ever existed, I know from studies of conspiracies that once a conspiracy goes beyond 7 people, it is very likely that the beans will ultimately be spilled. (See for example, Mancur Olsen’s “The Logic of Collective Action.) That is, an ex-officer who knew this was going on when he was with the DPD would attest to it, and others would likely confirm his attestation. That would be proof for one form of ‘racial profiling.’

    A second type of ‘racial profiling’ could be against departmental policy, but done by a small number of rogue officers on their own initiative. That is, one group of Davis Police Officers, under no instruction to do so, determines that blacks, for example, are likely guilty of some criminal or mischievous behavior. Therefore, these rogue officers harrass, detain, arrest and charge black suspects disproportionately, compared with other Davis Police Department officers.

    To prove this second type of ‘racial profiling,’ one would have to compare the statistics of each officer with all others, controlling as much as possible for which shift each officer works and which part of town he patrols. The relevant statistics would not just be the detention and arrest records, but it would include the harrassment complaint records and the numbers of cases where an arrest was made but no conviction was achieved.

    If it is a fact that there are racist rogue cops on the DPD, then they will have arrested far more blacks, for example, than their colleagues, they will have had more complaints of mistreatment by blacks lodged against them than their colleagues and among their arrests of blacks, they will have a lower conviction rate in those arrests.

    Again, it is certainly possible that there is ‘racial profiling.’ It is provable, if it exists. (I don’t think the negative could ever be proven, though.) But so far, I have not seen any rational proof of its existence.

  33. Rich Rifkin

    In the above examples, I used ‘blacks’ for the tests. However, the test group could just as easily be dark-skinned people of various races, or dark-skinned Latinos or whites or Asians or any combined subset.

  34. Rich Rifkin

    In the above examples, I used ‘blacks’ for the tests. However, the test group could just as easily be dark-skinned people of various races, or dark-skinned Latinos or whites or Asians or any combined subset.

  35. Rich Rifkin

    In the above examples, I used ‘blacks’ for the tests. However, the test group could just as easily be dark-skinned people of various races, or dark-skinned Latinos or whites or Asians or any combined subset.

  36. Rich Rifkin

    In the above examples, I used ‘blacks’ for the tests. However, the test group could just as easily be dark-skinned people of various races, or dark-skinned Latinos or whites or Asians or any combined subset.

  37. Doug Paul Davis

    Rich:

    I do not see either of those as solutions to the connundrum of proving racial profiling. The primary reason for that is that neither scenario accurately describes the problem as I see it. I do not see it as a departmental policy nor do I see it as a bunch of rogue cops who are racist–although there may be a bunch of rogue cops who are racist.

    I see this primarily as a problem of incentive structure–police officers are encouraged to make pretense stops, not because of some racist policy but because it is considered good police work.

    Second, police officers cross lines because of poor training, oversight, leadership, and supervision.

    Finally I remain concerned about your ability to deal with this issue given you lack of awareness of the issue given how long it has been going on and how long you have lived in this community.

  38. Doug Paul Davis

    Rich:

    I do not see either of those as solutions to the connundrum of proving racial profiling. The primary reason for that is that neither scenario accurately describes the problem as I see it. I do not see it as a departmental policy nor do I see it as a bunch of rogue cops who are racist–although there may be a bunch of rogue cops who are racist.

    I see this primarily as a problem of incentive structure–police officers are encouraged to make pretense stops, not because of some racist policy but because it is considered good police work.

    Second, police officers cross lines because of poor training, oversight, leadership, and supervision.

    Finally I remain concerned about your ability to deal with this issue given you lack of awareness of the issue given how long it has been going on and how long you have lived in this community.

  39. Doug Paul Davis

    Rich:

    I do not see either of those as solutions to the connundrum of proving racial profiling. The primary reason for that is that neither scenario accurately describes the problem as I see it. I do not see it as a departmental policy nor do I see it as a bunch of rogue cops who are racist–although there may be a bunch of rogue cops who are racist.

    I see this primarily as a problem of incentive structure–police officers are encouraged to make pretense stops, not because of some racist policy but because it is considered good police work.

    Second, police officers cross lines because of poor training, oversight, leadership, and supervision.

    Finally I remain concerned about your ability to deal with this issue given you lack of awareness of the issue given how long it has been going on and how long you have lived in this community.

  40. Doug Paul Davis

    Rich:

    I do not see either of those as solutions to the connundrum of proving racial profiling. The primary reason for that is that neither scenario accurately describes the problem as I see it. I do not see it as a departmental policy nor do I see it as a bunch of rogue cops who are racist–although there may be a bunch of rogue cops who are racist.

    I see this primarily as a problem of incentive structure–police officers are encouraged to make pretense stops, not because of some racist policy but because it is considered good police work.

    Second, police officers cross lines because of poor training, oversight, leadership, and supervision.

    Finally I remain concerned about your ability to deal with this issue given you lack of awareness of the issue given how long it has been going on and how long you have lived in this community.

  41. tansey thomas

    Rich, reading your comments helps me focus on what I need to say and explain about racism in Davis. I am working on a couple of papers, one, an advisory handbook for African Americans about living black in Davis and a paper explaining racism for the Interfaith Forum on Racism. I am bogged down right now (I’ve been reading back copies of the Davis Enterprise) but your comments inspire me to put my effort on the fast track. I will ask to do a special commentary for the Vanguard in a couple of weeks. Thanks for sharing your opinion.

  42. tansey thomas

    Rich, reading your comments helps me focus on what I need to say and explain about racism in Davis. I am working on a couple of papers, one, an advisory handbook for African Americans about living black in Davis and a paper explaining racism for the Interfaith Forum on Racism. I am bogged down right now (I’ve been reading back copies of the Davis Enterprise) but your comments inspire me to put my effort on the fast track. I will ask to do a special commentary for the Vanguard in a couple of weeks. Thanks for sharing your opinion.

  43. tansey thomas

    Rich, reading your comments helps me focus on what I need to say and explain about racism in Davis. I am working on a couple of papers, one, an advisory handbook for African Americans about living black in Davis and a paper explaining racism for the Interfaith Forum on Racism. I am bogged down right now (I’ve been reading back copies of the Davis Enterprise) but your comments inspire me to put my effort on the fast track. I will ask to do a special commentary for the Vanguard in a couple of weeks. Thanks for sharing your opinion.

  44. tansey thomas

    Rich, reading your comments helps me focus on what I need to say and explain about racism in Davis. I am working on a couple of papers, one, an advisory handbook for African Americans about living black in Davis and a paper explaining racism for the Interfaith Forum on Racism. I am bogged down right now (I’ve been reading back copies of the Davis Enterprise) but your comments inspire me to put my effort on the fast track. I will ask to do a special commentary for the Vanguard in a couple of weeks. Thanks for sharing your opinion.

  45. Don Shor

    Try talking to five black males, picked by yourself, on any day, at the University Mall as an experiment and I’m sure you will get a high percentage of affirmative responses.
    I’m sure that if you asked five teenage males, of any ethnic background, the same questions about whether they are singled out for harassment by the Davis police, and you’ll get an equally high percentage of affirmative responses. My son’s friends have complained to me about this. I don’t know whether their concern is real or perceived.
    But I am very, very white, so what would I know? just kidding….

  46. Don Shor

    Try talking to five black males, picked by yourself, on any day, at the University Mall as an experiment and I’m sure you will get a high percentage of affirmative responses.
    I’m sure that if you asked five teenage males, of any ethnic background, the same questions about whether they are singled out for harassment by the Davis police, and you’ll get an equally high percentage of affirmative responses. My son’s friends have complained to me about this. I don’t know whether their concern is real or perceived.
    But I am very, very white, so what would I know? just kidding….

  47. Don Shor

    Try talking to five black males, picked by yourself, on any day, at the University Mall as an experiment and I’m sure you will get a high percentage of affirmative responses.
    I’m sure that if you asked five teenage males, of any ethnic background, the same questions about whether they are singled out for harassment by the Davis police, and you’ll get an equally high percentage of affirmative responses. My son’s friends have complained to me about this. I don’t know whether their concern is real or perceived.
    But I am very, very white, so what would I know? just kidding….

  48. Don Shor

    Try talking to five black males, picked by yourself, on any day, at the University Mall as an experiment and I’m sure you will get a high percentage of affirmative responses.
    I’m sure that if you asked five teenage males, of any ethnic background, the same questions about whether they are singled out for harassment by the Davis police, and you’ll get an equally high percentage of affirmative responses. My son’s friends have complained to me about this. I don’t know whether their concern is real or perceived.
    But I am very, very white, so what would I know? just kidding….

  49. Don Shor

    Tansey, re: I am working on a couple of papers, one, an advisory handbook for African Americans about living black in Davis and a paper explaining racism for the Interfaith Forum on Racism.
    Has anyone ever told you that you are an incredible community resource?!
    Would you like to set up a web site for such articles? I’d be happy to help.

  50. Don Shor

    Tansey, re: I am working on a couple of papers, one, an advisory handbook for African Americans about living black in Davis and a paper explaining racism for the Interfaith Forum on Racism.
    Has anyone ever told you that you are an incredible community resource?!
    Would you like to set up a web site for such articles? I’d be happy to help.

  51. Don Shor

    Tansey, re: I am working on a couple of papers, one, an advisory handbook for African Americans about living black in Davis and a paper explaining racism for the Interfaith Forum on Racism.
    Has anyone ever told you that you are an incredible community resource?!
    Would you like to set up a web site for such articles? I’d be happy to help.

  52. Don Shor

    Tansey, re: I am working on a couple of papers, one, an advisory handbook for African Americans about living black in Davis and a paper explaining racism for the Interfaith Forum on Racism.
    Has anyone ever told you that you are an incredible community resource?!
    Would you like to set up a web site for such articles? I’d be happy to help.

  53. Rich Rifkin

    “Finally I remain concerned about your ability to deal with this issue given you lack of awareness of the issue given how long it has been going on and how long you have lived in this community.”

    My personal ignorance or naivete, as you perceive it, is not really relevant to the question of whether or not the police in Davis or some of the police in Davis are practicing ‘racial profiling.’

    Second, I have heard some people of all hues, not just darker hues, complain about the police for far longer than you have lived in my town. Whether or not those complaints were justified or not does not prove ‘racial profiling’ one way or the other. What I did not realize was that for a dozen years there has been a politicized movement to castigate the cops over this issue.

    Also, I have known blacks and other non-whites in Davis for more than 40 years. Far longer than you have lived here. I still don’t know of a credible case where the cops have mistreated an innocent person in Davis because that person was black, brown or some other color. I don’t have any doubt that some blacks, browns, whites, yellows, reds, etc have been mistreated, or believe that they have been mistreated by the police. I personally have been pulled over by the police in Davis for seemingly no reason and let go still unsure what it was that inspired the cop to follow me for 6 blocks and then pull me over.

    Until the case is proven, and it can be proven if my suggested course of inquiry is followed, I will continue to doubt the claim that the problem involves racial animus, which is exactly what ‘racial profiling’ suggests.

  54. Rich Rifkin

    “Finally I remain concerned about your ability to deal with this issue given you lack of awareness of the issue given how long it has been going on and how long you have lived in this community.”

    My personal ignorance or naivete, as you perceive it, is not really relevant to the question of whether or not the police in Davis or some of the police in Davis are practicing ‘racial profiling.’

    Second, I have heard some people of all hues, not just darker hues, complain about the police for far longer than you have lived in my town. Whether or not those complaints were justified or not does not prove ‘racial profiling’ one way or the other. What I did not realize was that for a dozen years there has been a politicized movement to castigate the cops over this issue.

    Also, I have known blacks and other non-whites in Davis for more than 40 years. Far longer than you have lived here. I still don’t know of a credible case where the cops have mistreated an innocent person in Davis because that person was black, brown or some other color. I don’t have any doubt that some blacks, browns, whites, yellows, reds, etc have been mistreated, or believe that they have been mistreated by the police. I personally have been pulled over by the police in Davis for seemingly no reason and let go still unsure what it was that inspired the cop to follow me for 6 blocks and then pull me over.

    Until the case is proven, and it can be proven if my suggested course of inquiry is followed, I will continue to doubt the claim that the problem involves racial animus, which is exactly what ‘racial profiling’ suggests.

  55. Rich Rifkin

    “Finally I remain concerned about your ability to deal with this issue given you lack of awareness of the issue given how long it has been going on and how long you have lived in this community.”

    My personal ignorance or naivete, as you perceive it, is not really relevant to the question of whether or not the police in Davis or some of the police in Davis are practicing ‘racial profiling.’

    Second, I have heard some people of all hues, not just darker hues, complain about the police for far longer than you have lived in my town. Whether or not those complaints were justified or not does not prove ‘racial profiling’ one way or the other. What I did not realize was that for a dozen years there has been a politicized movement to castigate the cops over this issue.

    Also, I have known blacks and other non-whites in Davis for more than 40 years. Far longer than you have lived here. I still don’t know of a credible case where the cops have mistreated an innocent person in Davis because that person was black, brown or some other color. I don’t have any doubt that some blacks, browns, whites, yellows, reds, etc have been mistreated, or believe that they have been mistreated by the police. I personally have been pulled over by the police in Davis for seemingly no reason and let go still unsure what it was that inspired the cop to follow me for 6 blocks and then pull me over.

    Until the case is proven, and it can be proven if my suggested course of inquiry is followed, I will continue to doubt the claim that the problem involves racial animus, which is exactly what ‘racial profiling’ suggests.

  56. Rich Rifkin

    “Finally I remain concerned about your ability to deal with this issue given you lack of awareness of the issue given how long it has been going on and how long you have lived in this community.”

    My personal ignorance or naivete, as you perceive it, is not really relevant to the question of whether or not the police in Davis or some of the police in Davis are practicing ‘racial profiling.’

    Second, I have heard some people of all hues, not just darker hues, complain about the police for far longer than you have lived in my town. Whether or not those complaints were justified or not does not prove ‘racial profiling’ one way or the other. What I did not realize was that for a dozen years there has been a politicized movement to castigate the cops over this issue.

    Also, I have known blacks and other non-whites in Davis for more than 40 years. Far longer than you have lived here. I still don’t know of a credible case where the cops have mistreated an innocent person in Davis because that person was black, brown or some other color. I don’t have any doubt that some blacks, browns, whites, yellows, reds, etc have been mistreated, or believe that they have been mistreated by the police. I personally have been pulled over by the police in Davis for seemingly no reason and let go still unsure what it was that inspired the cop to follow me for 6 blocks and then pull me over.

    Until the case is proven, and it can be proven if my suggested course of inquiry is followed, I will continue to doubt the claim that the problem involves racial animus, which is exactly what ‘racial profiling’ suggests.

  57. Doug Paul Davis

    “My personal ignorance or naivete, as you perceive it, is not really relevant to the question of whether or not the police in Davis or some of the police in Davis are practicing ‘racial profiling.'”

    It is relevent to your ability to judge this issue and the knowledge and interaction (or lack thereof) that you have incurred over those forty years that I know a great deal more about this issue and am and have been aware of it far longer than you. However, whatever knowledge I have on this issue, pales compared to people like Tansey Thomas and Rick Gonzales, Jr and Calvin Handy and others who have been aware and dealing with this issue for a long time.

    Your very discussion of what would indicate proof belies your fundamental misunderstanding of the issue here. Your demand for proof is focusing on the wrong aspects of the issue. You obviously believe that there is an accusation of either maliciousness and / or formal directive, that from my limited experience, does not fit what we are hearing about or experiencing.

    The fact of the matter is that the police seem to be driving around looking for things out of the ordinary and people who do not look as if they belong. They then look for an additional reason to pull them over. But the original traits that they look for are linked to racial and socioeconomic strata of people. Now how do we prove they are behaving out of prejudice or are they? Is it prejudice or simply poor training? The red flag for me is when I hear about wealthy minorities treated the same way. That indicates that it is not merely a socioeconomic factor.

    I will be talking in the coming weeks to two former Davis police officers and it will be interesting to see what they are willing to say on the record. Off the record, I am pretty convinced that this is going on, I just don’t know how to prove it by your standards.

  58. Doug Paul Davis

    “My personal ignorance or naivete, as you perceive it, is not really relevant to the question of whether or not the police in Davis or some of the police in Davis are practicing ‘racial profiling.'”

    It is relevent to your ability to judge this issue and the knowledge and interaction (or lack thereof) that you have incurred over those forty years that I know a great deal more about this issue and am and have been aware of it far longer than you. However, whatever knowledge I have on this issue, pales compared to people like Tansey Thomas and Rick Gonzales, Jr and Calvin Handy and others who have been aware and dealing with this issue for a long time.

    Your very discussion of what would indicate proof belies your fundamental misunderstanding of the issue here. Your demand for proof is focusing on the wrong aspects of the issue. You obviously believe that there is an accusation of either maliciousness and / or formal directive, that from my limited experience, does not fit what we are hearing about or experiencing.

    The fact of the matter is that the police seem to be driving around looking for things out of the ordinary and people who do not look as if they belong. They then look for an additional reason to pull them over. But the original traits that they look for are linked to racial and socioeconomic strata of people. Now how do we prove they are behaving out of prejudice or are they? Is it prejudice or simply poor training? The red flag for me is when I hear about wealthy minorities treated the same way. That indicates that it is not merely a socioeconomic factor.

    I will be talking in the coming weeks to two former Davis police officers and it will be interesting to see what they are willing to say on the record. Off the record, I am pretty convinced that this is going on, I just don’t know how to prove it by your standards.

  59. Doug Paul Davis

    “My personal ignorance or naivete, as you perceive it, is not really relevant to the question of whether or not the police in Davis or some of the police in Davis are practicing ‘racial profiling.'”

    It is relevent to your ability to judge this issue and the knowledge and interaction (or lack thereof) that you have incurred over those forty years that I know a great deal more about this issue and am and have been aware of it far longer than you. However, whatever knowledge I have on this issue, pales compared to people like Tansey Thomas and Rick Gonzales, Jr and Calvin Handy and others who have been aware and dealing with this issue for a long time.

    Your very discussion of what would indicate proof belies your fundamental misunderstanding of the issue here. Your demand for proof is focusing on the wrong aspects of the issue. You obviously believe that there is an accusation of either maliciousness and / or formal directive, that from my limited experience, does not fit what we are hearing about or experiencing.

    The fact of the matter is that the police seem to be driving around looking for things out of the ordinary and people who do not look as if they belong. They then look for an additional reason to pull them over. But the original traits that they look for are linked to racial and socioeconomic strata of people. Now how do we prove they are behaving out of prejudice or are they? Is it prejudice or simply poor training? The red flag for me is when I hear about wealthy minorities treated the same way. That indicates that it is not merely a socioeconomic factor.

    I will be talking in the coming weeks to two former Davis police officers and it will be interesting to see what they are willing to say on the record. Off the record, I am pretty convinced that this is going on, I just don’t know how to prove it by your standards.

  60. Doug Paul Davis

    “My personal ignorance or naivete, as you perceive it, is not really relevant to the question of whether or not the police in Davis or some of the police in Davis are practicing ‘racial profiling.'”

    It is relevent to your ability to judge this issue and the knowledge and interaction (or lack thereof) that you have incurred over those forty years that I know a great deal more about this issue and am and have been aware of it far longer than you. However, whatever knowledge I have on this issue, pales compared to people like Tansey Thomas and Rick Gonzales, Jr and Calvin Handy and others who have been aware and dealing with this issue for a long time.

    Your very discussion of what would indicate proof belies your fundamental misunderstanding of the issue here. Your demand for proof is focusing on the wrong aspects of the issue. You obviously believe that there is an accusation of either maliciousness and / or formal directive, that from my limited experience, does not fit what we are hearing about or experiencing.

    The fact of the matter is that the police seem to be driving around looking for things out of the ordinary and people who do not look as if they belong. They then look for an additional reason to pull them over. But the original traits that they look for are linked to racial and socioeconomic strata of people. Now how do we prove they are behaving out of prejudice or are they? Is it prejudice or simply poor training? The red flag for me is when I hear about wealthy minorities treated the same way. That indicates that it is not merely a socioeconomic factor.

    I will be talking in the coming weeks to two former Davis police officers and it will be interesting to see what they are willing to say on the record. Off the record, I am pretty convinced that this is going on, I just don’t know how to prove it by your standards.

  61. Anonymous

    The Davis Police may have very little reason to want to talk to someone in order to pull someone over. There is a lot that we might not be aware of, such as a crime in the area with a vague description of a car or just a “black man in his 20’s.” The fault may be in part attributed to the witnesses description. If a white person sees a crime committed by white person, description would not be “a white person in a blue car.” It would be more like “the guy was white, with greasy dark brown hair, a day old beard, wearing sunglasses, a brown jacket and jeans and a earring through his left eyebrow driving a blue car.” I think that it must be kept in mind that black citizens in this town may be sufficiently infrequent that a description stops at “black” without further details. We need to look at our own biases and prejudices as witnesses and victims of crime too.

  62. Anonymous

    The Davis Police may have very little reason to want to talk to someone in order to pull someone over. There is a lot that we might not be aware of, such as a crime in the area with a vague description of a car or just a “black man in his 20’s.” The fault may be in part attributed to the witnesses description. If a white person sees a crime committed by white person, description would not be “a white person in a blue car.” It would be more like “the guy was white, with greasy dark brown hair, a day old beard, wearing sunglasses, a brown jacket and jeans and a earring through his left eyebrow driving a blue car.” I think that it must be kept in mind that black citizens in this town may be sufficiently infrequent that a description stops at “black” without further details. We need to look at our own biases and prejudices as witnesses and victims of crime too.

  63. Anonymous

    The Davis Police may have very little reason to want to talk to someone in order to pull someone over. There is a lot that we might not be aware of, such as a crime in the area with a vague description of a car or just a “black man in his 20’s.” The fault may be in part attributed to the witnesses description. If a white person sees a crime committed by white person, description would not be “a white person in a blue car.” It would be more like “the guy was white, with greasy dark brown hair, a day old beard, wearing sunglasses, a brown jacket and jeans and a earring through his left eyebrow driving a blue car.” I think that it must be kept in mind that black citizens in this town may be sufficiently infrequent that a description stops at “black” without further details. We need to look at our own biases and prejudices as witnesses and victims of crime too.

  64. Anonymous

    The Davis Police may have very little reason to want to talk to someone in order to pull someone over. There is a lot that we might not be aware of, such as a crime in the area with a vague description of a car or just a “black man in his 20’s.” The fault may be in part attributed to the witnesses description. If a white person sees a crime committed by white person, description would not be “a white person in a blue car.” It would be more like “the guy was white, with greasy dark brown hair, a day old beard, wearing sunglasses, a brown jacket and jeans and a earring through his left eyebrow driving a blue car.” I think that it must be kept in mind that black citizens in this town may be sufficiently infrequent that a description stops at “black” without further details. We need to look at our own biases and prejudices as witnesses and victims of crime too.

  65. Dave Hart

    Hey, Rich, looks like you’re the one with your panties in a twist this time. Regardless of your heritage, you look pretty white in your Enterprise photo and, I would assume, to most DPD, CHP or any other public employee with a gun and the authority to use it. I didn’t make my comment to offend you, but to make the very point that you label “inappropriate” and “out of line”. Quoting myself, “Dang, Rich, you are so white! The same thing can and must be said about too many white folks: No matter what the facts are, they never believe that racial profiling is practiced by the police in Davis.”

    It’s rational to point this out because an observer’s point of view is crucial to what he sees. He cannot separate himself from it. He can’t see the flies in his eyes because he has flies in his eyes, to quote from “Catch 22”. This issue of white privilege and blindness to what that means is a fundamental problem in American life.

    When you rise and shine every morning and prepare to engage the day, you do not burden yourself with the fact of your skin color. In your case you probably think “What a smart, handsome guy”, then you’re out the door to face the world. If you do not have that white skin or can pass for white, you gird yourself before leaving the house with the necessary emotional armor to deal with the many and constant small, nearly imperceptible glances or reactions that will be directed to you during the course of your day because of the single fact of your skin color.

    Rich, I’m not “judging” you. Just making an observation that pertains to most people who are white who have never grappled with the reality of white privilege. Unexamined White privilege is like a disease because it allows you to make embarrassing statements like this: However, you apparently are not willing to judge me on the content of my character or my argument, but rather you focus on the color of my skin. MLK Jr’s enemies would be proud of you, Dave. Sorry Rich, but your defensive response just confirms my observation. Sorry if you don’t like what you see.

    The good news, I’d like to report, is that most “people of color”, especially most black Americans, are extremely forgiving people. You have a responsibility to acknowledge white privilege as a local writer and therefore a community leader. Once you get past the denial stage and accept that you’re just as much a victim of racism and racist ideology and pay attention to the little things people say and do to perpetuate it, I’m confident that comments like mine will sound more like humor than invective.

    On the larger issue, I sort of doubt there are any “rogue” cops that fit some grotesque Hollywood version of a white southern Klan cop on the streets of Davis. Racial profiling can be an unconscious or subtle behavior that springs from the pervasive and pernicious way racist attitudes are constantly reinforced in our culture and society on a daily basis. It’s quite possible no “smoking gun” or “proof” will ever be found or found in a quantity that would pass courtroom muster. All that we will likely find is patterns that emerge from data analysis. Unlike the raw, country type racism we had in 1950 in Mississippi, we have a much more refined and nuanced version for California in the 2000s. It’s just as hurtful and destructive.

  66. Dave Hart

    Hey, Rich, looks like you’re the one with your panties in a twist this time. Regardless of your heritage, you look pretty white in your Enterprise photo and, I would assume, to most DPD, CHP or any other public employee with a gun and the authority to use it. I didn’t make my comment to offend you, but to make the very point that you label “inappropriate” and “out of line”. Quoting myself, “Dang, Rich, you are so white! The same thing can and must be said about too many white folks: No matter what the facts are, they never believe that racial profiling is practiced by the police in Davis.”

    It’s rational to point this out because an observer’s point of view is crucial to what he sees. He cannot separate himself from it. He can’t see the flies in his eyes because he has flies in his eyes, to quote from “Catch 22”. This issue of white privilege and blindness to what that means is a fundamental problem in American life.

    When you rise and shine every morning and prepare to engage the day, you do not burden yourself with the fact of your skin color. In your case you probably think “What a smart, handsome guy”, then you’re out the door to face the world. If you do not have that white skin or can pass for white, you gird yourself before leaving the house with the necessary emotional armor to deal with the many and constant small, nearly imperceptible glances or reactions that will be directed to you during the course of your day because of the single fact of your skin color.

    Rich, I’m not “judging” you. Just making an observation that pertains to most people who are white who have never grappled with the reality of white privilege. Unexamined White privilege is like a disease because it allows you to make embarrassing statements like this: However, you apparently are not willing to judge me on the content of my character or my argument, but rather you focus on the color of my skin. MLK Jr’s enemies would be proud of you, Dave. Sorry Rich, but your defensive response just confirms my observation. Sorry if you don’t like what you see.

    The good news, I’d like to report, is that most “people of color”, especially most black Americans, are extremely forgiving people. You have a responsibility to acknowledge white privilege as a local writer and therefore a community leader. Once you get past the denial stage and accept that you’re just as much a victim of racism and racist ideology and pay attention to the little things people say and do to perpetuate it, I’m confident that comments like mine will sound more like humor than invective.

    On the larger issue, I sort of doubt there are any “rogue” cops that fit some grotesque Hollywood version of a white southern Klan cop on the streets of Davis. Racial profiling can be an unconscious or subtle behavior that springs from the pervasive and pernicious way racist attitudes are constantly reinforced in our culture and society on a daily basis. It’s quite possible no “smoking gun” or “proof” will ever be found or found in a quantity that would pass courtroom muster. All that we will likely find is patterns that emerge from data analysis. Unlike the raw, country type racism we had in 1950 in Mississippi, we have a much more refined and nuanced version for California in the 2000s. It’s just as hurtful and destructive.

  67. Dave Hart

    Hey, Rich, looks like you’re the one with your panties in a twist this time. Regardless of your heritage, you look pretty white in your Enterprise photo and, I would assume, to most DPD, CHP or any other public employee with a gun and the authority to use it. I didn’t make my comment to offend you, but to make the very point that you label “inappropriate” and “out of line”. Quoting myself, “Dang, Rich, you are so white! The same thing can and must be said about too many white folks: No matter what the facts are, they never believe that racial profiling is practiced by the police in Davis.”

    It’s rational to point this out because an observer’s point of view is crucial to what he sees. He cannot separate himself from it. He can’t see the flies in his eyes because he has flies in his eyes, to quote from “Catch 22”. This issue of white privilege and blindness to what that means is a fundamental problem in American life.

    When you rise and shine every morning and prepare to engage the day, you do not burden yourself with the fact of your skin color. In your case you probably think “What a smart, handsome guy”, then you’re out the door to face the world. If you do not have that white skin or can pass for white, you gird yourself before leaving the house with the necessary emotional armor to deal with the many and constant small, nearly imperceptible glances or reactions that will be directed to you during the course of your day because of the single fact of your skin color.

    Rich, I’m not “judging” you. Just making an observation that pertains to most people who are white who have never grappled with the reality of white privilege. Unexamined White privilege is like a disease because it allows you to make embarrassing statements like this: However, you apparently are not willing to judge me on the content of my character or my argument, but rather you focus on the color of my skin. MLK Jr’s enemies would be proud of you, Dave. Sorry Rich, but your defensive response just confirms my observation. Sorry if you don’t like what you see.

    The good news, I’d like to report, is that most “people of color”, especially most black Americans, are extremely forgiving people. You have a responsibility to acknowledge white privilege as a local writer and therefore a community leader. Once you get past the denial stage and accept that you’re just as much a victim of racism and racist ideology and pay attention to the little things people say and do to perpetuate it, I’m confident that comments like mine will sound more like humor than invective.

    On the larger issue, I sort of doubt there are any “rogue” cops that fit some grotesque Hollywood version of a white southern Klan cop on the streets of Davis. Racial profiling can be an unconscious or subtle behavior that springs from the pervasive and pernicious way racist attitudes are constantly reinforced in our culture and society on a daily basis. It’s quite possible no “smoking gun” or “proof” will ever be found or found in a quantity that would pass courtroom muster. All that we will likely find is patterns that emerge from data analysis. Unlike the raw, country type racism we had in 1950 in Mississippi, we have a much more refined and nuanced version for California in the 2000s. It’s just as hurtful and destructive.

  68. Dave Hart

    Hey, Rich, looks like you’re the one with your panties in a twist this time. Regardless of your heritage, you look pretty white in your Enterprise photo and, I would assume, to most DPD, CHP or any other public employee with a gun and the authority to use it. I didn’t make my comment to offend you, but to make the very point that you label “inappropriate” and “out of line”. Quoting myself, “Dang, Rich, you are so white! The same thing can and must be said about too many white folks: No matter what the facts are, they never believe that racial profiling is practiced by the police in Davis.”

    It’s rational to point this out because an observer’s point of view is crucial to what he sees. He cannot separate himself from it. He can’t see the flies in his eyes because he has flies in his eyes, to quote from “Catch 22”. This issue of white privilege and blindness to what that means is a fundamental problem in American life.

    When you rise and shine every morning and prepare to engage the day, you do not burden yourself with the fact of your skin color. In your case you probably think “What a smart, handsome guy”, then you’re out the door to face the world. If you do not have that white skin or can pass for white, you gird yourself before leaving the house with the necessary emotional armor to deal with the many and constant small, nearly imperceptible glances or reactions that will be directed to you during the course of your day because of the single fact of your skin color.

    Rich, I’m not “judging” you. Just making an observation that pertains to most people who are white who have never grappled with the reality of white privilege. Unexamined White privilege is like a disease because it allows you to make embarrassing statements like this: However, you apparently are not willing to judge me on the content of my character or my argument, but rather you focus on the color of my skin. MLK Jr’s enemies would be proud of you, Dave. Sorry Rich, but your defensive response just confirms my observation. Sorry if you don’t like what you see.

    The good news, I’d like to report, is that most “people of color”, especially most black Americans, are extremely forgiving people. You have a responsibility to acknowledge white privilege as a local writer and therefore a community leader. Once you get past the denial stage and accept that you’re just as much a victim of racism and racist ideology and pay attention to the little things people say and do to perpetuate it, I’m confident that comments like mine will sound more like humor than invective.

    On the larger issue, I sort of doubt there are any “rogue” cops that fit some grotesque Hollywood version of a white southern Klan cop on the streets of Davis. Racial profiling can be an unconscious or subtle behavior that springs from the pervasive and pernicious way racist attitudes are constantly reinforced in our culture and society on a daily basis. It’s quite possible no “smoking gun” or “proof” will ever be found or found in a quantity that would pass courtroom muster. All that we will likely find is patterns that emerge from data analysis. Unlike the raw, country type racism we had in 1950 in Mississippi, we have a much more refined and nuanced version for California in the 2000s. It’s just as hurtful and destructive.

  69. Rich Rifkin

    The good news, I’d like to report, is that most “people of color”, especially most black Americans, are extremely forgiving people.”

    Oh, I’m sorry, Dave, I forgot about your election as the representative of people of color. I’ll have to keep that in mind every time I need to hear your authoritative voice.

    “You have a responsibility to acknowledge white privilege as a local writer and therefore a community leader.”

    I don’t treat anyone better or worse on the basis of his immutable characteristics. That is all that is important. You have no grounds for telling me what I need to do in this respect.

    “Once you get past the denial stage and accept that you’re just as much a victim of racism and racist ideology…”

    You sure like to lecture people on how they should think. My suggestion is that you worry less about how other people think and worry more about how you treat other people.

    “Pay attention to the little things people say and do to perpetuate it.”

    You seem to have a strong need to preach your paranoid ideology. I don’t want to be a member of your church, Dave.

    “I’m confident that comments like mine will sound more like humor than invective.”

    They sound like the ravings of a complete lunatic.

    “Racial profiling can be an unconscious or subtle behavior that springs from the pervasive and pernicious way racist attitudes are constantly reinforced in our culture and society on a daily basis.”

    You sure live in a terrible place, don’t you?

    “It’s quite possible no “smoking gun” or “proof” will ever be found or found in a quantity that would pass courtroom muster.”

    Okay, so you allege a crime, but you concede that this crime cannot be proven. It’s much like a religious claim. And hence your proclivity to preach your brand of paranoid religion to me.

  70. Rich Rifkin

    The good news, I’d like to report, is that most “people of color”, especially most black Americans, are extremely forgiving people.”

    Oh, I’m sorry, Dave, I forgot about your election as the representative of people of color. I’ll have to keep that in mind every time I need to hear your authoritative voice.

    “You have a responsibility to acknowledge white privilege as a local writer and therefore a community leader.”

    I don’t treat anyone better or worse on the basis of his immutable characteristics. That is all that is important. You have no grounds for telling me what I need to do in this respect.

    “Once you get past the denial stage and accept that you’re just as much a victim of racism and racist ideology…”

    You sure like to lecture people on how they should think. My suggestion is that you worry less about how other people think and worry more about how you treat other people.

    “Pay attention to the little things people say and do to perpetuate it.”

    You seem to have a strong need to preach your paranoid ideology. I don’t want to be a member of your church, Dave.

    “I’m confident that comments like mine will sound more like humor than invective.”

    They sound like the ravings of a complete lunatic.

    “Racial profiling can be an unconscious or subtle behavior that springs from the pervasive and pernicious way racist attitudes are constantly reinforced in our culture and society on a daily basis.”

    You sure live in a terrible place, don’t you?

    “It’s quite possible no “smoking gun” or “proof” will ever be found or found in a quantity that would pass courtroom muster.”

    Okay, so you allege a crime, but you concede that this crime cannot be proven. It’s much like a religious claim. And hence your proclivity to preach your brand of paranoid religion to me.

  71. Rich Rifkin

    The good news, I’d like to report, is that most “people of color”, especially most black Americans, are extremely forgiving people.”

    Oh, I’m sorry, Dave, I forgot about your election as the representative of people of color. I’ll have to keep that in mind every time I need to hear your authoritative voice.

    “You have a responsibility to acknowledge white privilege as a local writer and therefore a community leader.”

    I don’t treat anyone better or worse on the basis of his immutable characteristics. That is all that is important. You have no grounds for telling me what I need to do in this respect.

    “Once you get past the denial stage and accept that you’re just as much a victim of racism and racist ideology…”

    You sure like to lecture people on how they should think. My suggestion is that you worry less about how other people think and worry more about how you treat other people.

    “Pay attention to the little things people say and do to perpetuate it.”

    You seem to have a strong need to preach your paranoid ideology. I don’t want to be a member of your church, Dave.

    “I’m confident that comments like mine will sound more like humor than invective.”

    They sound like the ravings of a complete lunatic.

    “Racial profiling can be an unconscious or subtle behavior that springs from the pervasive and pernicious way racist attitudes are constantly reinforced in our culture and society on a daily basis.”

    You sure live in a terrible place, don’t you?

    “It’s quite possible no “smoking gun” or “proof” will ever be found or found in a quantity that would pass courtroom muster.”

    Okay, so you allege a crime, but you concede that this crime cannot be proven. It’s much like a religious claim. And hence your proclivity to preach your brand of paranoid religion to me.

  72. Rich Rifkin

    The good news, I’d like to report, is that most “people of color”, especially most black Americans, are extremely forgiving people.”

    Oh, I’m sorry, Dave, I forgot about your election as the representative of people of color. I’ll have to keep that in mind every time I need to hear your authoritative voice.

    “You have a responsibility to acknowledge white privilege as a local writer and therefore a community leader.”

    I don’t treat anyone better or worse on the basis of his immutable characteristics. That is all that is important. You have no grounds for telling me what I need to do in this respect.

    “Once you get past the denial stage and accept that you’re just as much a victim of racism and racist ideology…”

    You sure like to lecture people on how they should think. My suggestion is that you worry less about how other people think and worry more about how you treat other people.

    “Pay attention to the little things people say and do to perpetuate it.”

    You seem to have a strong need to preach your paranoid ideology. I don’t want to be a member of your church, Dave.

    “I’m confident that comments like mine will sound more like humor than invective.”

    They sound like the ravings of a complete lunatic.

    “Racial profiling can be an unconscious or subtle behavior that springs from the pervasive and pernicious way racist attitudes are constantly reinforced in our culture and society on a daily basis.”

    You sure live in a terrible place, don’t you?

    “It’s quite possible no “smoking gun” or “proof” will ever be found or found in a quantity that would pass courtroom muster.”

    Okay, so you allege a crime, but you concede that this crime cannot be proven. It’s much like a religious claim. And hence your proclivity to preach your brand of paranoid religion to me.

  73. tansey thomas

    Thank you, Don Shor, for your exciting offer to set up a web site for me. I am flattered. I will get back to you after I complete the writing commitments I have already made.

  74. tansey thomas

    Thank you, Don Shor, for your exciting offer to set up a web site for me. I am flattered. I will get back to you after I complete the writing commitments I have already made.

  75. tansey thomas

    Thank you, Don Shor, for your exciting offer to set up a web site for me. I am flattered. I will get back to you after I complete the writing commitments I have already made.

  76. tansey thomas

    Thank you, Don Shor, for your exciting offer to set up a web site for me. I am flattered. I will get back to you after I complete the writing commitments I have already made.

  77. Anonymous

    This is a little late but I found the comments on this topic truly amazing. I was pleased also by the fact that Doug Paul Davis had good intelligent comments to say on this subject.
    However rich rifkin, tansey and don shor sound like bigots looking for ghosts in the closet. Having been in Davis a LONG time and having grown up in the projects of Watts and Compton permit me to make a suggestion.
    Rifkin, Shor,Tansey and throw in Jan Murray Garcia should go to the areas I grew up. There are real racial issues in thses places and it comes equally from black,latino and white. The above mentioned individuals don’t have the intestinal fortitude to confront real issues in areas like this. People like this are just farts in the wind. They are looking for ghosts in the closet of a small town that easily succumbs to white liberal guilt. In this smaller space their farts stink. They are the real bigots and racists.

  78. Anonymous

    This is a little late but I found the comments on this topic truly amazing. I was pleased also by the fact that Doug Paul Davis had good intelligent comments to say on this subject.
    However rich rifkin, tansey and don shor sound like bigots looking for ghosts in the closet. Having been in Davis a LONG time and having grown up in the projects of Watts and Compton permit me to make a suggestion.
    Rifkin, Shor,Tansey and throw in Jan Murray Garcia should go to the areas I grew up. There are real racial issues in thses places and it comes equally from black,latino and white. The above mentioned individuals don’t have the intestinal fortitude to confront real issues in areas like this. People like this are just farts in the wind. They are looking for ghosts in the closet of a small town that easily succumbs to white liberal guilt. In this smaller space their farts stink. They are the real bigots and racists.

  79. Anonymous

    This is a little late but I found the comments on this topic truly amazing. I was pleased also by the fact that Doug Paul Davis had good intelligent comments to say on this subject.
    However rich rifkin, tansey and don shor sound like bigots looking for ghosts in the closet. Having been in Davis a LONG time and having grown up in the projects of Watts and Compton permit me to make a suggestion.
    Rifkin, Shor,Tansey and throw in Jan Murray Garcia should go to the areas I grew up. There are real racial issues in thses places and it comes equally from black,latino and white. The above mentioned individuals don’t have the intestinal fortitude to confront real issues in areas like this. People like this are just farts in the wind. They are looking for ghosts in the closet of a small town that easily succumbs to white liberal guilt. In this smaller space their farts stink. They are the real bigots and racists.

  80. Anonymous

    This is a little late but I found the comments on this topic truly amazing. I was pleased also by the fact that Doug Paul Davis had good intelligent comments to say on this subject.
    However rich rifkin, tansey and don shor sound like bigots looking for ghosts in the closet. Having been in Davis a LONG time and having grown up in the projects of Watts and Compton permit me to make a suggestion.
    Rifkin, Shor,Tansey and throw in Jan Murray Garcia should go to the areas I grew up. There are real racial issues in thses places and it comes equally from black,latino and white. The above mentioned individuals don’t have the intestinal fortitude to confront real issues in areas like this. People like this are just farts in the wind. They are looking for ghosts in the closet of a small town that easily succumbs to white liberal guilt. In this smaller space their farts stink. They are the real bigots and racists.

  81. Anonymous

    This is a very late comment but it must be conveyed.
    Calvin handy was almost completely destructive to the UCPD. He was and is a self serving person who does not care about the department he ran. Tansey Thomas knows nothing about racism and rants when the opportunity presents itself.
    Having read a lot of comments in the vanguard by rich rifkin I get the feeling that rich is full of it most of the time. Perhaps he and wu ming should start their own web site.

  82. Anonymous

    This is a very late comment but it must be conveyed.
    Calvin handy was almost completely destructive to the UCPD. He was and is a self serving person who does not care about the department he ran. Tansey Thomas knows nothing about racism and rants when the opportunity presents itself.
    Having read a lot of comments in the vanguard by rich rifkin I get the feeling that rich is full of it most of the time. Perhaps he and wu ming should start their own web site.

  83. Anonymous

    This is a very late comment but it must be conveyed.
    Calvin handy was almost completely destructive to the UCPD. He was and is a self serving person who does not care about the department he ran. Tansey Thomas knows nothing about racism and rants when the opportunity presents itself.
    Having read a lot of comments in the vanguard by rich rifkin I get the feeling that rich is full of it most of the time. Perhaps he and wu ming should start their own web site.

  84. Anonymous

    This is a very late comment but it must be conveyed.
    Calvin handy was almost completely destructive to the UCPD. He was and is a self serving person who does not care about the department he ran. Tansey Thomas knows nothing about racism and rants when the opportunity presents itself.
    Having read a lot of comments in the vanguard by rich rifkin I get the feeling that rich is full of it most of the time. Perhaps he and wu ming should start their own web site.

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