Monday Morning Thoughts: Do Whites Really Want to Be Part of the Race Conversation?

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Ferguson St Louis

I found myself reading Debra DeAngelo’s column this weekend, which is probably something I should not do. But the topic: “Whites want to join the Black Lives Matter conversation, but we’re afraid to.” As someone who has been part of the conversation for years – quite frankly, I was taken aback by her theme.

After a long and drawn-out recitation of history, she finally got to the point: “Sadly, racism has been simmering away all along, particularly in neighborhoods scarred by chronic poverty, unemployment and violence, where blacks are exponentially overrepresented. High crime means more conflicts with law enforcement, and the subconscious erroneous association of skin color with crime. Black America knew this all along, and with the shooting of Michael Brown and the subsequent Black Lives Matter movement, now white America knows too.”

Ms. DeAngelo continues: “But here’s the thing: Most white Americans want to support the continued efforts toward racial equality, but we’re becoming afraid to join the conversation. The temperature in the room is very hot right now, and frequently when whites attempt to chime in, we’re shouted down with ‘white privilege!’ which has the same effect as ‘Shut up!’ And so, fearing being called racist above almost anything else — we do. But: Shutting whites out of the conversation hurts, not helps, the effort toward racial equality. We need each other.”

“Whites hesitate to say a peep, because when we attempt to engage in the racism conversation, we become the proverbial bull in the china shop, causing disaster every time we turn around. But, in our heart of hearts, we want to help. And to love. We really do. History has proven that,” she concludes. “So, fellow black Americans, please consider that most whites support your cause and want to join the conversation, even if we put our big fat bovine feet in our mouths when we try.”

I disagree with Ms. DeAngelo on both ends of this column.

First, I have been in more rooms in the last ten years that I care to elaborate. I have been in the homes of people whose loved ones have been sentenced to life sentences for things that would make you shake your head. I have been in the homes of people who have felt the indignity of racial profile.

I have been with people Tasered by police who could not grasp the enormity of the injustice. I have walked side by side with the families of people who have been shot and killed by police and people who have been pepper sprayed.

I have seen heartache and pain beyond what I care to grasp.

I have been the only white person in the room more times than I can count and I have never felt out of place or felt anything but gratitude for being there and listening to people’s experiences.

As a founder of the Vanguard or a member of the Davis Human Relations Commission, I have been part of this conversation many times with people of all races and creeds. Indeed, the event that we started in 2012, Breaking the Silence of Racism, is an effort not only to be part of the conversation, but to help facilitate that conversation.

If, Ms. DeAngelo, you want to be part of the conversation, then start speaking. Start using use your podium to advance understanding. Join with others in your community to be part of that voice for change.

The problem that I see is not that whites want to be part of that conversation on racism but can’t, but that too many whites simply do not want to be part of that conversation.

This is not a liberal-conservative thing, by the way – my experience a decade ago is that white liberal Davis did not want to talk about the dark underbelly of the treatment of people of color in their community. It made them uncomfortable. Sure, they would proudly vote for the first black president and celebrate it, but when it came to issues closer to home they would turn a blind eye.

Ms. DeAngelo writes that “with the shooting of Michael Brown and the subsequent Black Lives Matter movement, now white America knows too.”

She’s wrong. Polling shows that whites have been opening their eyes to the fact that race relations are not good, but they see Michael Brown as a precipitating event. They believe that the President, former Attorney General and a bunch of race baiters are stirring things up. They don’t see that their language is cloaked with the same language from the 1960s’ push back against the civil rights movement, where many southerners proclaimed that their blacks were happy, but for the outside agitators.

In one of the comments to the article, Noreen Mazelis demonstrates this point when she writes, “Michael Brown was a thug; this planet is better off without him. After robbing a store and beating its owner, he tried to kill a cop; then his parents, with ample help, tried to burn down the town. Face it: black lives ‘matter’ BUT only if they are taken by a white person. When blacks murder blacks, we hear nothing from bleeding heart columnists and, of course, nothing from The Current Occupant of the WH.”

In a way, the civil rights movement of the 1950s and 1960s was simpler. End segregation and legally sanctioned discrimination.

But, as I noted yesterday in a comment, no sooner had the Civil Rights Act and Voting Rights Act been signed, but the conversation changed. The next wave of the struggle has become more difficult. It is one thing to end laws that legally separate and hold people to a second class status, it is another thing to be able to create an equitable and fair society.

By focusing on the fact that “black lives matter,” we are focusing on the fact that for too long and in all phases of society black lives mattered far less than all other lives.

If we want to talk about black on black crime, as some on the right want to, then it has to start in a place with understanding that the current system traps many young black men into the cycle of poverty-crime-incarceration from which there is no escape.

The fact is, a lot of people can be part of that conversation – they simply have to speak up. My experience is not that people are not able to speak up, it is simply that they don’t wish to.

—David M. Greenwald 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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245 thoughts on “Monday Morning Thoughts: Do Whites Really Want to Be Part of the Race Conversation?”

  1. sisterhood

    ” “…we’re becoming afraid to join the conversation. The temperature in the room is very hot right now, and frequently when whites attempt to chime in, we’re shouted down with “white privilege” ”

    As a white woman, I couldn’t disagree more. Ferguson and other events give us an opportunity to speak up, support survivors of police brutality, memorialize the dead, and enter into the conversation. I have felt more comfortable in the discussion now, than any other time in my 59 yrs.

    Once again, the Emptyprize. Don’t read it, especially don’t buy it, and read the Vanguard instead.

    1. Tia Will

      sisterhood

      Good morning.

      I have a different perspective about the value of reading the Enterprise. This newspaper represents the view point of a substantial number of members of our community. While I often disagree with the viewpoint expressed, I believe that ignoring this perspective rejects an opportunity to address directly those particular points with which I do not agree. An ongoing conversation, including the direct confrontation of ideas we oppose, is vital to addressing the issues that are most important to us.

      1. Barack Palin

        Well said Tia Will.  I often don’t agree with what I read in the Vanguard but I would never tell anyone to ignore it, not to read it and not to donate if they wish to.  We should all embrace different forms of journalism and do as you say, have an ongoing conversation.

        1. sisterhood

          “We should all embrace different forms of journalism and do as you say, have an ongoing conversation.”

          “Conversation”?

          I only sense someone waiting in the wings to attack or make snide remarks.  Why not write a suggestion, something positive. Suggest a way to improve something you don’t like. Empty criticism,  and pessimism, without a constructive suggestion, or two, isn’t helpful. You don’t converse, you attack.

        2. Barack Palin

          I only sense someone waiting in the wings to attack or make snide remarks. 

          Look at you and your passive aggressiveness.  What did you do right now with what you just posted?  I posted this two days ago in agreement with Tia Will and you waited in the wings to attack and make snide remarks.  You often do this so go cry to someone else because I’m not playing your game.  So do you think you’re conversing with constructive suggestions right now, or are you simply attacking?  Do yourself a favor, don’t read my comments, nobody is forcing you to.  You just don’t like it because I come at things from a different political perspective than you.  Deal with it.

          Peace and chill out.

           

      2. sisterhood

        I guess if a person is Emptyprize curious, they can visit Cindy’s for a nice breakfast & free copy. They keep them in a basket by the front door. I hope Cindy’s is still there. Loved it.

  2. Tia Will

    Most white Americans want to support the continued efforts toward racial equality, but we’re becoming afraid to join the conversation.”

    If Ms. DeAngelo is correct that most Americans want to support “continued efforts toward racial equality” I would suggest another venue. Joining the conversation would certainly be one entry point. However, action frequently speaks louder than words and also gains more respect. I would make a simple suggestion to anyone who really wants to bridge this gap. Get involved directly in some way.

    If you are white, volunteer in some fashion that brings direct engagement with blacks. For medical professionals that might include volunteering at a minority dominant clinic. For anyone with a college education that might involve tutoring or mentoring. For business owners that might involve offering a youth internship program. For those who do not have a college education, consider volunteering time providing child care so that a young parent can pursue an education or get a better job.

    Unfortunately too often whites “joining the conversation” means telling blacks what they are doing wrong. This understandably leads to comments about “white privilege”. Do whites really believe that blacks do not know that lack of education impedes their opportunities, that having children without completing high school impedes them, that having a young father incarcerated means that a child will grow up in a fatherless household ? And yet these are the comments that we frequently encounter when whites “chime in”.

    Until all folks, regardless of the color of their skin are willing to actually take concrete steps to help those who do not have the same opportunity achieve it, we will be stuck in the same polarized lack of inclusive conversation.

     

     

    1. hpierce

      If you are white, volunteer in some fashion that brings direct engagement with blacks.”

      “Until all folks, regardless of the color of their skin are willing to actually take concrete steps to help those who do not have the same opportunity achieve it, we will be stuck in the same polarized lack of inclusive conversation.”

      First statement, given the second, sounds a lot like ‘white person burden’ and/or ‘white person guilt’.  I actually have neither, but I push back when someone says I should.

      Your second statement, I espouse.  Well-off ‘people of color’ should also be willing to mentor/take other ‘concrete steps’ to help those who do not have the “same opportunities”, regardless of the ‘color’ of those who need the help.

      Unless, of course, you believe in “the white devil”.  If so, then, we cannot agree.

       

      1. Tia Will

        hpierce

        Please bear in mind that my comment was a direct response to Ms. DeAngelo’s comments about her perception of “white people’s” desire to join in the conversation. I believe that exactly the same applies to all people who want to see improvements in American society.

    2. TrueBlueDevil

      Many “whites” have been part of the successes, and failures (programs that have unintended, negative consequences).

      Many do not fully comprehend the negative consequences to their choices / strategy. Dr. Thomas Sowell refers to the so-called “black underclass”. I see the problem here as twofold.

      1. Many have no idea what a traditional nuclear family looks like, what a Father in the home is, what traditional garden-variety social norms are, etc.

      2. Yes, there are many that know that being married is a benefit, that certain behaviors are negative, yet they continue to repeat that. It gets complicated.

      I recall reading one study where young girls who grew up without a Father knew life would be very difficult, there were counseled not to do it repeatedly by their Mothers (how hard their life was), they were given sex education / access to birth control, yet many still got pregnant. Part of the study showed that even though there were many arguing to change said behavior, the social scientists also concluded that there are benefits to a teenage getting pregnant when young (the child’s view) – they get to have a baby shower, they get to pick their childs name, they become the center of attention in a matrifocal community, and then may access money via government programs. They see the perks.

      Instead of these factors, many liberals tell them life is hard because they are black and because of racism. Many adopt that mindset.

      1. David Greenwald Post author

        The reason that many do not know what a nuclear family looks like is that their “father” has been in out of prison since he was 15, their mother made a series of bad choices, and the interaction has compounded on itself. You never want to talk about the impact of mass incarceration – people ending up in prison, the impact of prison on education, getting a job, getting housing, etc. And the fact that those punishments are lifelong. At some point, you have to intervene to stop that cycle.

        1. Frankly

          What the h e double-toothpicks is “mass incarceration”?  That is just a liberal buzz phrase that has no rational meaning at all to anything about the topic.   Nobody rounded up any group en mass and incarcerated them.   They did the crime and are doing the time.

          You need to come clean with what you propose for “intervene”.  This is where you are getting off way too easy.  You keep reporting the problem and never really commit to any specifics for what you propose for solutions.

          Put it out there.

          1. Don Shor

            First issue:

            Drug Sentencing Disparities

            About 14 million Whites and 2.6 million African Americans report using an illicit drug
            5 times as many Whites are using drugs as African Americans, yet African Americans are sent to prison for drug offenses at 10 times the rate of Whites
            African Americans represent 12% of the total population of drug users, but 38% of those arrested for drug offenses, and 59% of those in state prison for a drug offense.
            African Americans serve virtually as much time in prison for a drug offense (58.7 months) as whites do for a violent offense (61.7 months). (Sentencing Project)

            Source: http://www.naacp.org/pages/criminal-justice-fact-sheet

          2. David Greenwald Post author

            Mass incarceration is the lock up of a lot of people for a long time based on a variety of crimes. I don’t dispute that bad choices are made, the question that you have not answered is how do you prevent a kid from falling into a lifelong habit of crime-incarceration-release?

        2. Frankly

          5 times as many Whites are using drugs as African Americans, yet African Americans are sent to prison for drug offenses at 10 times the rate of Whites

          It is really quite infuriating that these type of junk stats are thrown out there without appropriate controls.  And the most glaring is the fact that many more blacks have multiple priors that lead them to receive harsher penalties.  And also there are more repeat offenders.   Someone gets a warning and then does it again, verses someone gets a warning and gets scared straight.

          The other control missing is geography.  For example, if you live in Damascus Syria today there is a greater likelihood that you will get killed by an Islamist.  And if you live in a high-crime, low-income urban area of the US, there is a greater likelihood that you will get attention from cops and get caught breaking the law with drugs.

          So multiple priors and geography are not racial issues.   Control for those and what do we see?… probably a de minimis difference.

          Besides, what is the solution you are suggesting here?  Is it simply that you want law enforcement to ignore blacks doing illegal drugs.  I already said that I am in agreement with that.  I think there are a lot of people on both sides of the political aisle that agree.  So why isn’t it getting done?

          But if not that, then what exactly are you suggesting?

          how do you prevent a kid from falling into a lifelong habit of crime-incarceration-release?

          First – you cannot easily prevent adults from making bad choices.  You can only teach what good choices are, and what the consequences can be for bad choices.  And there are some “mistakes” in choice that cannot be undone… so clearly they should never be chosen.

          But the answer to your question is really quite simple.   It is to provide the compelling and positive alternative.

          1. Don Shor

            I already said that I am in agreement with that. I think there are a lot of people on both sides of the political aisle that agree. So why isn’t it getting done?

            Maybe you should blame the prison guard unions. Or the corporations that provide privatized prisons.
            More likely, the issue is that criminal justice reform is largely a state issue, and no individual legislator wants to be seen as weak on crime. In California, much of the reform would require modifying the Three Strikes law, which voters have shown little enthusiasm for changing. In short, decriminalizing drugs or even just reforming how they’re handled in the legal system faces a lot of pushback and it’s politically risky to push for it.
            What I think they ‘should’ do is start releasing people who are just in jail for drug offenses. Start wiping convictions from the record so they aren’t impediments to employment. Press at the federal level for changes to how different drugs are listed. And press for criminal justice reform state by state.

        3. wdf1

          Frankly:  But the answer to your question is really quite simple.   It is to provide the compelling and positive alternative.

          And how do you do that in large communities of concentrated poverty and social breakdown?

        4. Davis Progressive

          the other problem frankly is that the system is set up to prevent good choices.  once someone has a felony status, you’ve effectively made it impossible to get gainful employment.  how do you allow people to get out from under that?

        5. Davis Progressive

          “the most glaring is the fact that many more blacks have multiple priors that lead them to receive harsher penalties.”

          when they do these studies, they control for priors -no reputable researcher would fail to account for priors. but the other part of the study, if you bothered to read it, is that they found that at every step in the process – blacks more likely to arrested for possession, more likely to be charged, more likely to be convicted, more likely to go to prison. none of that is independent of priors – the whole process leads blacks to have more priors than whites, because they are arrested, prosecuted and convicted more than whites.

        6. Frankly

          More likely, the issue is that criminal justice reform is largely a state issue, and no individual legislator wants to be seen as weak on crime.

          Obviously we are moving forward on voter opinion on decriminalization of marijuana.  I’m not sure about other more seriously addictive and destructive drugs.  I think there are valid concerns there with respect to collateral negative impacts having more serious drug-addicts on the streets.  But I think we should change the system and laws so we handle it differently.

          If this is THE issue with blacks as David and other liberals have latched onto, they why isn’t Obama using his lame duck influence to make changes?

          We had Democrats in control of all three branches of Federal government 2008-2010 and then in control of the Executive branch and Senate for six years.  And no executive orders.  No legislation proposed.

          I don’t buy that this is a state issue.  The Federal government is much more restrictive over marijuana than are many states. The Federal government can demand state compliance in return for Federal monies that flow to states for the drug “war”.

          Seems that the left is pointing fingers at everyone except themselves… the real reason we don’t have any progress here.

          And if you are still insisting that this is a state issue, then what does Barbara Boxer, Nancy Pelosi and Jerry Brown say?

          I think the system in Portugal is a model worth considering.

          http://mic.com/articles/110344/14-years-after-portugal-decriminalized-all-drugs-here-s-what-s-happening

          1. Don Shor

            If this is THE issue with blacks as David and other liberals have latched onto, they why isn’t Obama using his lame duck influence to make changes?

            If you recall, he addressed prison reform recently and granted clemency to a few dozen federal drug convicts. How’d that go over?
            I just read that he intends to make criminal justice reform a focus of his post-presidency.

            We had Democrats in control of all three branches of Federal government 2008-2010 and then in control of the Executive branch and Senate for six years. And no executive orders. No legislation proposed.

            In fact, the administration early on issued orders to de-emphasize prosecution of marijuana cases and reiterated that more than once (http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/08/29/eric-holder-marijuana-washington-colorado-doj_n_3837034.html).

            We had Democrats in control of all three branches of Federal government 2008-2010 and then in control of the Executive branch and Senate for six years. And no executive orders. No legislation proposed.

            http://www.theguardian.com/world/2013/aug/12/eric-holder-smart-crime-reform-us-prisons “The Department of Justice will now instruct prosecutors to side-step federal sentencing rules by not recording the amount of drugs found on non-violent dealers not associated with larger gangs or cartels.”

            I don’t buy that this is a state issue.

            It is mostly a state issue, I think. We’ve got lawyers who post here who can clarify that.

            The Federal government can demand state compliance

            And sometimes they do, and sometimes they don’t. This administration has straddled this issue considerably, finally informing the governors of Washington and Colorado that they would not prosecute once legalization occurred — but essentially reserving the right to do so in the future, or something.

            And if you are still insisting that this is a state issue, then what does Barbara Boxer, Nancy Pelosi and Jerry Brown say?

            If it’s a state issue, it doesn’t really matter what a US Senator and the US Representative say, does it? Gov. Brown has pretty consistently opposed legalization.

        7. Davis Progressive

          “If this is THE issue with blacks as David and other liberals have latched onto, they why isn’t Obama using his lame duck influence to make changes?”

          that’s a good question.  i would argue that obama has done a lot in the last year moving in the right direction, but he hasn’t gone far enough fast enough for my taste.

          “We had Democrats in control of all three branches of Federal government 2008-2010 and then in control of the Executive branch and Senate for six years.  And no executive orders.  No legislation proposed.”

          democrats were bad on this issue for decades – it’s a big reason i’m not a democrat.

        8. wdf1

          Frankly:   I think there are valid concerns there with respect to collateral negative impacts having more serious drug-addicts on the streets.  But I think we should change the system and laws so we handle it differently.

          If this is THE issue with blacks as David and other liberals have latched onto, they why isn’t Obama using his lame duck influence to make changes?

          Maybe you were on vacation when this happened.  But when the story came out in the news, though, I don’t remember it being about blacks specifically.  It is something that a lame duck president can do to make a point:

          Obama Shortens Prison Terms For 46 Drug Offenders, Vows More Commutations

          For years, reformers have been complaining that the justice system is out of whack, but now they’re hearing that sentiment echoed from the White House. This week, President Obama agreed to shorten the prison sentences of 46 people locked up for nonviolent drug crimes, and he says there’s more to come. 

    1. Davis Progressive

      responding to purported trumped up outrage with more trumped up outrage is hardly helpful.  in this case, the police once again instead of wanting to enact halfway measures have chosen to completely pull out when they are confronted with criticism.  it’s the same mentality of the slow down, when confronted don’t do your job and blame it on the media.  hardly helpful.  glad we have such mature people serving as police officers.

      1. Barack Palin

        The video even goes farther saying that the assailant may have rushed the officer because of the trumped up outrage that the media has helped instill in blacks.  Where’s your understanding of how the officer felt, the situation he was confronted with and his response that he didn’t want to pull his gun because of the media?  Most officers are good men and women, but you wouldn’t think so because of the narrative being put forward by the left.  It’s sad that they’re now afraid to do their job due to media bias.  I’m afraid that we’re going to lose many good police officers who no longer want to put up with the media backlash when they’re only trying to perform their jobs.

        1. Davis Progressive

          let’s pause the blame game and push it to the next level – what would you suggest we do at this point other than trying to silence the media and activists – neither of which will happen?  how do we get to common ground?  how can we deescalate the situation?  i’m interested in seeing if you have a real alternative here?

      2. Barack Palin

        You take this situation, if the officer had pulled his gun and shot the assailant because he was charging him you and others would most likely be saying that the officer made up a trumped up charge of driving erratically in order to stop the black man, he pulled his gun and shot when he could’ve de-escalated the situation in some other manner, so on and so on…..

        Instead the officer didn’t pull his gun to defend himself and could’ve easily been killed and yes, the media would’ve been partially responsible.

        1. Tia Will

          BP

          Instead the officer didn’t pull his gun to defend himself and could’ve easily been killed and yes, the media would’ve been partially responsible.”

          This is, in my opinion, a mis-assignment of responsibility.

          As you may recall, there was quite a lot of media hysteria generated around the issue of Ebola. If when confronted with an emergency situation involving a recent arrival from an affected country, a surgeon either opted or did not opt to operate on the patient based on their own fear of Ebola, would you blame the media if the patient died because of the surgeon’s refuse to operate. If the surgeon contracted Ebola and died, would you blame the media for not covering the situation adequately and making the warnings scary enough ?

          I suspect you would do neither. Most of us believe that professionals are self selected for the work that we choose to do. We know the hazards either at the time we apply, or certainly before we finish our training. Professionals are adults who are fully responsible for our own actions whether those actions harm ourselves or others. The only exceptions I would cede would be trainees, or those who have received inadequate training in which case the line is blurred between individual and organizational responsibility. However, in no case is the media to blame for the conscious choice made by an individual who has presented to work knowing what they may face.

           

           

        2. Barack Palin

          As you may recall, there was quite a lot of media hysteria generated around the issue of Ebola. If when confronted with an emergency situation involving a recent arrival from an affected country, a surgeon either opted or did not opt to operate on the patient based on their own fear of Ebola, would you blame the media if the patient died because of the surgeon’s refuse to operate. If the surgeon contracted Ebola and died, would you blame the media for not covering the situation adequately and making the warnings scary enough ?

          We shouldn’t pay much attention to anecdotal stories, right Tia Will?

      3. hpierce

        You’re right.  A mature person would never have his weapon taken away and used to pistol-whip himself.  Unless he has a martyr complex.  I guess you believe the officer was responsible for the violence accorded to him.

        The media was not responsible for the attack.  The attacker appears to be clearly the one who made a violent choice, and the officer a stupid one.  I hold my life more dearly than apparently the officer did.

  3. Alan Miller

    ““Most white Americans want to support the continued efforts toward racial equality, but we’re becoming afraid to join the conversation.””

    This statement first of all assumes “whites” are homogeneous, and secondly assumes all whites are cowards.

    1. Davis Progressive

      worse than that, the cop mishandles the situation and has no training or confidence he can’t resolve it without violence.  this illustrates the exact problem we have.  and instead of trying to fix it, the police are trying to escalate things.

      1. Frankly

        Maybe they are trying to prevent their injury or death.  But then maybe you cannot understand that since you have never done the job and seem to have led a very isolated and risk-free professional career.

        1. sisterhood

          “…since you have never done the job…”

          Hello  Frankly, your posts seem to portray a successful local businessman, not an ex-cop. So you have also never done the job? Not trying to out you in any way, you know I cherish my own privacy. Just observing.

        2. Barack Palin

          Difference being Frankly isn’t judging the cop and how he does his job.  DP seems to act like he/she knows how the cop should’ve handled that situation without being a cop his/herself.

        3. Davis Progressive

          difference being that’s part of what i do for a living – evaluating police complaints.  but i wasn’t judging the cop other than his response to the situation being fear of political retribution.  i’m more concerned that the system has degraded to this point and what can be done to bring both sides together.

        4. Frankly

          Hello  Frankly, your posts seem to portray a successful local businessman, not an ex-cop. So you have also never done the job? Not trying to out you in any way, you know I cherish my own privacy. Just observing.

          Hello sisterhood.  Please see what BP says.

          Also note that I have close family members that were cops, including a beloved brother in-law that took his own life mostly due to the stress of the job.

          Let me also say that I agree that we need to be training law enforcement in better de-escalation techniques… and away from the warrior mentality.  My point here was that DP seemed to discount the response of cops that might be simply to prevent their own harm.

          1. David Greenwald Post author

            I think that DP is arguing that if the solution is not continuing the status quo and it’s not what the cop did, there needs to be a way forward. So far, I have not seen a proposed solution.

        5. Tia Will

          Frankly

          Maybe they are trying to prevent their injury or death.  But then maybe you cannot understand that since you have never done the job and seem to have led a very isolated and risk-free professional career.”

          And maybe what they should be focusing on is how best to prevent injury or death for all, not just for themselves. Maybe that saying “All Lives Matter” can take on special meaning for those police who are focusing their attention, as you say, on the lives of police to the detriment of those they are sworn to protect, the citizens.

  4. Frankly

    I have seen heartache and pain beyond what I care to grasp.

    Here is your problem in a nutshell.  Your heart overrules your head.  You feel so much that you lose the ability to think deeply and fail to see the big picture.  You are obsessed with encounters and events and only filter the statistics that match your emotional-based worldview, and in doing so you both miss the truth and also establish a lack of credibility as a journalist to write effectively on the topic.

    I rarely agree with DD except for my appreciation of her snark and ability to write about things that risks upsetting the hypersensitive (please God, take away the bus keys from their hands lest we all crash and burn)… but she makes great points here.  The problem is that the left (generally media and political operatives) have inflamed emotions to the point that we absolutely cannot talk.    And you, David, are front and center in this.  You attempt to foment the conversation, but it is a “my way or the highway” stance.  It is a “you don’t know what it is like so you cannot comment.” position.  It is a “you are a racist if you disagree” attack.

    Here is the thing.  The people that are truly racist are silent.  The people that truly care are either silent from the real danger of personal and career harm from even trying to interject themselves into the conversation, or are taking great risks to fight the people stuck on their old destructive and broken paradigms.  The hypersensitive have effectively shut down meaningful conversation except for a few brave, or foolish, souls.

    The old racism template is an addiction… it is a victim mentality addiction.

    – The media is addicted because it enables lazy reporting that sells.

    – Politicians are addicted because it enables lazy vote-getting that protects political power.

    – Liberals are addicted because it enables them to “care” in a lazy way and validates their egalitarian savers syndrome.

    But unfortunately for blacks, these three actors are their primary enemy when it comes to the need for breaking out of their paradigms of slavery, Jim Crow and black racial strife.  Those problems just don’t exist to any material level warranting continued claims.  But they are the continued claims.

    The bottom line is that our current challenge to progress to the next level of black civil rights requires that blacks learn they need to reject the “help” claimed to be provided by those that only exploit their misery for their own selfish purpose.

    Civil rights 2.0 begins when blacks have a new awakening that their old friends are bad for them.

  5. TrueBlueDevil

    It is amazing that the Left / mainstream writers continue to hang their hat on Michael Brown, a caught-on-tape felon who attempted to kill a police officer with his own gun.

    On top of that, why did this police shooting resulting in death garner nationwide attention, yet even as the New York Times notes today, the death of Zachary Hammond – who was white – received substantially less media attention. Many think think that is the result of George Soros $33 Million infusion into multiple rent-a-mob organizations.

    Many citizens avoid these conversations for many reasons. Some know that David and Ms. DeAngelo already have their conclusions, and they’ll tie themselves into a million knots to reach those conclusions, no matter what.

    Much of these conversations start with the “When did you start beating your wife” question. When you reply, “I don’t beat my wife!”, they reply, “Well, you know, 60% of men who beat their wife are in denial about the beatings, and 20% have problems with substance abuse.”

    We could just as easily have a dozen articles about the monumental decreases in violent crimes which has resulted in the saving of hundreds of thousands of young black lives. In tandem, we could profusely thank the police who helped achieve these results – many of whom are white.

    We could also focus on black truancy, school drop-outs, out-of-wedlock births and others social ills which speed the race to the bottom, instead of asking white citizens to question why they put others there.

    If white racism is so all pervasive, why do Ethiopian-Americans kick tail across America (success above the norms)? Against the narrative being peddled?

    Lotta liberals make thousands and millions peddling that narrative, whereas I can’t think of one who has reaped rewards for discussing the success of our Ethiopian brothers.

    1. Tia Will

      TBD

      We could just as easily have a dozen articles about the monumental decreases in violent crimes which has resulted in the saving of hundreds of thousands of young black lives. In tandem, we could profusely thank the police who helped achieve these results – many of whom are white.”

      Now there might be a place for you and BP to start. Why not write those articles so that they can be evaluated for what steps actually made a difference to those statistics. I suspect that if we spent time analyzing the successes as well as just complaining and finger pointing about the failures, we would have much greater success in reaching consensus and building a way forward.

      I would greatly like to hear the “success” stories and your interpretations of what brought this about.

       

  6. sisterhood

    “…attempted to kill a police officer with his own gun.”
    Much of this hinges on whether or not one believes he was reaching for a gun. I don’t believe murder was the only solution. The cop, safely inside his squad car, could have rolled up his window, slowly followed the dangerous (stoned?) shoplifter, and called for backup, if he feared for his life.

    Why would a young man pick a deadly fight with an armed cop right before he was to start community college?  Did an autopsy ever determine if he was extremely drunk or stoned on weed? Still doesn’t seem like a life threatening situation, when the cop is safely inside his car.

    1. TrueBlueDevil

      You referring to the 300-pound assailant?

      The officer was recently quoted as saying, “In the 45 seconds I knew Michael Brown, I was fighting for my life.”

      1. David Greenwald Post author

        But to me you are avoiding the question as to why Officer Wilson fired the kill shot when it was clear he was not in mortal danger at that point.

          1. David Greenwald Post author

            I suspect if we had our Police Auditor look at this video, he would be able to note a number of things that were done incorrectly. To me that’s a training issue.

        1. Barack Palin

          I suspect if we had our Police Auditor look at this video, he would be able to note a number of things that were done incorrectly. To me that’s a training issue.

          Yeah, it was the female cop’s fault.

          1. David Greenwald Post author

            There is a difference between fault and avoiding the problem. It’s not her fault, that doesn’t mean she can’t be trained better on avoiding the problem.

        2. Frankly

          LOL.  Yes, that is pretty much what he is saying.  It is the cop’s fault make a split second decision to shoot a subject they believe would do them great bodily harm.  And it is the cop’s fault when making a split second to NOT shoot when they end up being beat or killed by the suspect.

          Do you note the irony here… advocating for copious second chances from mistakes of suspects while demanding utopian perfection from anything and everything cops do… especially their split second decisions in highly stressed and dangerous circumstances.

          Must feel good to sit in that armchair and quarterback the world.

          1. David Greenwald Post author

            The cop is the professional and the cop has to be properly trained to handle the situation. The cop made the wrong choice there – seems we need to figure out a better way, a point you continue to dodge is what that better way looks like.

        3. Barack Palin

          Do you note the irony here… advocating for copious second chances from mistakes of suspects while demanding utopian perfection from anything and everything cops do… especially their split second decisions in highly stressed and dangerous circumstances.
          Must feel good to sit in that armchair and quarterback the world.

          Perfect analysis.  You’ve got it so so right.

          1. David Greenwald Post author

            It’s not a perfect analysis. First of all, police officers are trained and well paid for their work. But second, all I’m suggesting is we find a way to prevent the first crime from dooming the person to a life of crimes. What you and Frankly are forgetting is that except for a relatively small number of liffers, most people will be released from prison at some point and they are generally released with prison with no tools to prevent them from falling right back into the life they came out of. The reality is almost everyone gets many chances to rectify themselves but we are failing to give them a chance.

        1. tribeUSA

          DP–I’ve seen that piece of ‘150 foot distance’ misinformation too many times in the mainstream media and on this forum not to respond:

          The positions of the shell casings and of Brown’s body show there was a separation distance of about 15 feet between Wilson and Brown at the time Brown was finally stopped by gunshot & fell down. Officer Wilson was not at the police car when Brown doubled back toward Wilson; they were both up the street over 100 feet away from the police car.

          When misinformation like the ‘150 foot’ continues to be spouted, it detracts from the credibility of other arguments (that might have some partial validity); and makes me view with high suspicion other statements made by those spouting such misleading info.

        2. TrueBlueDevil

          How did his fingerprints get on the police officer’s gun?

          Take a Logic Ride with me. In his short career, Officer Wilson had encounters with tens of thousands of young black men. Probably into the hundreds of thousands if you count his fellow officers over numerous years. So here are my questions.

          1. How many young men reached into an officer’s car to take their gun?

          2. How many fired an officer’s gun at an officer?

          My guess is that Michael Brown was the variable, not the officer.

          1. David Greenwald Post author

            First of all, I question tens of thousands of young black men. That’s probably far too high.

            Second, I think you should read about interactive game theory, it will help you understand the a complex event is an interaction of decisions made by both players. I would like to better understand two portions of the incident. First, how it was that we got from Wilson telling the two young men to get out of the street to the struggle in the car? While we do have the video of Brown in the convenience store, it’s not like he had a record of violent interactions with the police. Second, why did Officer Wilson pursue him once he took off running rather than calling in for back up?

        3. TrueBlueDevil

          David, I think we have a case of cognitive dissonance here. Your response is illogical.

          1. “First of all, I question tens of thousands of young black men. That’s probably far too high.”

          20 interactions a day x 5 days / week = 100

          100 x 50 weeks / year = 5,000 interactions a year

          5,000 x 5 years = 25,000 interactions

           

          2. “First, how it was that we got from Wilson telling the two young men to get out of the street to the struggle in the car? While we do have the video of Brown in the convenience store, it’s not like he had a record of violent interactions with the police.”

          WHAT? We have video of him tossing around a helpless store clerk, that was evidence that he was violent hours or even minutes earlier!!! Was he on other drugs, was it just marijuana affecting his higher mental faculties, who knows. He was in a violent mood that day.

          3. The officer was doing his job. And violent felon 300-pound Brown decided to turn around and charge him.

          1. David Greenwald Post author

            “20 interactions a day x 5 days / week = 100”

            I would have to ask a police officer for sure, but 20 interactions a day sounds high depending on how you define interactions. I don’t think most police officers are working five days a week. Remember, you’re not just talking about interactions with the general public, you specified “young black men.”

            But let’s reverse our analysis – how many black men live in Ferguson ages 16 to 30? The total population of Ferguson is 21,000. Two-thirds are black, so the total black population is 14,000 (14,297 according to the 2010 census). It looks like black men are about 30 percent of the Ferguson population so even your calculations of 20 per day, 5 per week, 25,000 total interactions in 5 years, which seems high to me, yields about 8000 or 9000 black men independent of age. Based on census groups, I estimate that there are 1240 black males under the age of 18 in Ferguson, but the problem is that some of those will be five year olds. There are about another 1000 black males age 18 to 34. So perhaps one-tenth of the Ferguson population is a black men at the age of 16 to 30. That would lower the interactions down to 2500 over the five year period, but of course you would argue that young black men are oversampled.

            My response is not illogical. I think given my experience on ridealongs, 20 interactions a day, depending on what Officer wilson’s patrol assignment was seems way too high. I have ridden with the gang squad in West Sacramento for a full shift and we didn’t interact with anywhere close to 20 people total. All interactions are not the same – saying hi to a person on the street is the not the same as a traffic stop which is not the same as serving a warrant.

            So I would suggest re-thinking your comment if you want to get a true sense of how many people he is interacting with and whether that is meaningful.

  7. Frankly

    Here is a little of the forgotten political history of the civil rights movement:

     

    – It was Republican President Abraham Lincoln that gave his life and the lives of millions of other Americans to free the slaves.

    – After 1933, in 26 votes for civil rights legislation, a majority of Democrats opposed civil rights legislation in over 80 percent of the votes. By contrast, the Republican majority favored civil rights in over 96 percent of the votes.

    – Republican President Dwight Eisenhower sponsored and signed the first Civil Rights Bill over the relentless opposition from Master of the Senate, Democrat LBJ.

    And then this quote from Democrat President LBJ…

    “I’ll have those [n-words] voting Democratic for the next 200 years.” —Lyndon B. Johnson to two governors on Air Force One

    “These Negroes, they’re getting pretty uppity these days and that’s a problem for us since they’ve got something now they never had before, the political pull to back up their uppityness. Now we’ve got to do something about this, we’ve got to give them a little something, just enough to quiet them down, not enough to make a difference.”—LBJ

    – And Democrat FDR’s New Deal created the dependency that Democrats after him continued to exploit.

    – And Carters Community Reinvestment Act (C.R.A) meant to force banks to make loans to under-qualified minority borrowers and was the catalyst for the sub-prime mortgage… well we all know what that led to.  And it has hurt blacks the most.

    From the National Bureau of Economic Research (http://www.nber.org/digest/may07/w12518.html ):

    “The 1980-2000 immigrant influx, therefore, generally ‘explains’ about 20 to 60 percent of the decline in wages, 25 percent of the decline in employment, and about 10 percent of the rise in incarceration rates among blacks with a high school education or less.”

    And, our tax and regulatory climate… both ramped up since 2008 and the Obama era, have stifled economic growth, and led to the first jobless economic recovery in US history.  The reason, a disparate negative impact on small business.

    Small business tends to generate 65% of new jobs, and employs over 50% of all workers.  But…http://www.gallup.com/businessjournal/180431/american-entrepreneurship-dead-alive.aspx

    So liberal tax and regulatory policy is contributing to higher black unemployment.

    And lastly, in the new information economy education is even more important to qualified workers.  Yet, education quality in most low-income urban areas where there is a higher concentration of blacks has either declined or remained flat.  Where vouchers and choice have been attempted there have been notable improvements; however, Democrats block and destroy these programs to ensure the teachers unions are rewarded for their campaign donations.

    The bottom line here is that Democrats are bad for blacks.

    1. hpierce

      Your history is wrong, frankly Frankly.  The Union did not enter the armed conflict to free the slaves.  It took Lincoln ~ 2 years to issue the emancipation proclamation, and that only freed slaves in states openly rebellious.  It did not free all slaves.  Slavery was still legal in Kentucky, Maryland, New York, etc.

      Lincoln made his move strategically, to promote insurrection/desertion by black slaves ordered to fight for the confederacy (many did) by their “masters”.  Opine all you want, but please get your facts straight.

      Oh, and it was a Democarat (Harry S) who integrated the military, and a Republican (Douglas McArthur) who opposed that.

        1. hpierce

          Let me make it as simple as I can:

          “It was Republican President Abraham Lincoln that gave his life and the lives of millions of other Americans to free the slaves.”  A Lincoln did not give his life.  It was taken.  Millions?  Wrong. Millions means more than two million. Untrue. Even to get to one million, you’d have to count those who fought for states’ rights, or for slavery.  To free the slaves?  No.  Some had that motivation, but relatively few (%-age wise).  Wrong on all counts.

          facts: http://www.civilwar.org/education/history/faq/?referrer=https://www.google.com/

          Does that answer you question?

           

        2. Frankly

          So, from this response, Martin Luther King did not give up his life fighting for black civil rights?

          You are arguing useless symatics here.  Lincoln knew his life was in peril constantly as a result of his decisions to fight the south.  Yet he proceeded.  In the end he gave up his life for the cause of freeing slaves.  There were other reasons… prevent the succession of southern states and the breakup of the union first and foremost.  But the war did drag on and the cause of freeing the slaves happened… unless you want to rewrite some history.

          With respect to your math challenge on the number of dead, I fall on my sword.  I was thinking 2% of the population and rounded up significantly.  But I do count the south dead in this number, because my point was that Lincoln gave them up for the cause as well as those from the north.

        3. hpierce

          MLK has nothing to do with the “facts” you spewed.  Lincoln did not intend, upon taking office, to free the slaves.  Southern states feared he and Congress would, and fired the first shots after declaring sucession.  Lincoln responded to ‘preserve the Union’.  You accuse me of symantics yet you tie my comments to MLK.  Very weird.

          Booth did not shoot Lincoln about slavery.  That was a “done deal”.  By the time Lincoln was shot, the last meaningful confederate army had surrendered.  Booth was a disturbed person who could not give up his idea of a confederate nation.

          It was the Republicans who wanted vengeance/justice (as you do now?) and imposed “Reconstruction” on the South, with far more horrendous ramifications than “New Deal”, and “the Great Society” put together.  “Reconstruction” as implemented, probably was the origin of the group (in response) that eventually became the KKK.  That program (Reconstruction) was a Republican thing.

          Remember, Lincoln was the first presidential candidate of the new Republican Party.  In history, Hayes was a disastrous republican president (who lost the popular vote, but prevailed kinda like George W), as was Cal Coolidge, and Warren Harding (remember TeaPot dome scandal, and others)  the latter two led us into the Great Depression.  They were also “conservatives”.  I make these points to point out your selective use of ‘history’ (as you wish to create it), and to point out that both major parties have had serious heroes and more serious jerks.

          I stand by my comment that you don’t know history too much.

        4. Frankly

          I stand by my comment that you don’t know history too much.

          You need to go back and read what I wrote and what you wrote very carefully and note that you got yourself all tied up into a mental knot I think probably because you must consider yourself some level of expert on civil war history.

          And you also seem to struggle understanding allegories and contrasting comparisons.

          You can stand by your opinion all you want, and you know what they say about them.

          It is simple, libs like to point back to slavery and civil rights fights and point the finger of blame at Republicans as being the perpetrators of slavery.  I disapprove of the continued look backwards and see it as a sign of psychological and/or intellectual dysfunction, but since we are, I pointed out that Democrats were in deed very complicit in the slavery and black racism trade.  And a Republican president ended the primary practice of it.

          I know that must be hard for you to take.  But take it you must unless you want to continue dancing on the head of a pin in some twisted fit of denial.

          Now looking at the present, I will again reiterate that Democrats are bad for blacks.

          One last thing… I don’t disagree with the point that the north did not go to war to free the slaves and I have written as much many times on this blog. However, you are going to have trouble with the left narrative if you keep repeating it.

          1. Don Shor

            It is simple, libs like to point back to slavery and civil rights fights and point the finger of blame at Republicans as being the perpetrators of slavery.

            I have never in my life heard anyone, liberal or otherwise, make that assertion.

  8. Topcat

    If we want to talk about black on black crime, as some on the right want to, then it has to start in a place with understanding that the current system traps many young black men into the cycle of poverty-crime-incarceration from which there is no escape.

    I don’t buy this argument at all.  In my life I’ve known a lot of black people who did not adopt a life of crime despite having started out in disadvantaged situations.  By getting a good education and being motivated to work hard they have become honest, hard working, productive, and reasonably happy members of society.

     

        1. Frankly

          Sometimes you get caught up in a series of bad choices but you have to have a way out or else the cycle continues.

          How may “second” chances should we provide?

          And while you are at it, how would providing many second chances be fair to those making good choices in life?

          And lastly, would providing so many second chances just damage the incentive to make better choices?

          1. David Greenwald Post author

            I don’t those are the right questions. If you’re goal is to break the cycle, then you have to intervene and you have to be successful. The way things are right now, a kid who runs with the wrong crowd, gets in a fight can get a felony on their record and make it difficult to graduate, impossible to go to college, and impossible to get a good job. So if you say, hey, you had your second chance – then what? You give up and lose another generation to this?

        2. Frankly

          The fruits of success generally go to those making good life choices and committing fewer mistakes.  You seem caught up in a new narrative of unfair consequences of making bad life choices and committing mistakes.  So, you are making nebulous suggestions to implement a sort of “bad choices affirmative action” as a way to improve life circumstances. And so my questions are absolutely valid.

          My preference would be to hold the line for consequences (except for those bad choices that only harm the choice-maker) while putting all of our efforts into injecting good choice-making into the behavior of those wanting a better future.

          It seems that you see the incapable as being chronically incapable unless they are provided exceptions.  That is a broken view IMO, because:

          1. There is never an end to it as the person loses motivation to develop beyond needing exceptions.  Exceptions create a destructive dependency and rob people of dignity and true feelings of equality.

          2. It isn’t fair to those that do develop capability seeing their opportunities diminished as those allowed exceptions are pushed up higher in the line.

          3. We dumb-down over all capability and behavior by lowering the bar.

          I get the attraction to this.  As you say, “I have seen heartache and pain beyond what I care to grasp.”  With that statement it is clear that your heart is fully-vested into advocating for solutions that immediately cure the heartache and pain.   But this is the source of many problems people have… pursuing what makes them feel better in the short-term and rejecting those things that are hard but that build resilience and capability for the long-haul.   It comes down to the practices of goal-setting and delayed gratification.  It comes does to learning to control emotional impulses to weigh the cost-benefit of each decision on true facts or merit, and then learning from errors in judgement to better optimize future decisions.

          What goes on in the head of someone making a decision to steal from or injure or kill another?  Are these just “mistakes” or are they a sign of a broken moral compass?  I think it is the latter and given a pass isn’t going to help repair the broken moral compass.

          I have experienced so many young people having their motivational switch diminished or eliminated by the crappy school system and maybe acerbated by crappy family situations … only to see the light bulb glow to full intensity after working for a few months where there is recognition for development and reward for accomplishment and opportunity for advancement.

          The first step to fixing these problem is to innovate the education system to meet the needs of all students… but primarily to help them achieve economic self-sufficiency.  Then we need to reduce business-killing regulations and taxes, and invest in enterprise zones in these urban areas to spur job-producing economic growth.  We also need to change the entitlement system so that it no longer incentivizes not working.   And for the short-term we need to increase the amount of law enforcement, while training police to do more community outreach and to do more de-escalation.   And we need to decriminalize drug possession for individual use and invest in more treatment services.

        3. Davis Progressive

          “The first step to fixing these problem is to innovate the education system to meet the needs of all students”

          that sounds good and i agree with doing that, but i had this defendant once he had bounced through 7 foster homes, he was addicted to drugs when he was 11, and often he got one meal a day.  he was sexually abused in some of the homes by both foster parents and kids.  it was an extreme example, but no education system is going to be able to help such a kid.

        4. Frankly

           had this defendant once he had bounced through 7 foster homes, he was addicted to drugs when he was 11, and often he got one meal a day.  he was sexually abused in some of the homes by both foster parents and kids.  it was an extreme example, but no education system is going to be able to help such a kid.

          Sounds just like my father except substitute alchohol for drugs.  He was pretty much raised in the LA Boys Home until he graduated high school.  He went on to play football for Mt. Sac JC and then University of Idaho and earned a degree in business and has owned his own business for the last 35 years.  He attended Catholic school before college.

        5. TrueBlueDevil

          I know a couple of white men who made bad choices a decade or more ago and committed non-violent felonies. They have been employed, but yes, they have had challenges. Both don’t have amazing careers, but both are wonderful members of society who contribute to their community and families.

          1. David Greenwald Post author

            Good for them. I know a lot of people who were able to overcome bad choices, and a lot of people who were not. When you are talking about a recidivism rate of 70%, you recognize that those who overcome those mistakes are not necessarily in the majority.

        6. wdf1

          Frankly:  The first step to fixing these problem is to innovate the education system to meet the needs of all students… but primarily to help them achieve economic self-sufficiency.  

          And you can begin to do that when you recognize that there is far more to education that what gets tested for in standardized tests.  Your flaw is in embracing the status quo standardized tests the way Obama (ironically) and Arne Duncan have done.

        7. sisterhood

          I tend to agree w/Frankly that private schools produce better results. My husband went to parochial schools, my mom attended parochial, my cop dad insisted we go to public. My husband switched to public in high school, he was a full year ahead of his classmates. I know a few moms in Davis who converted to Catholicism (some previously Buddhist or agnostic) and voluteered at St. Jams soley to improve their kids chances of admission to St. James. I was a member of St. James, church volunteer, but chose public. St. James had a better after school daycare, I often wonder if I made a mistake with my own two kids. My daughter thrived at DaVinci, my son struggled at Davis High. It would be interesting to see how many St. James, home schooled, and other private settings’ grads went on to college, or other successful endeavors, vs. Davis public school.

        8. wdf1

          sisterhood:  I tend to agree w/Frankly that private schools produce better results. 

          Private and parochial schools are less equipped to handle issues of English Language Learners, special ed., and many lower income family intervention issues.  Why?  Such students are more expensive to educate.  Beyond that, it maybe an issue of which school programs are a better fit for your situation.  In some areas of athletics, Catholic schools (Jesuit, St. Francis, Christian Brothers) can be stronger than even Davis HS.  If your kids are into music and performing arts, Davis HS would be a better option than almost any other HS, private, parochial or public, in the Sacramento area.  If you want accelerated academics, well, GATE/AIM and AP/Honors in DJUSD might work.

        9. wdf1

          Frankly:  The first step to fixing these problem is to innovate the education system to meet the needs of all students…

          The Onion, Aug. 7, 2015, reports on a move in Illinois that you might appreciate:

          New Statewide Education Standards Require Teachers To Forever Change Lives Of 30% Of Students

          SPRINGFIELD, IL—In an effort to hold classroom instructors more accountable, the Illinois State Board of Education unveiled new statewide education standards Friday that require public school teachers to forever change the lives of at least 30 percent of their students. “Under our updated educator evaluation policy, teachers must make an unforgettable, lifelong impact on at least three of every 10 students and instill a love of learning in them that lasts the rest of their lives,” said chairman James Meeks, adding that based on the annual assessments, if 30 percent of students don’t recall a particular teacher’s name when asked to identify the most influential and inspiring person in their lives, that instructor would be promptly dismissed. “We are imposing these standards to make certain that a significant proportion of students in any given classroom can someday look back and say, ‘That teacher changed the course of my life, making me who I am today, and there’s no way I could ever repay them.’ Anything less is failure.” 

        10. Frankly

          Funny little Onion…

          Seem the push-back here is that I am advocating for an unattainable utopian education system.  I don’t see it that way, but let’s assume for the sake of argument that this is the case.  If so, I would still advocate for the high bar as I think there is really nothing as important in our society and in our life than to do the best job we possibly can developing children into capable, happy and successful adults.  I can accept mediocrity in many things, but not education.  I absolutely cannot accept crappy education… which is what we have in most of the urban areas.

          And if we would focus on fixing the problems in education, we would also fix many if not most of the problems with black over-representation of crime and punishment.  Then most of the rest get fixed with an economy growing at 4% per year combined with incentives for business to start and locate in these areas with high unemployment.  And to get started we will need to increase the number of cops in these areas because business and others that can help lead the way will not move there otherwise because of the high crime.  But we need to train the cops away from a warrior mentality and more to being part of the community they police and more skilled in communication and de-escalation techniques.

        11. wdf1

          Frankly:  I can accept mediocrity in many things, but not education.  I absolutely cannot accept crappy education… which is what we have in most of the urban areas.

          ….

          But we need to train the cops away from a warrior mentality and more to being part of the community they police and more skilled in communication and de-escalation techniques.

          With respect to education, you’re focused on individual kids exclusively without respect for how to make that happen, because that seems like the most rhetorically sound position.  But what you miss is that you’re not fully aware of the system.  You think you are, but your comments don’t reveal that.  When you focus on individual kids exclusively, well there are multiple ways that would seem to give you the result you want, but many of those are not feasible.  It takes a system (multiple interacting individuals harmonizing as a system) to deliver the result.  Getting that harmonizing system requires worker motivation.  You’re thinking you can get there by “leveraging technology,” but that’s focusing on shiny objects.  Or you imagine that merit pay is the answer, but if money were the motivation for these individuals, they would have already found work in other more lucrative fields.

          How many Ferguson police officers actually live in Ferguson?  Honestly, I don’t know.  But I would bet very few.  When you’re not invested in the community where you work then it tends to change the way that you would view your job from being a profession in which one would find personal meaning and satisfaction to being “just a job to pay the bills.”  When you are invested in the community, then you care more about other people, you are likelier to know individuals and their lives and organizations and activities they associate with.  You will work harder.  You might delay a moment longer in pulling the trigger, for better or for worse, but you would be willing to give the benefit of the doubt to a fellow community member.

          Community buy-in is a problem for teachers in high needs districts, and often for finding teachers in general.  When one goes into teaching, then you’d better find greater job satisfaction than you might get from other professions, because the salary possibilities are limited, especially if you want to raise a family.  You are less likely to find job satisfaction from teaching if large chunks of the system are not genuinely invested in the community.  So you’re likelier to find work elsewhere.  Or you begin to treat it as “just a job.”

          Worker buy-in to the community is about relationships which will not be directly measured on standardized tests.  Education in particular is most effective when relationships are valued more than standardized test scores.  The concept of community caring seems to smack of the concept of collectivism to you, which to you is reflexively anathema.  I re-post this article from another thread.  What stands out to me more than anything with respect to fixing the problem is staff turnover.  Even having mediocre staff in place, long term, would be some improvement over having this level of turnover, even of highly competent staff:

          One fateful decision. Years of neglect. Five once-average schools remade into the worst in Florida. FAILURE FACTORIES

          Teacher turnover is a chronic problem, leaving some children to cycle through a dozen instructors in a single year. In 2014, more than half of the teachers in these schools asked for a transfer out. At least three walked off the job without notice.

          ….
          Help would have come sooner if district leaders had followed through on promises. Instead, they announced one program after another, only to abandon each one in short order.

          Turnover made things worse. Pinellas County went through four superintendents in five years.

          That is a systemic problem, a downward spiraling feedback loop.

        12. Frankly

          But what you miss is that you’re not fully aware of the system.  You think you are, but your comments don’t reveal that.

          Your comment are indicative of someone that is so embedded in the system that you cannot effectively think enough outside of the box.  And thinking outside of the box is exactly what we need.

          It takes a system (multiple interacting individuals harmonizing as a system) to deliver the result.  Getting that harmonizing system requires worker motivation.

          Well now here you appear to understand something about what is needed, but you write it in a context of defeatism.

          You’re thinking you can get there by “leveraging technology,” but that’s focusing on shiny objects.  Or you imagine that merit pay is the answer, but if money were the motivation for these individuals, they would have already found work in other fields.

          If you go back and read what I have written, I have advocated for all these things and others things.  I am basically advocating for the best practices in organizational structure, management, tools, performance and constant improvement.   I want the education system to be Six Sigma, ISO 9000… striving for perfection constantly.   Blow it up and reform it into a modern marvel instead of clinging to this old prehistoric model that is falling farther and farther behind.

          You really don’t get it.

          Like most other people in the industrialized world I hold in my hand access to all the information in the world 24 x 7, 365 days a year.  And yet the kids have to sit and listen to this unmotivated adult drone on and on about the details they must memorize from the pages of an over-priced textbook that is already obsolete.  Really?  You think that is a sustainable model?  You think that somehow holding on to this model we are going to keep up with the education needs of people to become productive members of a modern society?

          The kids are information rockets in a world that demand information rockets, but held back by a system that moves like a herd of elephants.

          Is there a new model I can point to so you can try to pick it a part?  There are lots of new models and many of them show promise. In fact, you can tell which ones show the most promise because those are the ones the Democrats and teachers unions work the hardest to defeat.

          But we have not really allowed the level of innovation we need in public education.  It will be the private sector that develops the alternatives that will eventually break apart or reform this crappy public system once and for all.

          1. Don Shor

            And yet the kids have to sit and listen to this unmotivated adult drone on and on about the details they must memorize from the pages of an over-priced textbook that is already obsolete.

            For the umpteenth time: those kids who are motivated to learn through technology and wish to do so have that option in Davis schools. The things you seek are already in place.

        13. wdf1

          Frankly:  Your comment are indicative of someone that is so embedded in the system that you cannot effectively think enough outside of the box.  And thinking outside of the box is exactly what we need.

          You often criticize Obama and Democrats for not understanding business and the economy the way you do.  By the same token, is it possible that you are so embedded in your system of thinking that you can’t think outside the box about business and the economy?

          Frankly:  I am basically advocating for the best practices in organizational structure, management, tools, performance and constant improvement. 

          Which means absolutely nothing unless you are more specific.  That’s slightly more sophisticated way of saying, “I just want what’s best for our schools.”   Who doesn’t?

          Frankly:  Is there a new model I can point to so you can try to pick it a part?  

          Go ahead.  It would probably make for more worthwhile discussion.

          Frankly:   It will be the private sector that develops the alternatives that will eventually break apart or reform this crappy public system once and for all.

          Okay.  Well, I’m looking forward to seeing what that will look like.

          In the meantime, while we’re waiting, the public schools are what we’ve got to work with, and they can be improved.

           

        14. sisterhood

          Re: solutions to the education mess we’re all a part of:

          WDF1: “…many of those are not feasible.  It takes a system (multiple interacting individuals harmonizing as a system) to deliver the result.  Getting that harmonizing system requires worker motivation.”

          I read your entire comment and want to hear your solution. It appears at least part of our solution must involve motivating teachers? Worrying less about SAT scores and other scores, and more about the whole person who is your student? A holistic approach to education, perhaps? Are some of Davis’ current public school teachers not motivated? Just going through the motions? I wish we could hear from some young people here on this blog. 

        15. wdf1

          sisterhood:  I read your entire comment and want to hear your solution.  It appears at least part of our solution must involve motivating teachers?  Worrying less about SAT scores and other scores, and more about the whole person who is your student? 

          “It would be nice if all of the data which sociologists require could be enumerated because then we could run them through IBM machines and draw charts as the economists do. However, not everything that can be counted counts, and not everything that counts can be counted.”  source

          Over time I have found the case for using standardized test scores to measure the quality of education to be weaker and weaker.  That goes for SAT scores, Common Core test scores, achievement test scores, IQ tests.  Achievement gap is specifically defined as the differential in test scores (usually of math and English language arts) between traditionally “at-risk” groups (often African-Americans, Latinos, English Language Learners, and families with lower income/educational levels), and scores of whites and Asians.  Closing the achievement gap conventionally focuses specifically on increasing cognitive achievement in math and English language arts.  This strategy tends to ignore the development of valuable non-cognitive skills and objectives.

          This radio report/podcast explains why such heavy focus on cognitive achievement is a strategy that misses the mark:  This American Life, 9/14/2012, Back to School

          Obama’s ‘Race to the Top’ program requires states to adopt standard teacher evaluation systems, and this almost always means using standardized test scores to do that.  Problems with it can mostly be summarized here:

          WaPo, 5/13/2014:  Good teaching, poor test scores: Doubt cast on grading teachers by student performance

           sisterhood:  A holistic approach to education, perhaps? Are some of Davis’ current public school teachers not motivated? Just going through the motions? 

          I think overall morale is probably better in Davis than in larger urban, lower-income, lower-achieving (as defined by standardized test scores) districts.  Before standardized test-scores were widely used (No Child Left Behind – NCLB – being passed in 2001), I think lower income districts probably performed better overall.  Since NCLB, a school’s and district’s standardized test scores are now used as a basis for deciding where a newer family will settle down.

          I favor giving teachers professional agency to make professional decisions and not tying job performance to standardized test scores of their students.  I think teacher evaluations would work better as a peer review process, and should be framed around a professional development program rather than as a witch-hunt to kick out bad teachers.

          I favor giving higher value in K-12 to arts education (visual and performing) and better accessibility to school athletics (for instance in the 1970’s elementary grade soccer programs ran at each school site in Davis rather than through an outside soccer league like Davis AYSO) and support of CTE programs.  These programs tend to be better oriented to developing non-cognitive skills in a broad segment of students.

          Topcat has some other strategies that I like here.

          I favor education addressing the question, what knowledge, skills, and experiences would make our kids better American citizens.  Frankly thinks the citizenship angle is a leftist conspiracy.

      1. Topcat

        …but you’re also not talking about the people who caught up in the system of incarceration and their families.

        If we want to break the cycle of crime and incarceration, we need societal solutions that focus on making sure that black children are brought up in functional (preferably 2 parent) families that teach them good values, are free of drug and alcohol addiction, and free of violence.

        Waiting until a black boy has committed his first few crimes because he was not raised properly is much too late.  We need to recognize the importance of the first few years of life in forming the pattern of a person’s life.

        1. Davis Progressive

          “If we want to break the cycle of crime and incarceration, we need societal solutions that focus on making sure that black children are brought up in functional (preferably 2 parent) families that teach them good values, are free of drug and alcohol addiction, and free of violence.”

          how do you do that when dad is in jail and mom is addicted to drugs?  it’s easy to say, but where and at what point do you want to intervene?

        2. Topcat

          how do you do that when dad is in jail and mom is addicted to drugs?  it’s easy to say, but where and at what point do you want to intervene?

          What I would like to see personally is the following:

          * More availability of Head Start classes for pre school children.  I would like to see social workers talking to the kids and their parents at the pre-school level to better identify at risk kids.  If mom is a drug addict, the kids need to be removed from the situation.

          * Better schools in disadvantaged areas. This would include lower class sizes for individual attention where needed.  It could also include charter schools and the use of education vouchers so that parents could choose to send there kids somewhere else if the local public school is failing to do a satisfactory job. Yes, I know this costs a lot of money; but I expect that it costs society more to not educate children well.

          * Education of teenagers about reproductive health and the consequences of early pregnancy.  This education should provide realistic, actionable ways for children to obtain contraceptive services should they choose to become sexually active.

          * Availability of family planning services through organizations such as Planned Parenthood and local community clinics.  We should not be seeing teenage girls having unwanted babies that they are unable to raise properly.

          Yes, I know it won’t be easy and it won’t be cheap, but it is better than the alternative of continuing the cycle of poverty, crime and imprisonment that bedevils a segment of the society.

  9. Davis Progressive

    don wrote: What I think they ‘should’ do is start releasing people who are just in jail for drug offenses. Start wiping convictions from the record so they aren’t impediments to employment. Press at the federal level for changes to how different drugs are listed. And press for criminal justice reform state by state.

     

    Well said don, now why couldn’t frankly or bp address this?

    1. hpierce

      Depends on the drug offense… possession for use, OK… possession for sale?  There was a drug dealer in SF in the late 60’s who targeted Jr High Students in the area.  Serious drugs.  He ‘escaped’ local law enforcement by running onto the Presidio grounds (jurisdiction thing)… he ran across an MP, who ordered him to stop.  The dealer pointed a gun at the MP.  MP got off the first shot, and wounded the dealer.  The dealer screamed that he was mal-treated, and demanded a lawyer.  Also cursed the MP, and said he’d sue.  The MP’s best friend was also an MP in Korea.  They funded an orphanage there.  The MP’s friend had become a police officer in Ohio, and had been killed by a drug dealer two months earlier.  The MP delivered a ‘coup de grace’ to the SF dealer.  Got busted in rank.  I knew the MP, and never judged him.

        1. hpierce

          Got to know the MP over a period of months.  I was 20-ish.  Not a ‘story’.  Truth.  To this day, don’t know what I would have done had I ‘been in his shoes’.

          He was a basically gentle person… found a rattlesnake where we worked, he adopted it, built a terrarium for it, found mice for it to eat, and named it “no-shoulders” (very cool name for a snake).  Snake was eventually set free when the campers had left at the end of summer.  “Sarge” was a good man, and he was a good mentor to a bunch of our young adults (like me), who were camp counselors.  A contrast… most loving/upright guy, who was faced with a situation that led him to deliberately take a life.  After 40 years, still trying to grasp the dichotomy.

    2. Frankly

      I’m ok with what Don suggests if the record is only possession for personal use.  As long as there is no other felony crime.  And not for selling or possession to sell.

      Think deeply about this.  Let’s say there are other felonies like theft to support the drug habit.  I’m sure you would make the case that the guilty needs another chance because it is drug related.  But this guy then presents himself as a worthy employment candidate sitting next to another guy with a truly spotless record.  How is that fair to the other guy, and also the employer?

      I draw the line when the crime is harmful to others.

      Now, get the economy back to 4% growth and low crime convicts would get hired just because of worker supply problems.  And I have heard that we are having trouble finding farm workers… think that is probably an untruth told by the coalition of the DNC and big business that wants more cheap immigrant labor… but if so, I would bet farmers and ranchers would give a lower crime convict a job if they cannot hire anyone else.

      How about we make sure our veterans have jobs first, and then worry about the ex convicts?

      His call to advocate for state criminal justice reform is too nebulous to be useful.

      1. sisterhood

        I draw the line when the crime is harmful to others.

        I agree.

        Also, victimless criminals should go straight to rehab. In county & in prison drugs are snuck in; few addicts get clean while incarcerated. Make them attend rehab, continue to test them until they test clean. We also need better quality mental health counseling I have dealt first hand with very bad and very good counselors. I also believe we give too many chances to parents who abuse their children. Get kids permanently out of an abusiv home & I bet the chances they commit crimes drop.

        Mandatory long sentences for domestic violence offenders.

      2. David Greenwald Post author

        The problem is that felony status itself is a tremendous burden. Isn’t it better to allow people who have served their time, have a chance to move on with their lives?

        1. sisterhood

          Re: felony status, I agree.  And, dare I say it –  the sex offender registry is also a career killer? Oh, boy, have I opened up a can of worms. Is it fair that a 19 year old will forever be punished because his 17 year old girlfriend’s parents bring charges of statutory rape? What is a more reasonable age for consent? I personally do not believe any 17 years olds are mature enough to deal with an unwanted pregnancy or std, or even a sexual relationship, so they should abstain. But should we lock them up and forever ruin a person’s job options? I also believe that some 15 year olds look eighteen, and a young man is stupid not to ask to see her drivers license, (but fake ID’s are available in Davis for $200) however,  many view that as unrealistic. So what is the solution to the sex offender registry? Should someone be punished for the rest of their life because a stranger emails them child porn, and they didn’t delete it or turn it over to the cops? Should the registry be revisited?

          Imho, non-violent felons should not have to answer yes to the felony question on a job/home rental application. I’m torn if there should even be a record for anyone, once they’ve served their time and probation/parole complete.

          1. David Greenwald Post author

            The sex registry arose out of the intention to inform the public when a sex offender, who might pose a threat to kids, moves into a given area. My objection is that there are people who commit nothing more than small sex acts when they were barely adults with minors who end up on those lists and end up lumped in with people who are probably ongoing threats to public safety. But I think moving down this line of discussion isn’t helpful to the issue at hand which is finding ways for non-violent, non-sex offenders to be able to get back on their feet and become productive members of society.

        2. sisterhood

          “…moving down this line of discussion isn’t helpful to the issue at hand…”
          Herein lies the problem. Take my own scenario out of the discussion, fine. But most readers,and apparently you are one, are so uncomfortable just hearing/reading those two words, they do not want to confront them. A 19 year old having consensual sex with his 17 year old girlfriend should not be on a list for the rest of his life that’ll forever narrow his career opportunities. If we have turned the “do whites really want to be part of the race conversation” into a conversation about felonies and jail time, which many blacks have no experience whatsoever with, but some blacks have an experience with, then I am bringing up this subject as another barrier to success.

          1. David Greenwald Post author

            I’m not uncomfortable with it, it’s just not a driving factor of the “New Jim Crow” for the black underclass.

      3. Tia Will

        Frankly

        Think deeply about this.  Let’s say there are other felonies like theft to support the drug habit.  I’m sure you would make the case that the guilty needs another chance because it is drug related.  But this guy then presents himself as a worthy employment candidate sitting next to another guy with a truly spotless record.  How is that fair to the other guy, and also the employer?”

        Let’s think a little more deeply about this. You have performed a little slight of hand here. By asking “how is this fair to another guy or the employer. You have suddenly taken up what is “fair” as the standard for how our society should operate. Extending that reasoning, how would it be “fair” to the child born into poverty, in a gang infested neighborhood, to a mom on drugs to be compared to the child of an intact upper middle class family who has had every advantage. I see it as quite ironic that you are now using “fair” as an argument when you have consistently stated that “liberals” cannot use the “victim card” as you see it when pointing out that our society does not offer equal starting points. I don’t see it as valid to pick an arbitrary starting point in two lives, and then start using “fairness” as your criteria when life is clearly “unfair” from the beginning.

  10. TrueBlueDevil

    Dr. Tony Brown in his book “Black Lies, Whites Lies”, reviews the close ties between the Jewish and Black communities.

    He poses an interesting question. Some (many?) Jewish leaders were pushing government intervention, social programs, and civil rights as a way for African Americans to get ahead. Those same Jewish leaders then went home and instructed their own children to study hard, save money, go to college, get married and start a business. Brown asks why the difference in message from one group to another?

    1. David Greenwald Post author

      That’s a fairly simplistic rendering of the world. First of all, you’re ignoring the legal barriers that blacks had prior to the 1970s. So naturally the civil rights movement was going to focus on civil rights as a way for blacks to gain equal footing with whites. It was also recognized blacks were not on equal footing even after lifting the legal sanctions in the 1960s and the remnants of those legal sanctions in the 1970s and beyond. Jews faced legal limitations in this country into the 1930s and 1940s, but their experienced paled in comparison with blacks. In short, I think you’re oversimplifying the experience of the two peoples which overlooks the need for the civil rights movement.

    2. Tia Will

      TBD

      “Jewish leaders were pushing government intervention, social programs, and civil rights as a way for African Americans to get ahead. Those same Jewish leaders then went home and instructed their own children to study hard, save money, go to college, get married and start a business. Brown asks why the difference in message from one group to another?”

      I disagree that this is about elitism, victim mentality, elimination of competition or any of the other pejoratives that get flung about in these discussions. My perspective is that this might be true if you were running an experiment in which you had identically matched children, same family background, same economic setting, same quality of schools, same health care and gave one set of children the message of government provision and the second set the message of work hard, save money….etc.

      But this is not the case. What you had were messages being given to those who have already entered the world into poverty vs those who already come equipped with all of lives advantages. In a previous post, Frankly has invoked the concept of fairness to those who have followed all the rules precisely and are glowing examples of good citizenship. What he neglects to mention is that these glowing examples are much more statistically likely ( as he has pointed out) to have been born into situations in which these behaviors were the norm. Or who one might say had an “unfair advantage” from the beginning.

       

      1. Frankly

        Or who one might say had an “unfair advantage” from the beginning.

        Because of our crappy school systems, the only REAL “unfair advantage” these days is to be born with academic gifts.  Other than that it is only determination and drive to progress in life.

        Kids from rich families or poor families, intact families or broken families, run the gamut of measures of adult success.  Immigrants owning some of the worst family situations and poverty far and above what the average “poor” American family experiences come to this country and do very well.

        This “unfair advantage” concept is just more victim mentality on display.  It is excuse-making.  But if you insist, I say we start increasing taxes on families having members with higher IQs and advanced degrees.

        1. Davis Progressive

          you keep focusing on the schools but the bigger problem is that you’re asking schools to deal with very difficult and complex issues.  ” the average “poor” American family experiences come to this country and do very well” – unless they were brought here as slaves for a few hundred years and then consigned to being second class citizens for another hundred, and then destroyed by mass incarceration for another 40 to 50 so far.

        2. Frankly

          unless they were brought here as slaves for a few hundred years and then consigned to being second class citizens for another hundred, and then destroyed by mass incarceration for another 40 to 50 so far.

          You must be making a point of eugenics since there is no way any of those people are alive today.  In fact, they are long gone by several generations.

          I really will never get this tendency for folks with your worldview to establish a perpetual victim mentality projected on people based on events that are decades and centuries old.

          Based on this old and tired narrative, you would expect females to be all screwed up living in poor neighborhoods and violently angry because they were not able to vote and oppressed by those piggish males of days gone by.

      2. TrueBlueDevil

        Tia, I believe you dodged my question.

        I believe you also stereotyped and completely whitewashed the struggles of Jewish immigrants and Jewish Americans. A family friend’s Dad was a hot dog vendor, is that “all of lives advantages”? Another had a Father battling mental illness, while they had a small family business. Several lost family members in the death camps in Europe.

        Let me guess, you think the Vietnamese boat people who came to America, the Chinese laborers, and Irish immigrants all had lives of advantage?

        An interesting twist is I have heard several stories of Jewish immigrants who were forced into occupations in the death camps / elsewhere, and what do they do when they come to America? They start a business in that field!

        If one reads more academically inclined literature, the interesting question is why did Polish, Jewish, Irish, and other immigrant groups who came to America catapult ahead of African Americans. The answer given by some is that these Americans were living in the rural, undeveloped, backward American south, while these new immigrant groups entered urban America, picked up skills and progressed.

        1. Davis Progressive

          “Let me guess, you think the Vietnamese boat people who came to America, the Chinese laborers, and Irish immigrants all had lives of advantage?”

          nope, there is no other group comparable to african americans in american history except the american indians, and they are in comparably bad shape.

          i have warned you about this before – vietnamese are not homogeneously well off.  they are among the poorer of the major asian subgroups and sizable impoverished populations.

  11. Tia Will

    Frankly

    I really will never get this tendency for folks with your worldview to establish a perpetual victim mentality projected on people based on events that are decades and centuries old.”

    So if I am interpreting you correctly, it’s only “perpetual victim mentality” that you object to. You seem to have no problem identifying “victims” yourself in various posts overtime such as “white males”, the academically gifted, the coworker and employer of a felon, victims of the “war on Christmas”, police and basically any other group that you happen to empathize with that has anything negative said about their activities or actions.

    So how is “victimhood” in your eyes any more legitimate or useful a concept for these folks than for the child of the drug mule now in prison( woman caught carrying, for example, not the kingpin), who herself was the child of a drug addict, who was herself the child of a single woman who raised other women’s children in order to be able to barely feed her own, who was the child of share croppers, who were the children of slaves.  Do you really not believe that this child is at any historical disadvantage ?  This is not eugenics. This is the product of systemic discrimination, ongoing effects of poverty, and yes, disparate educational opportunity.

    And yes, we all know anecdotal exceptions of those who rose above their circumstances. I am one. Frankly is one. One major difference is that I appreciate that much of my ability to overcome circumstances was because I was provided with opportunities first by our government, which Frankly maintains does not create jobs. Well my first job as a shipping clerk on a naval base was a government created job specifically designed to prevent kids like me from getting into trouble, to teach us what it meant to have a job, provide the experience that would allow us to get future jobs both in the public and private sectors. A government created job, Frankly. Regardless of whether or not you believe they exist.

    I do believe that government on a number of levels does have a responsibility to its citizens to help foster their success. And once successful, the individual has a responsibility to give back to the community that helped them. This I believe is how we break the cycle of poverty, imprisonment, and consequent maintenance of an “underclass” regardless of skin color. Currently we are assuming that if we just heap greater and greater rewards on those who are already successful, everyone else will also be elevated. Not so in my experience or apparently in the experience of this country if one looks at the growing disparity in the distribution of wealth.

    1. Frankly

      There is a difference between those harassed, damaged, maligned, mistreated and unfairly targeted by the government and those that complain these things for what is simply challenges of life.  The former often and usually has no recourse… there is nothing more powerful than government to stop government from doing harm.

      However, when there are copious options and opportunities for individual self remedy, it is easy to identify the complainer as having victim mentality.  Life is hard.  Life is not fair.  But when there are reasonable paths and expectations for a person to grow and develop, allowing them to make excuses is a cause of their continued failures.

    2. TrueBlueDevil

      So you’re essentially using one anecdote to connect most African Americans who struggle to slavery. This is beyond a stretch.

      Discussions regarding voluntary vs involuntary immigrants would shed more light.

      Or the success of married vs unmarried black couples.

      Or how with a dramatic increase in social spending saw the destruction of the black family. Or the parallel rise of drug use / gangs with the same familial breakdown.

      How about how the unions enacting such onerous regulations, that drove manufacturing jobs out of urban America, which created vast unemployment and the need for “community organizers”.

      I started out in a tough spot, have had successes and failures, and part of maturing is accepting our being the primary figure in those decisions. I do think education is a key, so is marriage, and if we could combine cheap, reliable energy with a streamlining of regulations / obstacles, I believe we could return some manufacturing jobs to our country.

      Of coarse, if Donald Trump were successful closing the border and returning some illegal immigrants south, we’d have loads of new jobs available for Americans. Wages would rise, and so would benefits.

      1. Davis Progressive

        “I started out in a tough spot, have had successes and failures, and part of maturing is accepting our being the primary figure in those decisions.”

        the problem i think is that we all have certain barriers to overcome in our lives.  if all goes well, we might be able to overcome them.  my daughter is a good example – she had a tough time in high school culturally in davis, but she had two parents who were well educated, supportive, and with resources.  take those away, then start dropping hits on people – parents divorce or never marry, low income, unemployed, father in prison, mother drug addicted, bad schools, running with the wrong crowd, and then to that background add bad adolescent choices – which we all make, but some kids are resilient and can overcome them, some aren’t.  and start throwing legal obstacles – multiple small offenses lead to a felony charge, a plea agreement, now they can’t get a job, they can’t finish school, they can’t qualify for certain forms of assistance… it piles up.

      2. Tia Will

        TBD

        So you’re essentially using one anecdote to connect most African Americans who struggle to slavery. This is beyond a stretch.”

        Except that I am not presenting a single anecdote. If you were to trace back the heritage of many African Americans ( not recent immigrants whose skin happens to be black) you will find similar stories. Do you really doubt this ?

        1. TrueBlueDevil

          Tia, you’re doing a great job playing stereotyping black families and people who struggle in a negative light.

          You completely miss the large black middle and upper classes, the countless success stories, and the numerous black families who were INTACT and SOLID for decades upon decades – until the Federal government started experimenting on them with “social” programs.

          Yes, I doubt that most black families have generation after generation who have made poor life choices. I went to school with many middle class African American black friends who’s parents were business men, electricians, carpenters, school teachers, and even a car dealership owner and a doctor. “Many” seems like an overstatement of the negative. The “why” only you can answer.

  12. TrueBlueDevil

    There is little new insight when folks are so committed to their viewpoints. Yes, the cycle of poverty is bad and tough to get out of, but many people have and do.

    The Left wants whites to reflexively accept that racism is the root of all problems in the black community, want them to feel guilty, and then agreed to have more of their money taken for new social experiments – which are rarely tested for usefulness or success. Rarely are failed programs ended or defunded.

    Your average person who is against seemingly endless victimhood know that programs have failed, know we have spent tons of money on social programs and education, and they see new immigrants from many other countries come to America and succeed. More well-read readers like Frankly, BP and others know the long history of failed programs, and many have concluded that government programs actually helped destroy the black family and rob their community of self-reliance (per the black underclass).

    We had readers here who didn’t know who Dr. Ben Carson was! Isn’t that actually a wonderful anecdote? There are so many highly successful African Americans, someone like Dr. Carson is just one of millions. I’m sure most here haven’t heard of Junior Bridgeman either. The examples are countless.

    There are dozens of new insights and perspectives which I think the Left doesn’t want to hear. They just want us to drink the Koolaid.

    1. Frankly

      Well said TBD!

      The left is really, really good and recasting the failures of their demanded policies as justification for more.  Too bad that so many ignorant voters can’t think beyond their immediate wants and note that the cycles keep repeating and don’t get better.   Maybe this next election will result in some real hope and change.

      1. Barack Palin

        Maybe this next election will result in some real hope and change.

        So far it’s scary, I’m not a Trump fan and the Democrats are still backing Hillary even through all her lies and deceit.

        1. Barack Palin

          So Democrats have a deceitful liar and a socialist for their choices?  Great.

          At least the GOP race is still wide open and I like Fiorina, Walker, Carson and Rubio. I look for one of them to step up.

        2. Davis Progressive

          and republicans have a bunch of crazy people as their choices in various forms.  i fail to see how this is going to become a productive discussion.  i’m glad i’m not a democrat or republican.

        3. Davis Progressive

          again, not my side of the aisle.  i would consider supporting bernie, i will not support any of the others.  as for crazy – i guess its in the eye of the beholder, though i agree that fiorina and walker are less crazy than misguided.  fiorina may talk a good game – but she has a lot of skeletons.  she was non-competitive running for senate.  walker barely survived a recall in his own state.

        4. Frankly

          again, not my side of the aisle.  i would consider supporting bernie, i will not support any of the others.

          I laughed so hard the milk came out my nose.

          DP, you might not be registered as a Democrat, but you are no independent.  You hang out on the left side of almost everything… the far left on many things.

          Bernie Sanders is the ying to Donald Trump’s yang.  Socialist verses capitalist.  Both into provocative words and positions to appeal to their opposite ideological extremes.

          With little exception, if you like Sanders as a candidate, you are hard left.  If you like Trump as a candidate, you are hard right.  I like both of them being in the race because it foments meaningful debate and discussion, but supporting one or the other as THE candidate makes you an extremist.

        5. Davis Progressive

          i make no bones of the fact that i’m to the left of the democratic party.  unfortunately on most issues i care about the most, i see little difference between the parties.  i’m pleased that the democrats are finally moving off the hard on crime stance, but both parties really are, and some republicans are willing to go much further.  i don’t see any difference between the obama and bush admin on war, police state, privacy issues.  everything else is the democrats a little more watered down than the republican party.

    2. Davis Progressive

      many people get out of poverty.  many people do not.  the 70 recidivism rate suggested that the vast majority of people who get caught into that particular cycle, stay there and it last multiple generations.  i laid out layers of hardship above where people in tough circumstances make bad choices as many do during their youth and their experience compounds itself.  i’m still waiting to see an actual prescriptive remedy to getting people out of these situations other than platitudes.

    3. sisterhood

      “…folks are so committed to their viewpoints. Yes, the cycle of poverty is bad and tough to get out of, but many people have and do.

      …the Left doesn’t want to hear. They just want us to drink the Koolaid.”

      Sounds like you, TBD, are also “so committed” to your viewpoint. You’re drinking the crazy fox news tea party nonsense koolaid, while telling others they are drinking the kool aid of liberal causes. Sounds rather hypocritical.

    4. Tia Will

      TBD

      The Left wants whites to reflexively accept that racism is the root of all problems in the black community, want them to feel guilty, “

      There is one significant problem with this analysis. It assumes that there is a unified “Left” that all feel exactly the same way, instead of accepting that “the left” just like “the right” is made of a multitude of different people who see things along a spectrum.  Most would characterize me as very far to the left, and yet I do  not believe in any of what you just said that “the left ” believes. What you are choosing to do is to stereotype, rather than seek solutions. I agree that it is much easier just to tell others that they are wrong than it is to seek solutions, however, it is also much less productive.

      1. Davis Progressive

        tia makes a good point here.  i do believe that racism and its manifestations are at the root of the problems in the black community along with an overly punitive legal system.

        i think it would be instructive for people like bp and tbd to look more closely and from a detached perspective at the rift between bernie and blacklivesmatter as it really illustrates two very different world views that make up the left and that doesn’t even get into the other groups – enviros, women, labor, the more moderate wing of center-left people, etc.

        1. sisterhood

          DP,  I think you mentioned Bernie Sanders in another post. What would it take for you to support a woman candidate? What would she look like, philosophically, politically? Sister Prejean? Barbara Boxer? Feinstein? Hillary? Mother Teresa? One of our supreme court justices?

        2. sisterhood

          Re: BP’s latest example of black on white crime: One can find these news articles all day long, 24/7. “Man abducts white children in Ohio & holds them in a prison in his home for years. White man in Antioch hides white girl for years, in his back yard. A hundred examples.

          What is YOUR point? Still waiting for your thoughtful, analytical and substantive submission to the Vanguard. Get writing.

        3. Davis Progressive

          the real deal?  based on what?  she was a complete dud when she ran for senate.  you’re going to have to wait a very long time as she will never get a chance to debate hilary.

        4. Barack Palin

          She ran for Senate is this brainwashed left of left coast state where no Republican would’ve had a chance.  But you’re right about one thing DP, the deceitful liar Hillary will never debate Fiorina because Hillary will be long gone before that when her lies finally catch up with her.

  13. Frankly

    Just read a good article that makes the point that the US is fully-leveraged and has little ammunition to deal with the next recession.  This isn’t so much just a Democrat problem, but the Democrats have doubled-down on all the wrong things at the wrong time to put the country at even greater risk of financial collapse and all the human misery and suffering that comes with it.

    The REAL problem is that Ivy League idiots run the country.  It has only been Constitutionally-protected freedoms plus the grit and determination of the regular Americans to produce something of value that has kept the economy strong.  But the Ivy league idiots hate it when the B-average, state-university-educated, captain of the Lacrosse team becomes financially successful.  The Ivy League idiots turn to government-empowered looting in the name of “equality”.  And they leverage the envy of the seething moocher masses to collar the votes they need in this scheme.

    The key to saving this country from collapse is to eject all the Ivy League idiots from positions of political power.

    This article nails the basis of the need for political battle.  And why Democrats have it easier to stay in power even as they cause so much damage.

    http://www.usatoday.com/story/opinion/2015/08/16/why-markets-work-column/31813363/

    And it all comes back to the problems with the black community.

    Democrats are bad for blacks.  Until more recognize this and begin to vote for their long-term well-being instead of their short-term desire to get a free phone, things will not change for the better.

     

  14. sisterhood

    “What is your point?”

    My point was, there were 106 comments when I tallied them. Title of this article is “Do whites want to be part of the race conversation?”

    Approximately 2/3  of the comments related blacks to incarceration, felonies, crime in general, (drugs, etc.) unwed mothers, and police interaction. 1/3 of the comments were other subjects. Not one comment related black to successful judges, lawyers, doctors, professors, poets, musicians, artists, restaurant owners, politicians, athletes, entrepreneurs, journalists,academy award winnig actors, actresses, or even Jackie Robinson, for goodness sake.

    1. Barack Palin

      I think you should talk to the Vanguard about that.  It seems to me that the Vanguard isn’t into pushing the successful black narrative, imo it more likes to delve into the blacks being victims theme.

    2. sisterhood

      As a white 59 year old woman drawn into the comments re: Michael Brown, Ferguson, etc., I was also guilty ofcontibuting to those comments. I did not once mention my favorite author and poet, Maya Angelou, or my favorite CNN political commentator, Donna Brasil. (sp?) or other black people who have personally inspired me. Another example of a black person who positively influenced my life was my eighth grade classmate, Gwen. She was bussed into our white Irish Catholic somewhat racist middle class suburb from the projects of Boston in 1969.

    3. TrueBlueDevil

      “Not one comment related black to successful …”

      I wrote: “We had readers here who didn’t know who Dr. Ben Carson was! Isn’t that actually a wonderful anecdote? There are so many highly successful African Americans, someone like Dr. Carson is just one of millions. I’m sure most here haven’t heard of Junior Bridgeman either. The examples are countless.”

       

      1. Barack Palin

        TBD, I remember when you first brought up Ben Carson and I was surprised that some posters had no idea who this great man was who is now running for President.

        1. TrueBlueDevil

          I don’t recall knowing him until his famous White House prayer breakfast speech, which is still a classic in my mind. Obama was 10′ away, and he espoused policies 180 degrees different than Obama’s with tact and grace. And hysterical.

          I was so impressed I read up on him, watched his real-life medical videos on youtube, and watched the movie on his life, Gifted Hands starring Kouba Gooding Jr. It’s not blockbuster material, but still excellent in my mind. A true American hero. The movie is non-political, and I recommend it.

          BTW, Junior Bridgeman used to play in the NBA, was preparing for life after basketball, and started investing in fast-food franchises. I think he now owns over 100 and has an estimated worth of over $400 Million while providing many jobs for his numerous communities.

        2. TrueBlueDevil

          Don – that article told me little. He calls Dr. Carson’s White House speech “disjointed” – so disjointed it got about 1 million views the first few days on youtube and was the talk of the town.

          He has jumped the gun on a few issues, or not been as diplomatic or well versed in all of the nuances of his answers, which isn’t surprising given that he is an outsider. Ross Perot gave a talk to the NAACP and when he said “you people” he was grilled. PC attitudes.

  15. sisterhood

    I challenge readers to name one or more black people who have truly inspired you and made you a better person. A young woman named Gwen from my 8th grade class is one. Donna Brasil is another. Maya Angelou’s poems and books have also helped me. Several singers, especially Marvin Gaye, have soothed my soul. The list goes on and on, when you think about it. Watching L.A. makes me think of number 42. Do you think of Willie Mays? Arthur Ashe? What about the great black inventors? Military leaders? Comics Wanda Sykes and Dave Chappell make me laugh… What about all the great blues musicians?
    Biddlin, care to join in here?

    1. Don Shor

      Since I’m a huge jazz fan, my list would be really really long. But I’ll select four who are outstanding even among that august group: Ella Fitzgerald, Earl Hines, Miles Davis, and Ray Charles. Each not just for his or her amazing talent, but for the fact that each adapted, changed, and reinvented stylistically as their careers progressed and tastes changed around them. Ella and Earl comfortably bridged the huge changes that occurred in jazz in the midst of their careers, each performing for decades. Miles Davis forged whole new directions in jazz, without regard to what critics or the public necessarily thought. And Ray Charles did whatever genre he wanted, impeccably.
      Plus my 7th grade chorus instructor, Mrs. Barnswell, who held us to impossibly high standards of performance quality.

      1. sisterhood

        Then please give us a generic description of one of your clients who succeeded, against all odds, without violating atty/client privilege or perhaps with that person’s permission. You gave an excellent example of the person in multiple foster care situations that didn’t have much of a chance in this world. It would be nice to also hear at least one example of someone who succeeded against all odds, and what attributed to their success.

    2. tribeUSA

      In high school freshman year gym class, the first black person I ever knew; and his name was…Lloyd White!

      There were only 3-4 black students attending Everett high school out of about 1800 students back in the mid 1970s (there were no black students at the Catholic grade school I had attended); two of them were good athletes, including Lloyd. I admired Lloyd because of his athletic prowess (he was short like me Freshman year; but much stronger than I was) and natural leadership–along with one other tall white guy he was basically the natural leader of our gym class and everyone looked up to him; even though he was short and black! He was very calm, looked everyone in the eye, had a serious demeanor (though he did also have a sense of humor) and treated everyone fairly.

      Prior to that, I’d never known a black kid–race was not an issue ever brought up by my family, or at grade school (except a bit about slavery and the civil war), and I had no opinion pro or con about people of other races–when I first met Lloyd I thought it was kind of curious that his skin was black, but there were other things about him that interested me more; his skin color was no more of a curiosity than a big nose or funny looking chin on another guy. He talked pretty similar to everyone else (with a bit of a southern accent; I think maybe his family had moved up to Everett from Georgia), and was respected and fit in well with the other guys at high school (nearly all white and some hispanics), and got along well with almost everyone. I never thought of him in terms of being a black guy, but as Lloyd White!

      So I guess I was fortunate in that the first black guy I met was someone I liked and admired, before I had been propagandized; pro or con, about black people.

    3. Frankly

      I was uncomfortable with this challenge from sisterhood and could not put my finger on it until later.  There are many blacks that I admire.  But in my mind they are just people I admire.  My discomfort is that we are feeling the need to isolate them because of their race.  Why?  Why do we need to do this.  My board chairman is a black gentleman and nobody in the organization ever thinks about his race. We just love who he is… his personality. Everyone has one.

      Now I hired a black employee a few years ago from Sacramento and early on I asked her how she liked the job and she said she did but that there did not seem to be any other black people in Davis.  I told her that Davis is very white, but that there was actually a lot of diversity but mostly because of the college.  Then I told her that our board chair was a black man and I was shocked how this cuased her to almost jump with joy.  That gave me a window into this issue being more about black insecurity.  Some people just feeling that they are separate and different and wanting to see more people like themselves.  I think this is uniqely black because I don’t experience with people of any other race, gender, sexual orientation… and I have it all and have had it all throughout my career.  People are people and it just does not seem to matter when they are all working together.

      But for this one employee it was and issue.  Why?

      I think the reason is that we keep up the narrative of black difference and uniqueness.  Black culture, black music, black this and that.   How about American this or that?  Or employee this or that?  Or fill-in-the-blank this or that?

      1. TrueBlueDevil

        Good points. Race is but one of dozens of traits that make us each unique.

        Years ago I got fed up with the constant drumbeat of “Daryl Jones is the first black French teacher in Anytown USA” game. I can understand that in the past we had hurdles and firsts – but it has gotten to be so vapid. I occasionally joke that we will soon learn that “Ted Jones is the first one-armed albino dog catcher in town”.

        1. Frankly

          The point, obvious to almost anyone, is that it creates role models and possible mentors for young people.

          But the point that you and others seems to be missing is the question about why do blacks need black role models?  Why not just focus on just role models?

        2. Frankly

          Why do boys benefit from having male teachers?

          Interesting question.

          Why do liberals discount gender role models and demand race-based role models?

          I think liberals have it completely wrong on both counts.  Gender role models are needed because of a basis of biological differences.  Do you want to make the same case about blacks?

          1. Don Shor

            Gender role models are needed because of a basis of biological differences.

            What is your basis for this statement? I think boys benefit from having male teachers because they can act as role models and mentors, and because they can relate to them better. I’d guess the same goes for people of various ethnicities and traits, particularly when they are in a minority within a particular population.

            Why do liberals discount gender role models and demand race-based role models?

            I don’t know. I think boys would benefit from seeing more male teachers. I think girls benefit when they see women in various professions that were once male-dominated. The reaction to the two women who have successfully completed the Army Ranger training is a good example. I think children of color benefit from seeing grown men and women like themselves working in professions that interest them. I think gay kids benefit from seeing gay adults functioning openly in work and school. I can’t really understand why this bothers you or TBD.

      2. hpierce

        meant as a gentle ‘tweak’… we will know when we’re ‘good’, when we do not use phrases such as “a black employee”, but say “an employee, who by the way, happens to be black”, if such a differentiation is needed at all.  I have no doubt, Frankly, that you measure those you are familiar with, by their character and abilities, not by metrics that really don’t (or shouldn’t) matter.  Lumping people with labels, ‘deserved’ or not, and attributing motivations to ‘classes’ of people, is, quite frankly, childish and ill-informed.

        1. Frankly

          Not a very gentle tweak, but I get your point.  The frustrating point for me is that I even had to write what I wrote.  I don’t see her as a black employee.  I don’t see my board chair as a black man.  But to combat the effing continuing racial division that is fomented by the political armies of the left in combination with those unable to control they fits of groupism-based irrational fairness assessments… how the h e l l do you have that conversation while walking on so many sensitivity eggshells?   It angers me to a great deal that one side inflames all this anger and shouting and then does what you do to editorialize the response as needing to be so perfect in political correctness.

          It is this type of thing that leads to guys like Donald Trump being popular.  People are really tired of the word police BS.  How about we just have a conversation about important issues?

        2. Davis Progressive

          “The frustrating point for me is that I even had to write what I wrote.  I don’t see her as a black employee.  I don’t see my board chair as a black man. ”

          and we know from research in sociology that this is true.  familiarity with an individual allows the in-group to see the out-group without the filters.  but we also know that that individuality is limited to people of familiarity.  which is why some of my best friends are friend, does not preclude the possibility of racial prejudice.  you’re still willing to put group labels on mass groups of blacks.

        3. Frankly

          you’re still willing to put group labels on mass groups of blacks.

          I would prefer not to do this.  But the unfortunate leftist racial narrative requires it.

          I don’t support “Black Family Day”, do you?

          I don’t support affirmative action, do you?

          I don’t support having any black caucus, do you?

          I don’t recognize the need to accept black culture, do you?

          I don’t see the need to define black mentors or “heroes”, do you?

          I think you should look in the mirror before you start trying to tag others with evidence of racism in their beliefs and language.

          I would just as soon remove using “black” or “white” in our lexicon related to race and people.  How about we just use American, legal resident, and illegal resident?

          But when blacks march as blacks and riot as blacks and politic as blacks and demand special treatment as blacks… well then we are back to having to debate the groupism.

        4. Davis Progressive

          it’s interesting, i never used the word racism in my post, but you’re the one constantly talking about victimization, high crime neighborhoods, etc.  you want to be able to talk about your black employees whose race you apparently ignore while at the same time labeling groups of people as victims or worse.

        5. Frankly

          you’re the one constantly talking about victimization, high crime neighborhoods

          As is often the case on this topic, you don’t get it.

          I am making the case that liberals, Democrats and the liberal media continue to inflame victim mentality and then this results in destructive individual and group behavior.

          What if you sat in a classroom of minority students told all the kids in that class that whites were inherently racist, that the problems of their parents were because of racism, that life is unfair to them because they are non-white, that slavery and Jim Crow still exist, that cops will mistreat them because of their race, that teachers are heroes and their crappy school experience is only because all the white Republicans will not spend any more on schools, etc., etc., etc…

          The kids would behave accordingly.

          The soft bigotry of low expectations.  This is exactly what is happening because of you and your political ilk.

          The point I am making is that LIBERALS and DEMOCRATS and the MAIN MEDIA (all the same today) project victim mentality and inject it into the thinking and psyche of many black people that struggle.  Because having an excuse to blame others is a slippery slope of destructive comfort verses the alternative of self-criticism, introspection and persistence to develop and grow as an individual.

          I keep saying that blacks as a group are being held back by their alliance to the Democrat party that exploits their misery for political power.

        6. hpierce

          Frankly, re: 9:28 post…  “The frustrating point for me is that I even had to write what I wrote.  I don’t see her as a black employee.”  

          I so GET that sentiment.  Often when I read things that indicate that because I’m “white”, I don’t get it, I think of the song by Billy Joel.  “I am, an Innocent Man”

        7. Davis Progressive

          and i would argue frankly, that for years democrats ignored the issue.  in fact, both parties did and what you are seeing now is anger and frustration exploding to the surface.  there were riots in ferguson before the mainstream media said boo.  so you have it backwards.  and you keep ignoring the role of mass incarceration and broken windows in creating these resentments.

        8. Davis Progressive

          “What if you sat in a classroom of minority students told all the kids in that class that whites were inherently racist, that the problems of their parents were because of racism, that life is unfair to them because they are non-white, that slavery and Jim Crow still exist, that cops will mistreat them because of their race, that teachers are heroes and their crappy school experience is only because all the white Republicans will not spend any more on schools, etc., etc., etc…”

          i don’t need to sit in a classroom and tell them that – they already know it.  how do you get beyond it?  it’s not a matter of words or teaching, it’s a matter of changing what we are doing.  throwing people in prison isn’t going to solve the problem.

        9. Frankly

           throwing people in prison isn’t going to solve the problem.

          First, let’s be honest. Throwing law breakers in prison does help solve a problem of there being less crime.  And throwing drug users in prison reduces their ability to access drugs and probably saves lives that would otherwise pass from drug OD.

          Liberals have latched onto this new excuse for black strife, but without changing liberal policies, fewer arrests and fewer convictions is not going to do squat to improve black lives in any material way.

          1. Don Shor

            Throwing law breakers in prison does help solve a problem of there being less crime.

            You can’t keep them there forever.

            Liberals have latched onto this new excuse for black strife…fewer arrests and fewer convictions is not going to do squat to improve black lives in any material way.

            Being convicted of any crime makes it harder to get a job or find a place to live. So if there are fewer arrests and fewer convictions, people could get jobs. If they are getting arrested and convicted for things like drug possession, then those laws should be changed. We’ve discussed this before. So, in fact, “throwing drug users in jail” harms black lives.

        10. Frankly

          You can’t keep them there forever

          True, and I believe in reabilitation and development while in prison.  Basically, work and school.  In fact, I think that is what prison should focus on.  I think in Texas at least they focus on work.

          But while they are locked up there is that benefit that seems to be ignored.  I think it is mainly property crime that liberals discount… because some do the minimalist thing and apparently don’t have much that they care enough about to have a problem with theft, or because they are limousine liberals that will just buy more.

          But for most people getting ripped off by crooks and theives is very harmful to them.

          Being convicted of a crime makes it harder to get a job and harder to find a place to live.

          Here are my thoughts on that. First, it was the lack of available jobs that caused some if not many of these people to turn toward crime.  And that is exacerbated by their crappy education.  That is why I advocate so strongly to put much greater policy effort into growing the economy and investing in economic development in these areas through tax breaks etc and a reduction of the mountains of regulations that make it too difficult and too expensive to start a business.  And why I advocate so strongly to blow up the education system… beginning in these urban areas… and completely reform it.  Fix the problems at the source, not at the symptoms.  Even if you expunge records they will be no better off and will likely have to go back to crime.

          I don’t think getting housing is really that hard except for the economics (except for registered sex offenders… which is another issue to talk about at another time).  Section 8 vouchers are available.

          Liberals protect the adult jobs program education system and demand all their high taxes and regulations.  Hell all the lefties CA State legislators are trying to change Prop-13 to make businesses pay massive property tax increases.  Do you know that that will do to unemployment in this state?  Liberals won’t give up on those things and have taken up this “it is because of cops and courts” excuse for why blacks are in such dire economic circumstances.

          The way I see it, if you really cared about the black community more than your politics you would join me in advocating for policy to drastically improve urban education and economic opportunity.

          1. Don Shor

            You said:

            fewer arrests and fewer convictions is not going to do squat to improve black lives in any material way.

            That statement if completely false. As I said, getting arrested, convicted, and doing time makes it harder to get a job and find housing. That’s a FACT. Section 8 vouchers are fine until you try to fill out the credit application to rent an apartment.
            The rest of your response is just partisan auto-fill. Do you think about your replies, or do you just find it easier to fill everything with the same responses?
            I suggest you try answering posts without using the phrase “adult jobs program education system,” without having straw man arguments with phantom liberals. It would make for a more meaningful conversation, and then maybe we can talk about ways to reform the present penal system.

        11. TrueBlueDevil

          Frankly, you missed a major component. 30-45 Million illegal immigrants made blue collar workers, including those who are black, expendable. Solid middle class jobs for those who had less inclination for school was a solid path. I’ve known several black carpenters, roofers, and one young man who opened his own mechanic’s shop in Los Angeles. They have all been married, had children, bought homes, expanded homes, and been fine upstanding citizens.

          The marijuana angle has also popped it’s ugly head in some recent discussions I have had. Two people I know well relayed 4 instances in which young black men were smoking pot on the job. Two were fired for it, and the other two had their jobs on the line. How someone can think that will fly, and the cultural importance of doing that and risking one’s job, is beyond me. I think it is telling.

        12. wdf1

          Frankly:  Liberals protect the adult jobs program education system…

          You’re very practiced with ad hominem material, which suggests a certain substantive shallowness to your arguments, but you don’t seem to be able to articulate and adequately defend a position on education policy.  Where’s that new education model you promised?

          Frankly: Is there a new model I can point to so you can try to pick it a part?  source

    4. Biddlin

      Louis Armstrong is the first musician I can recall hearing. His sincere delivery of a lyric with an instrumental range from morbidly somber to celestially joyful make him my favourite performer. My first influence on guitar was the late Jimmy Reed. A major influence on my style was Wes Montgomery, but so were Les Paul and Alvino Rey. My co-guitarist, think older Wesley Snipes look-alike, will tell you his big influence as a guitarist, was Roy Clark. Our Latina violinist and singer was hooked on Billie Holiday as a child,  I had avoided this thread, frankly, because nothing in the conversation changes. The entrenched remain so. As it happens, I’ve been in  the conversation for about 45 years, now, with this group of friends who,  perhaps as musicians,  are more accustomed to listening to one another.

      ;>)/

       

  16. TrueBlueDevil

    A professor at Stanford wrote a book suggesting that black women seek out and marry men of other races since black men seem to disinterested in the same. That’s a new idea.

    Rick Banks: Is Marriage for White People: How the African American Marriage Decline Affects Everyone?

    Stanford Law Professor Argues Black Women Should Cross Race Barrier For Marriage Partners
    “A provocative new book by Stanford law professor Ralph Richard Banks examines why black women are so unlikely to marry — and proposes a solution that is arousing controversy in the African-American community: Cross the color line.

    “Don’t marry down. Marry out,” says Banks in his campus office, busy with phone calls, emails and preparation for the new semester. The shared experience that once bound blacks together — segregation — is gone, he asserts. “So it all coalesces around this …: whether black women will continue to be held hostage to the failings of black man.”

    “It’s a good thing to get married, I think, if you find someone you want to be with,” says Banks, who attended elementary school with Eberhardt in inner-city Cleveland. “I did find that person.”

    “He speaks from personal experience; two of Banks’ three sisters — “intelligent, beautiful and educated” — are unmarried. In fact, black women are the most unmarried group of people in our nation. They’re only half as likely as white women to be married, and more than three times as likely as white women never to marry, according to his analyses.

    “Black women face the thinnest pool of same-race partners of any group in the country,” he says.

    https://www.law.stanford.edu/news/stanford-law-professor-argues-black-women-should-cross-race-barrier-for-marriage-partners

  17. hpierce

    When someone butchers the spelling of one’s name, one usually is “dissing” them…

    TrueB*******D******* (aka TBD), why Kouba Godding Jr., instead of Cuba Godding Jr.?

    Even.

  18. TrueBlueDevil

    Do you recall Freddie Gray, the man who died in the police van in Baltimore?

    New evidence seems to describe a career criminal who had also attempted a “cash for crash scenarios” – i.e., that he has tried to injure himself before while in police custody. City officials have withheld this information from the Defense of the six officers.

    “The defense attorneys said in a court motion Thursday that Assistant State’s Attorney Janice Bledsoe told police investigators working the case in its early stages not to “do the defense attorneys’ jobs for them” by pursuing information they had about such schemes and evidence that Gray “intentionally injured himself at the Baltimore City Detention Center.” ”

    If you recall, there was another person in the police van who said that Gray was ‘throwing himself’ into the side of the police van. A week or so later, this witness recanted his original story.

    http://www.baltimoresun.com/news/maryland/freddie-gray/bs-md-ci-gray-recusal-filing-20150806-story.html

    1. Frankly

      I read that too.  But, of course, not well reported in the main scream media.  It does not support the cops are racist template that serves the Democrat-media industrial complex.

      1. Davis Progressive

        of course you’re reading it in the mainstream newspaper.

        my thought is this: the defense is making very serious accusations.  if true, there have to be very serious consequences.  on the other hand, the defense may simply be leveling as many accusations as it can to muddy the waters, we’ll see.  i will say this: this is standard operating procedure for a lot of defense attorneys i have seen and i would hope if they prove to be correct that you guys be just as concerned when the defendant is someone other than a cop.

    2. Barack Palin

      I posted this about a week ago that the defense was saying that this happened.  More and more  Mosby’s case is falling apart, as was predicted by many when her trumped up charges first came out.  It looks like the race baiters have once again hung their hat on the wrong case.

    3. hpierce

      The theory has a flaw… ‘cash for crash’ only works if you live.  Given the person’s history, unlikely that he was so unselfish to commit suicide for cash for family/friends.  At this point, not buying that theory.  Not buying the theory that the police were directly responsible, either.  At least at this point.

        1. hpierce

          TBD’s theory on drugs aside, could you or anyone you know, “just hurt himself and went too far”?  Absent serious drugs, just can’t ‘get there’.  I need a lot more info to buy into a theory (not that it is any of my damn business).

        2. David Greenwald Post author

          The problem you still have is that if the police didn’t get him proper medical attention, even if the injuries were self-inflicted, it may not exonerate them.

      1. TrueBlueDevil

        It may be a confluence of factors.

        I wouldn’t say he was unselfish, try stupid and committed to a life of crime. He had been picked up by the police a huge number of times, 70 or 100. I wouldn’t say dim criminals or those high on drugs teach us much. Or all of the above.

        There are also reports that he tested as being on marijuana and heroin on the day of his death.

      2. hpierce

        BP… key word is “maybe”.  In my opinion, we need to see how this plays out,  prior to ‘judge’.  Am guessing that the “truth” is not out there yet.

  19. Davis Progressive

    this piece on the blacklivesmatter movement in the washington post sums it up for me

    Agitating a perceived political ally to the Black community is strategic. For far too long, the Democratic Party has milked the Black vote while creating policies that completely decimate Black communities. Once upon a time, Bill Clinton was widely perceived as an ally and advocate for the needs of Black people. However, it is the Clinton administration’s Violent Crime and Law Enforcement Act that set the stage for the massive racial injustice we struggle with in law enforcement today.

    Let us recall: Bill Clinton’s 1994 crime bill provisions included $10.8 billion in federal matching funds to local governments to hire 100,000 new police officers over a period of six years, $9.7 billion allocated for the construction of new federal prisons, creation of 60 new death penalty offenses, mandatory minimums for crack cocaine possession and the decision to allow children as young as 13 to be tried as adults. The Clinton administration gave birth to the very era of mass incarceration that current Democrats are renouncing with great emotion and fervor. But these are ardent words with no concrete agenda.

    Bill Clinton’s legacy is not amicable to the needs of our community. On the contrary, the Democratic-led war on drugs and crime was a thinly veiled war on the Black community as a whole. Today, over a million Black people are imprisoned, stark casualties of war.

    the problem in my opinion is that the people like frankly really don’t understand politics or political divisions and don’t understand why people like me can be on the far left but not a democrat.

    1. Frankly

      I think you don’t understand the human condition, human nature and human motivation…  and because of that your politics and views are largely wrong.

      But I do agree that Clinton is the one that started the run on stronger law enforcement.  What you fail to mention or remember is that the big social issue in the mainstream media at the time was run away crime.

      1. hpierce

        Frankly, you surprise me.  “your politics and views are largely wrong.”  Ok, you want to tell folks how they should think/feel?  And that they are “wrong” if they feel/think differently? So much for the Constitution.  And your credibility.  

    2. TrueBlueDevil

      In the 1970s and 80s there was a consistent rise in crime. One example was New York City, which had the number of homicides rise to 2245 in 1990. After the efforts of Clinton and Mayor Guliana, crime dropped substantially, dipping below 1,000, and then below 500. Last year NYC recorded 328 murders.

      We went from 9,000 murders yearly in the USA to 24,000 by 1990, and crack was a big part of that. That number is back down to 14,000 with a population increase. Total violent crimes look to be down about 1/3rd (more if you add in the increase in population).

      Any tears about violent criminals and hard drug dealers in jail have to also weight the hundreds of thousands of lives that have been saved, will be saved, and related casualties and mayhem which we avoid. Barretta said don’t do the crime if you can’t do the time.

      http://www.disastercenter.com/crime/uscrime.htm

       

      1. Tia Will

        TBD

        Barretta said don’t do the crime if you can’t do the time.”

        Barretta may have come up with a catchy phrase that some love to quote. Unfortunately this quote leaves out the collateral damage from the “tough on crime” and “punishment vs rehabilitation” mindset. The young man that is arrested and given a lengthy prison sentence is the son, boyfriend or husband, and perhaps father of children who would be better served by him being a contributing member of their family. His prolonged prison sentence leads to his absence as a financial support to his children and their mother. So, we “lock them up and through away the key” ( another catchy phrase) and then criticize the same folks for “familial disintegration”. I would say that the children of a long term prisoner are going to have a very hard time maintaining “strong family ties”. And yet, they are readily condemned for not doing so.

        1. TrueBlueDevil

          Do you ever consider the tens of law-abiding citizens who feel compelled to put bars on their windows and acquire large dogs for protection? Not a lot of security doors in Davis.

          Yes, many of these men have spilled the seed necessary to produce a child, but according to a recent CSPAN special on the Status of Black Men in America, half of non-custodial black men (i.e., baby daddy’s) never even see their child even once in a whole month. They are absent.

          I’ve also read in the past that by the time we catch a criminal, they have already committed 20 crimes. “Prolonged prison sentences” are only given for serious offenses like rape, armed robbery, dealing heavy drugs (i.e., heroine, crack), child abuse, etc.

          But I am sure that inner city crime would go down if we closed the border, and gave more American jobs to Americans.

          Further, it is hard to cry tears for such criminals when such a large percentage go back to their criminal occupation. But I’d love to see work camps, chain gangs, and other work details that instill work skills and trades which they could reach for when they are released. Will you join me in that? Much better than lifting weights and looking at porn. Since so many are “non violent” felons, I see no reason why they can’t use their muscle and minds.

  20. Tia Will

    Frankly

     I don’t see her as a black employee.  I don’t see my board chair as a black man.”

    Your use of the word “see” in these sentences is incorrect. Those of us who have vision do “see” the difference between blacks and whites. It is a human identifier that is immediate, and beyond our conscious control just as is our correct and immediate identification of gender unless steps have been taken to deliberately alter our discriminatory ability. Not only is this perception immediate, it is also permanent. Once identified by race, we cannot forget it just as we will not forget gender. While, for example, giving a description to the police, if we have seen someone clearly and closely enough in daylight, we will correctly race and gender identify almost 100% of the time. We may not recall specific facial features, or exact hair or eye color, but we will nail race and gender. I know that you are aware of in group vs out group discrimination because you have frequently written about “tribalism” as a natural human trait. However, you then deny tribalism’s influence in current American society possibly because this does not fit with your “it’s all the liberals fault” framing.

    I think that what you mean is that you do not consider your black acquaintances differently or treat them differently than how you treat your white acquaintances. Which is a laudable way to behave. However, you then make a critical error. You believe that the majority of whites behave the way you do. My life experiences to date tell me that this is not true. It is not  just blacks that create and maintain separation. No racial group has a monopoly on differential treatment of insiders and outsiders and anecdotes about individuals who overcome, and/or statements of how one individual treats people equally does not change that reality.

        1. Tia Will

          BP and Frankly

          This is powerful and accurate and will just piss off the Liberal-progressive-Democrat-media-complex for being outside of their demanded line of frog-marching ideological race-dividing political strategy.”

          I agree that this is a very powerful and poignant tape of a woman sincerely expressing her perspective. However, you are neglecting one statement that she makes ” there is police brutality out there, I will give you that”. She states clearly that she can see both issues. You apparently cannot.

          So why is it that in  your world view, both perspectives, those against police brutality, and those against black on black brutality cannot coexist ?  Why is it that you cannot seem to hold both concepts as important in your minds. Why must it be a competition one against the other when both are clearly problems in our society.

          And, why, why Frankly, must you constantly make assumptions about what will or will not piss off someone else and repetitively claim that a group that is notoriously ideologically divided ( the left) is “frog-marching”?

    1. TrueBlueDevil

      I believe more people act like Frankly (and myself), and many others.

      Tia wrote: “I think that what you mean is that you [Frankly] do not consider your black acquaintances differently or treat them differently than how you treat your white acquaintances. Which is a laudable way to behave. However, you then make a critical error. You believe that the majority of whites behave the way you do. My life experiences to date tell me that this is not true….”

      My experience tells me that Frankly’s behavior is closer to the norm. I don’t buy into your all-encompassing “in” versus “out” groups.

      Are the people we are discussing As or Giants fans? Are they polite or obnoxious? Funny or prickly? Verbose or nerds? Maybe verbose nerds?

      Let me guess, is this the sister or cousin of micro aggression’s? The grievances are endless.

       

    1. Frankly

      This is powerful and accurate and will just piss off the Liberal-progressive-Democrat-media-complex for being outside of their demanded line of frog-marching ideological race-dividing political strategy.

  21. Tia Will

     

    BP and Frankly

    This is powerful and accurate and will just piss off the Liberal-progressive-Democrat-media-complex for being outside of their demanded line of frog-marching ideological race-dividing political strategy.”

    I agree that this is a very powerful and poignant tape of a woman sincerely expressing her perspective. However, you are neglecting one statement that she makes ” there is police brutality out there, I will give you that”. She states clearly that she can see both issues. You apparently cannot.

    So why is it that in  your world view, both perspectives, those against police brutality, and those against black on black brutality cannot coexist ?  Why is it that you cannot seem to hold both concepts as important in your minds. Why must it be a competition one against the other when both are clearly problems in our society.

    And, why, why Frankly, must you constantly make assumptions about what will or will not piss off someone else and repetitively claim that a group that is notoriously ideologically divided ( the left) is “frog-marching”?

    1. wdf1

      Tia: And, why, why Frankly, must you constantly make assumptions about what will or will not piss off someone else and repetitively claim that a group that is notoriously ideologically divided ( the left) is “frog-marching”?

      Probably because these days Frankly is more about trash-talking and winning rhetorical arguments than having reflective, enlightening discussions.

      1. Frankly

        Frankly is fighting deflective and destructive hypersensitivity and political correctness with strongly provocative counterpoints.

        I really don’t want to just win rhetorical arguments.  If someone posts something thoughtful and factual I will gladly except it and thank them for it.

         

        1. Barack Palin

          Hey Frankly, you might not be having “reflective, enlightening discussions” but at least you don’t get accused of never posting anything substantive followed up with a “yawn”.  LOL

          I think it comes down more to you, I, TBD and a few others refuse to come around to the liberal way of thinking so we are the target of frequent attacks.

           

  22. Tia Will

    Frankly

    If someone posts something thoughtful and factual I will gladly except it and thank them for it.”

    Or just as frequently remain silent.

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