Category: Civil Liberties

In The News

A few stories I’m following right now:

  • I’ve been critical of some of Trump’s cabinet choices. But my first impression of Mattis, the proposed Secretary of Defense, is positive. He opposes torture, supports a two-state solution for Israel, recognizes that the Iran deal is flawed but that tearing it up would be a mistake. His approach to Iraq was a big reason the surge worked and his musings show an active and sharp mind. He has been willing to praise or criticize politicians from both sides. Moreover, Trump said that one thing that impressed him was that Mattis opposes torture, which Trump ostensibly favors, and made a good argument against it. One of the big concerns with a President is that he will surround himself with Yes Men. Mattis is definitely not a Yes Man. He’s a good choice. But the thought process behind the pick is also encouraging.
  • Of course, he’s still thinking about Bolton for State, so it’s not all roses.
  • Trump sent out a tweet the other day saying that flag burning should be banned and come with a loss of citizenship. You can pretty much guess my response to this: I’m with Scalia.
  • Of course, Hillary Clinton her own damned self once co-sponsored an anti-flag burning bill. No matter what Trump does, let’s not lose sight of what the alternative was like.
  • Neither Obama nor Biden will attend Castro’s funeral. Good.
  • Trump’s deal to keep Carrier from shipping jobs to Mexico (actually, Pence’s deal) does not impress me. It’s a $7 million tax break specifically for Carrier to keep 1000 jobs in Indiana. It’s crony capitalism and an example of what we shouldn’t be doing. We have an entire economy run on backdoor tax breaks, regulatory holidays, subsidies and special dispensations. What we need to do is make America a better place for all businesses through comprehensive and universal regulatory and tax reform.
  • However, I suspect the Carrier deal is a preview of Trump’s Presidency. He’ll make a huge fuss about little things he does like saving a thousand jobs, to give the impression that he’s doing good (which, to be fair, all Presidents do). The real good will have to come from Congress, who have the power to unshackle our economy.

Crime Sheet

2 rather important murder trials are now under way, both involve race, and with both, the outcomes are fairly certain. Dylan Roof gunning down 9 church goers, and Michael Slager, a Charleston police officer who shot a fleeing man in the back 8 times, both shooters are white and all victims are black.

The easy one first. Dylan seems like a troubled youth with a bucket load of mental problems, but the judge not only found him competent to stand trial but allowed Dylan to represent himself during the trial. What bothers me is that Dylan offered to plead guilty to murder and accept life without the possibility of parole in exchange for taking the death penalty off the table. A reasonable offer and one that the prosecution should have embraced. But here’s the rub, with white shooter/black victims, the racial component must take center stage, so countless millions (the cost from trial, through appeals, up to the actual injection, if it ever happens)will be wasted for what will be little more than a show trial. Getting back to my disgust for the very concept of hate crimes, where one person’s hide is more valuable and must exact a higher price than anothers, a sentence consistent with justice must now jump over another hurdle, artificially placed based on nothing more than the color of skin. If roles were reversed any prosecutor worth dick would take the life deal in a second, then go out for pizza.

Now on to Slager. There is both dash cam footage and private party cell phone video of the actual shooting. First off, why do rookie cops (5 years on the job, he should have known better) feel compelled to give foot chase on something as low level as a fix ticket infraction? We aren’t talking about a mass murder fleeing the scene who will most likely continue his killing ways, or even a bank robber fleeing with a sack full money, Slager knew who this guy was, he had his ID, knew he was unarmed, knew he had done nothing except drive with a busted taillight, knew he would pose no danger to any passerby’s, yet, he still felt it necessary to give chase on foot, lamebrain. A better course of action, impound the car (while inventorying the contents for any illegal contraband), then send him his ticket in the mail and go get them donuts while they are hot.

As far as the charge, yes, Slager needs to do prison time. There is no excuse, none, zilch, nada for shooting anybody in the back. Slager testified that he was afraid of Scott, how so? Scott was running away from him, had nothing in his hands, no history of violence against cops, no justification whatsoever existed for the application of lethal force. There probably was a scuffle (another reason you don’t foot pursue unless you absolutely have to) but the scuffle was over, Slager was in no danger and what we see is Scott retreating. I’m OK with manslaughter as long as he gets a serious sentence. Oh, and 8 shots? no marksmanship badge for you.

Perspective

As usual, if you followed the media narrative this morning when the sad story broke out about another stupid attack at Ohio State, their speculation went one way, and obviously the wrong way. Before enough facts where out, and as this always plays out with the narrative crowd, the idiots writing articles and commenting at the usual lefty dives such as the HuffPro insane asylum called it all wrong. For this crowd, i had to be Trump supporting, gun toting assholes that are stealing America from the good-thinkers, like them, that obviously did it! More gun laws are going to be needed, and since anyone that is a Trump supporter has to be motivated by hate, racism, homophobia, and whatever other cool term the prog kids throw around to identify those ungood-thinkers, it had – it just had to be – one of them behind this sad affair.

Of course, us ungood-thinkers immediately knew that odds where we were dealing with another follower of the religion of peace, guns had not been involved – Obama was not ridding this to sell his sensible gun banning policies immediately, which was a dead giveaway there obviously was no gun play – as the initial reports mentioned a car and knifes, things followers of the religion of peace have been advocating should be used by their Jihadi recruits in the not so distant past. We also suspected that interest in this story would die out as soon as the facts came out, due to lack of interest in reporting on something that contradicted the narrative the left so desperately needs (don’t worry I am sure some DNC paid paid operative will commit some crime sooner than later that they all will try to blame on others as has been going on for the past year or more).

At least justice was dealt out and the bad guys where captured or killed. But with the narrative not flowing, I suspect this story will go away. Unless the left decides to ask for sensible car and knife laws. How much do we ant to bet that when someone points out the perp was taken down by someone with a gun, their response will be we need more gun control (read disarming law abiding citizens).

It won’t go away

And while the DNC operatives with bylines are trying their best to ignore the reality, we are forced to use foreign sources to again point out that Hillary got away with a huge number of crimes because Obama would have gone down with her. From the article:

It appears US President Barack Obama lied to the US public when he said that he found out about Democratic Presidential candidate Hillary Clinton’s email scandal on the news, with new leaked emails from Clinton’s campaign manager John Podesta seemingly contradicting Obama’s version of events.

Included the 18th batch of the Podesta Emails, released by WikiLeaks, is a March 7, 2015 email sent by Clinton spokesperson Josh Schwerin to communications director Jennifer Palmieri, press secretary Nick Merrill and others, referring to comments Obama made about the Clinton email scandal.

No, it doesn’t appear to be the case that Obama lied: Obama lied. His presidency, after promising transparency never seen before, has been about one where they have foisted lie after the lie on the American people. If you were still wondering why Hillary was running for the office of POTUS instead of making license plates in an orange jumpsuit, then you now have the obvious answer: Obama made sure she walked because he would have gone down with her.

Crooks the lot of them. They have destroyed our economy, wrecked healthcare, pissed away trillions buying votes with one government scam after the other, abused the office, destabilized the world and made it a far more dangerous place – the usual suspects will of course love you to buy their lies that was done by someone else I will not mention despite the fact that our Nobel Peace Prize winner now has 5 concurrent wars going onwrecked the relationship with America’s allies while kissing up to its enemies, with little or no success to change their hatred and hostility towards us or their abuses of that trust, ground our military into the dirt, and emboldened some of the most frightening and dangerous actors on the planet to challenge stability. The man has been a complete failure. And he was aided in doing all this crap by Clinton, whom now wants to double down on the same policies and go even further than Obama. But our election remains about people with little credibility saying Trump saying bad things to women!

Go figure…

So it looks like the WH was behind making sure Hillary was NOT charged for breaking the law

While the left and the media remain focused on the fact that Trump acts like an alpha male, all while ignoring that Bill Clinton is a serial rapist, and his wife, not just an enabler, but the one that has gone out of her way to destroy anyone that tried to point that out, revelations abound that proveHillary should have been charged, but was not, because the WH made that happen. From the article:

“It is well known that the FBI agents on the ground, the human beings who did the investigative work, had built an extremely strong case against Hillary Clinton and were furious when the case did not move forward,” said Napolitano. “They believe the decision not to prosecute came from The White House.”

The claim also is backed up by a report in the New York Post this week, which quotes a number of veteran FBI agents saying FBI Director James Comey “has permanently damaged the bureau’s reputation for uncompromising investigations with his cowardly whitewash of former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s mishandling of classified information using an unauthorized private email server.”

“The FBI has politicized itself, and its reputation will suffer for a long time. I hold Director Comey responsible,” Dennis V. Hughes, the first chief of the FBI’s computer investigations unit, told the Post. Retired FBI agent Michael M. Biasello added to the report, saying, “Comey has singlehandedly ruined the reputation of the organization.”

Especially angering the team, which painstakingly pieced together deleted emails and interviewed witnesses to prove that sensitive information was left unprotected, was the fact that Comey based his decision on a conclusion that a recommendation to charge would not be followed by DOJ prosecutors, even though the bureau’s role was merely to advise, Fox News was told.

“Basically, James Comey hijacked the DOJ’s role by saying ‘no reasonable prosecutor would bring this case,’” the Fox News source said. “The FBI does not decide who to prosecute and when, that is the sole province of a prosecutor — that never happens.

“I know zero prosecutors in the DOJ’s National Security Division who would not have taken the case to a grand jury,” the source added. “One was never even convened.”

Napolitano agreed, saying the FBI investigation was hampered from the beginning, because there was no grand jury, and no search warrants or subpoenas issued.

Those of us that have seen the pattern established during the last 8 years, where some of the most egregious and illegal things were done by practically every federal agency across the board, only to have the WH pretend they were surprised by what was going on and claiming to be out of the loop, only to later discover evidence to the contrary that was from then on ignored, knew that the orders to let Hillary walk came from the WH.

I suspected from the start that Hillary and her people would never have dared to try and delete the emails outright like they did, if they, even a second, believed this would come back against them. And the only way this level of disdain for the law and the system of justice could continue for years, was if the WH was calling the shots behind the scenes. The media has avoided this story for a reason, opting instead to make excuses for Clinton and carry her water when she blames a vast right wing group for her law breaking and creating all sorts of distractions (like this current crusade against Trump’s demeanor towards women).

But we know now that she did what she did deliberately. She also did it with backing from the WH. And that was because she had Obama by the balls. That idiot went out and pretended he had no idea that she had that server when the story came out, only to now be caught communicating with her through a pseudonym email (a clear sign that even he knew this was some serious law breaking that Hillary was doing). Will this change anything? not a chance. The left will keep producing people that will say Donald is a cad and objectifies women, because we all know that unless you have the (D) next to your name, you can be held liable even for just thinking bad thoughts. If you have that (D) however, you have carte blanch. These same shrews will not only make excuses for you but help defend you from those that might think this crap is about something other than the left using it for political gain. In the mean time voters – the ones that actually might have a problem with someone that after these things likely now thinks she is above the law and is likely to do much worse, and not the ones that don’t care, because she is a member of their team – are getting shafted because they don’t hear what kind of evil criminal Hillary is.

I for one have experience with the WH sicking its agencies on those they view as their enemies. I suspect this will become far more common and be far reaching under another Clinton administration. I have no faith in our system of justice anymore, and I am not alone there. The marxists used to object to the system because the powerful could get away with everything. It obviously looks like the real objection was that people other than them might get away with shit. They sure don’t feel the law applies to them. Real champions of the people these porgs, ain’t they?

America loses yet again..

Dark times are a coming..

Today, on September 11, 2016, 15 years after the worst attack on US soil, while my thoughts are with those that lost their lives and those that loved their loved ones, both on that day and in the struggle after, I want to actually deal with something I see coming that bears ill for all of us: the PC movement’s attack on freedom in general, and internet freedom in particular. Now I am sure most good people will say that there should be nothing wrong with being polite and respectful to others, especially when hiding behind the anonymity provided by the internet, and that anyone unable to do so or resisting that effort must be bad or have ill intent, but whenever I hear the PC movement run their mouths about the ills of a free internet (or opposition of the PC movement in general) all I hear or see is exactly this: those in power will silence the opposition and their political enemies.

The world is heading towards dark times as Western values are being abandoned by the most corrupt and least capable political class ever (both oh, do they think they are awesome shit). The political elite calls the masses stupid or evil because they will not let the globalists do what they want. Especially since what the globalists are doing is horrible for the common people. Oh sure, they tell us that they are doing this to help the less well off and fight injustice, but these people give absolute proof to the saying that the road to hell is paved with good intentions. Don’t take my words for this. Look at what the world looks like after 8 years of the people that tell us anyone that doesn’t share their social and ideological values and ideas of social justice being provided by them, actually is today. In short, things are worse, and it is by design. More instability, the rich got more powerful and richer – and it is no coincidence ,that the biggest promoters of social justice also are the ones that have profited the most from the misery it has caused – and the rest of us are robbed of more of our freedoms and wealth.

Unlike the old fascists and communists that actually killed of their =political enemies, the new crop of collectivists now content themselves with destroying the lives and well being of those that dare stand up against the disservice they are doing us all. I leave you with one of the most telling quotes I have ever read:

“Throughout history, poverty is the normal condition of man. Advances which permit this norm to be exceeded — here and there, now and then — are the work of an extremely small minority, frequently despised, often condemned, and almost always opposed by all right-thinking people. Whenever this tiny minority is kept from creating, or (as sometimes happens) is driven out of a society, the people then slip back into abject poverty.

This is known as “bad luck.”

― Robert A. Heinlein

Government, Fast and Slow

Here is what government does when it comes to holding itself accountable:

The Environmental Protection Agency never submitted a report due to Congress in 2014 that might have shed light on the environmental problems with mandating the use of ethanol in gasoline.

When the EPA’s Inspector General pointed out this week that the study was nearly two years overdue, the EPA said they’ll get around to finishing it—by 2024.

Congress created the ethanol mandate in 2005, requiring the blending of corn-based biofuels into gasoline and diesel. A 2007 law expanding the scope of the mandate required the EPA to submit reports to Congress every three years detailing the consequences of that policy on air and water quality. After completing one such report in 2011, the EPA says it ran out of money and didn’t have enough time to keep doing them.

There isn’t a lot of doubt that the ethanol mandate is bad policy. It doesn’t cut greenhouse gas emissions at all. It encourages mono-cropping and putting food into cars instead of starving people’s bellies, driving up the price of cereal crops. It increases smog. It damages the ozone layer. A strange coalition of radical greens, conservatives and libertarians have come to the realization that this is a disastrous policy.

But it’s popular with farmers and popular with ethanol makers and popular with both of our Presidential, ugh, candidates. So the EPA is going to sit on one of the most important environmental analyses they are doing.

By contrast, when it comes to restricting our freedom, the government can move with amazing haste:

The U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency has filed a notice of intent (PDF) to place the southeast Asian plant called kratom to the most restrictive classification of the Controlled Substances Act. The plant, Mitragyna speciosa, and its two primary constituents, mitragynine and 7-hydroxymitragynine, will be temporarily placed onto Schedule I on September 30, according to a filing by the DEA at 8:45 am Eastern time today. The full announcement is scheduled to be published in the Federal Register tomorrow, August 31.

Various forms of kratom and teas made from the plant’s leaves are sold in cafes and on the internet. Their primary effect is to provide a short-lived peaceful and calm feeling that is described as pleasant. Consistent with this effect being opioid-like, anecdotal reports indicate that some users have used kratom to successfully recover from physical and psychological dependence on prescription opioids and heroin. Comments on my last report on kratom have also indicated the successful use of teas made from the plant in managing chronic pain without the side effects and addictive potential of prescription opioids like oxycodone, hydrocodone and morphine.

Makes people feel good? Competes with multi-billion dollar drug revenue streams? BATTLE STATIONS!

The justification for banning this is that poison control centers reported about 600 cases of abuse of the drug … over five years. 600 overdoses is probably a good week with alcohol. The risk is so minimal that the North Carolina legislature recently rejected efforts to outlaw it. Making it Schedule I will not only make kratom illegal but hinder any research into it.

These two stories really illustrate how our government works. They move instantly to destroy our freedom based one a rumor. But they can’t be bothered to check their own behavior despite overwhelming scientific evidence.

The establishment has decided to make sure they win the election

I was wondering why the democrats had suffered so many hacking attacks recently by people that actually should be their fellow travelers, and after this announcement, the picture is now clear. Maybe I am a conspiracy cook, but the way things are playing out right now is too much coincidence even for me to dismiss tampering. after all, we are dealing with the most corrupt and self serving bunch of people in my lifetime, and expecting them not to do what comes natural to them, is far more of a stretch to me than the other way around.

This administration has lied, cheated, abused their power, and in general ripped off the productive to enrich the few connected and cement their power, and they now are rigging the game to make sure one of them wins so they can keep at it. As Stalin pointed out: cast votes are not as important as whomever gets to count them. And what better way to make sure the credentialed elite establishment types can make sure to get the results they want without risking too much of a chance that the plebes find out they are being played. The law is for the little people after all, as both the Obama administration and presidential candidate Hillary Clinton’s constant criminal activities getting a pass, has made clear.

Thanks for the banana republic Obama and the democratic party in general!

Some Final Lochte Thoughts

The basically whole lot of nothing scandal is over, so now NBC doesn’t have to waste anymore air time on those bad boy Americans and can now just loop Usain Bolt clips over and over and over again like they have been doing all week. Re: the robbery and the aftermath (I am still calling it a robbery because it had all the elements of a robbery) I think the way it was handled was just terrible. More on that in a moment but first I want to spend a few moments trashing NBC. I know that they spent a boatload of dough getting the rights to broadcast and I know ratings are way down (look at all the empty seats in the venues)but after the first few days I can’t watch it anymore as aired. I tape the broadcasts, then blow through all the commercials and fluff, leaving me about 40 minutes worth of actual watchable content out of the 4 hours aired each night. The typical pattern is thus; let Bob Costas bluster for a few minutes, show about 2 minutes of actual competition, go to about 5 minutes worth of commercials, then come back with the 6000th airing of Usian Bolt winning a medal. This pattern has not varied. I have read many complaints about NBC touching all these bases. I can’t really say their avarice has cost them my viewership since I never watch them in the first place.

Now that we have believable testimony on what actually transpired that night, I am outraged at how our guys were treated. I watched that Rio press conference and I did not believe very much of what was said, mainly because of the source. All those stories you read about corrupt Mexican cops, the same stories are told about the Rio police.The whole press conference revolved around what the officials said the swimmers supposedly (?) told them. There was no audio from any of the cameras and large gaps where we don’t know what happened at all. I wanted to hear what the swimmers said away from the threat of sitting in a stank filled jail cell. Now we know.

Let’s look at some of the inconsistencies;

The press conference said there was only one security guard (off duty Rio police officer), now we know there were 2. They said a bathroom mirror was trashed but Bentz said it was an outside metal wall frame. They said the guard was there to insure that the swimmers did not leave and waited for the police, yet as soon as the guards took their money, the swimmers were released. Factor in the language barrier (how did the swimmers know they worked for the gas station, did they work for the gas station or were they just off duty cops looking to take off some Americans, did they tell the swimmers to wait for the police, what happened during those camera laps?)

No doubt once released they just wanted to get back to their rooms and forget about the whole affair. And if not for Lochte’s big mouth the next day, talking to a reporter about the incident, that would have been the end of it. No police report was filed, the police only heard about it through social media. Yet, they got a judge to issue an arrest order to pull 2 of the swimmers off of their flight to go home, talk about judicial overreach (where was our State Dept. in all this and why didn’t they file a formal protest and demand an apology for this gross act of overreach?) The police had no right to either take them off the plane or detain them in any manner, all on the word of some drunken swimmer talking to a reporter?

Back to the robbery angle. We don’t know what was actually said (or implied since there was a language barrier) at the gas station. 2 guys approached them with badges and pointed guns demanding money (not a specific amount, mind you, to pay for any damages, no, they wanted whatever the swimmers had in their wallets), then when the money was paid the swimmers were allowed to leave. No reporter at the press conference pushed this issue, if the guns were drawn to make sure the swimmers did not leave until the cops arrived, why were they allowed to leave once money changed hands?

Even though most of what Lochte said could be true, the MSM back home has just crucified him, lying Lochte. You would think he sodomized a local alter boy, for everything that has been written about him. He certainly should shoulder much of the blame, acting like a douche at the gas station then yammering about it the next day, but as usual with these sort of events, there is enough blame to go around for both sides.

Not only were the other 3 swimmers illegally detained (who knows what went on in that interrogation room, and no doubt our State Dept. has contacted all of them with warnings to not say anything to the press detrimental to harmonious Brazil/American relations, e.g. if they threatened you or coerced you into saying something against your will, keep it to yourself), but one of them had to pay 11 grand just to leave the country. Yep, just like the Mexican cops.

Thank God no underage hookers were filmed spilling out of that taxi at the gas station. And Lochte will be hurt financially for this little bit of indiscretion re: endorsements but the Rio cops could have handled this much better. A simple statement of ,”We are not aware of any robbery that took place at that gas station that night. Until the American swimmers contact us to make a formal report, no action on our part is required. We do not act on social media reports, thank you”. That would have worked just fine.

The Baltimore Mess

As you may have read, the final charges were dismissed in the Freddie Gray case a few weeks ago, after the first four trials ended in acquittal. What strikes me about the Freddie Gray case is the staggering incompetence of the prosecutor, Marilyn Mosby. In Freddie Gray, we had a man who had not committed a crime, was bound up and tossed in the back of the van and emerged with his neck fatally broken. You would think you could at least get something out of that. But through a series of blunders — concealing exculpatory evidence, overcharging (murder instead of negligent homicide or manslaughter) and other incompetent idiocies, Mosby got nothing. Well, she got her face on TV, which seems to be what mattered most to her.

Mosby is running around insisting that if she’d only had a jury trial, she would have won (ignoring that the first jury deadlocked). She’s wrong:

A prosecutor who evaluates cases based on evidence and appropriately applied laws is actually charged with seeking convictions over justice, not the other way around. Mosby admitted to the nation she was not looking for convictions. The only other explanation was that she was looking to appease the angry citizens of Baltimore.

That would seem noble, except it’s not. Prosecutors have a serious job that comes with serious power. And the way they wield that power is extremely important. Politics and criminal law don’t mix well. That’s been on full display as Mosby’s prosecutors keep spinning wilder legal theories and, not surprisingly, keep getting handed acquittals.

The larger pity of this is that the acquittal overshadows some very serious problems in the Baltimore PD. The Justice Department recently issued the results of its investigation in the BPD. Balko, who calls the DOJ report “the worst I’ve ever seen” goes through it point-by-point. BPD has been told to make large numbers of stops and arrests, regardless of whether someone is committing a crime or not. Unsurprisingly, these arrests are concentrated in a handful of poor black neighborhoods. People are frequently detained, questioned and searched without probable cause (95% of them turn out to have no contraband or outstanding warrants). People have been strip-searched in public without probable cause, arrested without probable cause, made to “justify” their presence in public areas. Of thousands of complaint of excessive force, only a tiny number were investigated and only one resulted in discipline. BPD officers are routinely instructed to use excessive force, including being told to point their guns at people in non-violent situations to exert control.

This passage in particular is just jaw-dropping.

During a ride-along with Justice Department officials, a BPD sergeant instructed a patrol officer to stop a group of young African-American males on a street corner, question them, and order them to disperse. When the patrol officer protested that he had no valid reason to stop the group, the sergeant replied “Then make something up.”

Just so we’re clear, the sergeant not only instructed a subordinate to violate the men’s constitutional rights by concocting a lie, he did so while knowingly in the presence of DOJ monitors. That’s some serious cultural and institutional rot. In another incident, the report describes how several officers detained a man whose only offense was to be in a “high-crime area” with his hands in his pockets. (The DOJ report notes that it happened to be a cold January morning.) After repeated questioning, the officers found a (perfectly legal) kitchen knife in his possession. They then illegally arrested him. When he resisted, they beat and Tased him to the point that he needed medical care. He was never charged with a crime. In his report, the supervising sergeant praised the officers for their “great restraint and professionalism.”

Notorious police-state bootlicker Heather MacDonald posted a response that basically ignored everything in the report. It amounts to, “well, most crimes are committed by black people.” That’s true, but it does not justify routinely detaining, searching, arresting and harassing black people. It does not make standing on a corner being black probable cause. It does not justify ignoring almost all complaints of police brutality and misconduct. This is not either-or. It is perfectly reasonable to note that black people commit an astonishingly high proportion of crimes and that the BPD is engaging in astonishing unconstitutional practices that are tinged with racial bias.

One of the things we have seen is that when riots erupt, there is often a history. That does not justify the riots, obviously, since the riots only do more damage to the community and discredit the cause. But the Rodney King riots erupted after years of complaints about Darryl Gates’ LAPD. The Ferguson riots erupted after years of the city sustaining its unsustainable budget by fining and ticketing the shit out of its black citizenry. This report shows that the Baltimore riots erupted in a city engaging in incredibly aggressive policing that makes its citizens feel under siege.

Balko:

I can’t imagine what it must be like to get stopped by the police 20 or more times every year — to be arrested and jailed for nothing at all, to be stripped nude and searched in public for a traffic offense, or to be told it’s basically illegal for me to merely exist in public. I can’t imagine trying to have a life under those conditions, to raise kids, to just function as a human being — much less rise above my surroundings. I suppose defenders of these tactics will say that black neighborhoods are disproportionately targeted because that’s where most of the crime takes place. I don’t doubt that may be true. But your constitutional rights aren’t determined by the behavior of people who look like you, or by the behavior of the people who live in your neighborhood. Neither should the dignity and humanity afforded to you by the people who are supposed to be protecting you.

This, of course, only makes the riots all the more tragic. Peaceful demonstrations would have done a better job of highlighting these problems without alienating everyone*. But the violence doesn’t change the reality that BPD has a serious problem in its policing.

(*Possibly. The might also, as we’ve seen in several cities, provoked a militarized response anyway.)