american racism

Two white cops charged with crimes after shooting black men who were fleeing

But being charged is a long way from being convicted:

A white Pennsylvania police officer was charged with criminal homicide just eight days after fatally shooting an unarmed black teenager in the back in a case built quickly on the testimony of multiple witnesses, video and the officer's own conflicting statements.

"You do not shoot someone in the back if they are not a threat to you," Allegheny County District Attorney Stephen Zappala said. East Pittsburgh officer Michael Rosfeld was charged Wednesday in the June 19 shooting death of 17-year-old Antwon Rose Jr. after the teen fled from a traffic stop.

In this case, the officer in question was brand new, had just been sworn in less than two hours before this shooting took place. Meaning, he probably wasn't allowed to carry a sidearm until then. But he wasn't a "rookie" in the classic sense, he had been a cop for the University of Pittsburgh for six years prior to this, until he was terminated for cause (don't know the cause yet, so don't click it). So there was apparently something hinky about this guy that was known beforehand, just as there was in this Georgia case also being prosecuted:

Hongbin Gu leads pack of newly-elected Council members in Chapel Hill

You can take your anti-immigrant bias and stick it where the sun don't shine:

The victory was “beyond our wildest expectations,” said Gu, a quantitative researcher with UNC’s School of Medicine. She faced a number of challenges to become the council’s first Chinese-American member, including social media criticism of her immigrant background. She also discovered, days before the election, that the U.S. Postal Service had closed her P.O. mailbox for two weeks and returned donations to their senders.

“It says something about about the community that we have,” she said of her victory. “I feel tremendously honored and just so happy.” She has multiple priorities going into her first four-year term, Gu said, like continuing the council’s efforts to bring high-tech and startup companies to the town. Work on the town’s affordable housing and transportation plans also will be important, she said.

Not my back yard, not my lobsters on the cook-out grill, but this should serve as a learning experience to navel-gazing racists and cultural throwbacks: It's entirely possible the reason she won the most votes is because of those hurtful comments on your "community" page, not in spite of them. That dog won't hunt in Chapel Hill.

Thoughts on the Great War for equality in America

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Stolen from my Facebook page:

People's eyes tend to gloss over when I start talking about history. I'm sure part of that comes from how I present the subject, as I tend to bounce around like I'm riding a time machine to point out how later developments undermined or enhanced notable historical events. Guilty as charged. But I feel it's important to not view these events as "closed" chapters, because that almost always leads to false assumptions.

Take the Civil War, for example: That event (or series of) should be viewed as merely a battle in a centuries-long war for racial equality, in not just our country, but the entire Northern Hemisphere, to be completely accurate. And that war continues to this day.

Just a side note, but intrinsically related: Just a few hours after my recent Op-Ed was published about erecting a monument to a former slave who was lynched in downtown Graham, I was contacted by a local playwright about forming a committee to pursue this goal. We met Wednesday and were joined by a local historian and a member of the clergy deeply interested in racial equality, and we are determined to make this happen. I'll keep you posted. Back to the boring lecture:

Is Donald Trump trying to start a race war?

If he thought it would help him win, he most certainly would:

He told the crowd to get a group of friends together on Election Day, vote and then go to “certain areas” and “watch” the voters there. "I hear too many bad stories, and we can't lose an election because of you know what I'm talking about,” Trump said. “So, go and vote and then go check out areas because a lot of bad things happen, and we don't want to lose for that reason.”

My natural aversion to being sucked into Godwin's Law is eroding fast. Trump is becoming more Hitler than Hitler ever dreamed of being...

NC's Klansmen trying to galvanize a race war

And once again Fayetteville neighborhoods are their prime target:

A Massey Hill resident, who asked not to be identified, said she saw a man wearing what appeared to be a white cape placing the plastic bags in the yards of Massey Hill residents during the evening. The bags contain fliers that use racial slurs alongside silhouetted caricatures of a person described to be black. The fliers encouraged people to throw the small, reddish-white rocks contained in the bags at African Americans.

Joyce said police have received multiple reports regarding the fliers in Massey Hill. Police are currently processing the plastic bags and investigating the incident. The fliers all urged residents to contact the Loyal White Knights of the KKK hotline.

I may have mentioned this before, but during my years stationed at Ft. Bragg, I was approached (more than once) by fellow soldiers who were involved in the Klan. I suppose since I was a white Southerner I was considered a good recruiting prospect. I shut them down in no uncertain terms, and the attempts stopped. But the "thread of awareness" remained in my mind, and I began to notice things that had previously gone unnoticed. I can only hope the Klan is no longer as successful in penetrating active duty military, but their continuing activity in Fayetteville leads me to believe that's a false hope.

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