Trayvon Martin

Why test the victim for drugs but not his shooter?

Trayvon Martin was tested for drugs and alcohol, post-mortem. The man who shot him, Robert Zimmerman, was not.

[P]olice seemed to accept Zimmerman’s account at face value that night and that he was not tested for drugs or alcohol on the night of the shooting, even though it is standard procedure in most homicide investigations.

That should you tell you all you need to know about how Sanford, Fla. police mishandled this case from the beginning.

‘How can you claim self-defense and you are the aggressor?’

That question begets another: How do police fail to file charges when an unarmed teen is shot for apparently no other reason than his appearance?

SANFORD, Fla. (AP) — Calls made to police show that a black teenager was terrified as he tried to get away from the white neighborhood watch volunteer who shot him, and that the volunteer was not defending himself as he has claimed, the teen’s family told The Associated Press on Saturday.

Sanford police released eight 911 calls late Friday. The neighborhood watch volunteer, George Zimmerman, tells a dispatcher in the first call that he is following 17-year-old Trayvon Martin. He says Martin is running, but the dispatcher tells him not to follow the teen. …

The teen had gone to a convenience store to buy candy and was walking back to his family’s home in the neighborhood.

(via Andisheh)

This post may require counseling

Fresh Loaf’s Gwynedd Stuart expresses some sympathy for Luis Rivera, the obviously contrite Gwinnett County math teacher forced to resign for crafting some rather ignorant word problems.

Rivera’s 20-question homework assignment used slave beatings and picking cotton to link lessons about ex-slave and abolitionist Frederick Douglass to math computation. One of the problems read: “If Frederick got two beatings per day, how many beatings did he get in one week?”

Reprehensible, no doubt, and the punishment, though severe, is not unreasonable. That doesn’t excuse the grandstanding by the perpetually indignant, especially when you consider there’s nothing to indicate the teacher, while clearly overmatched, is some Klansman. Last I checked the Triple K wasn’t too fond of guys named Luis Rivera.

Stuart:

A guy named Henry White — who, the AJC pointed out, doesn’t even have kids — called the incident an “egregious act of assault on the minds of a kid by an adult” at a Gwinnett County School Board meeting. And several parents said they wanted the school to make counseling available to their children. I don’t want to say they’re overreacting … but maybe they’re overreacting.

A commenter counters:

Would you feel the same if the homework questions were about the holocaust? I thought so.

It won’t be long before someone demands Stuart attend sensitivity training for her egregious assault on the minds of readers.

The counseling bill is in the mail, Gwynedd.

Is Rick Perry a racist?

So now Rick Perry is to blame for the “unconscionable, racially stereotypical attack” launched against Herman Cain? Rush Limbaugh’s words, not mine.

Apparently the Texas governor can’t handle an “independent, self-reliant conservative black.”

Professional race baiter decries ‘unconscionable racially charged attack’

Rush Limbaugh has become the Bizarro Farrakhan, seeing racism at every turn. The only victims, of course, are whites and Herman Cain.

“Politico and the mainstream media has launched an unconscionable, racially stereotypical attack on an independent, self-reliant conservative black because for him that behavior is not allowed,” Limbaugh said today on his radio show.

It’s a familiar refrain from Minister Limbaugh. Let’s review:

“Obama’s America, white kids getting beat up on school buses now. You put your kids on a school bus, you expect safety but in Obama’s America the white kids now get beat up with the black kids cheering, ‘Yay, right on, right on, right on, right on,’ and, of course, everybody says thewhite kid deserved it, he was born a racist, he’s white.”

“Obama’s entire economic program is reparations.”

“The days of them not having any power are over, and they are angry. And they want to use their power as a means of retribution. That’s what Obama’s about, gang. He’s angry, he’s gonna cut this country down to size, he’s gonna make it pay for all the multicultural mistakes that it has made, its mistreatment of minorities.”

Obama? “[T]he greatest living example of a reverse racist.” Harvard Professor Henry Louis Gates? “[A]n angry racist.” Sonia Sotomayor? “She’s a bigot. She’s a racist.”

Colin Powell will vote for Obama again because “melanin is thicker than water.”

Herman Cain and the ‘conservative anti-anti-racism’

Herman Cain, asked Sunday about Rick Perry’s lease of a piece of land that features a rock marking it as “N*****head,” said “I think that it shows a lack of sensitivity for a long time of not taking that word off of that rock and renaming the place.”

On Monday, Cain changed his tune. “I really don’t care about that story! They painted over it. End of story.”

So what accounts for the reversal? I think Adam Serwer nails it.

Cain just ran head first into the brick wall of conservative anti-anti-racism, the attitude on the right that accusations of racism directed at white people are of far greater consequence than any lingering vestiges of institutional racism nonwhites might face.

In defense of a double standard

In the ‘Hot Topics’ segment on “The View” this morning, the ladies discussed a Washington Post story about a rock with the word “Niggerhead” written on it at the gated entrance of a hunting camp leased and frequented by Rick Perry and his father.

Host Barbara Walters used the n-word while explaining the story, causing co-host Sherri Shepherd to take offense. Shepherd says she didn’t like the way Barbara Walters said it. However, Shepherd was okay with Whoopi Goldberg, the main host of “The View,” using it.

Because Whoopi Goldberg is black. Duh! I can say fag, you can’t.

To those who feel slighted let me remind you not everyone gets to do or say everything. Life’s not fair. You’ll survive.

Besides, why would you want to say it? When a white person says the N-word or a straight person says fag, the context is never right. That shouldn’t require any explanation.

The epidemic of conservative victimhood

I endure Helmet Head “interview” so-called therapist and megalomaniac Dr. Laura so you don’t have to. That, and the cheap hathos.

Of course she played the victim. Somehow her enemies forced her to say the N-word 11 times in order to limit her free speech.

I suppose businesses should be required by the federal government to employ conservatives even when they say stupid and offensive things — the kind of stuff that would cost the normal working slob their job.

Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.

In other words, Congress can’t fire you for being a racist asshole, but your employer can.

Congress also cannot pass a law spelling out who may or may not say the N-word. Society will make its own rule that is subject to change. If you find the imperative about the N-word unfair well, life’s unfair. Sorry you can’t scream epithets with absolution.

Besides, haven’t black people earned the right to govern use of the N-word? Call it the wages of sin (Jim Crow, in this case) clause. Personally I think it’s healthy to own your pejorative, thus my judicious use of the F-word. It’s one of the few perks, though it’s nothing compared to the perk of free air time to air grievances and play the victim, absolution guaranteed.

Wanna trade, Dr. Laura?

Only a racist who hates kids would call LeBron James arrogant

O’Brien asked James if race played a role in the backlash. “I think so, at times,” James said. “There’s always a race factor.”

Racism will always be with us, and so will self-absorbed professional athletes. I fail to see what one has to do with the other in this case. I suspect many of James’ contemporaries were equally disgusted with the televised spectacle that celebrated “The Decision” of a player who’s yet to win a championship.

But wait. “The Decision” wasn’t about LeBron James, says LeBron James, whose use of the third person tells you all you need to know about the man’s ego.

“If I have to take heat to give back to kids, I would do it the same way every single time,” James said.

So he’s a victim and a martyr. For the record, James signed a $110 million contract to play for the Miami Heat and makes countless more in endorsements, so giving someone else’s $3 million to the Boys and Girls Club is no sacrifice.

Columnist Jason Whitlock calls bullshit.

Please, let’s stop with all the nonsense that white folks are uncomfortable with LeBron because he’s “taken control of his career.”

Give me a &*%$ing break. The rationalization is as tired and lame as listening to Limbaugh defenders claim his black call screener is proof Rush is free of bias.

A white liberal scolds a black president for being too white

(link)

That sentence alone should indicate we’ve made substantial progress on race, though, as fearful whites scurry to play to victim, we’ve got a long way to go. But not as far as either side wants us to believe.

Matt Tabbi, surprisingly, cuts through the bullshit:

Your average person doesn’t spending hours a day pondering his racial victimhood like this – not unless he enjoys it, and if he enjoys it, he’s an asshole! (Especially if he’s white. If he’s white, the scale of his assholedom is almost incalculable). The Tea Partiers and the Glenn Becks of the world are bad in this respect, but they obviously have some dance partners on the other side now. There’s the NAACP passing a resolution like the Tea Party’s white-whining epidemic is a national emergency, and now there is all this criticism of Obama for being silent on race, as if spending one’s time dealing with the Gulf disaster, two wars, and a financial collapse instead of validating some Fox-generated suburban angst is somehow political malpractice.

Maybe I’m wrong and we do need a national “dialogue on race,” but my guess is that if Barack Obama figures out a way to turn the economy around and create some real paying jobs, a lot of this racial angst will disappear pretty quick. If you tune out the hottest parts of the Tea Party rhetoric and just focus on who these people are, what you’ll basically see are a bunch of middle-aged white people who spent their teens listening to Eddie Murphy albums and deep down are a lot more worried about their credit card debt than they are about ACORN taking over the government. Add a little more disposable income to that crowd and this whole debate will recede to tolerable levels. Or maybe not — but we can all hope, I guess. Is anyone else dreading 2012?

As the Sherrod story winds down, conversations about race should continue

The Shirley Sherrod story is about over. The president has apologized, Sherrod was offered a new job with the FDA and Andrew Breitbart has been exposed as a weasel.

But I’m troubled by this contention that all racism is the same. It’s not.

Racism, without power, is irrelevant. It doesn’t matter what the New Black Panthers think of me, or what some white middle Georgia redneck thinks about black people.

If you can’t understand why an elderly black Southerner might not be too fond of whitey, you don’t know history (or choose to ignore it). Let’s not equate that experience with the perceived racism claimed by paranoid whites in the age of Obama.

Some shameful shit

Shirley Sherrod’s story is one about redemption, about how she overcame her own prejudices and helped a white south Georgia couple keep their family farm.

A lot of people don’t want you to know that. They are determined to hide their own racism by insisting that those they are bigoted against are the real racists. Partisan agendas are more important than racial healing, and victimhood trumps all.

Sherrod made the mistake of being honest, and she lost her job for it. Her staunchest defenders? Roger and Eloise Spooner, the white couple she allegedly discriminated against.

Now the Spooners are being patronized by certain people who feel it’s their duty to tell them what they should think. The Spooners could care less. They still have their farm, and Sherrod deserves plenty of credit, Eloise Spooner told me.  

That’s a story of healing, one that’s more prevalent in this country then stories of division. I’m proud I was able to help tell it and have very little patience for anyone seeking to distort the facts.

The selective publishing of Andrew Breitbart

ED. NOTE: It’s incorrect to say Breitbart edited the tape, but he published it without doing any due diligence. Regardless, he’s shown himself to be a true weasel by refusing to accept any responsibility for the initial consequences.

His brand of lazy advocacy “journalism” is exposed yet again. Will Hannity, Limbaugh and the rest recant? Doubt it.

Here’s the real story:

Farmer’s wife says fired USDA official helped save their land

By Marcus K. Garner and Christian Boone

The Atlanta Journal-Constitution

The wife of the white farmer allegedly discriminated against by the USDA’s rural development director for Georgia said Shirley Sherrod “kept us out of bankruptcy.” …

The male Michele Bachmann

Tea partiers will probably nominate him for the presidency:

But the president has demonstrated that he has a default mechanism in him that breaks down the side of race – on the side that favors the black person.” — Rep. Steve King, (R-Iowa)

Speaking of tea party favorites, this GOP candidate from Alabama’s 2nd District advocates armed rebellion in a chat with actors portraying the Founding Fathers. I’m going to assume this ass clown never served in the military.