Scope Creep

I’m kind of torn about “Black Lives Matter”.

On the one hand, our criminal justice system has 99 problems, and racism is one.   Militarization, abuse of qualified immunity, the erosion of the Fourth Amendment, a drug war that’s been a complete failure, a mass of county and federal prosecutors driven by poiltics rather than justice, and on and on.

And “BLM”‘s stated national goals are, largely, on target in my opinion.  Not all of them – “broken windows” policing is a fine way of lowering crime, as long as it doesn’t get abused, yadda yadda – and is largely supported by the black communities on whose behalf BLM purports to protest.

On the other, to say racism is a pervasive force in American life, compared to 50 or 100 years ago, is madness.   Alternatively; “we-ism” is a problem everywhere on earth; it’s part of human nature.

Which isn’t to say I think BLM

But so as long as BLM focuses on our criminal justice system?  They may have a good point.  And I’m all behind people’s right to protest (while noting correctly that their claims of “institutional racism” kinda fall flat when you see how Official Minnesota has bent over backward to accomodate their protests; had the Tea Party or GOCRA blocked a freeway during rush hour, there’d have been tear gas and dogs).

Problem is, there’s some scope creep going on.

How’s That?:   The organizer of tomorrow’s planned State Fair protest, Rashad Turner, is either talking a lot of big talk, or playing peek-a-boo with the Twin Cities media, hinting at violence being possible.

Is he basically saying “Hey, media!  Being cameras!  You never know what’s gonna happen!”?

Or is he hoping to draw a few extra testosterone-jacked adolescents to the event with visions of mixing it up with cops dancing through their heads, to an area that’ll have more video cameras than Charlie Sheen’s boudoir?

Or is Rashad Turner himself one of those adolescents?

I suspect we’ll find out tomorrow.  Either way, it’s either a dumb manipulation (that’ll probably work), or a lot of really stupid talk.

Scope Creep:  And let me emphasize – I support protest, and limiting the power of government.  The police exist for a reason – but the idea that they work for us seems to be eroding over time.

So as far as that goes?  I’ll give BLM a listen.

But behind the criminal justice talk is all sorts of politics:

“Although there are elements of racism and white supremacy that are there, a simple policy change would be to start tracking [ethnicity] so we can be more intentional about representing the community,” he says. “I don’t think that anybody likes to check a box, but that would be a simple step to create an affirmative action process.”…BLM also wants the fair to be more transparent about its vetting of applications, and to make sure its top organizers include black, Asian and Latino people, says Nekima Levy-Pounds, president of the Minneapolis NAACP.

“Certain businesses are almost going to be guaranteed a spot if they’ve been there at the fair for a long time, and that’s obviously going to work to the disadvantage of minority-owned businesses and new businesses who weren’t given access to be vendors back when the fair began,” Levy-Pounds says. “This is a majority-white state that’s becoming more racially and ethnically diverse, and a colorblind policy is no longer effective at ensuring equal access to opportunity.”

But a free market that includes lots of minority businesspeople that know how to write a business plan and sell an idea is effective at ensuring that access.

But I don’t think that’s what they’re after.  Because…:

New Wrapper, Same Old Candy Bar:  But here’s a fearless prediction:  once the talk turns past policing and justice to government economic policy, BLM will be all about promoting “progressive” politics; they’ve already protested in favor of raising the minimum wage, and Levy-Pounds has just thrown in on affirmative action.

One of the questions I’ve heard asked of BLM is “why are you protesting in places like South Minneapolis and the Midway?  Why aren’t you protesting in front of the Governor’s mansion, or in Kenwood, or Maple Grove or Lakeville, where the actual power is?”

One possible answer;  because BLM isn’t about who’s in power.  It’s about whipping up the black vote in 2016, in a race where all the candidates will be old and white and in dire need of some of that Obama coalition to drag their sagging carcasses over the finish line.

And you’re not going to find those voters on Summit, or in Kenwood, or in Maple Grove.

Too cynical?  Perhaps.  But experience tells me that “too cynical” is just about right, most of the time.

17 thoughts on “Scope Creep

  1. -Rashad Turner. Straight outta Hamline! With his private school 4 year degree.
    -He may be setting himself up for a lifetime of fundraising to provide him with a cushy outrage industry job.
    -BUT…sometimes we should listen to some people. Not BLM, but others. During the Baltimore riots..Geraldo randomnly stopped a guy on the street to talk to him live on FOX News. A….lets say 50 year old…black man. It was interesting hearing his concerns. This guy wasn’t a rioter, just our watching. Told Geraldo what life was like in his neighborhood.

  2. Any conversation with a BLM person — by the media or anyone else — should begin with the FBI stats that shows that a white person is 50% more likely to be murdered by a Black person than a Black person by a white person. There reasons for the disparity in the numbers that have nothing to do with any supposed racism on the part of Blacks — most murder victims are killed by people they know, and Blacks are more likely to know white people as friends and relations than the other way around. But at least you could start the conversation on the basis of reality instead of victimization fantasies.

  3. If BLM spent as much time campaigning for self-help as they do for government help, things might begin to improve for more people and much faster than waiting for someone else to provide victim validation and support.

  4. Emery, you have to look at how BLM measures its own success, not how non- BLM people would like to measure its success.
    Putting a civil rights attorney from the US JD in every police station and judicial precinct, payed for, willy-nilly, by local tax dollars, would be a success in their eyes, I think.

  5. “…our criminal justice system has 99 problems, and racism is one.”

    Oh bullshit. The imbecilic War on Drugs is 101 of the problems of our criminal justice system. I doubt you can find a racist worthy of the name outside of the Aryan Brotherhood.

  6. If the concern is that “black lives matter,” then why not start with the fact that a black person is SIX TIMES more likely to be killed by another black person as is a white person by a white person. And almost 1000 times LESS likely to be killed by a white policeman. Seems to me if you want to solve the problem you start with the largest piece of it. If all you want to do is riot in the streets and turn more people against whatever positive suggestions you might have…. Well, box of rocks comes to mind.

  7. Black Lives Matter sprang from outrage that young Black men suspiciously died in police custody, or at police hands, in a few highly publicized incidents. Even right-wing-kooks like I can agree the police have grown arrogantly heavy-handed in recent years, so had that been the limit of the campaign, we’d have been natural allies.

    But Mitch is right that Conquest’s Second Law will not be denied and we see it with BLM, which has no substantive proposals to remedy police problems but instead is heading into traditional “give us money to shut us up” territory. Conservatives hate the Dane-geld so we’re no longer allies.

  8. As others with a more powerful microphone than mine have stated, BLM’s stated goals aren’t out of line, but most of the examples of racist police brutality they cite don’t hold up.
    In Ferguson a not so gentle giant was shot after he beat and attempted to take his gun. All this after committing robbery.
    Locally, a man was shot after trying to use his vehicle to run over 2 cops responding to a call about a threatening man with a gun.

  9. Emery, the only unarmed people that get shot by a copper are ones that are on videotape running away, or those that get shot by a cop without a throw down piece.

  10. “the only unarmed people that get shot by a copper are ones that are on videotape running away, or those that get shot by a cop without a throw down piece.”

    Specific citations, or STFU.

  11. Mitch:

    part of their scope creep is that they are so mad at the police they are telling people that cops are bad, but cops should be dead. There have been at least three cops executed recently. They are in effective telling people go and kill cops.

    Walter Hanson
    Minneapolis, MN

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  13. “…I draw from a pool of facts for my conclusions”

    Perchance, did your middle school math teacher mention the difference between anecdote and data?
    And did you notice that in the single instance you cited, the cop was indicted?

    Hummina guess “no” and “no”

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