George Floyd’s murder was appalling but the media still need to get their facts right

June 04, 2020

Poor George Floyd should be remembered respectfully. His death should not be hijacked by the extreme anti-Israel and other far leftist movements.

 

GEORGE FLOYD’S MURDER WAS APPALLING BUT THE INTERNATIONAL MEDIA STILL NEED TO GET THEIR FACTS RIGHT

[Note by Tom Gross]

For those interested in this issue, below are some items and images I have posted on my public Facebook page over the past week.

The murder of George Floyd was obviously appalling, as is lingering racism in the US and elsewhere.

But I feel it is important to give some of the context of the situation, which many media are not doing.

As a Washington Post database for 2019 makes clear:

10 million police arrests in US

1004 fatal police shootings

41 were of unarmed persons

19 of these unarmed were white

9 were African American

13 other – Asian / Hispanic

(As the Wall Street Journal points out in the piece below, The Post defines ‘unarmed’ broadly to include such cases as a suspect in Newark, N.J., who had a loaded handgun in his car during a police chase.)

***

The Wall Street Journal: “A police officer is 18˝ times more likely to be killed by a black male than an unarmed black male is to be killed by a police officer.

In 2018, for every black person killed by a white in America, there were 11 blacks killed by a black person.

This past weekend, 80 Chicagoans were shot in drive-by shootings, 21 fatally, the victims overwhelmingly black.”

International media have said “the four white officers arrested for Floyd’s murder”. Two of them are not white.

 



Two well-known mass killers chip in with their views on the situation…


 

IRAN’S EX-PRESIDENT AHMADINEJAD TWEETS N-WORD OVER GEORGE FLOYD DEATH

Former Iranian president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has been criticized by Twitter users after a tweet he posted on his account used the N-word in connection with the death of African-American George Floyd at the hands of Minnesota police. The tweet was supposedly in sympathy with Floyd but the use of the derogatory N-word was not welcome.

(When Ahmadinejad was president of Iran from 2005-2013, he regularly made hateful comments against Jews and also claimed that the Holocaust never happened, called on the world to destroy Israel and Israelis, and claimed that the 9/11 terror attacks were carried out by the US government.)

 



Apparently this is now the most pressing problem in Syria too...
(First the Assad regime bombed Idlib to bits and now it arranged this art mural)


 

THE VIDEOS NOT BEING SHOWN

Some international media outside the US are continuing to cover this story selectively in order to give the impression that the protests in the US are almost all peaceful and that all the problems are being caused by the governing authorities or the White House.

They are not reporting incidents like the one covered by the local affiliate of NBC TV in Richmond, Virginia about mobs setting a house alight when a child was sleeping inside.

Nor are they properly explaining how the voices of people genuinely and peacefully protesting against police violence or racism have often been drowned out by criminals and political agitators.

For example, video here.

Or the extraordinary video here.

Or here.

And after the looting. Manhattan today.

 

SOME OF THE RIOTERS ARE IVY LEAGUE LAWYERS WITH MOLOTOV COCKTAILS

Some of those arrested for acts of violence have been rich Ivy League lawyers hurling Molotov cocktails.

For example:

Pair of Brooklyn lawyers including Ivy League corporate attorney charged in Molotov cocktail attack on NYPD cruiser

https://www.nydailynews.com/new-york/ny-molotov-nypd-brooklyn-lawyers-charged-20200531-nxamwxnjmzgvzmczi6z2ypcbzi-story.html

 

LOOTERS DRIVING A ROLLS ROYCE

Some drove expensive cars (one of them was reportedly a Rolls-Royce) while looting, as this video shows:

https://nypost.com/2020/06/03/looters-flee-in-luxury-suvs-after-ransacking-nyc-stores-video/

 

 

AFRICAN-AMERICANS TARGETED BY THE MOBS

Middle class African-American shop-owners, and Korean and Jewish small businesses have been at the forefront of many of the attacks in recent days.

This brave African-American man who was trying to protect an African-American business in St Louis, was shot to death by looters who then filmed him live on Facebook as he lay dying ‘just for fun’

https://www.stltoday.com/news/local/crime-and-courts/retired-police-captain-shot-to-death-at-st-louis-pawn-shop-in-slaying-caught-on/article_d482138c-0224-5393-bd87-9898bebb3fd1.html

Jewish-owned shops such as this Steinway piano shop above, kosher diners, and synagogues have also been targeted in Washington, Philadelphia, Los Angeles and elsewhere.

https://www.jpost.com/diaspora/kosher-stores-synagogues-vandalized-and-looted-in-ongoing-la-protests-629895

https://forward.com/news/national/447696/violent-protests-in-los-angeles-tear-through-jewish-neighborhood/

 

WHERE ARE THE MEDIA?

Many international media are critiquing President Trump’s threat to bring in the army (which I am against) but they are not informing their viewers of the extreme violence Trump was referring to when he made his comments.

Fox News’s Tucker Carlson’s tone can sometimes be grating, but those of you who only watch TV networks that claim that there has been almost no extreme violence, should watch the video footage contained a couple of minutes into this report.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=youtu.be&v=3n5_D59lSjc

(The real question is why one needs to go to Fox News to watch this stuff? Why isn’t more of it being reported on other major networks?)

(Of course, Fox cannot include the worst acts of violence against innocent people, which are too graphic to show.)

 

AFRICAN-AMERICAN ROLE MODELS

If you only watch one video in this dispatch, I suggest it is this one.

I disagree with Candace Owens on some issues (for example, on coronavirus vaccines) but on this issue, Candace Owens reflects the views of many African-Americans. Yet many media are reluctant to have her on as a guest about African-American concerns, apparently because it might spoil their narrative.

(Some of the data she gives are also in the Wall Street Journal article below, citing a Washington Post study.)

This video was watched on Facebook about 15 million times in the first 12 hours after it was posted last night:

https://www.facebook.com/TomGrossMedia/posts/2979197342117765

I hope Mark Zuckerberg will not be intimidated by the campaign that The Guardian and other newspapers are currently running against Facebook and against Zuckerberg personally, to force Facebook to remove views and facts that The Guardian and NY Times do not like.

(One of my Facebook posts was censored by Facebook last month and Facebook threatened to take down my entire page. There was nothing inaccurate in my censored post whatsoever, which included a balanced note by me and a perfectly fair article from the Jerusalem Post.)

 

Even in London, journalists have been attacked. Video here:

https://www.abc.net.au/news/2020-06-04/australian-journalists-assaulted-covering-london-protest-floyd/12319604

 

“A HANDY NARRATIVE TO DEFLECT RESPONSIBILITY”

I attach two articles below.

In the first, Gerard Baker writing in today’s Times (of London) says:

“For all the simplistic narrative that portrays every encounter between a black man and a white police officer as a clash between good and evil, the reality of urban policing is much more complex. The principal function in practice of police forces in these cities is, sadly, to try to stop black people from killing each other. In 2018, for every black person killed by a white in America, there were 11 blacks killed by a black person.

“It is not racist to point this out. It may well indeed primarily reflect the vast inequalities that entrap African-Americans: of income and wealth, education and opportunity, and of the prejudice that supports it. It may also owe in part to social pathologies that afflict black communities in particular, the sort that Barack Obama identified when running for president in 2008: ‘Too many fathers are MIA, too many fathers are Awol, missing from too many lives and too many homes . . . they have abandoned their responsibilities, acting like boys instead of men.’

“Of course, larger American society has a role in preserving the inequalities that persist and it has an obligation to help fix them. But for the realities of their daily economic life and security, African-Americans have lived largely under Democratic politicians who have happily taken their votes come election time, and then blame police officers, Republicans, the White House and history for their own tragic failures.”

 

“A POLICE OFFICER IS 18˝ TIMES MORE LIKELY TO BE KILLED BY A BLACK MALE THAN AN UNARMED BLACK MALE IS TO BE KILLED BY A POLICE OFFICER”

In the second piece below, Heather MacDonald in The Wall Street Journal, points out that:

“The police fatally shot nine unarmed blacks and 19 unarmed whites in 2019, according to a Washington Post database, down from 38 and 32, respectively, in 2015. The Post defines ‘unarmed’ broadly to include such cases as a suspect in Newark, N.J., who had a loaded handgun in his car during a police chase. In 2018 there were 7,407 black homicide victims. Assuming a comparable number of victims last year, those nine unarmed black victims of police shootings represent 0.1% of all African-Americans killed in 2019. By contrast, a police officer is 18˝ times more likely to be killed by a black male than an unarmed black male is to be killed by a police officer.

“On Memorial Day weekend in Chicago alone, 10 African-Americans were killed in drive-by shootings. Such routine violence has continued—a 72-year-old Chicago man shot in the face on May 29 by a gunman who fired about a dozen shots into a residence; two 19-year-old women on the South Side shot to death as they sat in a parked car a few hours earlier; a 16-year-old boy fatally stabbed with his own knife that same day. This past weekend, 80 Chicagoans were shot in drive-by shootings, 21 fatally, the victims overwhelmingly black. Police shootings are not the reason that blacks die of homicide at eight times the rate of whites and Hispanics combined; criminal violence is.

“The latest in a series of studies undercutting the claim of systemic police bias was published in August 2019 in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. The researchers found that the more frequently officers encounter violent suspects from any given racial group, the greater the chance that a member of that group will be fatally shot by a police officer. There is ‘no significant evidence of antiblack disparity in the likelihood of being fatally shot by police,’ they concluded.

“A 2015 Justice Department analysis of the Philadelphia Police Department found that white police officers were less likely than black or Hispanic officers to shoot unarmed black suspects. Research by Harvard economist Roland G. Fryer Jr. also found no evidence of racial discrimination in shootings. Any evidence to the contrary fails to take into account crime rates and civilian behavior before and during interactions with police.”


ARTICLES

DEMOCRATS FAIL BLACK VOTERS AND BLAME OTHERS

Democrats fail black voters and blame others
The mayors of cities such as Minneapolis have had the time to correct the vast inequalities faced by African-Americans
By Gerard Baker
The Times (of London)
Wednesday June 4, 2020

George Floyd. Eric Garner. Freddie Gray. Rodney King. The baleful list of the names of black men killed or brutalised by police in America is long and too familiar. So too the list of cities where these and other acts occurred, cities now engulfed in protest and mayhem: Minneapolis. New York. Baltimore. Los Angeles.

These places have something else in common. Every one of them is controlled by the Democratic Party. Not just recently, or narrowly, or tenuously. Like almost all big cities in America where most instances of racial tension have occurred of late, they are citadels of one-party rule.

Minneapolis, where Mr Floyd was killed, has had a Democratic mayor for the past 42 years. There hasn’t been a single Republican elected to the city council there in the 21st century. The last time a Republican was mayor of Baltimore, Lyndon Johnson was president. Fourteen of the fifteen members of the Los Angeles city council are Democrats. The other is an independent. In New York City at the last council elections in 2017, Republicans celebrated inroads into the Democratic majority — they won four seats against the Democrats’ 47.

In America, states and cities have a large measure of autonomy. These are not the local councils of England and Wales. They have extensive revenue-raising powers through a range of taxes: property, business, sales and, in some cities, personal income tax. Directly elected mayors, in concert with councils, control vast budgets with authority in most municipalities over housing, education, urban development, fire and, of course, the police.

Police chiefs are in most cases appointed directly by the mayor and are supervised by and accountable to him or her. For decades these Democratic cities have had, in other words, near complete responsibility for the staffing, policies and performance of their police forces. If the mayor of Minneapolis and the city council that aligns with him had chosen, they could have transformed the police department. If they were alarmed about systemic abuse by police, about racist attitudes and behaviour, they’ve had more than 40 years to put them right. They could have replaced the entire force with black officers if they’d wanted to.

And yet, in the safe hands of a party that protests its absolute support for eradicating inequality and protecting minorities, we still get cases like that of Mr Floyd and the others. How can this be?

In part, it’s because Democratic politicians know that, whatever the shortcomings of their policies, they have a handy narrative to deflect responsibility. It’s always easy to blame racist white cops, ‘systemic racism’ in the nation, the legacy of slavery and generations of inequality. They know that a complaisant media will, as it has done with particular alacrity in the past week, buy into and promote the idea that when a black man is killed by a police officer it’s nothing to do with the authorities who appointed, trained and now regulate that police officer, but somehow the fault of Republicans in Washington, or some nebulous threat of white supremacy.

Perhaps, in fairness to these municipal kingpins, it’s also that the situation with urban police forces in the US is not quite as unremittingly racist as protesters, the media and Democratic politicians would have us believe. The picture painted in the past week of a daily reality for black men in which they cannot walk out their front door without fear of being murdered by a white police officer is grotesque.

According to the latest data from the justice department, blacks accounted for about a quarter of all those killed by police in the past three years; whites were slightly more than half. Blacks of course represent a smaller proportion of the US population — about 13 per cent, so those black fatalities do indeed represent a significantly disproportionate number of deaths by law enforcement.

But this is misleading. The relevant statistic when considering what happens to people at the hands of the police is not total population but the numbers of people who come into contact with police. In short, a better measure is the relationship between those who commit recorded violent crimes and those who are killed by police. According to the FBI, almost 39 per cent of murders and 54 per cent of robberies in the US are committed by African-Americans.

For all the simplistic narrative that portrays every encounter between a black man and a white police officer as a clash between good and evil, the reality of urban policing is much more complex. The principal function in practice of police forces in these cities is, sadly, to try to stop black people from killing each other. In 2018, for every black person killed by a white in America, there were 11 blacks killed by a black person.

It is not racist to point this out. It may well indeed primarily reflect the vast inequalities that entrap African-Americans: of income and wealth, education and opportunity, and of the prejudice that supports it. It may also owe in part to social pathologies that afflict black communities in particular, the sort that Barack Obama identified when running for president in 2008: ‘Too many fathers are MIA, too many fathers are Awol, missing from too many lives and too many homes . . . they have abandoned their responsibilities, acting like boys instead of men.’

Of course, larger American society has a role in preserving the inequalities that persist and it has an obligation to help fix them. But for the realities of their daily economic life and security, African-Americans have lived largely under Democratic politicians who have happily taken their votes come election time, and then blame police officers, Republicans, the White House and history for their own tragic failures.

 

THE MYTH OF SYSTEMIC POLICE RACISM

The Myth of Systemic Police Racism
Hold officers accountable who use excessive force. But there’s no evidence of widespread racial bias.
By Heather Mac Donald
Wall Street Journal
June 3, 2020

https://www.wsj.com/articles/the-myth-of-systemic-police-racism-11591119883

George Floyd’s death in Minneapolis has revived the Obama-era narrative that law enforcement is endemically racist. On Friday, Barack Obama tweeted that for millions of black Americans, being treated differently by the criminal justice system on account of race is ‘tragically, painfully, maddeningly ‘normal.’ ‘ Mr. Obama called on the police and the public to create a ‘new normal,’ in which bigotry no longer ‘infects our institutions and our hearts.’

Joe Biden released a video the same day in which he asserted that all African-Americans fear for their safety from ‘bad police’ and black children must be instructed to tolerate police abuse just so they can ‘make it home.’ That echoed a claim Mr. Obama made after the ambush murder of five Dallas officers in July 2016. During their memorial service, the president said African-American parents were right to fear that their children may be killed by police officers whenever they go outside.

Minnesota Gov. Tim Walz denounced the ‘stain . . . of fundamental, institutional racism’ on law enforcement during a Friday press conference. He claimed blacks were right to dismiss promises of police reform as empty verbiage.

This charge of systemic police bias was wrong during the Obama years and remains so today. However sickening the video of Floyd’s arrest, it isn’t representative of the 375 million annual contacts that police officers have with civilians. A solid body of evidence finds no structural bias in the criminal-justice system with regard to arrests, prosecution or sentencing. Crime and suspect behavior, not race, determine most police actions.

In 2019 police officers fatally shot 1,004 people, most of whom were armed or otherwise dangerous. African-Americans were about a quarter of those killed by cops last year (235), a ratio that has remained stable since 2015. That share of black victims is less than what the black crime rate would predict, since police shootings are a function of how often officers encounter armed and violent suspects. In 2018, the latest year for which such data have been published, African-Americans made up 53% of known homicide offenders in the U.S. and commit about 60% of robberies, though they are 13% of the population.

The police fatally shot nine unarmed blacks and 19 unarmed whites in 2019, according to a Washington Post database, down from 38 and 32, respectively, in 2015. The Post defines ‘unarmed’ broadly to include such cases as a suspect in Newark, N.J., who had a loaded handgun in his car during a police chase. In 2018 there were 7,407 black homicide victims. Assuming a comparable number of victims last year, those nine unarmed black victims of police shootings represent 0.1% of all African-Americans killed in 2019. By contrast, a police officer is 18˝ times more likely to be killed by a black male than an unarmed black male is to be killed by a police officer.

On Memorial Day weekend in Chicago alone, 10 African-Americans were killed in drive-by shootings. Such routine violence has continued—a 72-year-old Chicago man shot in the face on May 29 by a gunman who fired about a dozen shots into a residence; two 19-year-old women on the South Side shot to death as they sat in a parked car a few hours earlier; a 16-year-old boy fatally stabbed with his own knife that same day. This past weekend, 80 Chicagoans were shot in drive-by shootings, 21 fatally, the victims overwhelmingly black. Police shootings are not the reason that blacks die of homicide at eight times the rate of whites and Hispanics combined; criminal violence is.

The latest in a series of studies undercutting the claim of systemic police bias was published in August 2019 in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. The researchers found that the more frequently officers encounter violent suspects from any given racial group, the greater the chance that a member of that group will be fatally shot by a police officer. There is ‘no significant evidence of antiblack disparity in the likelihood of being fatally shot by police,’ they concluded.

A 2015 Justice Department analysis of the Philadelphia Police Department found that white police officers were less likely than black or Hispanic officers to shoot unarmed black suspects. Research by Harvard economist Roland G. Fryer Jr. also found no evidence of racial discrimination in shootings. Any evidence to the contrary fails to take into account crime rates and civilian behavior before and during interactions with police.

The false narrative of systemic police bias resulted in targeted killings of officers during the Obama presidency. The pattern may be repeating itself. Officers are being assaulted and shot at while they try to arrest gun suspects or respond to the growing riots. Police precincts and courthouses have been destroyed with impunity, which will encourage more civilization-destroying violence. If the Ferguson effect of officers backing off law enforcement in minority neighborhoods is reborn as the Minneapolis effect, the thousands of law-abiding African-Americans who depend on the police for basic safety will once again be the victims.

The Minneapolis officers who arrested George Floyd must be held accountable for their excessive use of force and callous indifference to his distress. Police training needs to double down on de-escalation tactics. But Floyd’s death should not undermine the legitimacy of American law enforcement, without which we will continue on a path toward chaos.

 

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