First, I validated your anger. I see it. I am trying to understand it. You can dismiss me as a right wing idiot and perhaps you’ll feel good. But you haven’t won any understanding. I’m reaching out trying to comprehend something I know I don’t understand. Do you just want to be angry and smug, or are you interested in actually reaching out to inform people? You did write your blog, and I appreciate that. But I’m left with questions.
But before we dig in allow me to elaborate on what I cited. The Michael Brown case is one of many high profile cases that have had memes trumped up. Eric Garner was another case. Travon Martin was another. All of these cases had disproportionate responses from the community that weren’t merited by the case itself.
Meanwhile there were other cases that I thought were far more just cause for infuriating to communities nearby and yet were largely ignored. Examples include the death of John Crawford in Beaver Creek Ohio, and the death of Walter Scott in South Carolina. I don’t see any rhyme or reason to what cases make it to high profile status among protesters. My point and my question was to ask why some murky cases make big news that move crowds, and other far clearer examples of evil that should infuriate many more barely elicit a yawn?
In any case, for the sake of argument, let’s say your statistics and observations are entirely accurate. I can joust with statisticians all day long. However, you probably won’t agree with my conclusions; and I will probably see all kinds of flaws in yours. But because I’m trying to understand you, let’s assume that your contentions are absolutely accurate. There are problems and you have unassailable proof that your answers are going to be effective.
How should we police people in urban communities? Should we even police them at all? Allow me to point out that police are in fact optional. You do have a right to keep and bear arms under the second amendment. We could save loads of tax money, and just lay off all the police. Let the community enforce justice on its own. But who are we fooling? I doubt you or anyone besides a few extremists would want to see that. So what should we do differently?
Have you discussed how police are trained? Should there be some fundamental policy changes? Should the wait for people to peacefully surrender or should they make an effort to arrest? If so, how much effort should they expend?
Most of all, WHY did your police relatives tell you that they should be avoided? Does wearing the uniform make them all racists (I seriously doubt that, but I feel obligated to ask it because that’s what some leaders seem to be implying).
You say the laws are stacked against you. Okay, change something. The law is hardly perfect. What are some quick wins that would improve the livelihood of the urban poor? Maybe there aren’t any easy answers, but perhaps you can suggest some areas to improve upon?
Going further, what investments should we make in the community? We have spent loads of money on education and on community centers and organizing. I don’t see it helping much. But let’s suppose you’re convinced that these are good people and they know what they’re doing. It will really work this time. Who should get that money, and what do you expect as an outcome?
More to the point, perhaps you’d like to see more money in the schools. Recognize that we already throw disproportionate levels of funding at inner city schools. The District of Columbia, where I grew up and attended public high school, and where my mother still lives and pays taxes, spends more money per pupil than any nearby school system in Maryland or Virginia. Yet when you look at their graduation and test scores, they have very little to show for it. Many cities, including Baltimore, are like that. It’s not for lack of money. Suburban school districts seem to do much better while spending significantly less per pupil. Shouldn’t the city schools do better? Why aren’t they?
Am I skeptical about the organizers of the BLM movement? Yes. I haven’t seen a single proposal from this movement that made any sense to me.
I see the anger, the malice, the crime, and the random violence. I don’t understand why it is that way. Many races and cultures in this country and others have overcome worse hatred and discrimination. If this was merely a matter of racism and discrimination, how have so many other races and creeds managed to succeed while so much of the Black community continues to languish in poverty?
Meanwhile, I am being asked to ignore the racism, the hatred, and the sophistries that I am told define the black community. These behaviors don’t define anyone. These are all optional. You can choose to be angry, or you can choose to do something about it. While I can support you, I can’t answer the questions I have outlined above for you. It has to come from within.
Holding the Black community down is not what I am about. To the contrary, as a selfish conservative, right wing, married middle aged white man, I would like to see the Black community prosper and grow.
I’m tired of all the political grandstanding telling me I am evil and wrong for being white and successful; and that I must pay for slavery that my immigrant grandparents had absolutely nothing to do with. I am tired of being told that, despite failure after failure, that I must still keep paying taxes to be squandered on things that show so little success.
Yes, I am an angry white guy — but not for the reasons your political leaders would have you think. Don’t tell me I shouldn’t be angry either.
Now, can we get past all the bullshit and make something good happen?