Monday, August 18, 2008

Amy Alkon: "My question: Was the reason our founding fathers fought for free speech really so tiny little thugs who call themselves "progressives" can foil any possibility of it on the websites of anyone whose opinions they disagree with?"

114 Comments:

Blogger Francis W. Porretto said...

Uh, no. But fascists have always done their best to shout down the opposition at the very least ("The Fascists cannot argue, so they kill." -- Victor Marguerite), and "progressive" fascists are no different in this regard. The rest of us simply have to cope.

6:27 AM, August 18, 2008  
Blogger Amy Alkon said...

Hey, thanks for posting this. And actually, I just left a comment on my site about a previous post of yours (critical of my "Rich Litters" piece on Pajamas):

I know many people on the right, some of whom think I'm a real idiot for some of my views. When people on the right think that -- including Glenn Reynolds' own wife -- they blog about what an idiot they think I am. They don't send the 7,000 Dwarfs over here to try to punish me for my speech.

Here's to civilized criticism like yours.

9:36 AM, August 18, 2008  
Blogger TMink said...

Amy, was it that they blog about what an idiot you are or what an idiotic idea you had? There is a huge difference.

Trey

9:43 AM, August 18, 2008  
Blogger M. Simon said...

Amy is so sweet. I have had some trouble on her widely read blog with her spam filter. She personally worked the issue and e-mailed me several times until the issue got worked out. I ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ Amy.

Simon

10:04 AM, August 18, 2008  
Blogger Helen said...

Amy,

I hardly think you are an idiot! I sure hope I never said that. I might disagree with you but I admire much of your work and read a recent article about you in some blogger magazine (can't remember which one) that was really great. We all disagree from time to time, but I am sure that we agree that free speech is priceless.

10:43 AM, August 18, 2008  
Blogger David said...

Whenever "progressives" gain control of an institution or a subculture, they attempt to shut down dissenting speech. We have plenty of evidence, at universities and in Hollywood.

If the "progressive"-dominated Democrats win the Presidency, in addition to both houses of Congress, what are the chances that we will escape without a major crippling of free speech?

I don't think they are very high.

12:04 PM, August 18, 2008  
Blogger Marquis said...

As a commenter at Sadly, No!, I must register my disagreement. There are at least four separate things that were going on, and none of them are clearly attempts to "shut down dissenting speech":

1) Sadly, No! became aware of Amy Alkon's blog when she posted about Tarika Wilson's death. The vandalism of Ms Alkon's wikipedia bio to say she was a transsexual or a transvestite began nearly two weeks before she wrote her comments about Ms Wilson's death (and about women who "squeeze out litters of fatherless children"). While she initially claimed to be amused by this, she changed her mind (as most of us would, really); still, this was obviously unrelated.

2) Blog posts on Sadly, No! beginning with describing her as someone who tries to look like Bette Midler and later fanning the transsexual "controversy". In poor taste? Perhaps. A plot by soi-disant progressives to intimidate and silence someone? Er, that's kind of ridiculous. Did some of us call her a trannsexual? Sure. That's immature and looksist (and while it's beside the point I think Amy has striking features although she pulls her hair back way too tight) and it undermines worthwhile discussion. But to get back to the point, it's not an attempt to silence anyone or punish her for her views.

3) Comments on her site by Sadly, No! Commenters. Well, you know, that's the thing with having a comments feature on your blog that's on the internets -- someone might read your post and want to weigh in on it. It's sort of like when a TV station or newspaper presents some view and they get a flood of letters from angry old people, except it happens faster. I know that bloggers write for their own audiences, but they have to be aware that other bloggers will occasionally link to them, sometimes because they disagree strongly with what you wrote. So a lot of commenters will suddenly show up and start arguing.

Of course, most blogging software enables the owner(s) to moderate comments, deleting comments and even banning people from posting comments. Blog owners are free to do this based on the relevance (no spam) or civility (no flaming) of the comments, or indeed for any reason at all. Several of my comments arguing politely but frankly (in this case, that the armed SWAT team and not the unarmed mother of six in her own home was responsible for what happened) were deleted, and my IP was banned. And you know what? That's fine. It's her blog, not mine. I'm a little bothered that she appears to think she's a wonderful person because she's such an advocate for speech that she agrees with, but that's nothing unusual. But I digress; others expressing disagreement, even if they may do that uncivilly, is not preventing Amy from exercising free speech. Simply not allowing anonymous comments is a perfectly reasonable thing to do; many web sites do this. When you have the ability to literally silence your critics with the press of a button, and instead choose to proclaim your martyrdom to your internet buddies, it makes you look ridiculous.

4) The big block of garbage text. This is a serious issue, because it looks to people who know about this sort of thing that it was an attempt to overflow the buffer, using a vulnerability to compromise the web server. This is a common way that worms propagate, and can be quite costly in terms of time and effort to fix, if the vulnerability is exploited, and is just an annoying block of text if it isn't. There are certainly crackers who will do this sort of thing because they don't like someone (cf Russian crackers with their "Funny Saakashvili gay video" thing). I don't speak for Sadly, No! but I do not believe that any of the regular writers or commenters there are malicious crackers. It's not at all the sort of thing that we approve of, and most of these attacks are for reasons unrelated to politics: a site experiencing a spike in traffic becomes more vulnerable to this sort of thing simply because it is more valuable as a target. I would be surprised if this attack was politically motivated, and shocked if it was related to Sadly, No!


Finally (and if you're reading this far, thanks!) I don't even think Ms Alkon's posts were "dissenting speech" -- she takes the view that the SWAT officer who shot an unarmed woman and a baby, killing the mother and maiming the child, acted appropriately, which was also the view of the jury.

She takes the view that Tarika Wilson, a 24-year-old single mother of six, who was about to start college, is not a role model, which is pretty uncontroversial, and further that she "valued her own life" less than the man who gunned her down. While the latter is, to me, a rather shocking thing to say,
I would by no means say it's "dissenting speech". On the contrary, when something particularly bad is done by the state to a poor person, those of us who are not poor people can do basically two things: blame the state and/or "the system", which ultimately means wondering if we ourselves are not at some level blameworthy, or we can say "oh what a shame, if only poor people didn't make such bad life choices it wouldn't be necessary for the police to shoot them so often". Choosing to use the poor choices of victims to excuse the shooter's actions is an easy way to reassure ourselves that we live in, and contribute to, a just society. Not surprisingly, most of us make that choice. To say "the poor are poor (or victims of state or private violence, or unhealthy, or unattractive, etc) because they make bad choices" is an overwhelmingly mainstream attitude, even among the poor.

The only speech that "dissents" from the view of the establishment is the nod to the idea that no-knock SWAT team raids are a bad idea, or at least overused (from someone describing herself as a libertarian, it should be surprising that this isn't the topic of the original post).

1:22 PM, August 18, 2008  
Blogger br549 said...

Gee, you had to write all that just so you could knock Dr. Helen a little bit with your last sentence.

Like the typical book in the bookstore, I should have read the last page first. I would not have wasted anywhere near as much time.

2:12 PM, August 18, 2008  
Blogger Marquis said...

What? No. I have nothing bad to say about Dr. Helen. The post is long because I wanted to address a lot of things. If I am knocking anyone, it's Ms Alkon, to the extent that "knocking" means questioning how she reconciles her self-described libertarianism and free-speech advocacy with her actual posts. See, we disagree on things. I'm writing about it. Someone was mean to her so now all progressives are thugs. It's ... kind of ridiculous.

3:53 PM, August 18, 2008  
Blogger Allen said...

That was quite the brawl. Who won again? With all this speech going on, it's hard to see where speech is being squashed.

4:42 PM, August 18, 2008  
Blogger Marquis said...

Over on the Advice Goddess blog, lots of comments are disappearing down the memory hole. Some of them are probably spam or crapflooding, but I saw a lot of reasonably civil discourse relevant to the topic that was there before and isn't there now.

4:54 PM, August 18, 2008  
Blogger Joe Max said...

I was one of those who was deleted while Ms. Alkon's was self-admittedly being "heavy on the delete key." I wasn't spamming or crapflooding, just pointing out disagreement.

What I find remarkable is that Ms. Alkon puts so much blame on the victim in her original post, and denounces those those who take exception to her opinion, but is so adept at playing the victim card herself.

By Ms. Alkon's logic, she shouldn't be running a blog on the Internet. Blogs, especially those who speak out on controversial issues, are notoriously common targets not only od dissent, but of spam and hacking, especially when they get a spike in activity. I'm sure Ms. Alkon must know this. So, following the same logic by which she claimed that Tarika Wilson shouldn't have been in a drug dealer's house if she didn't want to get shot by police, if Ms. Alkon doesn't want to be the possible target of Internet "harassment", she shouldn't be publishing a blog on the Internet.

(Which I, of course, don't believe for a second - but I'm just following Ms. Alkon's logic of holding the victim accountable for putting herself in a risky situation.)

5:12 PM, August 18, 2008  
Blogger Buford Gooch said...

Well, Doc, it looks like the Sadly,No! people have found your blog. They start out fairly reasonably, but it escalates. Just ask Amy.

5:23 PM, August 18, 2008  
Blogger Marquis said...

Joe Max -- I agree with you (in both senses) but I just want to point out that Tarika Wilson was in her own house, where her drug-dealing boyfriend was visiting.

5:41 PM, August 18, 2008  
Blogger Joe Max said...

Sadly No has known about Dr. Mrs. Ol' Prefesser for a long time.

http://www.sadlyno.com/archives/9508.html

The difference is, to Dr. Mrs. Ol' Perfesser's credit, she doesn't explode into a major on-line hissy fit over being lampooned on a comedy site after performing the famous "open mouth, insert foot" trick.

If Ms. Alkon ever ends up featured on The Daily Show, I do declare she would positively die of the vapors.

5:44 PM, August 18, 2008  
Blogger Pete said...

Marquis:

As someone who act5ually reads ("Know thy enemy") "Sadly Pathertic," in since I actually saw posts urging people to go there and shout her down, you, sirrah, are a liar.

5:57 PM, August 18, 2008  
Blogger Joe Max said...

Care to provide any examples of this "urging"? How do you define "shout down"? Do you mean go over to her blog and post a comment that disagrees with her opinion? How is that "shouting down" a blog owner on her own comment board, when she has her finger on the delete key and isn't afraid to use it?

Many blog ownwers will simply turn off comments in cases like this. Ms. Alkon had that option. Instead she deleted and banned people who disagreed with her no matter how politely, and left only posts from those who agreed with her, or celebrated her victimhood.

Are you going to accuse me of "blaming the victim" now? Won't that be a twist!

6:10 PM, August 18, 2008  
Blogger Factory said...

Riiight, now all the fascists are putting on their reasonable face.

Never saw THAT come from my sister whenever the parents came home and she was trying to look "innocent".

Geez, you people act like we've never had a sibling....

Liar liar pants on fire. :)

6:31 PM, August 18, 2008  
Blogger Marquis said...

Factory, you're being extremely uncivil, as are the other people characterizing people posting dissenting opinions as fascists and thugs. Has it occurred to you that (a) taking offense at a statement and (b) explaining why is not, in fact, in any way similar to fascist thuggery? It's a ridiculous hyperbole and it makes you look like a silly person.

6:45 PM, August 18, 2008  
Blogger JG said...

Marquis,

Why don't you "stick with your knitting" and bring back the articles on Amber Pawlik? Those were at least amusing.

6:50 PM, August 18, 2008  
Blogger Pete said...

Care to provide any examples of this "urging"? How do you define "shout down"? Do you mean go over to her blog and post a comment that disagrees with her opinion? How is that "shouting down" a blog owner on her own comment board, when she has her finger on the delete key and isn't afraid to use it?

Pretty much by so overloading comments nobody with a brain or a life cares to wade through your leftist tripe to read, much less discuss things.

Many blog ownwers will simply turn off comments in cases like this. Ms. Alkon had that option.

So?

Actually, it's probably was you assbags WANT. Which is why she - like me - decided not to do it.

Because you wish it.

Instead she deleted and banned people who disagreed with her no matter how politely, and left only posts from those who agreed with her, or celebrated her victimhood.

I read some of the garbage as it was being deleted. Go tell it to the Marines.

Are you going to accuse me of "blaming the victim" now?

No, just disingenuousness and abject stupidity.

Oh - and BTW - Amy is a pussy compared to me. Far as I am concerned, Crack-Girl was a waste of Oxygen, her death should have been listed under public improvements, and might have arguably been one of the best things to happen to those children.

What of it? You don't like it - lump it. When you Nazis get in control, I'm sure you'll want to send me to one of your progressive camps, but until then, stick it in you ear. My opinion, voiced, and not diddley you can do about it.

Gonz

7:16 PM, August 18, 2008  
Blogger Joe Max said...

Ooo, that hurt. I think I'll go cry now.

7:23 PM, August 18, 2008  
Blogger Jim C. said...

Joe Max said, Care to provide any examples of this "urging"?

[snip]

Instead she deleted and banned people who disagreed with her no matter how politely, and left only posts from those who agreed with her, or celebrated her victimhood.


Care to provide any verified examples of these disagreements that you call polite? Even a screen shot? I didn't think so.

Are you going to accuse me of "blaming the victim" now?

That's not the one I had in mind.

7:25 PM, August 18, 2008  
Blogger lovemelikeareptile said...

Marquis

Your comments after the 4 points were well stated.

I am only aware of what was in the papers- but Alkon's opinion , is, on its face, despicable.

Its irrelevant what kind of person this woman was, how many children she had by how many fathers, that she had made poor choices, etc.

The only relevant question is how does the state and its agents justify breaking into her home and shooting her dead-- unarmed and, apparently, not charged with any crime.

Since there seems to be no justification for this killing , the victim is demeaned and dehumanized, so that her death is really not THAT significant. Thats barbarism.

This was also done in the Texas case where a "nut-case" executed two burglars-- of his neighbor's house !-- with shotgun blasts-- to the back as they attempted to leave.
He was not indicted for two 100% pre-meditated murders ( the idiot is on tape)-- because the people he murdered ( illegal aliens, minorities, criminals) had no "value" to many members of society .

Its precisely in these type of cases --- victims that can be dehumanized and therefore crimes against them can be easily rationalized-- that the law should be most vigilant.

7:32 PM, August 18, 2008  
Blogger Joe Max said...

Here's the thing, Jim C. - all the comments made at Sadly No, in all their snarky glory, are still up. So you can still find any comment made there and reproduce it here. If you care.

You'll even find some cross-posts of what were deleted from her comments. But of course that's not proof to you, I'm sure.

You, however, can prove your point, whereas I can't (certainly not as easily.)

But never mind, you can just stick with "I know you are but what am I?" if you like.

7:54 PM, August 18, 2008  
Blogger Clif said...

Au contraire, we "tiny thugs" at Sadly, No! are most certainly not trying to shut Amy up. She has been the source of several days of hilarity and we hope to post about Amy for years to come. She's that funny -- unintentionally, of course.

We don't want less posts from Amy, we want more. We're even thinking of setting up a tip jar to keep her encouraged and motivated so that she keeps up her hectic pace of posting. Comedy like this rarely falls so easily into your lap.

8:04 PM, August 18, 2008  
Blogger Brenda said...

This is what got Sarah Schaefer banned almost instantly by Ms. Alkon.
http://www.advicegoddess.com/archives/2008/08/17/about_people_wi.html

"Can you provide even one example of a reasonably well known person espousing the view that you are suggesting here? That is, that there is never anything wrong with a woman having a child out of wedlock? Of course a single teenaged girl having a child without financial and emotional support or readiness is far from ideal. A financially secure single woman who decides to have a child via artificial insemination is a far different matter. So is, as you point out, a same sex couple that are committed to each other but are prevented by law from marrying. Lets not forget that many single parent families are created by death, divorce, abuse, abandonment, and lack of education about or access to birth control.

The problem with "prejudice" is that it seeks to impose judgement without full knowledge of the facts --- it tends to label and denounce and degrade an individual by making assumptions without having to really think or understand. That is what makes it dangerous and often hateful. Your recent post about the killing of a single mother with several children by different fathers was full of assumptions and stereotypes. You didn't know that woman, you didn't know the circumstances of her life. But you chose to make her less than human, to suggest that her life was expendable because she fit your prejudiced view based on some of the information about her children."

And this follow up by her should be engraved on every right wing blog:

"Apparently if someone disagrees with you, you decide it is open season to insult them and make snide accusations about their intelligence. I posted a fairly civil comment to you, and you decided to insult me. Why should I have respect for your point of view?"

It is this kind of blatant hypocrisy that we on the left see repeated time after time by the right. You don't really mean it when you say you want free and open debate. You don't want to have to compete in the free marketplace of ideas because you lose. Every. Single. Time.

You can't handle dissent. You can't tolerate being wrong and so you project your own failings onto others. You scream and cry out "How dare you not tolerate my intolerance!"

You never allow reasoned debate on an equal playing field.

8:27 PM, August 18, 2008  
Blogger Pete said...

I am only aware of what was in the papers- but Alkon's opinion , is, on its face, despicable.

Only because they might be understated.

Its irrelevant what kind of person this woman was, how many children she had by how many fathers, that she had made poor choices, etc.

No, sirrah. It is precisely relevant. Those bad choices placed her - AND HER CHILDREN, I may add - directly in such harm's way.

The only relevant question is how does the state and its agents justify breaking into her home and shooting her dead-- unarmed and, apparently, not charged with any crime.

In fact he was charged and just ACQUITTED.

http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/nationworld/chi-nat-swat-shootingaug05,0,6306828.story

When you have the actual facts, you don't look like such a moron.

Since there seems to be no justification for this killing , the victim is demeaned and dehumanized, so that her death is really not THAT significant. Thats barbarism.

Well, since you'va laready proven yourself short on facts....

Her boyfriend was manufacturing Meth - and she had her kids in there. (Mother of the year!)

Pit bulls got turned onto the cops duing the raid.

He was apparentl;y using them as human shields - and I have to say, looks like she was using her one baby the same way.

Hmmm.

This was also done in the Texas case where a "nut-case" executed two burglars-- of his neighbor's house !-- with shotgun blasts-- to the back as they attempted to leave.

Absolutely awesome. And you left out that they were also illegal aliens. You're slipping there.

A job well done, I say. I'd like to buy him a beer. 2 less pieces of human debris.

And in fact, he didn't shoot until after confronting him they advanced on him - on his property - and the single one shot in the back was trying to draw his own weapon.

He was not indicted for two 100% pre-meditated murders ( the idiot is on tape)-- because the people he murdered ( illegal aliens, minorities, criminals) had no "value" to many members of society .

The right answer is "Criminals." And yes, they are of less value.

And he wasn't indicted because it wasn't murder. Texas law allows people to use deadly force to protect themselves if it is reasonable to believe they are in mortal danger or to protect their property. Similarly people also can use deadly force to protect their neighbor's property; for example, if a homeowner asks a neighbor to watch over his property while he's out of town.

Its precisely in these type of cases --- victims that can be dehumanized and therefore crimes against them can be easily rationalized-- that the law should be most vigilant.

Sgt. Joseph Chavalia and Mr. Joe Horn were investigated most thoroughly. Sgt. Joseph Chavalia was tried, and Mr Horn faced a Grand jury.

The law was vigilant. You have your knickers in a knot because they weren't the Kangaroo Courts you libtards are so enamored of, rubber-stamping your preconcieved verdicts.

Gonz

8:54 PM, August 18, 2008  
Blogger Sean said...

Could you borderline retards please understand that the free speech our founding fathers fought for was speech FREE FROM GOVERNMENTAL INTERFERENCE. Fucking idiots.

9:22 PM, August 18, 2008  
Blogger Brendan said...

For the record, Amy Alkon deleted a comment of mine that did one thing: pointed out an error in fact in a comment that she had made about me.

So, it's not just differing opinion that she can't tolerate (I was banned for doing that). Apparently, just attempting to set the record straight is the same thing as being a "tiny little fascist" in her mind.

9:41 PM, August 18, 2008  
Blogger Marquis said...

Pete, or Gonz, or whoever -- the shooter was charged with misdemeanors and was acquitted, ostensibly because the thirty-year veteran of SWAT action mistakenly thought the shots fired were from above him rather than from below (the other officer present a few feet away did not experience that confusion). Shooter admits he did not identify his target before engaging with automatic fire. Think about that: someone kicks down the door of someone who is not even a suspect in a criminal case, much less a violent one, knowing there are children in the house, shoots the mother to death, maims an infant, and is charged with a misdemeanor. And acquitted.
Why? Because they needed so urgently to get a guy who sold drugs? Who had sold drugs on at least two separate occasions to informers/narcs?

Whatever; I guess you think the baby had it coming, too. If you were a man I'd probably want to hit you.

9:59 PM, August 18, 2008  
Blogger Marquis said...

Sean, the Constitution's provisions regarding free speech are about government interference and there's nothing illegal or unconstitutional about deleting blog comments or banning commenters, any more than newspapers are required to publish every crackpot's letters as Op-Eds. We've also all been on the internet long enough to know that 1NCR3a5e Ur p3N15 S1Z3 type comments and Mikheil Saakashvili Gay Scandal attacks are an unfortunate price of the free interchange of ideas, and continually updating the software you use to automatically remove that sort of rubbish is very worthwhile.
The thing is when someone is deleting comments because their ox is being gored while at the same time saying "ooh, look at me, I'm such a wonderful free speech advocate because I am politically incorrect". It's a load of baloney to be in favor of free speech for views you like. Goebbels was in favor of free speech for views he liked. So was Stalin. If you're in favor of free speech, then you're in favor of freedom of speech precisely for views you despise. Otherwise, you're not in favor of free speech.

And again, it's legal and constitutional for a private person to exercise control over the content of speech appears on their blog, website, newspaper, zine, documentary, etc. But it's really asinine to do that while claiming to be a free speech advocate.

10:08 PM, August 18, 2008  
Blogger Marquis said...

Pete, why do you say "you left out that they were also illegal aliens" and then actually quote the guy saying that they were illegal aliens?

I mean, aside from the fact that illegal aliens are not actually "outlaws" in the tenth century Norse sense, it makes you look like a functional illiterate.

10:12 PM, August 18, 2008  
Blogger Job said...

Marquis said "Someone was mean to her so now all progressives are thugs."

Not now. You have been for a long while. As long as I can remember.

And not all progressives are thugs. Just a grossly disproportionate number of you.

11:04 PM, August 18, 2008  
Blogger Allen said...

Good grief has everyone forgotten polite discourse? It goes something like this:

Whomever, I take extreme issue on your views on this matter. In fact here is why I disagree with you:

1.
2.
3.

Even if I don't agree with your contentions, or more importantly the blogger, the well done counter arguments actually enhance a blog.

11:55 PM, August 18, 2008  
Blogger lovemelikeareptile said...

Pete

You poor ignorant slut*

You are such a pathetic arm-waving yahoo, you hardly warrant a response. You give a bad name to responsible conservatism-- because you are the mindless redneck we all get smeared with.

The Texas case was premediated murder-- but I am not going to waste my time arguing the law or the facts with someone who makes Jethro Bodine look like a rocket scientist and Paris Hilton look like a moral philosopher.


* reference is to SNL skit with Dan Akyord and Jane Curtin, circa 1976.

12:11 AM, August 19, 2008  
Blogger Joe Max said...

Here's the thing, lovemelikeareptile...

To paraphrase Mr. Job, "And not all conservatives are thugs like Pete. Just a grossly disproportionate number of you."

The problem is that you depend on them for electoral majorities. Without them, you lose. You know it. That's why Republican politicians pander to them.

The difference is, on an equally tempered scale, the ideological equivalent to Pete on the extreme Left is like, say, Earth First tree spikers, dead-end Revolutionary Communist Party hacks, or Nation of Islam bowtie goons. These groups, even taken together, hardly constitute a significant voting block to exploit. So the "mainstream" progressive Left certainly doesn't pander to them, or need to. You think Pelosi is the darling of the hard Left? Hardly.

But even smart conservatives, who should know better, pander to bucketheads like Pete as a matter of political survival. There's just so damn many of them, and they're easily manipulated and exploited. You need these useful idiots to maintain electoral power. Keep 'em stupid, frenzied and voting for Republicans, that's the ticket.

Well, your prescription for political dominance turned out to be pretty pathetic at actually running a country. As my favorite conservative writer, P.J. O'Rourke put it, Republicans are the party that tells you that government doesn't work, then they get elected and prove it.

I'm hoping that the Republican Party gets it's ass kicked hard in November, so they'll have the chance to dump the idiocracy and get back to being the party or Lincoln, or at least the party of Teddy Roosevelt.

Oh, and Pete? You're a tool. You're being used, man. Doesn't that ever bother you?

2:12 AM, August 19, 2008  
Blogger zuzu said...

Lurker here, but couldn't resist responding to Pete/Gonz's entertaining comments.

***


The only relevant question is how does the state and its agents justify breaking into her home and shooting her dead-- unarmed and, apparently, not charged with any crime.

In fact he was charged and just ACQUITTED.



Uhm, Pete/Gonz, she is not describing the police officer. Or did you imagine he could be described as also "unarmed"?


When you have the actual facts, you don't look like such a moron.

Glass houses and all that, old boy.

-----------------


Well, since you'va laready proven yourself short on facts....

Her boyfriend was manufacturing Meth - and she had her kids in there. (Mother of the year!)

Pit bulls got turned onto the cops duing the raid.

He was apparentl;y using them as human shields - and I have to say, looks like she was using her one baby the same way.



Well no, Pete/Gonz. She was not "there." She was in her own house. That's in the newspaper piece YOU posted.

She was in her bedroom with her six children. How can you use your children as a shield when you're hiding them?

5:27 AM, August 19, 2008  
Blogger Pete said...

Check again, Zuzu.

And Marquis, et al....

Difference is, I think this of anyone, regardless of color, etc.

The minute your kind find out that they were white, employed, attend church on occasion, or (gasp!) voted Republican, your tune changes to "Got what they deserved."

5:48 AM, August 19, 2008  
Blogger Helen said...

To all,

Every time "Sadly No" types come here, the discourse disintegrates. Please refrain from responding to these pests so that I do not have to moderate comments.

7:37 AM, August 19, 2008  
Blogger Platismatia said...

It must suck to be so wrong so often.

8:20 AM, August 19, 2008  
Blogger Locomotive Breath said...

Ironically, plenty of the lefty types continued to blame the Duke Lacrosse team for the fact that three members were nearly sent to prison on a false rape charge solely on the basis that if only they hadn't had that stripper party they wouldn't have had a problem. [Stripper parties are not illegal BTW.] This is even after the whole thing was way over and the facts were known.

More than a few right wingers passed the same judgement.

I guess it's all whose ox is getting gored.

9:03 AM, August 19, 2008  
Blogger ignatov said...

I think the Sadlynauts have been quite reasonable, at least in this thread.

10:53 AM, August 19, 2008  
Blogger Oligonicella said...

General statement. I have no great like for Amy. I find her views on religion obnoxious and have had heated exchanges with her about it. That said, I am not barred from her site. Hmmm.

10:56 AM, August 19, 2008  
Blogger Jonathan said...

The nature of Alkon's opinions is irrelevant to this discussion. On her blog she has the right to express opinions, ban commenters, etc. If readers don't like what she says they will go elsewhere and she will eventually lose her audience. In fact it's obvious from her high traffic, and from the numerous comments her posts receive, that many people like what she says.

The question is why so many of the "Sadly, No!" crowd think it's a good idea to swarm Alkon's blog comments in ways that impose large time costs on Alkon and discourage regular commenters from participating. As the SN commenters enjoy making personal attacks, it appears that their goal is not persuasion but rather to shut down expressions of opinion that they disagree with. When called on it, they attempt to justify themselves by accusing Alkon of holding wrong opinions or of deleting their comments or of engaging in other behaviors (on her own blog) that they assert are impermissible.

Why are SN readers unable to tolerate opinions that they disagree with?

1:28 PM, August 19, 2008  
Blogger TMink said...

I think what Amy did was criticize the woman and on page 142 of the the socialist handbook it says something to the effect of it is not their fault and anyone who says that anything is the poor's fault is an oppressor who should be lined up and shot.

Amy had the good sense to castigate a single woman with 6 kids who likes to shack up with drug dealers. Does that make her accidental death OK, no, does it flesh out the picture from the "crime against the poor" approach of socialism, you betcha!

I was raised hearing "Don't hang around with the bad kids, if they get arrested and you are there you will be arrested too." It stuck with me, and I appreciate that information as wisdom. But socialist thought does not entertain the possibility that poverty (in many cases)is the result of choices not oppression. So it makes perfect sense to me why Amy wrote what she wrote and got the response that she did.

And secondly, Bette Midler dreams of being as attractive as Amy in that photo.

Trey

2:28 PM, August 19, 2008  
Blogger TMink said...

Locomotive breath, thanks for the link to the Ann Coulter article. I agree with every word she said.

It is funny, I find her a little obnoxious and over the top when I hear or see her, but in print she is less insulting. Well, at least to my way of reading.

Trey

2:33 PM, August 19, 2008  
Blogger Marquis said...


Difference is, I think this of anyone, regardless of color, etc.

The minute your kind find out that they were white, employed, attend church on occasion, or (gasp!) voted Republican, your tune changes to "Got what they deserved."


Pete, that's a terrible thing to say. I don't think that way, and I can't think of a time when I read about someone being killed in a no-knock raid and thought "oh, good, that bastard".

Not when the 92-year-old woman was gunned down in her home and the cops planted bags of marijuana(!), not when it's a wrong address, hell, not when they shoot a real drug dealer.

You do raise a good point, perhaps inadvertently -- being a gainfully employed churchgoing white republican will not protect you if, due to an all-too-common error on the part of the police, you awake to a gang of armed men bursting into your home and shouting orders. If you try to defend yourself or your family, that's apparently good enough reason for them to shoot you and get away with it. If you don't, and one of them gets spooked or something, well, it's unfortunate but everyone really thought you were holding something that looked gun-like.

4:59 PM, August 19, 2008  
Blogger Casey said...

A point to consider for those who complained that Amy deleted allegedly reasonable posts along with the garbage: it is fairly self-evident from Ms. Alkon's comments that at least some of the tricks used related to IP banning. So if the same IP was used -not necessarily by the same person- all related comments would be deleted. One may ban ranges of IP addresses as well.

Just sayin...

5:04 PM, August 19, 2008  
Blogger Marquis said...

The question is why so many of the "Sadly, No!" crowd think it's a good idea to swarm Alkon's blog comments in ways that impose large time costs on Alkon and discourage regular commenters from participating. ...it appears that their goal is not persuasion but rather to shut down expressions of opinion that they disagree with.

Wait, she has to spend a lot of time deleting comments? That's pretty unfair. You've convinced me that it's really just like the fascists, just like Francis said at the beginning with the way truckloads of Fascists would drive around and hand out pamphlets, and people had to spend so much of their time ignoring or throwing away the pamphlets that they couldn't express their own thoughts. In Spain, they shut down Loyalist newspapers by writing so many letters to the editor that it was impossible to function.

Or wait, no, those are ridiculous things to say.

5:09 PM, August 19, 2008  
Blogger Marquis said...

So if the same IP was used -not necessarily by the same person- all related comments would be deleted.

Not really; I posted some stuff over there that was deleted and some that wasn't, under the same name (not this one), from the same machine. Some of it was really over-the-top racist bile, which I wrote in a misguided attempt at parody. That didn't get deleted, but when I wrote "s#1t moat" some of my *other* comments were deleted and my IP was banned.

5:15 PM, August 19, 2008  
Blogger Pete said...

To all,

Every time "Sadly No" types come here, the discourse disintegrates. Please refrain from responding to these pests so that I do not have to moderate comments.


Gotcha, Doc.

When the descend to far into illogic and start being obtuse, then comes the time to just munch popcorn and be entertained by it.

5:22 PM, August 19, 2008  
Blogger br549 said...

What's up marquis? You've been here two days now. What's really bugging you, bunky?

Liberals travel here from time to time in groups. As if it is your assignment for the week or something. They get tired, and the next rotation arrives on que.

Oh, and trust me, Obama won't win. You forget the Clintons. Hillary has been way too quiet. Expect her to leap in and screw it up for Obama at the last minute. If she can't win, he's not going to either. She wants to divide and conquer her own party, and come back next cycle as the saving grace. It's about her, not the party. Politics is all she and Billy have. She has been setting the pins for 2012 since Obama rose to the surface.

5:29 PM, August 19, 2008  
Blogger Marquis said...

What's up? Not much, really. I get an email whenever someone posts a comment, and often I feel like saying something back.

And Dr. Helen, to her credit, has not decided to delete or ban reasonably civil comments that she or her regulars may disagree with. So far the discourse hasn't disintegrated, despite all predictions.

5:54 PM, August 19, 2008  
Blogger JG said...

"Oh, and trust me, Obama won't win"

-------

I think he probably will. And I'm not a left-winger and would never vote for him. But I think he's going to win. Sometimes I think that's what America needs - a great big dose of left-wing Obama. It's just like Jimmy Carter's inept handling of just about everything paving the way for Ronald Reagan.

It will be easy to come back and check this thread again in November.

6:01 PM, August 19, 2008  
Blogger JG said...

With regard to the Sadly, No! crew:

I don't know why this association sprang into my mind, but when I was in junior high, there was a kid in my class named Geoff (kind of like Jeff, I guess). He had braces and was thin and kind of pasty-white in terms of complexion.

He would mock other people and when he got some aggression back would then look scared, run to a teacher or other adult and say that he had been aggressioned-against FOR NO REASON AT ALL. After the teacher defused the situation, Geoff would go right back to the constant mocking. Over and over.

I have no idea why the Sadly, No! crew reminds me of that.

6:05 PM, August 19, 2008  
Blogger Oligonicella said...

Handing out pamphlets to individuals is far different than dumping a truck load of them on one person's doorstep.

6:05 PM, August 19, 2008  
Blogger Marquis said...

Mantis: It's a blog. It has a comments section. People post comments to it. Bloggers who don't want comments, or who don't want anonymous comments, can easily restrict them. Is the internet a new thing to you? There is literally nowhere else where the moderator has so much control over the discussion with so little effort required. To continue my pamphlet analogy (if it were serious), the blog owner can make the unwanted pamphlets vanish and never receive them again at the push of a button.

JeffG: It's funny, but that aptly describes many supposed adults who are habitual controversy-seekers. Someone might say "oh, people are bombarding me with comments in which they disagree with things I've said -- I'm being silenced!"

In fact, she (or he) might later decide they are not "people" and are instead "thugs". As in "I don't ban people; I ban thugs".

6:25 PM, August 19, 2008  
Blogger JG said...

I don't know, Marquis, anyone who says "soi-disant" is probably a communist or some kind of French guy. I'll bet that phrase gets chicks, though.

6:29 PM, August 19, 2008  
Blogger Marquis said...

Like you wouldn't believe, jg, like you wouldn't believe.

6:35 PM, August 19, 2008  
Blogger br549 said...

"What's up? Not much, really. I get an e-mail whenever someone posts a comment, and often I feel like saying something back."

I love it when I'm right.

So who's on rotation this week?

6:38 PM, August 19, 2008  
Blogger Sarah said...

I'm the Sarah that Amy attacked early on in her post. The reason she banned me was because I pasted a full definition of the word "prejudice" that I copied off freedictionary.com, which just happened to be the first thing that popped up on google. Apparently that definition did not include something that another source did, and for that Amy accused me of being dishonest and banned me. I was never uncivil, never insulting. However, Amy did attack me as being a moron, dim, and belittled me by called me "kitten". Now, trust me, I've been a junior high teacher, so I've been called much worse, so it wasn't like my feelings were hurt. But the point is, Amy couldn't handle some civil disagreement with her, and had to resort first to insults and then to outright banning. So if Dr Helen can somehow both defend Amy banning me and still stand up for free speech, I'd love to see how she does it.

8:45 PM, August 19, 2008  
Blogger Marquis said...

Most people are in favor of free speech that they agree with. There's nothing really wrong with that, but it doesn't make someone a free speech advocate. It's a patently fatuous pose that's actually quite difficult to maintain when you don't control the flow of communication. Fortunately for her, some people and/or bots have vandalized her wikipedia page and spammed her site with some sort of halfassed buffer overrun attempt, which enables her to go into full-on martyr mode, invoke the hallowed Founding Fathers, and post all over the internet that she's being silenced.

9:16 PM, August 19, 2008  
Blogger Oligonicella said...

Second tier nobility --

Been working with computers pre-PC, but drop into ad hominem when you can't really discuss.

My analogy stands, the sheer volume takes time to deal with, not "the push of a button" unless you simply turn off all commentary. But, you know that. I'm sure you understand the chess parable.

10:17 PM, August 19, 2008  
Blogger Marquis de Chocula said...

Sorry if that came across as ad hominem -- I was just pointing out that spam is hardly a new thing. With your history, then, you are no doubt aware that computers have come a long way since the punch card days. It's a trivial thing to disallow anonymous comments, employ a spam filter, or any of the other remedies available (you'll note that this blog, for example, is not flooded with seemingly-random characters). There's free software like Akismet. Maybe it's not actually *zero* effort, but hey, it's part of being a blogger. Plus it takes a lot less time and effort than writing reams about how oppressed it makes you feel. But it's probably not as ego-gratifying.

Is the "chess parable" you refer to the one where the checkers-player whines to a bunch of people about how the chess club is being mean to him and silencing him and they're fascists? It's a nice story, but people tend to cast themselves as the virtuous victim when using such analogies.

10:49 PM, August 19, 2008  
Blogger Locomotive Breath said...

Trey - you are off base and so was Coulter. Her column as written early on. And she changed her tune right quick.

Nifong was supposed to look like Gregory Peck — not like Bob Wexler! But it's the lacrosse players who look like Gregory Peck.

Second-rate liberals who went to mediocre schools and married mediocre women are burning with jealousy from their nondescript, mediocre jobs. So they use their government jobs to attack their betters and sneer about the players' "daddies."

Like so much injustice in America, this whole sick spectacle was the revenge of the mediocre against the successful. Stupid and envious is a bad combo platter.


My point was that the left thinks it's OK to persecute the hell out of "privileged white male athletes" for minor youthful indiscretions, even if they are completely innocent of the crime of which they are accused, but if you criticize a woman who has baby after baby by man after man and she can't support the kids you're in trouble for criticizing her behavior.

In neither case were the actions of law enforcement a predictable outcome, but if you're hanging around crack-heads it's a lot more predictable that you'll be having negative interactions with the cops. 'Cause, like, you're hanging with people who are actually breaking the law.

8:28 AM, August 20, 2008  
Blogger TMink said...

Locomotive, I am not sure where we disagree! Frankly, I wish I had written the last paragraph of your post at 8:28 a.m. That is good stuff and well said. Perhaps I did not write so well and those words do not mean what I think they mean.

Trey

9:27 AM, August 20, 2008  
Blogger TMink said...

Locomotive, I am not sure where we disagree! Frankly, I wish I had written the last paragraph of your post at 8:28 a.m. That is good stuff and well said. Perhaps I did not write so well and those words do not mean what I think they mean.

Trey

9:27 AM, August 20, 2008  
Blogger Rob Fedders said...

I think many people have the wrong idea of what "Free Speech" is supposed to be.

Many think that Free Speech means that any moron ought to be allowed to spew any drivel they want, wherever they want, anytime they want.

Bloggers, newspapers, magazines etc. are not obligated to provide countless dimwits with a pulpit, although, it is generally considered good form to allow criticism of one's work - because it lends credibility to the author as an honest and reasonable person.

What is meant by the "Right to Free Speech" is that anyone is allowed to start up their own blog and start saying whatever they wish. The same thing applied to the times of the Founding Fathers. Newspapers were not obligated to give every citizen a venue to voice their opinion, but, every citizen had the right to set up a printing press in his carriage house, and start distributing his own newsletter to compete with the major newspapers.

In this way, society gets exposed to many differing ideas, all competing with eachother. If someone has good ideas and is a decent writer, then more and more people will read them and society will become influenced by said ideas. If someone is an absolute moron and writes pure crap, then his little newsletter will only reach other morons, and his ideas will not reach anyone and soon will be swept away in the gutters of history.

If someone wants to truly complain about free speech, they ought to investigate whether major media outlets are suppressing the rise of competing ideas by heavy handed tactics typical of monopolies. In Canada, there are only two companies that own all of the major media outlets. In the USA, I believe there are five companies. This is counterproductive to what the Founding Fathers intended with free speech, as major media outlets often actively use their power to crowd competitors out of the marketplace. The media is mandated to be a part of the political system, and ought to be criticizing, questioning, and investigating everything that our corrupt politicians are saying, so that the people are properly informed. They have been failing us miserably (and purposefully).

The real threat to free speech is not some blogger moderating/filtering comments. If you don't like it, start your own blog - they are free and easy to start. The threat to free speech comes from asshats like Nancy Pelosi who's first order of business after being promoted to Grand Puba, was to try to regulate the internet so that it would be more difficult for us little peanuts to start our own blogs. Another threat to free speech is ISP's desire to have certain websites rise in relevance over others - thereby removing the level playing field that currently exists on the web.

10:36 AM, August 20, 2008  
Blogger Locomotive Breath said...

Trey, I interpreted your original post as agreeing with Colter's original assessment that the Duke lacrosse team deserved what happened to them because they had done something immoral. If I misunderstood, I apologize.

While Colter did change her mind, and said so publicly, organizations like the NC NAACP were cheerleaders for the false prosecution all the way to the end.

But we digress.

11:14 AM, August 20, 2008  
Blogger Oligonicella said...

marquis --

Back to ad hominem, although aimed at the parable reference. No, it's about the one, two, four.... grains of wheat on the board. I'm sure you have a good idea how large 2^64 is.

I started in IT when punch cards were the input standard, so I have an intimate understanding of the processes involved. Even with tools, it takes an inordinate amount of time to not do a blanket purge, which is exactly the idea behind flooding a comment board.

But, that's a well known thing. It is not as simple as you are trying to portray. Task-wise, yes. Time-wise, no.

11:41 AM, August 20, 2008  
Blogger Marquis de Chocula said...

Many think that Free Speech means that any moron ought to be allowed to spew any drivel they want, wherever they want, anytime they want.

Agreed. Many also think that when others call them a moron or say that what they write is drivel, that they are being "silenced". This is, to put it nicely, ridiculous.

Again, I am not saying that there's anything illegal or unconstitutional about moderating comments. particularly when those "comments" are spam, or obscene, or irrelevant auto-generated garbage text, or particularly when they're crude hack attempts, moderating them is perfectly reasonable. In fact, I have even agreed that a blogger is allowed to delete comments solely because of their point of view.

I just don't think it's reasonable to do that last one and to claim you're a free speech advocate. It's one or the other.

I also agree with you about Big Media (although they're becoming less and less relevant every year), in that they are highly consolidated and that they restrict rather than promote the exchange of ideas. However, I don't see restrictions on speech as a problem that's going to be made worse by Nancy Pelosi in particular. As an example, when Bush took office with a Republican majority in the House, the right to free speech was not expanded: the practice of setting up so-called "free speech zones" at (or rather, distant from) political events became more prevalent.

1:15 PM, August 20, 2008  
Blogger Marquis de Chocula said...

Back to ad hominem, although aimed at the parable reference.

I believe you are using the term ad hominem somewhat inaccurately -- I merely intended to say that the story fits just as well with the characters switched around (although I was, of course, mistaken about the chess reference).

No, it's about the one, two, four.... grains of wheat on the board. I'm sure you have a good idea how large 2^64 is.

Pretty darn big, yeah. I guess I don't get how that's relevant -- it's not like individually written blog comments are of exponential complexity. The closest I could see to that would be if everyone who takes offense at a blog post not only commented on it, but also persuaded some friends to do the same, and for those friends to recruit others.

And frankly, if that were to happen it would basically be no different from a petition.

1:26 PM, August 20, 2008  
Blogger Marquis de Chocula said...

asshats like Nancy Pelosi who's first order of business after being promoted to Grand Puba, was to try to regulate the internet so that it would be more difficult for us little peanuts to start our own blogs. Another threat to free speech is ISP's desire to have certain websites rise in relevance over others - thereby removing the level playing field that currently exists on the web.

I must be missing something here, because to me it sounds like you're saying that network neutrality is a threat to free speech, *and* that opposition to network neutrality is a threat to free speech as well.

1:29 PM, August 20, 2008  
Blogger Marquis de Chocula said...


My point was that the left thinks it's OK to persecute the hell out of "privileged white male athletes" for minor youthful indiscretions, even if they are completely innocent of the crime of which they are accused, but if you criticize a woman who has baby after baby by man after man and she can't support the kids you're in trouble for criticizing her behavior.


Two things:

First, it's really unfortunate that the kids at Duke were falsely accused and that they had their lives disrupted and reputations sullied in that way. A lot of people are too quick to fit news into their particular narratives of how they think the world works, and this is particularly a problem when it causes people to be treated unjustly. That said, having your good name dragged through the mud is nothing, nothing, compared to being shot to death in your own home by the police. The prosecutor in the Duke case acted improperly and illegally; as a result was disbarred and is the defendant in a lawsuit (which he will probably lose -- he's tried to declare bankruptcy to get out of it), and hey, serves him right based on what I know. We don't know how the Wilson case will turn out - so far, the shooter was charged with misdemeanor manslaughter and was acquitted; the family might be able to bring a civil suit against the cop who shot Tarika Wilson (or maybe against the police department or the city, for allowing a no-knock SWAT raid to get a nonviolent offender in a house with six young children in it).

Second, Ms Alkon was not simply relating the common-sense advice that, you know, getting impregnated by a number of different men who (according to the mother) are drug dealers is a bad idea. She characterized the slain woman's children as a "litter" and explicitly said that Tarika Wilson placed a lower value on black lives (specifically, her own and her children's) than did the police who, as we know, carried out a no-knock SWAT raid to get a nonviolent offender in a house with six young children in it, which resulted in a maimed black orphan and a dead black mother.

1:47 PM, August 20, 2008  
Blogger Locomotive Breath said...

Sounds like you were paying enough attention to know the facts of the Duke lacrosse rape hoax. That's actually pretty rare. Good on you.

All right, let's take a not hypothetical where someone does what Wilson did but does NOT get shot in a police raid. It's so common it's not remarkable. The only reason we're here is because this particular woman was shot.

Someone, let's say someone with some standing like Bill Cosby, lectures her on her life choices and lack of respect for her kids and the problems she's guaranteed to be causing them in the future. Never mind the problems she's causing for the black community or society as a whole.

We already know what happens. He gets called an "Uncle Tom".

I have to agree that "litter" is a pretty apt description for kids routinely borne by a woman (I won't say mother) who has no intention or ability to properly care for them. That's a slam on the woman and not the kids.

Unless you think the cops shot Wilson on purpose because "she's black and expendable", how could you think more lowly of someone than to bring them into this world with no intention of properly caring for them. In this criticism I include the so-called fathers.

2:14 PM, August 20, 2008  
Blogger Marquis de Chocula said...

Yes, it's perfectly reasonable to say "don't have kids you can't take care of" (though we don't really know how the kids were doing, how much Wilson's extended family were supporting them, if any of the fathers were non-dedbeats, and so on, so it may be a bit much to say that's what she was doing. But in a general sense, it should be perfectly uncontroversial common sense advice). I don't agree, though, that "litter" is an apt description for human beings -- first off it's inaccurate: a litter is multiple births like the fictional Shelbyville Nine, not a large family like the Duggars). But more to the point, it's an inherently dehumanizing term, and it was used as such. Alkon defends it by saying she also once described a "litter" of Catholics (apparently viewing them as somewhat less than human too), and is shocked, shocked that someone might suggest her choice of words was at all racist, inhumane or condescending. And, predictably, that we're the "real" racists for defending the right of poor black people to make bad choices without being shot to death in their homes by the police.

Did the cop shoot Wilson because she was "black and expendable"? I don't think so -- from the description of the trial he shot her because he thought the gunfire downstairs (of his fellow officers shooting dogs) was coming from the room ahead of him, at which time the armored 30-year veteran of SWAT action, fearing for his life, sprayed unaimed automatic gunfire into the room.

But you know, well before all the confusion and adrenaline and flash-bangs, the cops made a decision to escalate the situation: to serve a warrant using shock and awe type tactics knowing that six children under the age of ten lived in that house. I suppose that should be a tough decision to make, where you decide to put those children at risk because there's a truly awful risk from your target -- an actual hostage situation, perhaps, or the fictional "ticking time bomb" scenario. What was the risk in this case? That Anthony Terry was going to destroy evidence? After seven recorded drug deals with police informants? So according to the police in Lima, endangering a woman and six children is an acceptable risk if it makes your police work easier? I would say that qualifies as thinking of people as expendable, yes.

Possibly not solely because they're black, rather because they're associated with a felon, but still: expendable. People. Um.

So yeah, a lot of people took issue with Bill Cosby. It's a controversial topic, race and personal responsibility, and looking again at his speech I see a lot of places where he says a basically reasonable thing (don't shoplift) in a rather unreasonable way (it's okay for the cops to shoot a shoplifter in the head). He's a great comic, and a crotchety old man at the same time, and he's seen a lot of terrible things happen. He knows there are a lot of reasons for poverty and crime (he discusses it more eloquently in his book "Come on, People") and that poor black people and poor people in general (and really, everyone) need to take responsibility and make better choices and take care of their kids. But as long violence perpetrated by militarized police is excused by the volatility of the situation that they themselves created, innocent people are going to continue to be killed by the very organization that is supposed to protect us.

3:08 PM, August 20, 2008  
Blogger br549 said...

One of our reps from the northwest went to the first Workboat show presented in New Orleans after Katrina. He was walking back to his hotel after a dinner, and two guys jumped out of an alley (French Quarter) and beat him to death with clubs, in the open, and took his wallet.

We live in a dangerous, sometimes crazy world.

7:41 PM, August 20, 2008  
Blogger Oligonicella said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

7:48 PM, August 20, 2008  
Blogger Oligonicella said...

"I believe..."

Don't condescend. It was a metaphor. I believe you understood what I was meaning because you concocted a fake parable twisted a specific way in response.

"I guess I don't get how that's relevant -- it's not like individually written blog comments are of exponential complexity."

Pedantry won't work. Exponential no, but each one requires a modicum of time and that is the intent of the flooders -- consuming her time as a form of punishment.

BR549 -- It has always been thus. People have forgotten.

7:49 PM, August 20, 2008  
Blogger Marquis de Chocula said...

"I believe..."

Don't condescend.


I beg your pardon.

It was a metaphor. I believe you understood what I was meaning because you concocted a fake parable twisted a specific way in response.


Actually I didn't know what you were talking about; I googled for a chess parable and found two: (1) that the rulses of chess take very little time to learn, yet you can learn more your whole life, and (2) a story "The Parable of the Chess Club", which appears in an online magazine for Mormons. In that story, a guy joins a university chess club, decides he likes checkers better, and then uses politics and public opinion to force the chess club into becoming (gasp) a checkers club, with him as its leader.

I had never heard of this story before and thought it actually would make a good metaphor, if the SN readers had been trying to turn Amy Alkon's blog into a lefty snark website. I have a different perspective.


"I guess I don't get how that's relevant -- it's not like individually written blog comments are of exponential complexity."

Pedantry won't work. Exponential no, but each one requires a modicum of time and that is the intent of the flooders -- consuming her time as a form of punishment.


I'm not being pedantic, or at least not on purpose. I truly did not understand your chessboard allusion, until you explained it later as powers of two. I don't see how that's my fault: if your short metaphorical statements are unclear, you're not being pithy, just unclear.

"Every snowflake in an avalanche pleads not guilty" would probably fit.

But again, while I don't speak for SN, my intent in posting to her site has not been to "punish" her by making her deal with a "flood". It has simply been to argue that her argument is wrong, and her choice of words dehumanizing and racist. Some have decided to respond with unmanageable heaps of garbage text, which is obnoxious and counterproductive. The same sort of stuff shows up at SN quite frequently (I think the spam filter stops a lot of it, but comments that just attempt to argue show up all the time). I would ask that the obnoxiousness of these misguided individuals not be used to smear the other lefties.

BR549 -- It has always been thus. People have forgotten.

That is a terrible thing to happen.

8:37 PM, August 20, 2008  
Blogger Rob Fedders said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

9:16 PM, August 20, 2008  
Blogger Oligonicella said...

marquis --

You presented yourself on your first post as a voice of "what happened". I've reread your every post just now. In them, you defend SN cross commenter's actions and I don't find one where you alter the voice to not speaking for SN until now.

Your actions posting there may not, but their actions certainly were and you have been defending them and being condescending towards her for the time they've cost her.

In short, not clear at least.

9:14 AM, August 21, 2008  
Blogger Oligonicella said...

Oh. FYI, I normally drop threads after three days, so today's the last I'll check in on this one. I *never* have the e-mails sent for reasons similar to Amy's problem, I go to the site and check.

9:17 AM, August 21, 2008  
Blogger TMink said...

"though we don't really know how the kids were doing, how much Wilson's extended family were supporting them, if any of the fathers were non-dedbeats, and so on"

While I certainly do not have info as to how the kids are doing we can make a scientific estimate of how they are doing based on how many of the risk factors for having poor kids the mom engaged in. It is science!

6 kids, 5 dads. This is a predictor of poverty for the mom and the children. It is also a predictor for the boys being incarcerated.

Un-married mother with multiple children. This is a predictor of poverty for the mother and the children.

6 children. This is a predictor of poverty for the mother and the children (belive me, I have 4 and I know!)

She gave birth to her first child when she was 17 or 18. Mothers who give birth to children before age 25 tend to be poor and place their children in the same position.

Hanging out with drug dealing individuals. Her mother reports that the fathers of all her children were drug dealers. This one involves a bit more speculation, but people who use drugs tend to be poor. A stretch, I admit.

So this is why we scientifically predict that she and her children were poor.

I disagree with Ms. Alkon that this lady deserved to die. Her death was tragic. I agree with Ms. Alkon that this foolish woman hurt her children in many obvious and documented ways by her long history of irresponsibility. I agree with Ms. Alkon that it is time for abusive and irresponsible pregnancies to stop. It is KILLING the black community, and hardly anyone will say a word about it.

Trey

11:49 AM, August 21, 2008  
Blogger TMink said...

I found a comment posted by someone identifying themselves as from Lima, where this occured. It is informative, so I am posting it here.

"I live in Lima, lets look at the facts.
Tarika was with a guy who was involved in drugs. The police entered the house not knowing if weapons were present. Chavalia went upstairs were he saw someone that kept coming out of a door way. He could not see the person very well or what they were doing. Shots rang out and he felt threatened and returned fire.
The shots turned out to be officers downstairs shooting two pitbulls that were attacking.
Veteran SWAT officers at the trial said they would have taken the same action. One officers said the only thing he would have done differant is fire sooner.
The prosecution said it best. Chavalia saw a figure in the dark and could not see what that figure was doing. Was he suppose to wait till he was shot to return fire?
Tarika should have gone into the room and stayed until police got to her and her kids. Popping in and out of a door way, in the dark, while police were entering the house was not the smart thing to do.
Getting involved with a individual who was involved with drugs was also a dumb move.
Lets put the blame were it is due. With the boyfreind who decided to make a life with drugs instead of working like HONEST citizens.
This in not a race issue. It is a drug issue and the truth hurts. If there was no drug involvment this tragedy would not have happened."

Just a few facts to point us in the right direction.

Trey

12:43 PM, August 21, 2008  
Blogger Marquis de Chocula said...


While I certainly do not have info as to how the kids are doing we can make a scientific estimate of how they are doing based on how many of the risk factors for having poor kids the mom engaged in. It is science!

...

So this is why we scientifically predict that she and her children were poor.



This word, "science". You keep using that word. I do not think it means what you think it means.

We all figure they were poor. They lived in Lima OH, for crying out loud. But there's a hell of a lot of difference between being a kid with just a single mom (and mom's latest boyfriend visiting two days a week) and being a kid with a single mom, uncles and grandparents.

The point is, unless you know the facts about her life, rather
than extrapolating from figures, then you're not being "scientific". It's very easy to point to where someone's situation is on a graph of income vs. mortality, or whatever sort of thing, and say that based on some statistics you've decided are the important factor here, you're going to call a dead woman abusive and irresponsible for having children.

As I've said, nobody reading the internet needs to be told that it's a bad idea to have a lot of kids by a lot of presumably absentee fathers -- but that's not the point here, nor is it the point of Alkon's article. Her point was that a "black leader" in Lima said that the police don't value black lives, because they killed an unarmed black woman in her own home in order to nab some two-bit dealer, and the "Advice Goddess"'s response was that it was the dead woman herself, a woman who was taking care of five children, was not taking drugs, and was about to start taking college classes, who "didn't value black lives", specifically those of herself and her children.

That kind of unsolicited advice from a white suburbanite is tolerable when it's not actually in response so someone being killed in her own home, and when it's not phrased in a dehumanizing and racist way. If, as you say, you "disagree with Ms. Alkon that this lady deserved to die," perhaps it would be better to tell her that, rather than to defend the shopworn and pedestrian non-advice she used to say so.

1:10 PM, August 21, 2008  
Blogger Marquis de Chocula said...

Oligonicella says:

I don't find one where you alter the voice to not speaking for SN until now.

In my first post, the paragraph that starts with "4)":
"I don't speak for Sadly, No! but I do not believe that any of the regular writers or commenters there are malicious crackers."

I have never claimed to speak for SN. I'm simply sharing my own observations -- the tone is often crass, but the "targets" are always people who either are influential (politicians) or who claim to be, anyway (bloggers). People who, by the nature of their actions, invite comment. And in many cases, literally invite comment: Alkon's blog had an open comments section, she claimed numerous times that she invited all sorts of opinions and parody and whatnot -- if people took her at her word, can you blame them? Sadly, yes, apparently.

Now, there was definitely some maliciousness perpetrated by some miscreant(s). And I would guess that the person posting a zillion copy/pastes of the same couple of sentences was probably the same person who annoys SN with the same schtick. Likewise the automatic postmodernist text generator -- Ms Alkon chortled about how someone must have spent a great deal of time writing some pseudo-Marxist gibberish that took her all of six seconds to delete, but in fact that is probably not the case. But the point is that SN gets these, too, as well as some weird automated posts that just sort of quote the middle of a sentence and appear to exist solely as a way to slip in a link to another site. I don't really know where these come from, and they're usually a mild annoyance.

The apparent hack attempt, though, I take quite seriously. The "management" of SN certainly does not approve either, as they run a blog dedicated to snark, and winding up Amy as as entertaining as it is easy.

If I am condescending towards her for the time it's cost her (and I most certainly am), it's probably because I have a hard time being sympathetic to her so-called problems. Perhaps there's some sort of blog expert or internet guru she could turn to for some advice.

1:26 PM, August 21, 2008  
Blogger TMink said...

The chocolate one wrote: "then you're not being "scientific"."

It was a verbal regression analysis. I know I know, you are saying "But Trey, correlation is not causation." True, but if it looks like, walks like, swims like a duck and quacks, it is a duck!

Also, there is what her mother said about her as well as the post from someone who lived in Lima.

I am willing to bet I am right here, should we have a friendly wager?

Trey

1:46 PM, August 21, 2008  
Blogger TMink said...

I have to agree with Amy, the deceased did not value black lives. The evidence supports that.

Still has nothing to do with the fact that she did not deserve to die and that police SWAT teams are acidents and manslaughter waiting to happen though.

Trey

1:49 PM, August 21, 2008  
Blogger Marquis de Chocula said...

Thanks TMink, for that comment from someone who says they live in Lima. Interestingly, the Lima resident appears to know exactly as much about the case as there is in the news:

Tarika was with a guy who was involved in drugs.

The guy, Anthony Terry, was definitely involved in drugs. The Lima police knew this because they had recorded seven separate drug deals between Terry and police informants. They also knew how he could be contacted to sell drugs to them, and probably where he actually lived (he stayed at Wilson's house about two nights a week, according to the news). Yet they chose to go to Wilson's house on that evening.

The police entered the house not knowing if weapons were present.

The police did, however, know that children were present. This is from the testimony in court. With this information, they chose to break down the door and storm in.

[Chavalia] could not see the person very well or what they were doing. Shots rang out and he felt threatened and returned fire.

Sgt. Ron Holman, the officer who was next to Chavalia must have had a better spatial sense, as he testified that he did not think the shots were coming from anywhere downstairs. I think he also recognized the sound of M-4s set on single action, but whatever.

But sure, yeah, it was a highly volatile and potentially dangerous situation. You have to feel for those guys in their state-of-the-art ballistic armor, bursting into a house with kids in it with flash-bang grenades and automatic weapons, but the fact remains that it was the police who chose to go into Wilson's house. Tarika Wilson did not pick up her child and run into police headquarters barking orders. Nor did the police have reason to believe that this was (a) a hostage situation, (b) a heavily armed criminal or (c) a terrorist cell.

Simply put, the only way in which Anthony Terry was a "high risk warrant" was that there was a high risk of the SWAT team shooting a bystander.

Veteran SWAT officers at the trial said they would have taken the same action.

Yes, the guy who makes a living defending SWAT officers' actions as an expert witness defended the SWAT officer's actions. In other news, water is wet. Now here's Stormy Clouds with the Doppler Nine Zillion Accuweather forecast.

STORMY: Ninety percent chance of darkness tonight, which will probably let up some time around sunrise tomorrow.

Thanks, Stormy.

This in not a race issue. It is a drug issue and the truth hurts. If there was no drug involvment this tragedy would not have happened.

That's not true, either. If there was no War on Drugs involvement this tragedy would not have happened, maybe. If the police had decided to arrest the dealer somewhere other than his girlfriend's house (and really, haven't they heard "never sell no crack where you rest at" and "never keep no weight on you"?), it wouldn't have happened.
If the police weren't empowered to burst into someone else's home to serve a damn drug possession warrant -- I mean, they got the guy, and he's going to get what, five to seven? Wow, thank God they took that kingpin down. Hooray, friggin' Scarface is off the street and we can all rest easy, and all it cost was a dead woman and a maimed baby. And she'd already made some bad choices, so her life wasn't valued that much anyway, according to Ms Alkon.

2:24 PM, August 21, 2008  
Blogger Marquis de Chocula said...

I have to agree with Amy, the deceased did not value black lives. The evidence supports that.

Trey, I think that there's a very important difference between putting your kids at risk by making bad relationship choices or by being poor, and putting others' kids at risk by bursting into their home looking for a gunfight.

Plus, as a citizen in a representative democracy, I am pretty concerned about what the police are allowed to do ostensibly in my name, and I feel some responsibility for that. If the police know that they will be exhonerated because they were in "a dangerous situation" (never mind that it's a situation they engineered) this sort of thing will continue -- and it's not just poor people and drug dealers, either.

Do I want to bet with you that the slain woman was poor? A friendly wager that someone killed by a cop who was then acquitted of misdemeanor homicide was poor? I may be crass but I'm not a rube. Of course she was poor.

2:40 PM, August 21, 2008  
Blogger br549 said...

You win. See ya.

3:10 PM, August 21, 2008  
Blogger TMink said...

Count of chocolate wrote:

"Trey, I think that there's a very important difference between putting your kids at risk by making bad relationship choices or by being poor, and putting others' kids at risk by bursting into their home looking for a gunfight."

Me too. Having 6 kids in 8 years puts them at risk if you are middle class. Getting knocked up by antisocial dudes does too. Like you, I am no fan of police swat teams, but I think you are moving the goalposts!

"If the police know that they will be exhonerated because they were in "a dangerous situation" (never mind that it's a situation they engineered)"

Count, I think you are being disengenuous here. The police did not release the trained attack dogs! The criminal they were seeking did that. They figured he would as he had a history of resisting arrest.

I do some court work, about once a month or so, and the one thing I can tell you about court work is that nobody knows how things will turn out till they do. If the cops were acting all cavalier, depending on a jury to let them off, then these really were stupid cops!

Then about the "never keep no weight on you" rule, maybe dude rolled a fat one with that page of his criminal mastermind's rule book as I believe that they got a small quantity of drugs.

Where is the evidence that this was a racial incident? The usual suspects marching and huffing in Chicago is nothing like evidence much less proof. The cops did a swat raid, things went wrong as they are prone to do on those stupid things.

I honestly mourn her loss. But I just as honestly hope that 50 people decide to ditch their antisocial s.o. as a result of this cautionary tale. I would wish that this would lead to an elimination of popo swat raids, but I am not that optimistic.

If we are just left disagreeing that this was a racial incident, what makes you think it was racially motivated? Did the cops enter yelling racial epithets? Were they dressed in robes? Any burning crosses?

See, down here in the South, we know what a racial incident looks like. Sadly.

Trey

5:54 PM, August 21, 2008  
Blogger Oligonicella said...

marquis --

Hmm. You don't speak for them but defend their actions. At least it sure looks it to me. You've also written very extensively bashing Amy and supporting their actions for someone who doesn't speak for them. Nuance, perhaps.

By the way, snowflakes don't choose to join an avalanche. Bad analogy. More like "every member of the mob claims innocence", which wouldn't fly in court.

Perhaps I was reacting overmuch to "Goebbels was in favor of free speech for views he liked. So was Stalin. If you're in favor of free speech, then you're in favor of freedom of speech precisely for views you despise. Otherwise, you're not in favor of free speech.

And again, it's legal and constitutional for a private person to exercise control over the content of speech appears on their blog, website, newspaper, zine, documentary, etc. But it's really asinine to do that while claiming to be a free speech advocate.".

You know the rule about referring to Nazis, yet you equate her to a Nazi and a tyrant. You also know damned well you don't have to tolerate hostile speech in your home or on your blog. Neither asinine nor hypocritical.

7:58 PM, August 21, 2008  
Blogger Marquis de Chocula said...

While it's not in the South, Ohio certainly mas a history of racial incidents -- not just epithets shouted by random dumbasses, either: hundreds of lynchings, many reported on favorably (and even encouraged) by major newspapers. And as you know, one of the most chilling aspects of lynching is that the perpetrators (murderers, really) often acted in full view of the public -- no robes, no hoods, their faces visible in photographs that they posed for.

Because they knew they would probably not be charged, and would almost certainly not be convicted.

But that was over a century ago, and things are no doubt different now. But they're not as different as we might like to think -- according to residents of Lima and to statistics, the (mostly white) police treat black people pretty badly, harassing and often threatening them. Because they are black? Who knows? Because they are breaking the law? Well, no. It's religious and business leaders.

I suspect very strongly that race had a role in the acquittal by an all-white jury of a white policeman who shot a black (or biracial) woman and her child. I don't bring up lynching to say that Tarika Wilson was lynched. I don't think the military-style raid on her house was motivated by the color of her skin, or of Anthony Terry's skin. I do think, though, that the police, in situations where they are considering a no-knock SWAT team entry, know they will probably not be charged, and will almost certainly not be convicted if, during the course of smashing into a home with their guns at the ready, they mistakenly shoot someone.

And when that person -- be they black or white, an unemployed crack dealer or a 92-year old grandma or your town's mayor -- is shot, the police will say it was a tragic and unavoidable mistake, another isolated incident, and the jury will shake their heads sadly and say "well the officer was in fear of his life, I'm sure I'd have done the same". Well, it's a hell of isolated incidents now, and it's a hell of a lot of police departments choosing to serve warrants in a way that brings this on.

8:04 PM, August 21, 2008  
Blogger Marquis de Chocula said...

Oligo -- I defend their actions because I agree with their actions (more accurately, I defend some of the actions; I don't agree with the apparent hack attempt, if that was done for personal/political spite). I don't think, for example, "Gonz" speaks for the police, but he defends their actions.

The "every snowflake" thing is an expression. You can look it up; it means what I used it to mean.

The only "rule" about referring to Nazis is Godwin's rule, which simply states that as a discussion goes on, the probability that someone will mention Hitler/Nazis/fascism approaches 1. Many people feel that at this indicates there's no more substantive discussion, or, somewhat more ridiculously, that the first person to do this "loses". Orwell had a very good argument that people throw around the term "fascist" to mean anything they don't like.

I submit then, that you should consider Francis W. Porretto's comment at the beginning of the thread (I'll wait). Okay, so does that get your ire up too? Actually, come to think of it, take a look at Alkon's posts, both the one linked to at the top and the one before it titled "Sadly, No".
She's big into calling others fascists too, surprisingly enough.

I actually don't "equate" Alkon to a Nazi or a tyrant. I do say that her comments re Tarika Wilson were inhumane, but that doesn't mean I think she's going to invade Poland.

I also don't say that it's asinine not to "tolerate hostile speech" (meaning speech you disagree with) in your home or your blog. I say that "it's really asinine to do that while claiming to be a free speech advocate". There is a substantive difference. Spam, threats, obscenity, linkbots and garbage text are a different matter of course.



Finally, if she wants to respond to the arguments, she has a perfect place to do that, with a well-informed, mostly sympathetic commentariat. Again, she's not some random person whose amateur website (much less her home, I mean what the hell?) is being overrun by a sophisticated network of hackers hell-bent on foiling any possibility of free speech. She's got a blog with sponsors, she's part of the "Pajamas Media Network", she's got an "IT guy".

8:35 PM, August 21, 2008  
Blogger Oligonicella said...

marquis --

Oh yes, Gonz speaks for the police. They did not approve or assign that, he took it upon himself, much as you do, but nonetheless.

I didn't say you didn't believe the snowflake analogy, I said it was a bad one. Commenters do what they do of their own volition, be that at the urging of others or not.

I'll wait. Uh, for what? You think I was awaiting your post? I'm not exchanging with him, just you. You might do well to reread Porretto's post. He qualifies to progressive fascists. You're intelligent, that does not mean all progressives. That means he understands there are those who are not fascist. You might ask him if he thinks there are conservative fascists. I do, by way.

I actually don't "equate" Alkon to a Nazi or a tyrant.

Um, you did. That was the reason you brought them up to begin with, else wise you could have simply made the same statement without referring to them. "Invade Poland", please. Trite and a different meaning of what was equated anyway.

Spin what nuance you will. Her blog, her decision as to what qualifies to stay. Free speech is about removing the ability of someone to express, not the allowing of that expression everywhere. They are free to post at, say, SN. Don't conflate. Wait a mo'... I think you said basically the same thing about her, eh.

You may not talk politics at my dinner table. No suppression of speech as you are free to do it elsewhere.

10:48 PM, August 21, 2008  
Blogger Marquis de Chocula said...

"I'll wait" was just an attempt to be amusing; like I was waiting while you scrolled up and read the earlier post. It fell flat, because we're not really having a friendly discussion I guess. Civil, though.

I really didn't equate Alkon to Goebbels or Stalin; I just meant that being "in favor of free speech", but only as long as you don't disagree with it, is a meaningless claim. And I swear up and down on a stack of Origin of the Specieses that she was deleting relevant comments because they were dissenting opinions.

I consider her to be neutral toward free speech: she doesn't, as far as I know, go out of her way to try to ban books or movies or political pamphlets (do they still make those?) but she is not a free speech advocate like she claims.

Not talking politics at the dinner table is a good policy, actually. I remember when my grandfather was alive, he and my dad would get worked up about things they agreed on.

2:17 AM, August 22, 2008  
Blogger Marquis de Chocula said...

I think it was Voltaire (or possibly biographer SG Tallentyre) who said "I disapprove of what you say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it, as long as you do it somewhere else where my readers don't have to see it".

2:33 AM, August 22, 2008  
Blogger br549 said...

Concerning you last post: I've personally never heard the last part, but do agree with the first part in helping defend another's right to say what they feel. In America, we have to do that, or we will slowly become something other than who we are. It requires patience. It requires two eyes, two ears, and one mouth - and the realization of that ratio of those analog communication devices. God knew what he was doing, regardless of whether we realize it or not.

marquis, I do hope you realize what kind of blog you have entered and speak in. I do hope you see it is not as you have been told. Overall, and especially considering what has been discussed here on this thread, you have to admit it has been most civil. A hell of a lot more civil than your typical divorce proceeding, anyway. Dr. Helen has not blocked a single post. She does not unless absolutely necessary. Comments are deleted by the writer, usually after posting and re-considering what they said, perhaps in the heat of the moment.

You obviously know all that, or you would not be here. It would be of good form for you to take that information with you when you return to wherever you normally post. I will also admit that the cynic in me feels you are here saying what you are saying because the dialog would have deteriorated to name calling or worse by now, just about anywhere else.

Consider your own blog. Seriously.
You have a model for it right here.
I'd pop in, and actually expect the same treatment and respect you have received in this one.

5:22 AM, August 22, 2008  
Blogger TMink said...

mdc wrote: "But that was over a century ago."

I wish. Check your calender. Anti lynching legislature was still being passed in the 1920s, and the sources I found in a few minutes on the web showed lynching in the early 60s. Shameful.

"Because they knew they would probably not be charged, and would almost certainly not be convicted."

For someone who offered criticism regarding our projections regarding the deceased (see above) you certainly assume quite a lot about the minds of the police.

Again, we concur in our abhorence of para-military police.

Trey

9:44 AM, August 22, 2008  
Blogger Marquis de Chocula said...

Br549, I agree with you about this blog -- it's been a really civil place, considering the thread starts off with accusations of fascism. Both Joe Max and I have expressed appreciation for Dr. Helen's tolerance of dissenting viewpoints (particularly in terms of comment moderation) both here and on SN. I suspect that Ms Alkon would probably have been less ban-happy with regard to opposing views were she not at the same time a target of spam and crapflooding, and we may all have been able to have a more reasonable discussion. Still, the bans were her choice and nobody else's.

The last part of the Voltaire quote was meant as a sarcastic addition. Voltaire's view was, generally speaking, that those who said/published things he disagreed with should be welcomed and encouraged to do so. Then he would mercilessly mock them and their views. That's what Sadly, No! is supposed to be about, too (although admittedly we're not Voltaires in terms of quality).
The "defend to the death" "quote" was not something Voltaire actually said, but was a pretty accurate summation of his views by a biographer.

2:27 PM, August 22, 2008  
Blogger Marquis de Chocula said...

TMink, you're right about lynching. Ohio specifically was enacting laws against lynching (as opposed to simply considering it assault/kidnapping/murder) by around the 1890s, but a lot of the time this was rather toothless legislation. Reading about it in detail is too depressing for me right now.

Regarding the minds of the police, I have a bit more to go on:

"A jury verdict that cleared a police officer in the drug-raid shooting death of an unarmed woman will allow other officers to do their job without hesitation, police union officials said".

Officially, police are supposed to identify their target before shooting. If they are shielded from the legal consequences of failing to do so, however, then they can act without hesitation.

Some libertarian guy has a fuller story on it.

2:46 PM, August 22, 2008  
Blogger Joe Max said...

I second the Marquis' commendation of Dr. Helen for her light hand on moderation of this discussion.

It's good to keep in mind that Sadly, No! is a comedy site, which has won web awards as a comedy site, so snark and parody are the reasons it exists.

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