You probably heard the old line about the three kinds of lies: white lies, damn lies, and statistics. Apparently the New York Times and Eric holder are unaware of the third kind.
Ferguson, Mo., is a third white, but the crime statistics compiled in the city over the past two years seemed to suggest that only black people were breaking the law. They accounted for 85 percent of traffic stops, 90 percent of tickets and 93 percent of arrests. In cases like jaywalking, which often hinge on police discretion, blacks accounted for 95 percent of all arrests.
The racial disparity in those statistics was so stark that the Justice Department has concluded in a report scheduled for release on Wednesday that there was only one explanation: The Ferguson Police Department was routinely violating the constitutional rights of its black residents.
The report, based on a six-month investigation, provides a glimpse into the roots of the racial tensions that boiled over in Ferguson last summer after a black teenager, Michael Brown, was fatally shot by a white police officer, making it a worldwide flash point in the debate over race and policing in America. It describes a city where the police used force almost exclusively on blacks and regularly stopped people without probable cause. Racial bias is so ingrained, the report said, that Ferguson officials circulated racist jokes on their government email accounts.
In a November 2008 email, a city official said Barack Obama would not be president long because “what black man holds a steady job for four years?” Another email included a cartoon depicting African-Americans as monkeys. A third described black women having abortions as a way to curb crime.
“There are serious problems here that cannot be explained away,” said a law enforcement official who has seen the report and spoke on the condition of anonymity because it had not been released yet.
The report will most likely force Ferguson officials to either negotiate a settlement with the Justice Department or face being sued by it on charges of violating the Constitution. Under Attorney General Eric H. Holder Jr., the Justice Department has opened more than 20 such investigations into local police departments and issued tough findings against cities including Newark; Albuquerque, N.M.; and Cleveland.
But the Ferguson case has the highest profile of Mr. Holder’s tenure and is among the most closely watched since the Justice Department began such investigations in 1994, spurred by the police beating of Rodney King in Los Angeles and the riots that followed.
While much of the attention in Ferguson has been on Mr. Brown’s death, federal officials quickly concluded that the shooting was simply the spark that ignited years of pent-up tension and animosity in the area. The Justice Department is expected to issue a separate report Wednesday clearing the police officer, Darren Wilson, of civil rights violations in the shooting.
Obviously I haven’t read the report. That makes it kinda hard to question the findings, but if the only specific examples they could uncover were some racist jokes then Comedy Central is a major civil rights violator.
Take a look at the picture at the top of this post. That is a photo of a convenience store in Ferguson being looted during one of the riots last year. According to statistics, 1/3 of the people in that picture should be white, and approximately half of them should be women. But all the people in the picture appear to be young black males.
Is that racist?
If the police are routinely violating the rights of black people in Ferguson, shouldn’t the DOJ be able to come up with some specific victims? Phones with cameras are ubiquitous these days, so why aren’t there numerous videos of police misconduct and brutality?
Perhaps the truth is more complex and less uh, . . . black and white.
But the Department of Justice isn’t looking for a conviction, their modus operandi is extortion. They threaten the city with all kinds of dire consequences, then offer something akin to a plea bargain. The city and the feds enter into an agreement called a “consent decree” that gives the federal government semi-permanent oversight over the city.
All without ever having to prove a single civil rights violation took place.
But the DOJ is fighting racial discrimination, so if you object to their methods or results you must be a racist who is pro-discrimination.