Blaming Trump For Triggering The Recent Shootings Is More About Controlling Speech Than Violence

Below is my column in The Hill newspaper on the continuing recriminations following the recent massacres. The effort to blame the massacres on Trump reflect an ongoing effort to control speech by declaring certain words to be “triggering.” In this case, the meaning is literal.

Here is the column:

The final death tolls in El Paso and Dayton were not even established when the chorus of recriminations began. Several Democratic candidates like South Bend Mayor Pete Buttigieg accused President Trump of stoking the hatred leading to the shootings, while Senator Kamala Harris insisted the victims were the “incredible consequence” of the rhetoric used by Trump. Senator Cory Booker went even further, saying not only that Trump was “particularly responsible” and “complicit” in the mass shootings last weekend, but so is everyone who is “not actively working against hate.”

Many of us have denounced the rhetoric of Trump on immigration, the courts, and the media. However, there is a familiar ring to some of the coverage following the massacres that Trump is responsible for the shooting because the language he uses is “triggering.” Columnist Mehdi Hasan said, “The president may not be pulling the trigger or planting the bomb, but he is enabling much of the hatred behind those acts by giving aid and comfort to angry white men by offering them clear targets.”

There have long been efforts to limit speech as “triggering” to others. Colleges and universities have created “safe spaces” and implemented “trigger warnings” to protect students from opposing views or values. Faculty and students have demanded sanctions against those engaging in speech perceived as threatening or demeaning, including the poorly defined concept of “microaggressive” words. The result is a type of speech control that redefines censorship as merely “sheltering.”

In news coverage, “triggering” has taken on a literal meaning that Trump virtually pulled the trigger on victims by adding to a raging environment. It does not matter that a fair amount of violence is committed by leftist groups like Antifa. Such acts are often portrayed by advocates as merely “self defense.” The CNN special “United Shades of America” with Kamau Bell featured what Bell called the “redneck revolt” of gun toting liberals who are battling the “alt right.” Bell followed them to gun ranges and asked why “more white people” are not joining their ranks. Among the “good guys” featured was Willem Van Spronsen, who later attempted to firebomb an immigration center and died in a shootout with police.

Does that make CNN culpable in “triggering” Van Spronsen? Of course not. Yet it would appear from the coverage that Trump is still responsible for El Paso shooter Patrick Crusius, who referenced Trump and said “this attack is a response to the Hispanic invasion of Texas.” It did not matter that both of these individuals apparently have serious mental health issues. It was the rhetoric of Trump that was responsible for the crimes of Crusius. It also does not matter that Conner Betts, the shooter in Dayton, described himself as a “leftist” Democrat who supported the candidacy of Senator Elizabeth Warren. He reportedly wrote, “I want socialism, and I will not wait for the idiots to finally come round to understanding.”

Trump supporters have been assaulted for wearing MAGA hats or overtly supporting the president. Protesters have shouted death threats outside the home of Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell. An MSNBC host told viewers that Trump was “talking about exterminating Latinos.” A new Hollywood movie, described as a satire, features the hunting of MAGA types called “deplorables,” the name Democratic candidate Hillary Clintongave to Trump supporters during the 2016 campaign. None of those stories led to condemnations of “triggering” rhetoric by Trump critics.

Few Americans will tolerate outright censorship. But 20 years ago, writers began to push an alternative way to silence their critics by limiting their words as “triggering” or threatening. They could claim they were not censoring a viewpoint, only the words used to express it. Yet the result is the same in curtailing what others say. The concept of “triggering” language has become so mainstream today that news hosts now nod in silent acceptance when guests denounce the use of common terms.

On “Meet the Press” last weekend, Eddie Glaude, Princeton professor of African American studies, declared the very use of the term “illegal immigrant” may have caused these shootings. He said, “You set the stage for people who are even more on the extreme to act violently.” Glaude, who previously called the immigration policies of Trump “terrorism,” interrupted another guest, who was noting that laws on the books make such immigration illegal. “No human being is illegal!” Glaude declared.

For years, activists tried to shame others into dropping any reference to the illegal status of some immigrants by claiming the term is verboten. It does not matter that the term appears in laws and has been routinely used by the Supreme Court, including decisions by such liberal icons as William Brennan, Thurgood Marshall, and John Paul Stevens. It is now “triggering” language and, according to Glaude, may actually cause massacres.

Even expressions of empathy can be considered “triggering.” After the shootings, Trump condemned the violence and white supremacy, expressed sympathy for the victims, and ordered all American flags to fly at half mast until August 8. Frank Figliuzzi, an NBC News national security contributor, claimed the flag order was “triggering” because the date, 8/8, could be viewed as a reference to 88, which could be a reference to HH, the eighth letter in the alphabet, which could be viewed as a salute to “Heil Hitler.” Thus, Trump unwittingly or wittingly signaled neo-Nazis.

Figliuzzi expressed shock, “No one is thinking about this. No one is giving him the advice. Or he is rejecting the advice.” There is another possibility that “no one is thinking about this” because it is perfectly insane. More importantly, what Figliuzzi refers to as the “little things” often leads to the limiting of a big thing called “free speech.” That some deranged neo-Nazi would celebrate the coincidence of flags being reraised on 8/8 does not mean that we should all change our actions or speech accordingly.

Trump did not help himself with disastrous visits to El Paso and Dayton, where he was denounced for such moments as giving a “thumbs up” in a photo with an orphaned baby and bragging about how big his crowds were at a rally. He then reportedly complained about the lack of good press out of the trip. However, it ultimately did not matter what he said because his very presence was the trigger. Catherine Wicker, executive president of the Texas College Democrats, said he had “no business” visiting Texas because “what he says to people of color is triggering.”

There is no sense of hypocrisy in any of this for those who use shootings to score political points by denouncing others for doing the same thing. It is inevitable that some will follow massacres like political carpetbaggers to make easy gains. Yet none of these gun triggers were pulled, literally or figuratively, by Trump or Warren or Fox or CNN. We live in an age of rage, however, there remains a big difference between rage and a rampage.

Jonathan Turley is the Shapiro Professor of Public Interest Law at George Washington University. You can follow him on Twitter @JonathanTurley.

317 thoughts on “Blaming Trump For Triggering The Recent Shootings Is More About Controlling Speech Than Violence”

    1. When the Chinese are waving the American flag and playing the national anthem, while the Left in America burn the American flag and protest the national anthem, it seems like a win-win opportunity to export the American Left to China, and bring these Chinese to America. Call it an act of mercy to relieve suffering with everyone winning.

      🇺🇸

      https://www.theweek.in/news/world/2019/08/13/hong-kong-protesters-wave-american-flag-sing-national-anthem.html

      Hong Kong protesters wave American flag, sing national anthem

      Hong Kong seem to be heading to a ‘Tianenmen-like’ situation with thousands of protesters thronging the streets. Chinese media had already warned of potential terrorism rising in the country and even accused the US of supporting the riots. A video posted on twitter shows pro-democracy supporters in Hong Kong waving the American flag adding to the fury of the Beijing-backed government.

      1. I am sympathetic to the HK protesters but this was incredibly stupid. This will lose them a lot of support on the mainland. The Chicoms have been saying that America was behind it and now they can roll this clip and say “I told you so”

        freedom does not just mean individual liberties., freedom also means national self government and autonomy vis a vis foreigners. in that sense of the word, the Chicoms fought a long and hard series of wars against the hated Japanese foreigners, the foreign occupiers of various concessions, and the Nationalists who were supported by America. The resounding victory of the Communists in those struggles was epic and is not at all forgotten by mainlanders.

        What I’m saying is, the optics of that were bad. For the protesters. it’s almost so bad one almost wonders if provocateurs put them up to this. Sensible leadership would have carefully avoided any flying of American flags whatsoever. I even saw one clip which had a Union Jack flying. Amazing that any Chinese kid would be stupid enough to do that.

        It’s counterproductive for their aims, unless, their aims were simply to lose.

        1. Kurtz – you are right. If the US intervenes, China would consider it an act of aggression. Nothing would enrage the Chinese government more than for the American flag to be flown on land it considers its possession.

          The Qing Dynasty ceded Hong Kong to the British forever. Great Britain’s obtaining a 99 year lease in the 1800s in order to control more land was a fatal mistake. That led to the UK giving all of Hong Kong to the Chinese upon the end of that lease. It might have been more politically expedient, but it was not what was best for the people of Hong Kong. Granted, those in Hong Kong had no military, so if the UK just turned it loose as its own country, I think China would have promptly conquered it. I think it should have become part of the UK, or at least the British Commonwealth. That would have taken care of the colonization aspect of it.

          Hind sight is 20/20.

          There is now a movement in UK for the people of Hong Kong to be granted British citizenship. This should have been done prior to the Handover, as a means for those who wanted to be free to leave, and move to the UK. You cannot be free and live under Chinese rule. While authoritarianism has only slowly been seeping into Hong Kong, it is inevitable. Should the UK now, at this late date, offer citizenship and an escape to successful people in Hong Kong, I believe the Chinese government would view that as an act of aggression, as it would bleed the revenue generating potential out of the island. I would still like to see it happen, however.

          Give the people of Hong Kong a choice – China or the West.

      2. I remember when those students showed support for America and democracy at Tiananmen. I was so naive at the time, I thought that if innocent people called out for us and for freedom, that we would help them. It would have been an act of war against China. I still remember the shock at that massacre.

        I’ve been thinking of that while Hong Kong waves those flags. I do not see Hong Kong remaining free under Chinese rule. They were better off under the British, and might perhaps be better still as a democratic, independent nation. Having no military force of its own, however, it will never be able to hold off China.

        I think Hong Kong is doomed. It will either be quashed in one stroke, or it will slowly have its freedoms chipped away, until it is just another province of China, with social credit scores, censored news and internet. The Chinese government already has been telling Hong Kong that its toxic smog is just a marine layer fog for years.

        If Hong Kong can’t be saved, then we should get them out. People who want freedom, the right to run their own businesses and affairs, are exactly the kind of people who thrive here in the West. We need to improve efforts that smuggle defectors out.

        This is what I don’t get about Socialists and Communists here in the US. Can they not see how people suffer under the rule of these governments? No one risks it all to get into a Socialist country; they do so to escape it to a capitalist country.

  1. ” BTW everything is not ”right/left Trump/ Obama”. I take it that you have not read many of Hill’s comments here, or attempted to discuss policy issues with him.

    1. 30 something. Up to the second statistics are very hard to find. But here’s one. With all the shootings in the USA and Mexico compared people often ask why go there. about one half person per one hundred thousand who go and stay six months to a full year and are with in 50 miles of the border or the big glitzy resorts compare that to shootings total a few years ago in Houston and now in Chicago and others or the USA average Have fun.

  2. “It would be wrong to think, however, that the separation of church and state means that the political views of men and women must remain unaffected and uninformed by their religious beliefs. That would be quite impossible to achieve and is assuredly not part of our political tradition. The Declaration of Independence begins by invoking “the Laws of Nature and of Nature’s God,” and concludes “with a firm reliance on the Protection of Divine Providence.” The philosophy expressed in that document, that “all men are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights,” underlay the Bill of Rights. Belief in God, leading to that belief in human freedom, had much to do with the greatest war in our national history, as the words of the “Battle Hymn of the Republic” make plain. From abolition to Prohibition, the secular arrangements that Americans have voted for, or indeed fought for, have often been related to their religious beliefs.
    It has become fashionable to speak of the American constitutional system as though it contained within itself the philosophy of John Stuart Mill—that everything must be permitted, and nothing can be forbidden, unless it physically harms another human being. “That is simply not so. Consider, for example, laws against bigamy, which the Supreme Court has held to be constitutional. Or laws against public nudity. Or laws against cruelty to animals. It cannot be said that any of these prevents physical harm to another human being—or even aesthetic harm of much significance. (If the nudity bothers you, avert your eyes.) It seems to me that society’s desire for laws of this sort—and all societies have them—is traceable to some common ethos, either religiously based or indistinguishable from religious prescription, which the old writers used to call bonos mores—“good morals.”

    Excerpt From
    Lessons from an American Believer
    Antonin Scalia

    1. Before you copy and repost something you should at least understand what it means. There is no separation of church and state in the Constitution or in the Amendments, The First Amendment is specifically written to prohibit factions from gaining control over the Government, due to the fact that religious denominations are factions, just like political parties which are likewise prohibited from being established by Congress and elevated to a position of power and authority. But it was never their intention to prevent factions, only to control their effects!

      Amendment I
      Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.

      If you don’t understand the first amendment then try Federalist #10 by Madison, it should be self explanatory if you are willing to accept that the Convention designed the assembly of our government to exclude Factious groups and limit their spread and influence into national Political institutions, like what we have today.

      Yes Madison was directly involved with the writing of the Constitution, the Federalist Papers, and the Bill of Rights, I think I’ll take his word what it means over yours, Scalia’s, or any other so called Constitutional scholar!

      1. ha ha here comes federalist with this strange interpretation again

        factions are part of politics everywhere always and they were in 1789 too

        faction is just another type of group. you cant get rid of groups. its human nature. can’t outlaw human nature

        1. You are showing your ignorance and your arrogance simultaneously, and all we can hear is you talking, that’s all you can do is talk, never take the time to actually consider what others have to say, just be your condescending, petty, juvenile self.

          If you had bothered to read what I wrote, or Federalist #10 by Madison, then you would understand that it was never the goal to prevent or outlaw factions, which include Political Parties, the goal is to manage and control the effects, and the spread of the influence, of Factions. I’ll let you read Federalist #10 to see what Madison did to make sure Parties could not gain the influence and control they enjoy today, but leave it to say it has everything to do with republican Government and Representation, in fact he made it unalterable by any means, or by any governing body.

          But I’m sure you won’t bother to enlighten yourself, so stick your reply to this comment in whatever place makes you happy, I have no time for your childish games, and I will not reply further no matter what you decide to do.

          Enjoy your pettiness, and your ignorance!

    2. secularism and laicite versus the confessional state is the real battle that the Catholics lost. it was mostly won in 1789 when the advocates of secularism resolved the discussion by chopping off heads.

      it wasn’t until Vat II that the Church was finally tricked and intimidated into obscuring its teaching on the confessional state

      American Catholics have been woefully mislead on the topic by the American clerics at the august “Catholic Universities” who train people to misunderstand. Guys like Scalia much as I admired him, helped.

      I bet the words “confessional state” are meaningless to 95% of American Catholics. maybe more.

      I once had a chat with a young priest who told me the Church had “changed” the teaching on usury. Really? Vix Parvenit. Told him to look it up. He didn’t get back to me on that.

      But what do I know. I Figured after while if they don’t take it seriously, why should I? “The road to hell is paved with the skulls of priests and bishops” said St John Chrysostom

    1. Any credible resources? Cato Institute spent a ton of time money and effort and found on two things. Over the spread of crimes about the same amount active violations found per each category. The amount of criminals was the same percentage per group or the entire population less than one percent generally They used US population as one base and police for another. Same result.

      “http://www.policemisconduct.net/arguing-the-case-for-police-accountability-part-1/

      Arguing The Case For Police Accountability – Part 1

      In the years that I’ve been monitoring and researching the issue of police misconduct I’ve noticed some prevalent, and quite successful, arguments used by those who feel there is no need for improved police accountability and transparency and that police misconduct isn’t a problem worthy of attention.

      However, the statistics generated by the NPMSRP offer a useful counterpoint to these arguments, if they are understood and used correctly.

      One thing to understand about the NPMSRP statistics is that they do not point to any evidence that police misconduct is pervasive… that is, they do not indicate that all cops are bad. This is the first pitfall that people fall into when arguing the case for improved police accountability, the need to prove all, or even most cops are problematic isn’t necessary, nor is it reasonable.

      So, to start, let’s look at the most common argument used against police accountability and the counterpoint people should consider against it…

      The argument of small percentages

      Statistics in terms of police misconduct mean little without something with which to compare them with. The first thing a police officer or anti-police accountability debater will tell you in a debate is that officers who are caught doing something wrong are a very small percentage of the police population in the US.

      For example, I’ve seen people point to one of our daily reviews of police misconduct reports and say, “Look, 28 cases in one day! That’s a problem!” to which an antagonist will say “No it’s not, 28 officers is a very small number of the 800,000 police officers in the US!”

      Well, they are right, 28 out of 800,000 is a small percentage and nowhere near a majority of the police population in the US. In fact, our statistics indicate that just under 1000 per 100,000 police officers per year are involved in credible reports of police misconduct. Yes, that translates to under 1% of all police officers.

      (NOTE: We should mention that we base our statistics on misconduct by the estimated 712,492 state, county, and local sworn law enforcement officers per the 2008 UCR employment statistics, not the magical 800,000 number often quoted by law enforcement officers arguing against improved accountability.)

      But, as I said, that number means little unless you have a comparison point. None better exist than the numbers Americans use to guage how bad crime is in the US, the FBI/DOJ Uniform Crime Reporting statistics or UCR for short. The UCR tells us what portion of the US population is involved in alleged reported criminal acts per year, just like the NPMSRP stats that tell us how many officers are involved in alleged reported acts of police misconduct per year.

      So, what am I talking about?

      Making a point that police misconduct is a problem worth study is a matter of comparing the rates of police misconduct with the rate of crime in the US.

      Why?

      Because, as a percentage of population, criminal activity represents a relatively equally small percentage of the overall population in the US as does the rate of police misconduct… so if you believe that crime is a problem in the US worthy of trillions in tax fund expenditure, then surely police misconduct is worthy of study if it represents an equally large percentage of the police population.

      How So? Well, here’s some numbers taken from the 2008 UCR statistics and 12-months worth of statistics taken from the NPMSRP between April 2009 – March 2010 (a combination of our 2009 annual statistics and our Q1 2010 quarterly statistics):

      As you can see, when we examine violent crime statistics, law enforcement officers appear to be involved in violent crime in a comparable rate with the general population. 432 officers out of every 100,000 compared to 454.5 people out of every 100,000. So, roughly 0.43% vs 0.45%.

      Both seem like small numbers, don’t they? Yet most people would probably tell you that they are worried about the rate of violent crimes… but not police misconduct even though both occur at similar rates statistically.

      If you’re wondering about the homicide rates, “Homicide Charged” compares the number of alleged homicides in general population with the number of police officers actually charged with homicide or murder. The “Homicide” number compares the same general population statistic with the number of officers involved in questionable non-vehicular homicide deaths including deaths in custody as a result of excessive force that were not charged as homicides.

      The statistic for sexual assaults is the stunner for us though. 29.3 per 100,000 in the general population vs 73.3 per 100,000 for law enforcement officers. That would seem to catch people’s attention as a problem, but apparently it doesn’t.

      So, you see, it’s all a matter of context. Sure, .073% is a small percentage of the population of police officers in the US, but that number represents 522 officers per year and is a larger, by over 2x, ratio of the population of police than are the number of alleged sexual assailants in the US general population at .029%.

      So, the next time you find yourself challenged by a law enforcement officer who says that police misconduct isn’t a problem because it only represents a small percentage of the number of police officers in the US. Remember that it really does represent a small percentage but so does crime in the general population but that doesn’t stop people from worrying so much about it that they’ll spend a majority of their tax dollars to fight it.

      When you want to make a point and cannot come up with something along these lines the tendency is to toss your conclusion in the trash unless it makes another good start point. but using the Guardian as the only resource? Most of the time which I generally have enough of the results are disappointing to non existent.

  3. This reminds me of the media coverage following the shooting at the Pulse Nightclub in Orlando.

    Here’s a clip from the NYT editorial dated June 15, 2016 :

    “While the precise motivation for the rampage remains unclear, it is evident that Mr. Mateen was driven by hatred toward gays and lesbians. Hate crimes don’t happen in a vacuum. They occur where bigotry is allowed to fester, where minorities are vilified and where people are scapegoated for political gain. Tragically, this is the state of American politics, driven too often by Republican politicians who see prejudice as something to exploit, not extinguish.”

    Except this was completely wrong:

    “There was compelling evidence of other motivations. Mateen had pledged allegiance to the self-described Islamic State during the shooting, and explicitly said that he was acting to avenge air strikes in the Middle East. ‘You have to tell America to stop bombing Syria and Iraq. They are killing a lot of innocent people,’ he told a crisis negotiator over the phone while at Pulse. ‘What am I to do here when my people are getting killed over there. You get what I’m saying?’ . . . As far as investigators could tell, Mateen had never been to Pulse before, whether as a patron or to case the nightclub. Even prosecutors acknowledged in their closing statement that Pulse was not his original target; it was the Disney Springs shopping and entertainment complex. They presented evidence demonstrating that Mateen chose Pulse randomly less than an hour before the attack. It is not clear he even knew it was a gay bar. A security guard recalled Mateen asking where all the women were, apparently in earnest, in the minutes before he began his slaughter.”

    https://www.huffpost.com/entry/noor-salman-pulse-massacre-wrong_n_5ac29ebae4b04646b6454dc2

    1. Anonymouse, you should cite the particular piece and date. So we might all inspect it. The full piece with its headline title.

      We don’t know if you’re making a distinction here between Editorial by Editors or an Op Ed piece. Without a date or title we have no idea ‘where’ your clip is coming from.

      1. Hill has evidently decided that you are “anonymous Tom” .
        Another anonymous denies that he/ she is not Diane.
        Once and for all, anonymous, time to fess up if your name is Tom.
        If your name is not Tom, you can point that out as well.
        But Peter “Hollywood” Hill has it ALL figured out for you, due to his fabulous investigative skills.
        So while you are very unlikely to be “”Tom”, it won’t matter to Hollywood Hill.

    2. Tom, that Huff Post link is too big of a read for me. All we need to know is the title of N Y Times article in question. It’s headline title and date published. And ‘who’ actually wrote it? An official Editorial by Editors, Columnist or Guest Op Ed?

      These are all the questions to evaluate when someone claims a newspaper was totally off-base. And it’s naturally right to see the entire piece. One might compare it as well to coverage said paper reported while the news was fresh. Was the paper’s reporting generally fair and accurate compared to other sources?

    3. Tom, that Huff Post link is too big of a read for me. All we need to know is the title of N Y Times article in question. It’s headline title and the date published. And ‘who’ actually wrote it? An official Editorial by Editors, Columnist or Guest Op Ed?

      These are all the questions to evaluate when someone claims a newspaper was totally off-base. And it’s naturally right to see the entire piece. One might compare it as well to coverage said paper reported while the news was fresh. Was the paper’s reporting generally fair and accurate compared to other sources?

      1. Tom / Anonymous:

        Here’s a key paragraph from the N Y Times Editorial with regards to Republicans:

        “Yet, that fight remains far from over. Since the marriage ruling, several Republican-led state legislatures and Republican governors and federal lawmakers have redoubled their fight against legal protections for people on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity. So far this year, more than 200 anti-L.G.B.T. bills have been introduced in 34 states”.

        The editorial clearly had specific GOP initiatives in mind. But the initial clip you posted made no mention of said initiatives. Therefore one can’t say the Times Editorial was really that far off.

        1. “The New York Times is no longer the paper we grew up with. It is no longer a news organization. It is an agenda driven organization out to change the Country (for the worse.).” Michael Goodwin, Highly Respected New York Post Columnist

    4. I would have said the same thing about any of the socialist leftist medias but more common is they are for the most all more sensationalistic that accurate. But NYT, WaPo, Huff and Puff ans the rest are evidence of a very overt lack of ‘broad’ research and a ‘very narrow’ viewpoint.

  4. For those seeking some real food from the dearth of same in today’s public discourse, consider Justice Antonin Scalia’s collected speeches gathered by his son and former clerks. I am almost done with this book and it has been delightful. Sanity still can be found

    On Faith: Lessons from an American Believer
    https://www.amazon.com/Faith-Lessons-American-Believer/dp/1984823310/
    On Faith is an inspiring collection of the late Supreme Court justice Antonin Scalia’s reflections on his own faith, on the challenges that religious believers face in modern America, and on the religious freedoms protected by the Constitution

    One reviewer from Amazon wrote:

    “This small book (5”x7”; 222 pages) contains excerpts from some of the speeches, judicial opinions and letters written by Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia on the subject of religion. Also included are a number of short commentaries written by colleagues, former law clerks and members of the Scalia family about Justice Scalia’s devotion to his Catholic faith. Finally, there are Scalia’s thoughts on his own funeral and funeral services in general. No eulogies! Eulogies detract from the real purpose of the Mass.

    Judges write a lot. Scalia wrote more than many of his colleagues. Moreover, as an Associate Justice of the Supreme Court of the United States, Scalia wrote many opinions and speeches dealing with the Religion Clauses of the First Amendment to the United States Constitution: “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion or prohibiting the free exercise thereof.” The opinions included in this book are just the tip of the Scalia iceberg. He makes it clear that a knowledge of history is essential to an understanding of the words of the Constitution.

    Inasmuch as most of the content of this book was created either for use in a speech or in a judicial opinion, most of the legal conclusions are easy to understand. Also, it is easy to understand why Justice Scalia argued that his Catholic faith played no part in his judicial decisions. His judicial rulings were based on the facts and the law.

    The sermon from Scalia’s funeral Mass fits nicely with the theme of the book.

    This is an excellent book for a basic understanding of the role of religion in constitutional law.”

  5. “Dayton shooter Connor Betts may be Antifa’s first mass killer”

    -NY Post

    “Democratic presidential candidates Joe Biden, Elizabeth Warren, Kamala Harris and Bernie Sanders succinctly condemned white nationalism — the ideology espoused, before President Trump ran for office, by the El Paso shooter in his purported 2,300-word manifesto.

    However, when it comes to condemning the Dayton shooter’s militant far-left views, all remain mum. Others, such as anti-police activist Shaun King, even claimed the Dayton shooter targeted blacks in a hate crime, though ­racism doesn’t appear to have been a component of his twisted worldview.

    While Betts, the Dayton shooter, didn’t leave behind a manifesto, his extensive social-media footprint provides clues as to what may have inspired him. Federal investigators announced Tuesday that they are looking into his exploration of violent ideologies.

    Betts had long expressed support for antifa accounts, causes and individuals. That would be the loose network of militant leftist activists who physically attack anyone to the right of Mao in the name of “anti-fascism.” In particular, Betts promoted extreme hatred of American border enforcement.

    “Kill every fascist,” the shooter declared in 2018 on twitter, echoing a rallying cry of antifa ideologues. Over the next year, his tweets became increasingly violent. “Nazis deserve death and nothing else,” he tweeted last October. Betts frequently flung the label “Nazi” at those with whom he disagreed online.

    By December, he reached out on Twitter to the Socialist Rifle ­Association, an antifa gun group, to comment about bump stocks, and the SRA responded to him. (A bump stock is an attachment for semiautomatic rifles that allow them to fire much faster.)

    In the months leading to his rampage, Betts expressed a longing for climactic confrontation. In ­response to an essay by Intercept writer Mehdi Hassan titled, “Yes, Let’s Defeat or Impeach Trump—but What If He Doesn’t Leave the White House?” the shooter wrote: “Arm, train, prepare.”

    By June he tweeted: “I want socialism, and I’ll not wait for the idiots to finally come round understanding.” Last week, he promoted posts that demonized Sens. Ted Cruz and Bill Cassidy’s resolution against antifa extremism.”

  6. Oh lest I forget, last weekend in Detroit, 4 dead, at least 7 wounded in 9 superstructure shootings. That was Trumps fault too.

  7. CONSERVATIVE MEDIA MAY HAVE INFLUENCED..

    EL PASO SHOOTER ‘AND’ DONALD TRUMP

    There is a striking degree of overlap between the words of right-wing media personalities and the language used by the Texas man who confessed to killing 22 people at a Walmart in El Paso this month. In a 2,300-word screed posted on the website 8chan, the killer wrote that he was “simply defending my country from cultural and ethnic replacement brought on by an invasion.”

    It remains unclear what, or who, ultimately shaped the views of the white, 21-year-old gunman, or whether he was aware of the media commentary. But his post contains numerous references to “invasion” and cultural “replacement” — ideas that, until recently, were relegated to the fringes of the nationalist right.

    An extensive New York Times review of popular right-wing media platforms found hundreds of examples of language, ideas and ideologies that overlapped with the mass killer’s written statement — a shared vocabulary of intolerance that stokes fears centered on immigrants of color. The programs, on television and radio, reach an audience of millions.

    Sometimes the hosts are repeating the president’s signature phrases. Sometimes the president appears to take his cues from television pundits. The cumulative effect is a public dialogue in which denigrating sentiments about immigrants are common.

    Before the first groups of Central American migrants received heavy news media coverage in 2018, words like “invaders” or “invasion” were rarely used by American outlets. In the last year, the use of such terms has surged, with references to an immigrant “invasion” appearing on more than 300 Fox News broadcasts. The vast majority of those were spoken by Fox News hosts and guests, but some included clips of Mr. Trump using that language at rallies and other public appearances.

    The Times analysis examined the last five years of show transcripts from Fox News, CNN and MSNBC to measure the frequency of terms like “invasion” and “replacement.” Segments that included this language were verified by watching clips of the shows to determine whether hosts and guests were speaking in their own words or reporting on the language of others.

    The portrayal of immigration as a menace has returned with force, a shift brought on not just by radio and TV hosts, but by Republican leaders in Congress and the president himself. This year Mr. Trump has used the terms “invasion” or “invaded” seven times on Twitter to describe the situation at the border, at one point referring to the approach of the migrants as “the attempted Invasion of Illegals.” At rallies, he has injected terms like “predator,” “killer,” and “animal” in his descriptions of immigrants.

    The Trump-friendly media world — from outlets like Sinclair Broadcast Group and The Drudge Report to platforms like Breitbart News and Gateway Pundit — has used similar incendiary rhetoric. “The fact of the matter is that this is an attempted invasion of our country — period,” Boris Epshteyn, a former Trump campaign adviser, said last year in a commentary on migrants that aired on nearly 200 Sinclair television stations.

    The El Paso suspect, who confessed to the mass shooting last week, claimed in the document he posted to be defending against a “Hispanic invasion of Texas.” The words “invasion” and “invaders” appear six times in the text, a stark parallel to the language heard on conservative television and talk radio today.

    Edited from: “How The El Paso Killer Echoed The Incendiary Words Of Conservative Media Stories”

    THE NEW YORK TIMES, 8/11/19

    1. Regarding Above:

      According to N.Y. Times, research, the language of rightwing media has evolved since Trump first campaigned for president. Words like ‘invasion’, with regards to undocumented immigrants, have definitely surged.

      This piece also reminds us that Trump’s relationship with rightwing media is essentially a closed information loop where it is frequently difficult to discern ‘who’ is influencing ‘who’. Trump seems to function as an extension of rightwing media. And likewise rightwing media functions as an extension of Trump’s White House.

      1. Peter – did the NYT forget when Obama was texting messages to tv shows or calling them in the morning to keep them on point? The NYT is the publishing house for the DNC right now. I am not sure we should take this article at face value.

        1. Paul, during the 2016 campaign the N Y Times coverage of Hillary was mostly negative. So I don’t what the hell you’re talking about. It sounds like one of those snippy comments loyal Trumpers are supposed to make.

    2. Peter – so the NYTimes is now blaming the dictionary for conservative media stories. How low they have fallen.

  8. SCALISE SHOOTER IS BERNIE SANDERS SUPPORTER
    SUSPECT IN CONGRESSIONAL SHOOTING WAS BERNIE SANDERS SUPPORTER, STRONGLY ANTI-TRUMP
    CNN INVESTIGATES
    (CNN)James T. Hodgkinson, the man identified as shooting a Republican member of congress and four others on Wednesday morning, was a small business owner in Illinois who defined himself publicly by his firm support of Bernie Sanders’ progressive politics — and his hatred of conservatives and President Donald Trump.
    This is based on CNN’s review of Hodgkinson’s Facebook profiles, public records, and three years of impassioned letters to his local newspaper.
    “Trump is a Traitor. Trump Has Destroyed Our Democracy. It’s Time to Destroy Trump & Co.” he posted on his personal Facebook page on March 22.
    “Republicans are the Taliban of the USA,” he posted in February.
    Hodgkinson, 66, was married and lived in Belleville, Illinois. He started his own company, JTH Inspections, in 1994 and conducted home inspections and mold/air-quality testing.
    But he quit that job on New Year’s Eve last year, according to one of his two Facebook profiles. Illinois state records show that he dissolved his company on January 10.
    Federal law enforcement identified Hodgkinson as the shooter who attacked Rep. Steve Scalise, a congressional staffer and members of the congressional police force, Wednesday morning in Alexandria, Virginia. Hodgkinson died following a gun battle with police, authorities said.
    His politics
    Hodgkinson’s online presence was largely defined by his politics. For example, his public Facebook posts date back to 2012 and are nearly all about his support for liberal politics. He was passionate about tax hikes on the rich and universal health care.
    In the past year, most of his Facebook posts consisted of signed petitions on Change.org with titles such as: “Bernie — please run no matter what;” “Hillary Rodham Clinton should concede the nomination to Bernie Sanders;” and “Healthcare for all Americans.”
    In one public post on May 24, he signed a petition to “Stop the NEXUS Pipeline” in Michigan and Ohio. After Hodgkinson’s Facebook profiles were discovered by news reporters, they were updated to prevent public access.
    On Wednesday, Senator Sanders publicly acknowledged that Hodgkinson had volunteered for his presidential campaign last year, but he denounced the violence as “despicable.”
    Hodgkinson’s own descriptions on social media portray him as an avid consumer of political shows. His favorite television shows were listed as “Real Time with Bill Maher;” “The Rachel Maddow Show;” “Democracy Now!” and other left-leaning programs.
    His favorite movie? The documentary “Inequality for All,” featuring progressive economist Robert Reich.
    He had also joined several anti-GOP Facebook groups, including “Terminate The Republican Party;” “The Road to Hell Is Paved With Republicans;” and “Join The Resistance Worldwide!!”
    Public records that align with the alleged shooter’s name and personal details also match the descriptions on Hodgkinson’s Facebook profile: his business, location, wife, and wife’s employer.
    Federal Election Commission records show Hodgkinson donated $18 to Bernie Sanders’ presidential campaign through the fundraising platform ACT Blue in 2015 and 2016.
    Hodgkinson appears to have written more than a dozen letters to the Belleville News-Democrat, a local paper, from 2010 to 2012. One of the final letters from Hodgkinson, in July of 2012, called for President Obama’s re-election and to “vote all Republicans out of Congress.”
    In the letters, he wrote extensively about income inequality and called repeatedly for higher taxes on the rich.
    Hodgkinson also engaged with his own representative. Congressman Mike Bost said in a statement that Hodgkinson contacted his office 10 times in recent months with complaints about the Republican’s stance on health care and his voting record.
    Past run-ins with police
    A police report in Illinois also details an incident in 2006 with Hodgkinson’s daughter and her friends — one that involved a gun. When Hodgkinson’s daughter was at a female friend’s home, he and his wife allegedly tried to take her away from there.
    The report says Hodgkinson resorted to dragging his daughter out of her friend’s car, slashing her seatbelt, and punching his daughter’s friend in the face.
    The young woman’s boyfriend later confronted Hodgkinson, and Hodgkinson pulled out his shotgun, hit the younger man in the face with the wooden stock of the gun, then fired a single shot that missed, according to police. Hodgkinson was charged with two counts of battery, aggravated discharge of a firearm, criminal damage to a motor vehicle and two counts of domestic battery. None of the three victims showed up in court, so the case was dismissed later that year.
    Another, more recent incident, occurred three months ago. Deputies with the St. Clair Sheriff’s Office were called when locals heard “shots fired” in a residential neighborhood, according to police records. Deputies found Hodgkinson shooting a hunting rifle. But because he had properly registered himself as a firearms owner with the state of Illinois, deputies merely advised him to shoot safely.
    ‘Unacceptable behavior’
    For a time, Hodgkinson worked as an independent subcontractor doing lead paint removal for the St. Clair County’s housing rehabilitation and weatherization program, according to county board chairman Mark Kern.
    But he was fired as an independent contractor in 2003 from the St. Clair County Intergovernmental Grants Department for “unacceptable behavior,” Kern said. He declined to elaborate on the incident.
    Hodgkinson came back in 2012 and sought paperwork to be reinstated as an independent contractor but he never returned the paperwork.
    “There were enough employees that were still there that remembered him. The situation still stood from ’03 and he would not have been allowed back into the program,” Kern said.
    His views on Scalise
    On Facebook in 2015, Hodgkinson made at least one comment about the Republican congressman he is accused of eventually attacking in person.
    “Here’s a Republican that should Lose His Job, but they Gave Him a Raise,” Hodgkinson said of Scalise, pointing to a cartoon about the congressman.
    The cartoon — which featured Scalise addressing a racist crowd of members of the Klu Klux Klan — referenced how Scalise had been caught speaking to a white supremacist group more than a decade earlier when he was a state legislator in Louisiana.
    The guns
    Federal agents are now tracing the origins of the two firearms recovered at the scene of the crime: an SKS 7.62×39 rifle (made in China) and a 9-millimeter pistol, according to a law enforcement source. It is believed Hodgkinson shot at the politicians and staffers with the SKS rifle.
    It is unclear how Hodgkinson obtained his firearms. But he did have a legal right to own them.
    Hodgkinson had an Illinois firearm identification card and a concealed carry license in the state, which would have allowed him to legally obtain a weapon in Illinois, according to a local law enforcement official who requested anonymity.
    Illinois tracks firearm owners — but not their weapons. The state does not require firearm owners to register their firearms, according to the Law Center to Prevent Gun Violence. CNN has filed a public records request to obtain records of Hodgkinson’s firearm identification card.
    However, Hodgkinson had no hunting permits in Illinois, according to Illinois Department of Natural Resources.
    His recent whereabouts
    In recent months, Hodgkinson had been living out of a white cargo van in Alexandria on a block that borders the baseball field, according to the FBI. Former Alexandria Mayor Bill Euille told CNN he had regular encounters with Hodgkinson at a YMCA near the field where Euille exercises.
    Hodgkinson would ask the mayor for restaurant and bar recommendations within walking distance of the facility. Euille said the man appeared to be living out of a gym bag with all his possessions.
    Stephen Brennwald, a 57-year old trial attorney who also works out at the YMCA, said he regularly saw Hodgkinson there in recent weeks, always on his laptop. “He didn’t fit into our gym at all. I never once saw him work out, never once saw him in workout clothes,” Brennwald said.
    Hodgkinson also hung out on a bench in the park by the baseball field, nearby residents said.
    Alison Manson would steer her one-year-old daughter away from him.
    “I just thought he looked homeless,” she said. “He had a lot of bags with him.”
    Alison’s husband, George, said he sometimes tried to say hello to Hodgkinson. He would not respond.
    “He didn’t seem scary,” George Manson said, “he just seemed out of it.”

  9. Code breakers needed

    Guess who is Thorny Rose & Wolf Man? ….Had something to do with expense accounts & ……..

  10. Peter, I have to laugh at your ignorance along with your memory. JB calls himself Say for a reason far beyond your abilities to understand.

        1. I don’t think that Hill bothers to read the comments.
          Just as well.
          He may find something he disagrees with, and robotically spout “Fox News” or “right wing media bubble” instead of actually replying to a comment.
          After pulling that stunt hundreds of times, he might fear that it could be over used.

  11. “How the El Paso Killer Echoed the Incendiary Words of Conservative Media Stars”

    https://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2019/08/11/business/media/el-paso-killer-conservative-media.html

    Excerpt:

    “Fox goes out and looks for stuff that is inherently on fire and foments fear and anger,” Mr. Cameron added.

    The use of “invasion” and “invaders” has also surfaced on outlets away from right-wing media. The Times review of demonizing terms for immigrants found a spike in such terms in 2018 on CNN and MSNBC, but almost exclusively in the context of reporting how leading conservatives had been using such language.

    Fox News, it should be noted, is not monolithic. While its prime-time lineup of Mr. Carlson, Sean Hannity and Ms. Ingraham is devoted to right-wing commentary, some of the network’s news reporters, like the anchor Shepard Smith, have taken pains to refute misleading language about migrants. Chris Wallace, the “Fox News Sunday” host, recently grilled the White House chief of staff, Mick Mulvaney, about the racism inherent in Mr. Trump’s critical remarks about Baltimore.

    Days after the El Paso massacre, Mr. Carlson said on-air that white supremacy was “actually not a real problem in America” and likened it to a “hoax.” His words ignited widespread criticism, including from fellow conservative commentators like Erick Erickson and a Fox News weekend anchor, Arthel Neville.

    The next night, Mr. Carlson returned to his show and urged his critics to “calm down,” warning about the roiling divisions in the country, before announcing that he was leaving on a vacation that he and Fox News said had been previously planned.

    1. The El Paso killer also stated that the country needed universal income, and that corporations were destroying the environment. He said that millions of people were going to need to be killed in order for there to be enough benefits to support everyone, and to save the environment. The other reason was racism.

      When the media blames Fox News or Trump for the El Paso shooter, they conveniently ignore all of the Leftism in his rambling manifesto. It is also not AOC’s fault that he thought something had to be done right away to save the environment, with her 12 years till doom rhetoric. Nor is it Bernie’s fault, with his universal income, or Elizabeth Warren’s fault for anticapitalist sentiment. Nor is it Republicans’ fault for pointing out the problems with illegal immigration.

      However, it is nice to see you quote an article discussing how right leaning Fox News includes Democrat perspectives, although it did not mention the Democrats they include on the show, such as Donna Brazile.

      1. Karen might have a point of there was some identifiable characteristic in the ElPao shooters actions indicating an environmental or guaranteed income motivation. There isn’t. There is the fact that he drove 400 miles from his home – and presumably not an environmental or equal income paradise – to a border town which is 85% Latino, and in his eyes part of the invasion his leader called out.

        1. So, the El Paso shooter took the time to write pages of a manifesto outlining his various reasons for murder, but you choose to disregard any that might be detrimental to the Left.

          That’s politicizing a mass shooting.

          His philosophies were mixed. Based on his own manifesto, which I posted earlier in its entirety, he was a racist eco terrorist, out to kill people to drive Latinos back across the border, easing the strain on the benefits structure, and to help save the environment.

          He also stated in his manifesto how he came to this conclusion before Trump was elected.

          It is disturbing how many people use the killing of innocent people to make political hay. They blame a president for ideas that were formed prior to 2016, and they do not blame Democrats for giving him the idea that if we don’t do something drastic, the world will end in 12 years, or that there is not enough money funding the benefits structure.

          This was not Trump’s, Pelosi’s, AOC’s, Bernies, or Warren’s fault. For example, if anyone states the obvious, that our benefits structure has difficulty taking care of people, that is not the reason why someone would go shoot people to lessen the load.

          1. Karen ignores the evidence which clearly shows the motivation for the El Paso shooter. He didn’t drive to El Paso to make a statement about guaranteed incomes or the environment.

            I understand Karen’s need to avoid responsibility for the a..hole she continues to support but her faulty reasoning is clear and obvious.

            1. Actually, Anon, I am using all the evidence, rather than politicizing it. I did not ignore his mixed ideologies, his comments about Republicans and Democrats, or only claim his motivation was the source that benefited a cause.

              I even linked the full manifesto so that people could read it and decide for themselves, rather than depend upon the snippets of information the media provides to shape a narrative.

              Ignoring the evidence is when you ignore motivations that undermine your argument.

              You, however, have dismissed everything the shooter wrote that displeased you.

              I wrote that I do not blame anyone on either side of the aisle for the mixed ideologies driving his murder spree.

              You dismissed motivations that did not suit you, and blamed Trump, completely ignoring the fact that he formed these opinions prior to his election and named his sources. And yet, you complain about hate and the incitement of violence.

              1. Let me spell it out for Karen who’s willful ignorance about her low life scumbag of a leader has blinded her to any facts casting blame on him..

                There is nothing in the shooters act which reflects a goal of guaranteed incomes or environmentalism.

                There is the fact that shooter drove 400+ miles form his home to a location on the border and known for a high Mexican population to kill people. That is consistent with his goal, which he shares with Karen’s leader, of stemming a perceived invasion of Latinos.

                I don’t mind beating up Karen with facts all day if she wants to do this again.

                1. i pointed out lasts week how certain influential “Racists” from 100 years ago like Madison grant were deeply involved in conservationism and socially progressive ideas . Grant sat on the board of trustees for the American Museum of Natural History and other eminent institutions at the time.

                  there is a thread of that which has persisted with the development of ecology., but, applied to humans.

                  https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Carrying_capacity

                  “The carrying capacity of a biological species in an environment is the maximum population size of the species that the environment can sustain indefinitely, given the food, habitat, water, and other necessities available in the environment. In population biology, carrying capacity is defined as the environment’s maximal load,[1] which is different from the concept of population equilibrium. Its effect on population dynamics may be approximated in a logistic model, although this simplification ignores the possibility of overshoot which real systems may exhibit.

                  Carrying capacity was originally used to determine the number of animals that could graze on a segment of land without destroying it. Later, the idea was expanded to more complex populations, like humans.[2] For the human population, more complex variables such as sanitation and medical care are sometimes considered as part of the necessary establishment. As population density increases, birth rate often increases and death rate typically decreases. The difference between the birth rate and the death rate is the “natural increase”. The carrying capacity could support a positive natural increase or could require a negative natural increase. Thus, the carrying capacity is the number of individuals an environment can support without significant negative impacts to the given organism and its environment.”

                  here’s a clue to grasp the link:

                  “invasive migratory species” and population overshoot and carrying capacity. all can be applied to more than just rabbits, asian carp, and kudzu

                  there is also the field of evolutionary psychology aka sociobiology, but that’s another topic

          2. In a charged atmosphere where one ‘faction’ hardly a party any more so ‘group of factions’ might work who are fighting for their very existence and all of them losing it’s not unusual to find op stuff by the ton which has the start and finish written with the rest filled in from standard fare having not much to do with anything even close to proven facts

            Once printed they are regurgitated and that’s an end to it until they are hauled out for the next specious go round. I recall seeing false information in a number of media sources which blamed not El Paso but places to the west such as Tucson and to the east.

            They all had two things in common. The purpose was to throw dirt on one single individual. The second was they were all in the rhetoric of a group which is on it’s last legs and each wanna be next big cheese wanted the top spot.

            Maybe a third as none of them were worth consideration. In 2016 we really didn’t know how easy it was going to be to fracture and splinter the left or to watch it run rabbit run. I doubt our military is going to have to do much to uphold it’s Oath of Office if the time comes but until then

            The Constitutional Centrists should remember the biggest weapon is the vote. 40% last time we should start thinking of going for fifty one. Do that right the rest falls in to place.

    2. It isn’t the right wing you have to worry about nor the left.

      Nor conservatives nor liberals

      It’s Constitutionalists vs Socialists.

      Nowhere iin our Oath of Office is the second word mentioned.

  12. “Now let’s take up the minorities in our civilization, shall we? Bigger the population, the more minorities. Don’t step on the toes of the dog-lovers, the cat-lovers, doctors, lawyers, merchants, chiefs, Mormons, Baptists, Unitarians, second-generation Chinese, Swedes, Italians, Germans, Texans, Brooklynites, Irishmen, people from Oregon or Mexico. The people in this book, this play, this TV serial are not meant to represent any actual painters, cartographers, mechanics anywhere. The bigger your market, Montag, the less you handle controversy, remember that! All the minor minor minorities with their navels to be kept clean. Authors, full of evil thoughts, lock up your typewriters. They did. Magazines became a nice blend of vanilla tapioca. Books, so the damned snobbish critics said, were dishwater. No wonder books stopped selling, the critics said. But the public, knowing what it wanted, spinning happily, let the comic books survive. And the three-dimensional sex-magazines, of course. There you have it, Montag. It didn’t come from the Government down. There was no dictum, no declaration, no censorship, to start with, no! Technology, mass exploitation, and minority pressure carried the trick, thank God. Today, thanks to them, you can stay happy all the time, you are allowed to read comics, the good old confessions, or trade journals.”
    ― Ray Bradbury, Fahrenheit 451

    1. There are about 16,000 homicides in this country. About 2% are police killings, and the vast majority of these are of people who got themselves in the soup by being witlessly noncompliant. I’m sorry Mr. Whitehead had degenerated into a crank in his old age.

      1. I’d love to see you take it up with John Whitehead ‘This is absurd x XI’.

        Excerpt:

        Here’s what we’ve learned about the government’s gun violence since Ferguson, according to The Washington Post: If you’re a black American, you’ve got a greater chance of being shot by police. If you’re an unarmed black man, you’re four times more likely to be killed by police than an unarmed white man. Most people killed by police are young men. Since 2015, police have shot and killed an average of 3 people per day. More than 2,500 police departments have shot and killed at least one person since 2015. And while the vast majority of people shot and killed by police are armed, their weapons ranged from guns to knives to toy guns.

        Clearly, the U.S. government is not making America any safer.

        Indeed, the government’s gun violence—inflicted on unarmed individuals by battlefield-trained SWAT teams, militarized police, and bureaucratic government agents trained to shoot first and ask questions later—poses a greater threat to the safety and security of the nation than any mass shooter.

        According to journalist Matt Agorist, “mass shootings … have claimed the lives of 339 people since 2015… [D]uring this same time frame, police in America have claimed the lives of 4,355 citizens.”

        That’s 1200% more people killed by police than mass shooters since 2015.

        (It’s sounds like ‘TIA…’ is an old ‘crack.’)

        1. “I’d love to see you take it up with John Whitehead ‘This is absurd x XI’.”

          DSS, this sounds like Diane when she called herself Diane just a year ago. I argued with the statistics she brought to the table and used. After a lengthy discussion of many many posts she finally said the following:

          “Allan, I made a horrible mistake with the number I gave you. I asked my son to check my work. He caught the error and figured out how I made it. The statement ‘sworn officers are safer than we’ is, in fact, egregiously false. My son gave me the correct numbers. Here they are. … I am terribly sorry and very embarrassed by my stupid mistake. You we’re right. I am wrong.” Since then she has made mistake after mistake without admission.

          1. This guy “Allan” should take it up with Whitehead, as well. I have no idea who this “Diane” person is.

            1. “This guy “Allan” should take it up with Whitehead, as well. I have no idea who this “Diane” person is.”

              Too bad. you hide yourself amongst the anonymous personalities instead of maintaining one personality but then you complain. You sound like Diane and your arguments are similar to hers with regard to the police. I quoted just one of your statements but if you choose not to take credit for your foolishness, I understand, because of what it makes you look like.

              I have proof that you are Diane. Though the proof is not absolutely the best it is better than the proof you can provide that you are not Diane.

              1. “I have proof that you are Diane.”

                Ah, no you don’t. I’m not Diane, so you can’t have proof that I am. But you’re gonna believe what you wanna believe, it would seem.

          2. The figures in the quote are completely wrong. A white person is more likely to be shot by police than a black person. A police officer is more likely to be killed by a black suspect than a white one.

            Why does everything always have to be about race in the Left? White people are more likely to be killed by other white people, and black people are more likely to be killed by other black people, according to the statistics.

            It is also wrong to assume that if someone black was shot, it was racist. So many assumptions, so few facts.

            The result of all the Leftist anti-cop rhetoric is now people dump buckets of water on cops doing their jobs. Maybe one day it won’t be water. This is using a false narrative to encourage violence and resistance against the police.

            Don’t want to get in a fight with police? Then obey their instructions, and save your complaints for the watch commander, and an internal audit.

            https://youtu.be/OEvMc-K8XHY

            1. “By the numbers: US police kill more in days than other countries do in years”

              “The Guardian has built the most comprehensive database of US police killing ever published.
              Compare our findings to those from the UK, Australia, Iceland and beyond”

              https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2015/jun/09/the-counted-police-killings-us-vs-other-countries

              https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/ng-interactive/2015/jun/01/the-counted-police-killings-us-database

              1. Anonymous – there is only one question in a police shooting: Was it justified? It does not matter what is going on thousands of miles away, in another country, or what other people’s interactions entail.

                Was the shooting justified?

                One of our friends is a cop. He worked a gang beat. Therefore, he shot more people than a cop who worked in Beverly Hills. One time, he was chasing a gang member, when the man turned and opened fire upon him. The cop was grazed by a bullet and returned fire. He was white. The gang member was black. It was a justified shooting. Race quite obviously had zero to do with the shooting. There were more police shootings in East LA than there was in Beverly Hills. Evidence of racist cops? Obviously not. But coyly comparing police shootings to people unfamiliar with the areas and crime rates would fool some people. Most British police do not even carry firearms, and depend upon calling a firearm specialist in an emergency, so obviously less British police shoot criminals. They just get stabbed instead. Were you to remove all firearms from Los Angeles cops, and tell them to go patrol gang areas, they would just all die. Use some common sense, even if a journalist did not.

                Promoting the false narrative that cops are racist preying upon black people encourages even more violence against cops, as well as resisting arrest.

                1. Kurtz said: “i posted this three times before and it was always ignored. you guys are fake”

                  No. We’re busy.

                    1. Kurtz,

                      not too busy to trot out the same bs again which is contrary to facts

                      “hands up dont shoot” etc etc
                      _____

                      LOL. Get over yourself.

                2. Apologies? I don’t think so, but I’m willing to look at and consider the data. Thanks for posting the article.

                  Excerpt:

                  KASTE: Lorie Fridell is a criminologist as well as a bias trainer. She says academics have been wrestling with this question for decades, and this latest paper is not about to settle things.

                  FRIDELL: The defenders of police, of course, will cherry-pick the studies that show no bias. And the other side will cherry-pick the ones that do. But we don’t have any definitive studies on this.

                  KASTE: She thinks people should be more open to the idea that bias and demographics can both play a role. And that’s something that the authors of the paper and their critics both seem to agree on.

                  The real question here is not whether race is a factor in police shootings, but when? Is it beforehand in all the things that might lead up to a shooting, such as drug laws or racial profiling? Or does it come down to the skin color of the individual cop holding the gun?

                  1. here is another take on the pertinent study. make of it what you will

                    https://www.economist.com/democracy-in-america/2019/07/24/white-cops-are-no-likelier-to-shoot-dead-african-americans-than-black-ones-are

                    I don’t dismiss the notion that there are racist cops. Of course there are. Nor that profiling is used even by cops who are not racist. Of course.

                    I think this conclusion is probably based on the fact that trained procedures in use of lethal force (shooting most of all) come down to very fast instinctual reactions inculcated into muscle memory based on physical cues like going for a weapon

                    mistakes happen of course but these mistakes will tend to happen with anybody of any race who makes a false move with a scared cop

                    that’s why i have always been super careful when i get pulled over for speeding. they will cap me just like anybody else if they are in fear of their life.

                    cops generally are not going to shoot somebody without the cues on which they are trained because they know good full and well the hell that will pay if they are wrong.

                    they are not angels and I am not a cop groupie. i am just making observations which are based on facts about training and procedures and the legal system and how it handles these things.

                    1. Thanks, Mr Kurtz. I’ll take a look.

                      I’m not sure that the title would have made it past a good editor, but maybe the article is better.

                      The title:

                      “White cops are no likelier to shoot dead African-Americans than black ones are”

                3. Kurtz, facts for the leftists run in one ear and leave through the other. Not only that but they are blind to how statistics are created.

                  1. Allan says: August 13, 2019 at 4:20 PM

                    “Kurtz, facts for the leftists run in one ear and leave through the other. Not only that but they are blind to how statistics are created.”

                    Worthless generalizations that add nothing to the dialogue.

                    1. Since Kurtz and others have provided this or similar information and the left acts as if it doesn’t exist then yes, in one ear and out the other. I don’t see facts from you that are in context and on target. Generaly what you copy is information that is conflated with too many things and thus is worthless to form any conclusions. About a year ago I went over this type of data finally getting an admission that the other person was wrong and embarrassed.

                  2. kurtz, you were presented with clear and irrefutable evidence that one of your assertions was unarguably false and still refused to accept it. I’m not sure you’re the person to make that statement.

                    PS You’re also a Trump fan. There are very few people in the universe as uninterested in or bound by facts in what he says as he. That means you aren’t either.

      2. whitehead has deteriorated some but i would not call him a crank. i used to find him pretty good. he’s slipped for sure

        1. If there is to be an honest look at statistics…….whether they are presented by Whitehead or anyone else…..that overview should include the percentage of cop killers who are black.
          When a group that is about 13% of the population accounts for about 40% of assaults and murders of cops, that, too, is significant.

          1. That’s sensible. Recall, however, that the current chairman of the Democratic National Committee said he went to law school because he was bad at math. Submit that’s a common problem among lawyers.

            1. I don’t think bad. i just think most were better at verbal skills. there is a correlation. if you can do verbal reasoning you should be able to do symbolic reasoning too, that’s always been what i thought but i am not a shrink. does that generally hold or not? dont know.

              it’s interesting and I would love to explore that notion and know more about it.

              i found these conversations, which I liked:

              https://www.quora.com/Is-there-a-correlation-between-IQ-and-math-skills

              https://www.quora.com/What-does-it-mean-to-have-a-high-verbal-IQ-and-low-performance-IQ-and-vice-versa

              my math was very good but my verbal was excellent. most of my classmates were just the same. if they had been as good at math as they were at words, they would have gone into STEM. a few of them did and then became lawyers with an eye towards IP practice which is great money and less stress.

              it’s sensible to try and develop your strongest assets.

              1. Joseph Stiglitz told an academic economist of my acquaintance that a great many policy debates at the White House when he worked there came down to disputes between economists and lawyers.

                1. huh. I had a business degree in undergrad so we had to do plenty of math and economics. i took some extra economics in the liberal farts school and it was all marxist. worthwhile, however, from current perspective

                  stiglitz very interesting work on information asymmetry. that’s a topic i find interesting and screening and from there into game theory. this interest is just for fun on my part

                  i was in chicagoland during law school and was hooked into a clique of well i guess you could call them libertarians, at the time. A few times we went to listen to Richard Epstein speak. Between Epstein and Judge Posner there are a lot of lawyers in Chicagoland and the Seventh circuit who take an interest in both law and economics.

                  I don’t know much about the kinds of lawyers who can’t do arithmetic because in my current work half the time we are pushing around figures in court. however, it’s simple stuff really, and never gets past simple algebra in complexity. I could have done all what we do now in my wheelhouse, in terms of math, back in sixth grade.

                  its true some lawyers cant even balance their checkbook., but i gather most people don’t bother these days

              2. Kurtz, if you ask enough lawyers you will find a sufficient number that decided to go to law school after being rejected from medical school. The reverse does not appear to be true.

                1. allan, that would be an uncivil question, so i wont be asking. i generally only want to tick lawyers off when somebody is paying me to do it.

                  in school i was not that close to most of my peers. one thing i can say is that a lot of the girls– my class was at least 60% women, nearer to 2/3; a lot of them were unmarried english majors continuing their “studies”

          2. This is a start point. Follow it from year to year and the different sources you’ll find .some useful information. On the other hand you can stay stupid. which is why you lost three years ago.

            http://www.policemisconduct.net/arguing-the-case-for-police-accountability-part-1/

            Arguing The Case For Police Accountability – Part 1

            May 9, 2010 @ 4:56 PM by David Packman

            In the years that I’ve been monitoring and researching the issue of police misconduct I’ve noticed some prevalent, and quite successful, arguments used by those who feel there is no need for improved police accountability and transparency and that police misconduct isn’t a problem worthy of attention.

            However, the statistics generated by the NPMSRP offer a useful counterpoint to these arguments, if they are understood and used correctly.

            One thing to understand about the NPMSRP statistics is that they do not point to any evidence that police misconduct is pervasive… that is, they do not indicate that all cops are bad. This is the first pitfall that people fall into when arguing the case for improved police accountability, the need to prove all, or even most cops are problematic isn’t necessary, nor is it reasonable.

            So, to start, let’s look at the most common argument used against police accountability and the counterpoint people should consider against it…

            The argument of small percentages

            Statistics in terms of police misconduct mean little without something with which to compare them with. The first thing a police officer or anti-police accountability debater will tell you in a debate is that officers who are caught doing something wrong are a very small percentage of the police population in the US.

            For example, I’ve seen people point to one of our daily reviews of police misconduct reports and say, “Look, 28 cases in one day! That’s a problem!” to which an antagonist will say “No it’s not, 28 officers is a very small number of the 800,000 police officers in the US!”

            Well, they are right, 28 out of 800,000 is a small percentage and nowhere near a majority of the police population in the US. In fact, our statistics indicate that just under 1000 per 100,000 police officers per year are involved in credible reports of police misconduct. Yes, that translates to under 1% of all police officers.

            (NOTE: We should mention that we base our statistics on misconduct by the estimated 712,492 state, county, and local sworn law enforcement officers per the 2008 UCR employment statistics, not the magical 800,000 number often quoted by law enforcement officers arguing against improved accountability.)

            But, as I said, that number means little unless you have a comparison point. None better exist than the numbers Americans use to guage how bad crime is in the US, the FBI/DOJ Uniform Crime Reporting statistics or UCR for short. The UCR tells us what portion of the US population is involved in alleged reported criminal acts per year, just like the NPMSRP stats that tell us how many officers are involved in alleged reported acts of police misconduct per year.

            So, what am I talking about?

            Making a point that police misconduct is a problem worth study is a matter of comparing the rates of police misconduct with the rate of crime in the US.

            Why?

            Because, as a percentage of population, criminal activity represents a relatively equally small percentage of the overall population in the US as does the rate of police misconduct… so if you believe that crime is a problem in the US worthy of trillions in tax fund expenditure, then surely police misconduct is worthy of study if it represents an equally large percentage of the police population.

            How So? Well, here’s some numbers taken from the 2008 UCR statistics and 12-months worth of statistics taken from the NPMSRP between April 2009 – March 2010 (a combination of our 2009 annual statistics and our Q1 2010 quarterly statistics):

            As you can see, when we examine violent crime statistics, law enforcement officers appear to be involved in violent crime in a comparable rate with the general population. 432 officers out of every 100,000 compared to 454.5 people out of every 100,000. So, roughly 0.43% vs 0.45%.

            Both seem like small numbers, don’t they? Yet most people would probably tell you that they are worried about the rate of violent crimes… but not police misconduct even though both occur at similar rates statistically.

            If you’re wondering about the homicide rates, “Homicide Charged” compares the number of alleged homicides in general population with the number of police officers actually charged with homicide or murder. The “Homicide” number compares the same general population statistic with the number of officers involved in questionable non-vehicular homicide deaths including deaths in custody as a result of excessive force that were not charged as homicides.

            The statistic for sexual assaults is the stunner for us though. 29.3 per 100,000 in the general population vs 73.3 per 100,000 for law enforcement officers. That would seem to catch people’s attention as a problem, but apparently it doesn’t.

            So, you see, it’s all a matter of context. Sure, .073% is a small percentage of the population of police officers in the US, but that number represents 522 officers per year and is a larger, by over 2x, ratio of the population of police than are the number of alleged sexual assailants in the US general population at .029%.

            So, the next time you find yourself challenged by a law enforcement officer who says that police misconduct isn’t a problem because it only represents a small percentage of the number of police officers in the US. Remember that it really does represent a small percentage but so does crime in the general population but that doesn’t stop people from worrying so much about it that they’ll spend a majority of their tax dollars to fight it.

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