Slander or Opinion? Claims Of Racism and Defamation Fly After Education Council Member Is Seen Bouncing Black Child On Lap

download-4A New York City education council meeting recent attracted national attention after one member of the council (and its past President), Robin Broshi, accused another member,  Thomas Wrocklage, of racism after he was seen in a zoom meeting bouncing a black child on his lap. The video below is rather breathtaking but the incident has led to countervailing claims of racism and slander.  As is often the case, we tend to jump on any novel torts claims and this is a good example of the tension between opinion and slander, particularly in such overheated (indeed radioactive) moments in public debates.  It is unfortunately an increasingly common legal question in today’s rage-filled politics. The video of his meeting has now been shown throughout the world.  However, it has some interesting elements as a pedagogical tool for understanding the underlying applicability of tort liability, or lack thereof.

 THE FACTUAL BACKGROUND

The entire 4-hour council meeting is available but here are the highlights. It began with references to a prior “ugly” meeting and a call for more civil discourse by President Maud Maron who notes that “it is possible to condemn racism and at the same time to extend grace and compassion to the people who disappoint you.” That hope however is quickly dashed whenCouncil member Eric Goldberg denounces her “hollow” statement as  “deny[ing her] culpability in creating an environment of division and divisiveness.”

That is when Broshi enters with a bang and refers to a letter campaign and adds:

“a member of this council was racist and I did nothing and I’m ashamed I did nothing and I can sit here during a public meeting and say I’m sorry, I made a mistake, I didn’t speak out verbally when multiple times during the meeting one of the members engaged in behavior that made me ache and hurt for the non-white people that were logged in.”

With that, the meeting was off to the races with allegations of racism and slander.

Ironically, it is Broshi who is then accused by Council Vice-President Edward Irizarry. Irizarry states:

“You, in your comfortable white world can tell us about how we ought to reach down and help the poor Latino, and help the poor black, condescendingly look at us as though we are inferior. Because never, do I see anyone, or any of these advocates, really in communion with these poor students that are not getting the education that they deserve… We don’t want handouts… Cosmetic diversity, that’s what you’re looking for, you’re not looking for true change. You’re not looking to really educate all of the people of this district.”

Broshi then denounces her own white supremacy:

“I want to apologize to you.  I want to acknowledge that calling out the one vote was an example of white privilege and it was an example of trying to silence the legitimacy of your space on this council . . . . There’s work — everyone has work to do and I have work to do.  I have 40 plus years of white supremacy I need to undo and that was unfair of me to make that point and I don’t want to silence your voice, and your voice has merit, Edward.”

It is then that it is clear that Wrocklage was being referenced as a racist earlier and denies the allegation but Broshi again refers to his “racist behavior” and his example of “white people exhibiting their power over people of color.”  She further notes “if you won’t even read a book about white fragility . . . I can’t sit here in a working  business meeting and educate you.” (This issue of the book was raised repeatedly: “Tom! I’ve explained it to you! You can Google, you could read a book!”. “Read Ibram X. Kendi! Read White Fragility! Read How to Talk to White People… It is not my job to educate you! You’re an educated white man! And you could read a book! And you can educate yourself!”).

Well you get the idea, but here is a clip:

This is the relevant transcript:

Morden: During our last meeting you were talking about someone’s friend on someone’s lap when there were actual kids who were saying there are racist acts in your school! Sad! You are sad! But today you want to talk about…

Broshi: Ben!…It hurts people when they see a white man bouncing a brown baby on their lap and they don’t know the context! That is harmful! It makes people cry! It makes people log out of our meeting! They don’t come here! They don’t come to our meetings! And they give me a hard time because I’m not vocal enough! And I’m not trying to be a martyr! I’m trying to illustrate to you that you think I’m a f**k–excuse me–you think I’m a social justice warrior! And you think I’m being patronizing and I’m getting pressure for not being enough of an advocate! And I take that to heart and that hurts me! And I have to learn to be a better white person!

Wrocklage: I would like to know before this meeting adjourns how having my friend’s nephew on my lap was hurtful to people and was racist. Can you please explain?

Broshi: Tom! I’ve explained it to you! You can Google–you can read a book! Read [inaudible]! Read White Fragility! Read How to Talk to White People! It’s not my job to educate you! You’re an educated white man! You could read a book and you could learn about it yourself!

Others then join in on attacking Wrocklage for having a black child on his lap.  Emily Hellstrom joins in attacking Wrocklage and demands an apology:

“You had a smirk and a grin on your face when you pulled that child in… you in a joking tone, said ‘my living room is integrated right now’… as if, as if, the hundreds of years of first slavery and then segregation were nothing, would go poof, because you happened to have a black friend… So the fact that—and perhaps you didn’t intend it to be racist—and that does not matter, actually, was racist… You need to look deep inside and say ‘wow, I hurt a lot of people.’ Whether you intended to or not, you did.”

Wrocklage insisted “I was also laughing at the absurdity of the cognitive dissonance of people like you. People exactly like you, who are telling people of colour how they should feel. How absurd that is.”

However, Council member Shino Tanikawa also demanded an apology from Wrocklage:

“If you’re not willing to read then you’re not doing the work. And this is work we all have to do. And you can disagree with people but this is not an ideological difference. This is how black and indigenous people of color see the world. And it’s not for you and me—East Asian affluent person–to deny that reality. And we have to get on board, we have to understand what these people are telling us, we have to do the work, we have to get uncomfortable. But I don’t see some of you willing to do that uncomfortable work.

…When somebody tells you that you did something wrong, the first thing to do is reflect on that and then apologize, even if you don’t agree, you apologize… That is what grown-ups do.”

That is just a part of the meeting, but it raises a common question for meetings and protests where such allegations fly of racism and other forms of bias.

PRIVATE CITIZEN OR PUBLIC FIGURE?

The first step is to determine the status of these council members. Until this meeting became an international sensation, none of these individuals were high visibility individuals.  However, they are council members who appear at public meetings, including current or former officers of the council.  A claim could be made that they are all at least limited public figures, if not full public figures, due to their thrusting themselves into the public eye. There is however a claim to be made that participating in such public meetings should not cause a private citizen to trigger the higher burdens of being a public figure.  This video has gone viral but, until it did so, this was a small educational council meeting with an open mike.  That threshold issue could create some very interesting arguments over the tipping point for public figures.

This issue will turn on Gertz v. Robert Welch, Inc., 418 U.S. 323, 352 (1974) and its progeny of cases.  The Supreme Court has held that public figure status applies when  someone “thrust[s] himself into the vortex of [the] public issue [and] engage[s] the public’s attention in an attempt to influence its outcome.” A limited-purpose public figure status applies if someone voluntarily “draw[s] attention to himself” or allows himself to become part of a controversy “as a fulcrum to create public discussion.” Wolston v. Reader’s Digest Association, 443 U.S. 157, 168 (1979).  Given the earlier controversy from the preceding meeting and the letter campaign referenced by Broshi, a court could find that Wrocklage is a limited public figure but there is a room for challenge on this point.

THE STANDARD

Under New York law, Wrocklage must show (1) a “defamatory statement of fact concerning the plaintiff; (2) publication to a third party; (3) fault [(actual malice for public figures)]; (4) falsity of the defamatory statement; and (5) special damages or per se accountability (defamatory on its face).” Biro v. Conde Nast, 883 F. Supp. 2d 441, 446 (S.D.N.Y. 2012).

The standard for defamation for public figures and officials in the United States is the product of a decision decades ago in New York Times v. Sullivan. Ironically, this is precisely the environment in which the opinion was written and he is precisely the type of plaintiff that the opinion was meant to deter. The Supreme Court ruled that tort law could not be used to overcome First Amendment protections for free speech or the free press. The Court sought to create “breathing space” for the media by articulating that standard that now applies to both public officials and public figures. In order to prevail, West must show either actual knowledge of its falsity or a reckless disregard of the truth. The standard for defamation for public figures and officials in the United States is the product of a decision decades ago in New York Times v. Sullivan. Ironically, this is precisely the environment in which the opinion was written and he is precisely the type of plaintiff that the opinion was meant to deter. The Supreme Court ruled that tort law could not be used to overcome First Amendment protections for free speech or the free press. The Court sought to create “breathing space” by articulating that standard that now applies to both public officials and public figures.

THE ALLEGED DEFAMATION

At various points, it is clear that Wrocklage is being called an effective racist, which Wrocklage objects to as slander.  There is no question that an allegation of racism is a serious matter but Broshi could challenge the basis for claiming a per se category of defamation.  New York recognizes four categories: “statements (i) charging plaintiff with serious crime; (ii) that tend to injure another [plaintiff] in his . . . trade, business, or profession; (iii) that plaintiff has a loathsome disease; or (iv) imputing unchastity to a woman.” Liberman v. Gelstein, 605 N.E.2d 344, 347 (N.Y. 1992). This is not an allegation of a crime, but it certainly would injure the professional reputation of Wrocklage to be labeled a racist.

Yet, a defamatory statement “must do more than cause discomfort or affront”; it must lead “reasonable minds” to “think the speech attributes odious or despicable characterizations to its subject.” Chau v. Lewis, 771 F.3d 118, 127 (2d Cir. 2014). In this case there are countervailing statements that Wrocklage is being accused of acting like a racist rather than being a racist.  For example, consider Broshi’s later comment:

“Integration is a system. Tom I don’t know what to tell you, I know you believe you did nothing wrong, but you have a 100 people that told you—I am not calling you racist… I’m saying that was racist behavior. . . We are all capable of racist behavior. I am capable of racist behavior… I owned up to it in this meeting! Right now, when I apologized to Edward… And we should apologize when we offend people of color! When they get upset. When they say this is a harmful space, when they log out of a meeting immediately because they see white people exhibiting their power over people of color… If you can’t even read a book about White Fragility or Ibrahim X. Kendi, I can’t sit here in a working business meeting and educate you about the distinction between interpersonal racism and systemic racism.”

 

For Wrocklage, the distinction between acting racist and being racist is a precious one.  He is still being denounced as effectively or actually a racist.

That however leads to the next complication: opinion or hyperbole.  The Supreme Court actually dealt with such an overheated council meeting in Greenbelt Cooperative Publishing Association v. Bresler, 398 U.S. 6 (1970), in which a newspaper was sued for using the word “blackmail” in connection to a real estate developer who was negotiating with the Greenbelt City Council to obtain zoning variances. The Court applied the actual malice standard and noted:

It is simply impossible to believe that a reader who reached the word “blackmail” in either article would not have understood exactly what was meant: It was Bresler’s public and wholly legal negotiating proposals that were being criticized. No reader could have thought that either the speakers at the meetings or the newspaper articles reporting their words were charging Bresler with the commission of a criminal offense. On the contrary, even the most careless reader must have perceived that the word was no more than rhetorical hyperbole, a vigorous epithet used by those who considered Bresler’s negotiating position extremely unreasonable.

Of course, calling someone repeatedly a racist is more than simply “rhetorical hyperbole.” However, it is also part of a public debate that is heavily laden with protected political speech.  If Broshi can be sued for defamation in making such an allegation, it could chill political speech at a time when the entire nation is focused on our continuing struggle with racism.  This is her opinion of the actions of Wrocklage– an opinion that has been subjected to both worldwide criticism and support.

Yet, the Supreme Court has shown that there are limits to opinion as a defense as in Milkovich v. Lorain Journal Co., 497 U.S. 1 (1990). In that case, there was another inflammatory allegation stemming from a public meeting.  An Ohio high school wrestling coach sued over an opinion column alleging that he had lied under oath at a public hearing, saying that it was tantamount to an allegation of perjury.  The trial judge granted summary judgment on the ground that the assertion in the newspaper column was opinion.  The Court however rejected the defense in the case in 7-2 opinion written by Chief Justice William Rehnquist. The Court noted that “expressions of ‘opinion’ may often imply an assertion of objective fact”  and may inflict “as much damage to reputation” as factual claims. Moreover, some opinions are based on assertions that are “sufficiently factual to be susceptible of being proved true or false.”

I would submit that calling someone a racist is not one of those facts easily “susceptible of being proved true or false.”  Moreover, the risk to chilling political speech is too great, particularly when the meaning and systemic presence of racism is being debated throughout our society.

THE VERDICT

Thus, Wrocklage’s denouncing the slander is likely as rhetorical as the allegation of racism from a legal perspective.  That does not excuse any of these attacks, but the recourse for Wrocklage is to engage his critics in the court of public opinion, as he has with a global audience.

 

296 thoughts on “Slander or Opinion? Claims Of Racism and Defamation Fly After Education Council Member Is Seen Bouncing Black Child On Lap”

  1. The embedded video of the Council is tour de force of sorts. In my 50+ years as a labor and employment attorney I have been in intense negotiations with many unions as the principal spokesman for F.W. Woolworth, including the Teamsters both in NYC and Chicago, the Longshoremen in SFO, and others all throughout the nation. In those situations the employee bargaining committees were diverse in composition, all races and sexes, with a wide span of degrees of education and experience, and feelings often ran very high. There were strikes in some, one Teamster strike that lasted six weeks, and there was violence on picket lines, but not at the bargaining table. In the hundreds of meetings in which I participated I never once faced conduct even approaching that shown by some Council members, persons I presume to be “educated” individuals. They were, simply put, unhinged. The video clip depicts the polar opposite of reasoned discourse, and the offending council members’ conduct is inexcusable. They are probably too obtuse to recognize the error of their ways, an inbred condition probably caused by the lack of diversity of ideologies in their learning process.
    Legal issues aside, the Council members should be made to wear dunce caps as they write on blackboards, in cursive of course, “I will comport myself in a reasonable manner at all future Council meetings.”

    1. Union threats and strikes are an unacceptable abomination in a society of laws and in America under the Constitution. The only negotiation with labor would be to require members to perform assigned duties or vacate the premises. Labor law is unconstitutional. Congress can only modify the right to private property through the amendment process. The “help” cannot “claim or exercise dominion over” the private property of the owner. All workers enjoy a right to strike. All owners of private property enjoy a right to fire strikers and hire replacement workers. Unions have no authority over private property, the right to which is unqualified by the Constitution and, therefore, absolute. Union violence, whether at the “negotiating table” or elsewhere, constitutes criminal acts and must be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law.

      You arrive at “agreements” based on criminal violence…and you keep a straight face. Are sane and rational Americans, existing under the dominion of the Constitution, supposed to take your words seriously? The only actual negotiation which could possibly be estimated to be legitimate in the aforementioned scenario would resolve merely the prison where the union thugs would prefer incarceration. Can you name one American Founder who was a “union” advocate, leader, activist or zealot? For substantial remuneration, you negotiate with criminals who are violent communists and subvert and effectively nullify the U.S. Constitution. You enable. Congratulations, comrade.
      __________________________________________

      “[Private property is] that dominion which one man claims and exercises over the external things of the world, in exclusion of every other individual.”

      – James Madison

    2. You had serious objects in those labor negotiations. This woman had no serious objects. To meltdown is the whole point.

    3. Do you mind if I steal your dunce cap idea for the next meeting? I guess I’ll have to figure out how to do it virtually.

    1. SteveJ, Carlson is the a..hole who helped sell the Iraq War for W and now is questioning the patriotism of a woman who left 2 legs there serving in the military. What else would we expect from dirt like this?

      1. I heard about Duckworth. That was pretty recent. On the Iraq war, Carlson said it was a major mistake.

        1. Carlson supported the war for over a year on national TV. His later admitting this was a mistake is irrelevant to the fact that he was a cause of the war which ended up costing Duckworth her legs. He’s an a..hole who should STFU about the patriotism of others.

            1. Supporting the war on national TV for over a year as it was being debated ranks as causing the war. Dollars to donuts, most of you righties here supported it too, if not on national TV. In 10 years you’ll be pretending you didn’t support Trump either.

              1. Just because you are a hypocrite doesn’t mean everyone else is. Your use of multiple aliases along document your hypocricy even if you choose not to remember all of your conflicts. I respect people that are able to change their minds with sincerity.

                You are laughable and ignorant.

              2. “Supporting the war on national TV for over a year as it was being debated ranks as causing the war.”

                No, VOTING for the war ranks as causing the war. 3/4 of the senate including 1/2 of democrats voted for it.
                2/3 of the house including a large number of democrats voted for it.

                I have heard none of those admit error as Carson has.

                At the time I did NOT support the war against Iraq (I did support the war against Afghanistan), Bush’s premptive war doctrine was WRONG.

                I absolutely and fully supported getting rid of Sadam Husean – but not by invading a country that had not committed an act of war against the US.

                When we voted to go to war – as any patriotic american I supported our troops and hoped for the best.

                “Dollars to donuts, most of you righties here supported it too, if not on national TV.”
                I am sure many “righties” did – as did many lefties. if support for the Iraq war is the test – the overwhelming majority of americans on both sides FAILED. Only most libertarains consistently opposed the war in Iraq.

                Democratic support for Iraq did not melt away until it was clearly going badly.

                “In 10 years you’ll be pretending you didn’t support Trump either.”
                What does this even mean ? I do not support Trump now. I did not vote for him.

                But Just like when Obama was elected – I want to see him succeed as president – because I want to see the country succeed.

                Further – if you put a gun to my head and said I must pick Trump, Obama, Biden, or Clinton.
                There is only one possible outcome – Trump. He is the least bad choice of the 4.

                Finally, I do not expect perfection in our political leaders – whether I voted for them or not.
                Trump is not perfect. He has done many things wrong.
                But most of those he has been LESS wrong than Biden or Obama or Clinton.

                He has also gotten many things right.

              3. Absent a change 10 years from now I expect that those supporting Trump will be marched through town squares with signs arround there necks saying Capitalist roader and racist. while forced to make public confessions, before being marched to the gulags to die.

                I expect mt rushmore to be wiped clean, and all traces of the american revolution to be obliterated.

                As we sing the anthem of the people’s republic of Wakanda.

                And I expect you will be caring the pitch forks.

          1. Anon – Duckworth was a member of the IL National Guard (Sleep Well Tonight, We Sure Will) and her unit was deployed. It happens.

          2. The vast majority of this country supported the war at the time.
            The vast majority of people now claiming the war was wrong, have never admitted to being mistaken,

            The left pretends that they were lied to about the Nigerian yellow cake.
            But we all understood that was a pretext.

            I opposed invading Iraq at the time – whether they were building WMD’s or not – just as I would oppose invaliding Iran or NK just because they are building WMD’s.

            The Bush concept of preemptive war is immoral. Yet the majority of this country endorsed it 0 democrats and republicans alike.

            The war with afghanistan was justified – the Taliban provided protection and material assistance to Al Queda. We should have destroyed the Taliban and left. Nation building was something Bush ran AGAINST. It is not the role of the US.

            Iraq under Sadam was evil, But absent an act of war we were not justified in invading.

            What is right and what is wrong is not determined by our personal feelings about people.

            Bush – and those in congress who authorized the invasion of Iraq were morally wrong. That Sadam was a bad man is irrelevant. That they were “wink, wink, nod, nod” lied to is irelevant. Sadam had not committed an act of war.

            This is no different from the presumption by those on the left that Trump is a criminal because they do not like him or his policies.

            The collusion delusion has proven a FRAUD. It there was any justification of investigations into Trump at all, those justifications did not survive a cursory investigation – yet the investigations continued after the justifications were found fraudulent. ‘

            That is an actual crime, and actual abuse of power. Our government may not investigate people because it wants to.

            The problem with those on the left is they have no moral foundations.

      2. Just because someone lost two legs in a war doesn’t make them “patriotic.” They get no free pass to be a traitor to their country, for example, or to commit crime. Not saying Duckworth did either thing, but the idea that someone can’t be questioned at all (regarding patriotism or anything else) because of a disability is no different than saying they can’t be questioned because of race or anything else.

        1. DV, just because someone presumes to be a judge of the patriotism of others doesn’t make them so or even patriotic themselves, especially when they were responsible for a war which cost the legs of the person he now says was not. I think we can see that in this case frat boy Carlson has inappropriate respect for our military members who don’t agree with him.

          He’s a douche bag.

          1. Ignorant and laughable.

            Carlson is a leading voice trying to stop US involvement using troops as a form of foreign policy. He admits to a mistake which is understandable but you have advocated placing or keeping troops where Americans get killed and where such involvement can lead to greater involvement even where there was no existential threat to the US.

            Duckworth’s legs were lost but you don’t care about the legs of others as long as you can bash Donald J. Trump who will be reelected in 2020.

            You are a hypocrite

          2. Carlson has admitted his mistake on the War,

            Very few people especially on the left admit they supported the war.
            Even when there is plenty of public evidence.

            As do Duckworth – I can respect her past and still grasp that her criticism of Trump’s mt. Rushmore speech is bat $h!t crazy.

            Rep. Rangle was a genuine US war hero in Korea. He was part of the Battle of Chosen, and I beleive on the east side.
            Those fighting on the east of Chosen had a 100% casualty rate – everyone was killed or wounded. They were outnumbered more than 10:1, they were overrun multiple times, and yet they still managed an organized retreat. The wounded fighting against overwhelming odds to bring even more badly wounded home.

            That does not alter the fact that Rangle as a congressmen was corrupt.

            Duke Cunningham was also an american hero, and also a corrupt congressmen.

            We should give those who have sacrificed for the country the benefit of the doubt – not willful blindness.

    2. Which section of the Constitution was violated? Was it the one granting freedom of speech or the one which assured that “…the enumeration in the Constitution, of certain rights, shall not be construed to deny or disparage others retained by the people?” Please cite the constitutional section wherein opinions are proscribed. Where in the Constitution are superior rights and privileges granted to hyphenates?

      1. I don’t see that there was any Constitutional violation — by anybody. He’s certainly free to resign if he wants to. I doubt Carlson had to ask for it.

          1. I don’t think this guy was censored from any of the blogs he was posting on. And he’s free to say whatever he wants without getting arrested by the government.

            1. Yes, yes, free speech is a wonderful mechanism. Same with the disinfecting power of light and transparency. We all know hatred when we see it, it’s tiresome to keep being asked to believe that’s it’s hatred done in love.

            2. I was blocked on Twitter – which I would argue is now a public forum – by elected officials so that they could slander me with impunity. Does that work?

                1. A brilliant comment/question by Allan. /sarc

                  lol

                  Take some time, buddy. Step away from your keyboard. Leave the blog for a few days. Detox. You need help.

                  1. Should have said tweet because the tweets were likely outside of whatever immunity the state offers these groups.

                    I said Twit because you have littered the net with your Stupid comments, Brainless. You sound like the woman in the video yelling at Wrocklage. She didn’t seem to make any sense. Is she related to you?

    3. “The segments on the protests have been clueless.”

      IOW, they were dead on.

      You gave that away by your complete inability to clearly explain why in your opinion they were “clueless”.

      Which makes you the one who is completely clueless, or a propagandist spreading falsehoods.

  2. It’s bad, It’s terrible. But they never leave.

    They never leave.

    They keep on comin’.

    They never leave.

  3. A public demonstration like this meeting should clarify to reasonable men, why people of color are disgusted by having any of their affairs in the hands of liberal whites. Malcolm X knew it and Conservative and rational people know the same frustration and disgust..they insist on holding power and are peculiarly unfit to have it. They really need to stop electing these shallow morons to rule over them.

    1. Your use of the phrase “people of color” is an acknowledgement that colored people can never assimilate in America. Moses had the Israelite slaves out of Egypt before the ink was dry on their release papers. Oil and water cannot mix and require emulsifiers to force temporary and false commingling. In America the political emulsifiers are wholly unconstitutional generational welfare, affirmative action privilege, forced busing, quotas, unfair Fair Housing, discriminatory Non-Discrimination, social services, minimum wage, public housing, TANF, WIC, HAMP, HARP, Obamacare, etc., ad infinitum, ad nauseam.

      The profound irony is that “Crazy Abe” Lincoln told us so:

      “One of Lincoln’s most representative public statements on the question of racial relations was given in a speech at Springfield, Illinois, on June 26, 1857.6 In this address, he explained why he opposed the Kansas-Nebraska Act, which would have admitted Kansas into the Union as a slave state:

      ‘There is a natural disgust in the minds of nearly all white people to the idea of indiscriminate amalgamation of the white and black races … A separation of the races is the only perfect preventive of amalgamation, but as an immediate separation is impossible, the next best thing is to keep them apart where they are not already together. If white and black people never get together in Kansas, they will never mix blood in Kansas …’

      “Racial separation, Lincoln went on to say, “must be effected by colonization” of the country’s Blacks to a foreign land. “The enterprise is a difficult one,” he acknowledged,

      ‘but “where there is a will there is a way,” and what colonization needs most is a hearty will. Will springs from the two elements of moral sense and self-interest. Let us be brought to believe it is morally right, and, at the same time, favorable to, or, at least, not against, our interest, to transfer the African to his native clime, and we shall find a way to do it, however great the task may be.'”

    2. It’s not just “liberal whites”…just check out the Asian lady with short white hair. The madness on display is epic. We should all wake up to the danger, myself included.

  4. I’m sorry. I’m confused. Why would it hurt people to see a white person playing with a black baby? Why was that lady screaming hysterically about this “harmful” imagery?

    Is this like a virtue signaling melee, where everyone calls everyone else a racist, until there is a last one standing?

    We should stop normalizing racism against whites. All racism is wrong, regardless of what the target race is.

    Also, stop pretending like all black people think and vote the same, or should be punished if they step off the Democrat Plantation. Blacks are no more a homogenous group than whites. Blacks have different opinions, different lifestyles, interests, socioeconomic levels, and behaviors, just like other races. I have more in common with a black conservative than with any of these crazy white Liberals as the subject of this post. I would have more in common with a black person who rode horses, than with a white person who lived in a city. No one speaks for the blacks, like they’re just a monolithic group. They don’t need a Democrat Lorax to speak for them. They should be viewed as individuals who have myriad possibilities on character, accomplishments, interests, and politics.

    There is a trend to jump to conclusions, and then to defend their error in judgement. They should make it an Olympic sport. There have been multiple mobs formed over racist hate crimes…only to find out it was a hoax, or just a simple misunderstanding. In CA, there were two black men found dead, hanging in trees, in two completely different cities. People about lost their minds. There were massive protests. Kim Kardashian weighed in. People claimed that white supremacists were killing black people, hangin them out as a warning to others, and that the cops were in on it, and covering up for them. They just knew.

    Then surveillance video was found that showed the act of one of them tragically hanging himself. Then evidence was discovered that the other one hanged himself, too. It was all just jumping a few miles to conclusions. But no one seems to learn from this. They become even more sensitized to trigger even faster to the next wrong conclusion.

    How many people hear about these rumors and conjectures, but never learn the truth?

    Listen to Brandon Tatum explain a time when Don Lemon made sense about the problems plaguing the black community.

    https://youtu.be/k27qpQdV-Qk

    1. I’m sorry. I’m confused. Why would it hurt people to see a white person playing with a black baby? Why was that lady screaming hysterically about this “harmful” imagery?

      It wouldn’t. The woman is a nut. She either fancy it would or she thinks this is a good rhetorical power move.

            1. Young, Glenn Beck used to live on the West side of NYC. I spoke to him and asked him why he was moving to Texas. His response was chilling. He said he didn’t mind what people said to him but when in the park with his young children adults would walk up to the children and yell at them even when the father wasn’t sitting directly next to them.

              1. Waal, that’s the gleichschaltung These people cannot recognize any sphere of life might be immune to their political struggle. So, you have a**wipes yelling at Glenn Beck’s kids and lawfare harassment of the Boy Scouts and Hibernians courtesy the gay lobby.(Not to mention what’s been done to school curricula and jurisprudence). It’s wholly unnecessary. The question is, what do we do to restore the autonomy of different spheres of life? It’s not going to be pretty.

    2. +1 on your post Karen. I would note however that there are several regular posters here you couldn’t have helped but notice who regularly try to tie all black people to transgressions – real or imagined – by black individuals or groups. That is unarguably racist behavior and your calling them out when you see it would be welcomed by me.

      1. Book– You are the racist who said black people are born with inherent disadvantages but are good at jumping. I suppose the last part of your observation has something to do with basketball. Very racist, Book.

      1. Each of us is free to judge the image as we please.

        People are free to criticise you for that – even if i think the action was innoucous.

        But it was not relevant to the meeting you were a part of.

        Further – accusations of moral failure – defamation, require proof or they redound on the accuser.

        If you make false allegations – it is your integrity that is lost.

        There are few accusations worse than racism.

  5. Pelosi gets George Floyd’s name wrong…which democrat’s dementia is worse, Joke Biden, Nanny Pelosi, Pocahontas, Eccentric Emmet Sullivan or Obergruppenfuhrer Robert Mueller?

  6. As usual, the holding of an opinion on race, as an exercise of the freedom of thought and opinion, is erroneously and maliciously conflated with violence. Americans enjoy the freedom of thought, per the 9th Amendment, and Congress has no authority to deny the constitutional right and freedom of thought and opinion, and Congress has no power to mandate whom citizens accept and whom citizens reject; whom they like and whom they dislike. The communistic fascists must be neutralized and eliminated from America with extreme prejudice for the sake of the Constitution and American freedom.

    1. Like Mueller and all the communists’ (liberals, progressives, socialists, democrats, RINOs) hoaxes, this link goes nowhere.

  7. Four times, the American Founders established who may be an American citizen in their Naturalization Acts of 1790, 1795, 1798 and 1802.

    The American Founders, in 1788, restricted the vote to Male, European, 21 with 50 lbs. Sterling/50 acres.

    By design, turnout in the 1788 presidential election of George Washington was 11.6%.

    The criminal acts of Abraham Lincoln, his successors and subsequent progressives, socialists and communists were and are unconstitutional and illegitimate.

    The entire communist (liberal, progressive, socialist, democrat, RINO) American welfare state is unconstitutional whereas the 5th Amendment right to private property is absolute, Article 1, Section 8 restricts the power of Congress to tax only for “…general Welfare…” not individual welfare, charity or redistribution of wealth, and the same Article provides Congress the power to regulate only the value of money, the flow of commerce among States, Nations and Indian Tribes and land and naval Forces.

    The real America has a massive overabundance of corrective action yet to be taken.
    ___________________________________________________________________

    United States Congress, “An act to establish an uniform Rule of Naturalization,” March 26, 1790

    Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America, in Congress assembled, That any Alien being a free white person, who shall have resided within the limits and under the jurisdiction of the United States for the term of two years, may be admitted to become a citizen thereof…

  8. This may not present a cause of action in a court of law but it definitely is a cause for either home schooling or charter schools.

    1. Oh it does now. Another Community Education Council member accused me of being a teenage stalker and tweeted my firm to try to get me fired. I have enough now to pursue this in a court.

      1. Thomas Wrocklage – they may have reached the level of libel per se, depending on the state you are in.

            1. Thomas Wrocklage – Robert Barnes is defending the Central Park Karen, he would be a great advocate, if you could get him.

      2. Aren’t there some standards of conduct for the counsel itself ?

        I would presume that unsupported moral accusatiuons would violate those.

        Calling someone a racist or stalker without being able to prove it must have consequences.

  9. On the question of defamation, there is an interesting tension between a state’s desire to protect those who serve voluntarily on boards and commissions and cases such as this which cry out for some kind of relief. In Texas, the officers and board members of nonprofit corporations are given immunity from liability for any damage done by them in their corporate capacity (with some exceptions, usually bad faith). In the case of governmental boards, people serving on them usually have either governmental or sovereign immunity. I do not know whether the Council is private or governmental, but if New York law on this point is similar to Texas, then wouldn’t those who attacked Wrocklage have immunity from liability for defamation (or any other tort) assuming they were not acting in bad faith?

    1. Honest– As usual a well considered comment from you. It occurs to me there are other ways to make someone miserable than wasting time and money in fruitless lawsuits, or, perhaps, by engaging in fruitless suits. The process is the punishment. These reckless and evil accusations should stop.

    2. So our CEC is setup by NY state statute. However, they were acting in bad faith. They knew the details of what happened and ignored them to malign me for their own benefit.

  10. We’re really looking at two irreconcilable perspectives clashing here.

    One is postracial and is focussed on how individuals develop the social skills and problem-solving techniques to thrive in a postracial meritocracy.
    The postracial believes that rules of social etiquette be blind to racial/ethnic factors. The postracial is focussed on the present as prelude and opportunity gate to the future. The postracial is optimistic and generous in spirit, and willingly cedes full agency to others. This mindset is that of Wrocklage.

    Broshi is coming from a radical multiculturalist perspective, where people are to be first assigned a racial ID, then the rules of social etiquette branch according to the racial IDs of the actors. However, these rules are expansive and nebulous, and are constructed in the moment by the multiculturalist in manner that obliges deference of a member of an “oppressor” group to a member of an “oppressed” group. Essentially, the multiculturalist attempts to apply reverse racism as a core principle, awkward as it may be in some situations. The multiculturalist is obsessed with the injustices of the long-ago past, and keeps up an exaggerated pretense that little progress has been made — thus justifying the flipping of those ancient roles in the style of reverse racism. The multiculturalist is always looking for slights and minor offenses, but since the multicultural rulebook is non-verbal and made up on the spot, cannot explain in any detail what is expected of people in the future….it’s a punitive system.
    The multiculturalist goes looking for racism and consequently finds it everywhere he looks. He is not optimistic about the future.

      1. Thomas, as someone else commented, Prof Turley does not seem to read these comments but I am pretty sure he does look at emails to this address:

        jturley@law.gwu.edu

        Good luck.

        Does this thing seem to be winding down or will there be repercussions of one sort or another? Not having seen the controversial toddler knee bouncing. I was struck by the co-opting of the meeting for repeated personal attacks on you over seemingly benign, and at worst ambiguous behavior. I would expect the moderator to cut that off immediately and get back to the agenda, and if there was repercussions they should be toward her and your attackers.

        1. Thank you for your support and recommendation. Since that meeting people have contacted my firm insisting that I should be fired because of this incident. It is actually insane. They have called me a teenage stalker for responding to a college student on Twitter that called me a racist and they have constantly harassed me on Twitter.

          1. Are you saying that the attacks against you on Twitter were not from those in the meeting?

            Why don’t you provide the Twitter addresses of the comments?

  11. This is exactly why Trump voters will NOT reveal their voter preferences to any screwed up biased poll. Only to be labeled as a racists, etc. That is why many have taken the course of action to let you argue with each other, and watch the disintegration reveal itself in front of the world. Just like CHOP in Seattle, murder, drugs, rape, arson and property destruction finely overtakes the stealing of public land to make a so-called free zone.
    These counsil members are a disgrace to the human race! Especially those ignorant loudmouths. And they think they will be the leaders of this Country?
    They only thing they will lead is security for a pit toilet!

  12. This is why the country is in trouble. These people are blooming idiots. They shouldn’t be in any kind of office. They’re good examples of what one pundit referred to as “educated, yet idiot. “

    1. They are parents elected by PTA officers and have limited power,mostly recommending. This is a Seinfeld column by JT – it’s about nothing.

    2. “This is why the country is in trouble.”

      – semcgowanjr
      ____________

      Four times, the American Founders established who may be an American citizen in their Naturalization Acts of 1790, 1795, 1798 and 1802.

      The American Founders, in 1788, restricted the vote to Male, European, 21 with 50 lbs. Sterling/50 acres.

      By design, turnout in the 1788 presidential election of George Washington was 11.6%.

      The criminal acts of Abraham Lincoln, his successors and subsequent progressives, socialists and communists were and are unconstitutional and illegitimate.

      The entire communist (liberal, progressive, socialist, democrat, RINO) American welfare state is unconstitutional whereas the 5th Amendment right to private property is absolute, Article 1, Section 8 restricts the power of Congress to tax only for “…general Welfare…” not individual welfare, charity or redistribution of wealth, and the same Article provides Congress the power to regulate only the value of money, the flow of commerce among States, Nations and Indian Tribes and land and naval Forces.

      The real America has a massive overabundance of corrective action yet to be taken.
      ___________________________________________________________________

      United States Congress, “An act to establish an uniform Rule of Naturalization,” March 26, 1790

      Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America, in Congress assembled, That any Alien being a free white person, who shall have resided within the limits and under the jurisdiction of the United States for the term of two years, may be admitted to become a citizen thereof…

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