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“Stop Beating Around The Bush”

BLACK MEN, LAW ENFORCEMENT BOTH NEED TO ADDRESS THEIR DISRESPECTFUL BEHAVIOR By Len Anthony  || There are four actions each of us can take that will make this a wonderful world.  I have written about two to of them: have integrity and respect everyone else’s religious beliefs.  The third is…

BLACK MEN, LAW ENFORCEMENT BOTH NEED TO ADDRESS THEIR DISRESPECTFUL BEHAVIOR

len anthonyBy Len Anthony  || There are four actions each of us can take that will make this a wonderful world.  I have written about two to of them: have integrity and respect everyone else’s religious beliefs.  The third is so simple it needs no explanation: Treat everyone as you wish to be treated.

The final action is this: When there is a disagreement, talk about the core issues causing the disagreement, not the symptoms.

Stop beating around the bush.

The phrase “beating around the bush” appears to have originated in medieval times when hunters would pay young men to go into the bushes to flush out animals.  There were often dangerous animals in the bushes so sometimes the young men beat around the bushes rather than going into the bushes.

We see the oral equivalent of this every day.  Spouses do it.  Friends do it.  Israelis and Palestinians do it.  Republicans and Democrats do it.  White people and black people do it.  Each side avoids the “dangerous animals,” so the real issues causing the disagreement are not addressed and therefore nothing is ever resolved.  With the protests in Ferguson, Missouri receiving 24-hour news coverage, let’s go “into the bushes” and confront the “dangerous animals” at the heart of the relationship problem between young black men and law enforcement.

The following passage is taken from an editorial by Michael Martinez, Stephanie Elam and Erica Henry of CNN posted on CNN’s website on August 15, 2014. According to the authors it is “the hard truth” told by black parents to their sons:

“Think twice about wearing a hoodie. Pull up your pants. Shut your mouth around police. Swallow your pride. Don’t drive with more than three friends. And keep your hands where they can be seen.”

The implication is that non-black young men can do all of these things and have no issues with the police.  I hate to break it to the CNN folks, but these “truths” apply to all young men who want a good relationship with the police.

Think about what is being said and admitted.  If a young man is walking around with the hood of his sweatshirt pulled up over his head (particularly if it is not cold or he is inside a building), with his hands concealed, or is in a packed car (normally with the music blaring), at a minimum the police are going to notice and most probably be suspicious.

If a young man is walking around with his pants down to his knees and smarts off to a policeman he is saying to the policeman: “I do not respect you.”

The moral for all young men is be respectful towards law enforcement and don’t wander around looking like you just did something wrong.  For some reason, many young black men believe it is their right to be disrespectful.  They are disrespectful to the public in general (as evidenced by their underwear displays) but in particular to law enforcement (yes, I have seen some “saggy” white young men but their numbers pale in comparison to the number of “saggy” black men I have seen).  Many years ago I was present when a “saggy” young man came over to talk to my daughter.  I told him to pull up his pants.  It was a sign of no respect for me and my daughter.  This lack of respect harms the relationship between whites and blacks, and blacks and law enforcement.

Here in Myrtle Beach, S.C. the truth of this assertion is annually confirmed during the “Black Bikers’ Week.”  The behavior of many of the Black Bikers indicates they have little or no respect for the law, non-bikers and or anything or anyone else.  They speed up and down our streets on their poorly muffled motorcycles until 4:00 a.m. or later, they take over parking lots preventing – or interfering with – customers’ access to the businesses served by the parking lots, and many of the women prominently display their naked buttocks (allegedly there are thongs in there somewhere) on the back of the motorcycles.

Every parent wants his five-year-old child to see that as he drives down the road.

All young men should act as if they have some home training, and show respect for women, law enforcement and others in general. If you don’t want the police or others to think you are up to no good, don’t act like you are and show some curtesy when interacting with the police.

Turning to law enforcement, do many police officers take advantage of their authority?  Are some of them disrespectful to members of the public?  Do some of them violate people’s civil rights?  The answer is “yes” to all three questions.

I have personal experience in all areas. When I was eighteen years old I went into a Pizza Hut in Spartanburg with my date.  When I walked in I discovered two policemen talking with a friend of mine who had had too much to drink.  I was completely sober.  I walked over and very politely said “Excuse me officer, I know this guy, if it will help, I will gladly take him home.”  The officer moved within several inches of my face and told me to buzz off I was “obstructing justice.”

The police need to be better trained.  They need to be taught that their badge is not a license to bully.  They need to be fired when they intentionally violate a person’s rights.  Solicitors need to refuse to prosecute persons wrongfully arrested.  I once represented a college student whose Fourth Amendment rights had clearly been violated.  One of her parents was a lawyer.  I contacted the assistant district attorney and asked him to review the file.  The policeman’s behavior was so outrageous I was confident the charges would be dismissed once the district attorney reviewed the facts.  I was wrong.  He said “it is always the students’ who have a lawyer for a parent who give us trouble.”

When I went to court, the case heard immediately before mine involved the same policeman and same assistant district attorney who were involved in my case.  The policeman had done the same thing to the young man in that case that he had done to my client.  The judge threw out both cases and chastised the policeman for violating the students’ rights.

For the record, all defendants in both cases were white.

Solicitors and policemen respect citizens’ rights, if you want respect, play by the rules.  Bottom line, young black men and law enforcement both need to admit blame and stop their bad behaviors.

Len Anthony spent thirty years as in-house counsel for a public utility. He’s now semi-retired living in North Myrtle Beach, S.C. Wanna sound off on FITS? Submit your letter to the editor or opinion column HERE.

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37 comments

swervin ervin August 23, 2014 at 9:10 pm

Nice letter Len. Appears you got a problem with black “buttocks” and the Pizza Hut incident fucked your mind up about cops. Other than that, can you spare a dime?

WTF?

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Benjamin Wofford August 23, 2014 at 9:58 pm

“The officer moved within several inches of my face and told me to buzz off I was “obstructing justice.””

He was only partially correct. Instead he should have told you to go eff yourself.

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Mike at the Beach August 24, 2014 at 12:23 am

More smarmy “everybody be nice to each other and everything will be alright” pablum. Of course there are rude cops, but very many more (per capita) rude attorneys. I’ve moved in both worlds, so take my word for it. The problem isn’t rude cops OR punks wearing their pants down under their ass; that’s silly reductionism. The problem is that entire subcultures in the US (and even swaths of mainstream culture) have lost respect for basic traditional values, decency, and civilized behavior; baggy pants, boorish public behavior, and attitudes toward law enforcement are merely symptoms.

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euwe max August 24, 2014 at 12:52 am

Of course there are rude cops, but
———-
they don’t all shoot unarmed aggressors… we should all acknowledge that before we condemn the media scapegoat for the ill behavior of protesters.

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Mike at the Beach August 24, 2014 at 1:04 am

I know that in your world cops should let 300 pound guys pound them nearly unconscious prior to using potentially lethal force, but (luckily enough for cops) neither the Constitution nor the US Supreme Court requires that.

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euwe max August 24, 2014 at 1:53 am

No, in my world – the real one – cops take revenge using deadly force that we provide them to defend us with – and those who sympathize with the difficulties of enforcment, don’t have a problem with that.

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Mike at the Beach August 24, 2014 at 2:52 am

Dumb. Cops just want to go home after their shift, and guessing whether or not a suspect is planning to lay some life-threatening injury on you is an imprecise science. Folks don’t think through the nonsense they write sometimes; do you really think the Ferguson cop was bent on “revenge?” Do you honestly believe he had the time and the ability to map out something akin to “that SOB punched me, so now I’ll shoot his ass. No one will ever question me, because a white cop shooting a black suspect in a black majority community is no big deal?”

euwe max August 24, 2014 at 3:04 am

Dumb. Cops just want to go home after their shift


Afraid to lose control, I’ve wasted time, I’ve wasted breath…

War, don’t let me down… when I open my mouth, it’s something I said. The problem isn’t with those cops… just like recreational use of marijuana, or cocaine. As long as the addiction doesn’t lead to something bad – it’s not bad. There aren’t very many bad actors using heroin, either.

I’ve heard people talk about dungeons and dragons being bad for kids.. introducing Satan, and so forth. What a bunch of shit. However, there are people who are attracted to drugs and role playing games who aren’t mentally healthy.

Sometimes, when a person has nothing but good things in his review folders, he goes on a 7 state killing spree.

Generalizing isn’t a profitable business… but just like the kid walking down the street with his pants sagging – there are insecure, poorly educated egomaniacs looking for an outlet for release of inner anger and feelings of powerlessness.

Easy to identify the former, not so easy the latter.

Who has the power?

Mike at the Beach August 24, 2014 at 10:46 am

Holy wow, no way I have time to go point-for-point with you on that one. I’ll just generalize and say that (contrary to your contention), generalization IS a profitable business. Occam says the simplest solution with the fewest moving parts is usually true, and he’s right. Stereotypes become stereotypes because they are generally true. Statistical modeling works because generalizing based upon specific past outcomes works. You’re wrong on the seven state killing spree too- people very seldom “snap” and go from perfect record to killing spree. That’s media mythology. Reporters are (generally) not that bright, but they look good on TV, so they follow a script. Finding the neighbor to do the obligatory “He was such a quiet guy…seemed normal” standup is part of their shtick.

euwe max August 24, 2014 at 11:05 am

So you’re saying that it doesn’t happen. Has never happened.

Mike at the Beach August 24, 2014 at 11:27 am

Depends upon your definitional position- all spree killers have a first kill, but they generally follow a fairly easy to document pattern of behavior. The problem is that the pattern is generally not pieced together until it’s too late. as i said, much to detailed an boring for a discussion on FITS, but entire psychology and criminology textbooks are available on the subject if you have a few months to kill (no pun intended)…

euwe max August 24, 2014 at 11:38 am

I’m just trying to pin you down to whether you are claiming there are no exceptions to those textbook rules (which “govern human nature?”) or whether you are still claiming the generalization creates all of the specifics in this case.

Mike at the Beach August 24, 2014 at 11:42 am

Dude, really?! Quit wasting time on silliness- no one can say there are no exceptions to psychological rules, and I didn’t say that here. You want to cling to your fraction of a percentage point? Go ahead, that’s your right. It simply means that you’ll be wrong in the vast majority of instances. I like going with the numbers because I’m a busy dude and it’s faster.

euwe max August 24, 2014 at 11:52 am

You know what they say.. the pawn is the soul of chess.

Games turn on the difference of fractions of a pawn. When you are analyzing a position, you don’t estimate the best move or “grok” it – you *calculate* it. It doesn’t matter how many similar positions you’ve seen and ‘statistically’ what was played in those games, though it may give you themes and ideas to examine you might have missed without that experience – what *does* matter is the SPECIFIC case in front of you, not how you feel about the majority of cases.

Occam’s razor creates patzers – analysis of concrete variations creates Grandmasters.

Mike at the Beach August 24, 2014 at 12:00 pm

…and yet the statisticians will be right in the vast majority of instances. I love me some intuition and going with the gut, too, and do it when I think it’s best. This just isn’t one of those times. Namaste…

euwe max August 24, 2014 at 12:04 pm

…and yet the statisticians will be right in the vast majority of instances.

——-
You only have to be wrong once to appreciate what “the vast majority” actually means.

Mike at the Beach August 24, 2014 at 12:44 pm

True on both sides of our discussion. Again, sticking with the numbers *generally* makes for a longer life.

euwe max August 24, 2014 at 12:55 pm

But adding concrete calculation to catch the exceptions can double your income when you’re performing quality control.

euwe max August 24, 2014 at 3:12 am

do you really think the Ferguson cop was bent on “revenge?”

——
right now, I do. I could be wrong. I usually am. But I don’t let that stop me.

Some people have trouble postponing orgasm because it feels so good… Anger is a lot like that when you have deadly force in your hand.

Unless you think that big, bad man was pissing his pants in fear at seeing that gorilla “advancing” – so completely debilitated, he couldn’t reach his taser, or pepper spray… or even stop, steady himself, and point his service revolver at center mass for a clean shot?

I think he was so angry, he was firing over and over… exterminate this fucker!

Mike at the Beach August 24, 2014 at 10:57 am

You’re right about one thing, but you’re hurting your own case. Under the stress attendant to assaults and deadly force situations, there is no calm dialogue (of any type) going on in anyone’s head, good guy or bad guy. The physiological responses (too many to bore you with here, but well documented in the medical community) preclude that for all but the most hardened and battle tested folks. As the adrenaline dumps, vision closes down to the center, and auditory exclusion kicks in people revert to their training (or shut down in a panic). The odds are very high (like almost certain) that the cop wasn’t “thinking” about anything- he was doing precisely what he had done in the dozens of shoot-don’t shoot drills during his basic training, and at the range hundreds of times- firing at center mass as quickly as he could until the threat that he had perceived was stopped. To answer your question, I have been punched in the face (more than I care to admit) and have been shot at hundreds of times. There is a *generalized* psychological and physiological response that affects almost everyone in that situation, from Delta operator all the way down to 6-year beat cop, and while it may look like “revenge” to you, it looks like training and psychology to me. Your seven state killing spree theory fails here, too- racist, problem cops stick out like sore thumbs. Write-ups, inordinately high level of citizen complaints, etc. Agencies don’t always handle them as they should, but they’re fairly easy to spot because cops don’t “snap” either. If they’re shitty on a given day, they were very likely shitty before that day.

euwe max August 24, 2014 at 11:07 am

Hurt my case? We fry mentally ill people in Texas! How did that hurt my case?

Oh, wait. You mean when you find your wife in bed with another man you can shoot him – even if you’re a cop. Precedent!

SCBlues August 24, 2014 at 10:19 am

” I’ve moved in both worlds, so take my word for it.
Uh – weren’t you one of the loudest voices squealing “The sky is falling! The sky is falling!” when commenting about the two Americans infected with the Ebola Virus being brought home for treatment?? (I believe one of the terms you used was “fucktardery”.) They were brought home. They were successfully treated. They were released from the hospital. They infected no one. The sky did not fall. The total and complete ignorance of science and medicine and just plain good old common sense was on parade in the comments section of that article.

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Mike at the Beach August 24, 2014 at 10:40 am

Actually, I wasn’t. I didn’t really get into the Ebola nonsense too much- I commented (once, I think) on some aspect of it. “Fucktardery” isn’t one of my words, so maybe you’re thinking of some other dude you let live in your head rent free. I use “nitwittery” and “jackassery” some, though…

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SCBlues August 24, 2014 at 11:08 am

” “Fucktardery” isn’t one of my words, so maybe you’re thinking of some other dude you let live in your head rent free”
I stand corrected – and am big enough to admit my mistakes unlike some others on this forum (hint, hint!) – you gave the comment “fucktardery” an “A+++” reaction.

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euwe max August 24, 2014 at 12:07 pm

He wants to be right in the “vast majority of cases” – so he doesn’t bother thinking about it much. :)

This Occam’s razor thing is going *down*! ;)

SCBlues August 24, 2014 at 1:55 pm

“He wants to be right in the “vast majority of cases” . . .”
All it takes is a computer and an internet connection for some to anoint themselves as Grandmaster . . .

euwe max August 24, 2014 at 2:17 pm

….oo
(0 – – 0)

(deer in the headlights look)™TBG

CorruptionInColumbia August 24, 2014 at 11:56 am

Hi Blues! “Fucktardery” was my term and I stand by it. We’re going to continue to screw around with that stuff until it is on our own soil. It is coming and I don’t think it will be long. Apparently not as a result of the first incident but eventually, we will play with it until Americans on American soil are catching it. Whether or not it will become a pandemic remains to be seen. It is however, something we could have gone for the rest of our lives without and been the happier without it.

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SCBlues August 24, 2014 at 1:52 pm

“Hi Blues! “Fucktardery” was my term and I stand by it”
Hello CIC –
Now you know I don’t always agree with you but I think you are one of the very few Stand-Up Guys on this forum and I do respect your opinions. I just think the “do-gooders” in this case were American citizens and the conditions they were coming home to were vastly different than what they were dealing with in Liberia so I did not see an issue with bringing them back for treatment. I do agree with you that this “epidemic” of Ebola seems to be “different” and more widespread – I just do not see it being a threat to the American population at home. But I hear what you’re saying.
Again, thanks for being a Stand-Up Guy on this forum – there are not very many!
P. S. I also liked “fucktardery” – keep up the good work!

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CorruptionInColumbia August 24, 2014 at 3:57 pm

Thank You! While I (and that goes for people on both sides of a given issue) may get frustrated from time to time with the opposing viewpoint, a lot of you guys on what some would call the “liberal” side do make good points. As I have noted with several such posters on boards that went to Facebook, before the switch was thrown, even though we may be at each-other’s throats from time to time on a given subject, I would not wish those adversarial posters away any more than I would those I might be allied with on a given thread. I learn from both.

Take care!

SCBlues August 24, 2014 at 6:33 pm

You are a good guy!

euwe max August 24, 2014 at 12:50 am

I wonder if the Jews realized that they were partly responsible for Hitler’s treatment of them?

Everyone needs to take equal responsibility for that tragedy.

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euwe max August 24, 2014 at 12:54 am

beating around the bush
——
I blame Bush.

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Soft Sigh from Hell August 24, 2014 at 5:14 pm

Sure, some of the out-of-control cops are ‘roided up, but the problem of thug cops long predates steroid misuse.

Manhood issues have long been suspected but apparently little investigated, except maybe by standard personality tests.

But maybe the preoccupation with “carrying big guns” (now hypermagnified by military weapons) really does often arise from carrying small packages (term used advisedly) of self-esteem and manly confidence. Maybe departments should be making another “measure” when hiring, beyond just grade-points and IQ.

I merely make the suggestion and pass on.

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Yep! August 24, 2014 at 10:05 pm

Emotional control/restraint is the single biggest factor I’ve seen in determining success/failure in business.

It’s not intelligence…intelligence helps…but without emotional control they almost always self destruct. There’s other ancillaries, like luck, work ethic, etc., but if the emotional stability isn’t there then it’s tough to pull off.

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This just in. . . August 24, 2014 at 8:43 pm

Critics Blast Obama’s Three Meals a Day
By Andy Borowitz

WASHINGTON (The Borowitz Report) — G.O.P. chief Reince Priebus ripped President Obama on Sunday for consuming three meals a day while on vacation in Martha’s Vineyard.

“With international crises boiling over in Iraq, Syria, and Ukraine, it’s unconscionable that the President is having breakfast, lunch, and dinner,” he said.

The White House defended the President’s eating habits, noting that his predecessor, George W. Bush, frequently supplemented his three meals a day with an afternoon snack, but Priebus was unmoved by this argument. “It sends a very dangerous message to our enemies to see President Obama eating,” he said.

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The Plagiarizer August 25, 2014 at 1:17 am

It’s not the three meals a day Reince(gay name btw) was pissed about, it was the fact they were all in the golf course club house.

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