A reader shared with me this video clip, which I watched in a vacuum, having heard nothing about the case behind it. The text accompanying it on YouTube says:
Police Chief Edward Flynn speaks to reporters after a Fire and Police Commission meeting Thursday night concerning the shooting of Dontre Hamilton. During the meeting, Flynn learned that a 5-year-old girl was shot and killed. Video by Ashley Luthern
Here’s the latest on the Dontre Hamilton case. The chief in the video above has fired the cop involved.
The reader who brought this to my attention implied that what the chief is saying is something that should be heard more often. Of course, there are radically, profanely different views out there regarding the same clip.
What do y’all think?
He makes very valid points, accepts responsibility for his department’s wrongs….but two wrongs don’t make a right.
This is why having someone who looks like the community is a good idea. If the primary “customers” of the police department are black, having a black face out front helps. That’s just racial reality.
Does that apply to the mayor, the fire chief, the school superintendent, the head of the parks department, the head dog catcher?
Why can’t it be about doing the job?
Because the head cop is having to answer questions about why black men and boys are treated, arguably, differently from others. It’s a lot easier to take someone calling out your community’s failures when that person has walked in your shoes.
Warren Bolton is more likely to be effective in calling out the shortcomings of the black community than Cindi Scoppe.
Yes. And aside from the fact that I just really like and respect Warren and have an appreciation for his voice (his PERSONAL voice as Warren, not just having a black voice), I’m very happy that one thing I achieved as editorial page editor was adding someone to our editorial board who had tremendous credibility with a large part of our audience.
It helped shatter many people’s firm conviction that The State was “the white newspaper.”
But more than that, I appreciated the gifts that are uniquely Warren’s…
I guess it depends. Tim Scott wouldn’t get that said about him.
“It’s a lot easier to take someone calling out your community’s failures when that person has walked in your shoes.”
Or when you THINK, based on a superficial likeness, that that person has walked in your shoes… Which is what Identity Politics depends on.
I’m not arguing with Kathryn. She’s right. A black man can say things, and be heard, to people who’d never listen to a white man saying them.
I acknowledge that reality. That doesn’t mean I think it’s right that things are that way…
Of course that same reasoning is why a lot of companies in a white area could say they only have white employees- and why a company in a black area could say they have only black employees.
A company is not the police.
Companies have customers. Some of them have more black customers than white customers.
Should they not reflect the makeup of their community if they are taking their money?
We might as well play this great idea out and not just concentrate it in a few areas.
And of course – the logic would go- largely white areas should have white police chiefs……
I think we have tried this before…..
If there were an issue with predominantly black police forces led by black police chiefs treating whites more harshly than blacks…
For example, why are there so many drug sweeps in black communities, but vanishingly few in college dorms? Blacks and whites use illegal drugs at the same rate, but blacks are overwhelmingly arrested more often. Something like 80% more often, for illegal drugs.
Companies are not the police. They cannot arrest people or shoot them under color of law (stand your ground excepted, where applicable). Police power is serious business. You need to ensure that it is perceived as fairly wielded.
Companies are sued all the time for various reasons. They are also accused of discrimination from time to time because they hold the key in many areas to economic empowerment.
You suggest a slippery slope answer that I think is problematic in many ways.
“If there were an issue with predominantly black police forces led by black police chiefs treating whites more harshly than blacks…”
Who is looking into that? Where is that research?
How quickly would the person doing that research have their funding revoked?
I would guess predominantly black forces with black police chiefs (they have to have black chiefs, right?) are focusing on the same problem largely white departments are focusing on- the high percentage of crime in black inner city areas.
“For example, why are there so many drug sweeps in black communities, but vanishingly few in college dorms? ”
Have you ever considered that the black people in those areas that don’t use drugs have demanded more police presence than the college kids in the dorm have?
Do you think students at Benedict in dorms are facing more drug raids than students in dorms at Clemson?
I’d love to see ANY evidence of that.
Doug, it can’t be about just doing the job because all some see is the color of skin.
That is why, I assume the logic goes, that Columbia should have a black police chief, not a white one.
I guess that is why majority white school districts should only have white superintendents. That is why black majority districts should only have black superintendents.
Doesn’t the “progress” just leap off the page at you?
Agree with all of your comment.
As to: “This is why having someone who looks like the community is a good idea. If the primary “customers” of the police department are black, having a black face out front helps. That’s just racial reality. – KF
At last count (census) , however, Milwaukee County was 69% black. Now, either more than 18% of them were minors, many blacks voters vote look for qualifications beyond face complexion, or too many black voters do not value citizenship enough to exercise their vote. Probably a mix of all three possibilities.
Of one thing, however, there is no uncertainty. Minors should NEVER have legal handguns.
There is no valid reason for it nowadays. Those caiught with handguns should be conscripted into their choice of military service, youth work camps, or eligibilty for trial as adults. Let us stop the false, bleeding heart compassion for the few vile perpatrators of 80% of the tragedies cited by Chief Flynn!
The police chief in Milwaukee is not an elected position.
You know what struck me most, perhaps irrelevantly? How articulate he remained, in spite of being so angry. If I were that angry, and felt that beleaguered, I think all you’d get out of me is sputtering noises…
He’s exploding, but at the same time very much in control of what he’s saying…
It’s like the video you run in your head about what you WISH you had said when you were so angry, only none of it came to you at the time…
I think he did an excellent job in the video. Of course, I am white.
Forget race. I think there is much in what he says because of certain Tory sensibilities that are deep within my makeup. I love the song “Tradition” from “Fiddler on the Roof.” I’m for law and order and the lawful guardians of that order, so his assertions strike a certain chord in me… I feel his outrage that a child has been killed, while people about him focus on relative irrelevancies, ignoring the brutal, life-and-death realities with which he contends. He is outraged at the numbers of black people who fall victim to violent crimes in his community, the community he’s sworn to defend, and I feel that outrage at such an offense to what is right…
Um, the issue at hand was some police misconduct, and he redirected the conversation. It’s not okay, as he does acknowledge, for the police to unjustly shoot someone (black), if that’s the issue, even if someone else (black) got shot by some third (black) person.
Yes, the black community should be up in arms about the violence in its midst, but it also has a perfect right to be up in arms about police misconduct.
It’s not though- and that was his point.
But is it not legitimate to “redirect” the conversation when you’re on your way to the scene of another tragic death?
Sure, it’s wrong to say, “Well, you black people are always killing each other anyway,” but I’m not hearing that. And the reason I’m “not hearing it” isn’t “privilege blindness.” I hear the things that would make someone ELSE think they’re hearing that. I’m a pretty astute guy. I’m not deaf, not in that way anyway (I hasten to add before my wife corrects me). But I’m also hearing that HE is saying something else, whatever other people may hear…
It’s politically astute to redirect. He also seems sincere. I get that.
But just because the black community is not in the streets protesting thuggery doesn’t mean they aren’t trying to deal with it. See Warren Bolton’s many pieces on it, for one.
The police are supposed to be better than thugs.
I think the chief’s point is that if some of those same folks would take just 10% of their anger and place it on people that are purposefully trying to kill black people in Milwaukee, they might have some positive effect there too- considering it is the criminals killing 99% of people in Milwaukee.
You’re in denial about gay marriage becoming legal in SC,and this is your passive aggressive attempt to sink further…
You must be SO full of rage.
When the blogger makes most of the comments,is that good?
Say hello to the boys at The Palmetto Family Council Hate Group…
What’s the matter, Bill? Why are you unhappy? And why are you projecting?
Everyone back up. I got this one.
Um… I don’t think that really characterizes this conversation…