Today, I Am Pissed At Black Lives Matter. They Aren't Doing The Hard Detailed Work Change Requires

Like many of the people who are protesting today in St. Louis the acquittal of  Jason Stockley (please, let's hope it stays peaceful) I am angry about the lack of accountability for this behavior:

Smith tried to flee from Stockley on Dec. 20, 2011, following an alleged drug deal, authorities said. During the pursuit, Stockley could be heard saying on an internal police car video he was going to kill Smith, prosecutors said.

Stockley, riding in the passenger seat of a patrol vehicle with his personal AK-47 in one hand and department-issued weapon in the other, shot at Smith’s car, according to St. Louis Circuit Attorney’s Office spokeswoman Susan Ryan and charging documents.

At Stockley’s direction, the driver of the police car slammed into Smith’s vehicle and they came to a stop, court documents said. Stockley then approached Smith’s car and shot him five times with his service weapon.

Stockley’s lawyers said he fired in self-defense because he believed Smith was reaching for a gun but prosecutors said the only gun recovered from the scene had only Stockley’s DNA on it.

Stockley was acquitted of all charges today.  Just read the above and remember that Smith was not some terrorist about to detonate a nuclear weapon, he was involved in a drug sale.  And here is this police officer chasing him in gunzerker dual-wield mode, crashing his car into him and shooting him after stating his intention to do so over the radio.

But I am also pissed off at BLM.  Why?  Well, I suppose if they encourage folks to violence today I will be mad at them for that.  But I am really mad at the total failure they have become as a change organization.  For years many lone voices have tried to point out issues with police violence and the lack of accountability for it.  BLM did a great job of substantially raising awareness of these issues through protests and disruptions.  But protest and disruption (and collecting donations) is all they seem to be able to do.  The time is long past that they need to be leading the hard work of renegotiating police union contracts and changing local laws.  BLM should have been ready for a day like today with a list of model legislation they can be waving in front of cameras saying this is the list of things we need to be doing in every city to prevent a repeat of this travesty.  Instead, all we will watch is more protests and violence.

Why do I single out BLM?  Why is it their responsibility?  Because they have sucked all the oxygen out of the room.   They wanted to be -- and are -- the de facto leaders on this issue.  They get all the funding.  They get all the celebrity support.  And they are not doing jack except perhaps alienating people they will need to work with to make progress.  They actually had a good plan in the beginning that they have since abandoned in favor of posturing and virtue signalling.   In contrast look at the ACLU, the IJ, and ALEC and how they spend their resources.   It reminds me of exactly how the Trump Administration operates, as so ably described by Megan McArdle today.  Lots of posturing, no ability to do the hard, detailed work to make change.

  • jimc5499

    You are assuming that change is the goal of BLM. It may have been at the beginning, but, it isn't now. BLM's goal is the same as Antifa and other groups, to promote a divided country and to deny Conservatives the right to free speech.

  • gvanderleun

    Oh puhlease..... whatever was your expectation from this jiving clowns? Have you been on the planet longer than a year? It's a money suck play. More racial extortion and huckstering. Always was. Always will be.

  • The day you should have washed your hands of Black Lives Matter: the day they went to the Mall of America and laid down on the floor, pretending like they were choking. Which was years ago.

    Is Megan still a vegan? I had to stop reading her- you need DHA and other fatty acids for proper brain health. Trump does the work- He does posturing, but he does work. Dude did speeches non-stop for days while Hilary was sitting around with her feet up. It's no different now. You think the hater media is going to mention how much he is working? Hah! They are too busy trying to start a race war.

  • kidmugsy

    "They get all the funding. They get all the celebrity support." In their eyes that probably counts as success. If they managed to stop the unjustified police violence they'd lose the funding and the celebrity support. Just as poverty pimps don't want to eliminate poverty, BLM doesn't want to eliminate the supply of black bodies.

  • Talnik

    You may have misread BLM's intentions from the beginning, but you are not alone. By taking things at face value we often fail to differentiate between the pretext and purpose of an event or, in this instance, cause.

  • BobSykes

    BLM has become a violent terrorist group that must be suppressed.

  • ColoComment

    I'm surprised that this quote wasn't the first comment.
    “Every great cause begins as a movement, becomes a business, and eventually degenerates into a racket.”
    ― Eric Hoffer, The Temper of Our Time

  • johnmoore

    BLM is not about solving this problem. BLM is about inciting violence and providing power to its leaders. BLM is a violent movement, in league with Antifa.

    Sometimes cops get out of hand. That is a fact. It will *always* happen because it is human nature. These days, it happens a lot less than in the past, but our media age makes it seem commonplace.

  • Aggie -

    As an organization, BLM is not nearly as mature as the ACLU et. al., so it follows that their ability to effectively organize the administrative side of their efforts - coherent messaging, budget, allocations, etc - is also fledgling. Don't get me wrong, I'm not excusing it; in my opinion whenever BLM gets involved it always seems to be against a backdrop of other-people's property damage at a minimum and murder & mayhem at the worst, all with the tacit support of the BLM leadership. That's not just a failure of leadership, that's toxic leadership, actually. And I believe it's made possible in no small way by the cringing attempts at appeasement by lame-ass civic and academic leaders who seem to have forgotten that their most important responsibility is to promote both a selfless duty of care and the public trust by upholding our societal principles. Unfortunately we live in the golden age of ME. BLM won't get properly focused on the right issues until they choose to behave like the rest of the grownups and articulate ideas to be advocated and debated, instead of simple inchoate violence.

    As for who polices the cops, well.....we the voters are responsible for that, not BLM. I am dismayed at our country's passive no-thinking-required attitudes when confronted by the steady erosion of our most cherished liberties, starting with Free Speech and extending past the steadily encroaching police state.

    Thanks as always for sharing your thinking and ideas.

  • marque2

    Didn't he have a whole post recently how he likes that the Trump admin wants to privatize more park management, however Trump is a jerk, and therefore it won't happen?

    He has major major Trump derangement syndrome.

  • Ray

    https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/73e140685170dce64d7689cf12fa8e4e94ec1a4f3ceb08c522b29d83a5aa17db.jpg

    The main reason you should be mad at BLM is that they're not truly focused on the issue that truly puts their community at risk.

  • Zachriel

    (per 1,000,000 members of the murder's race)

    Is that supposed to be the murderer's race or the murder victim's race?

  • Zachriel

    johnmoore: Sometimes cops get out of hand.

    The problem just isn't that sometimes cops get out of hand, but that there is no accountability. Priests may be no more likely to be pedophiles than other people, but it's that the Church enabled pedophiles so that one bad priest might commit hundreds of crimes, even after having already been caught. What you see in the media is just the everyday experience of people of color.

  • ErikTheRed

    This is the result of the tendency we see in both major political parties to justify bad behavior on their side with bad behavior on the other side. Even if one, for the sake of argument, takes this as a valid moral stance (I don't), it leads to a downward spiral of behavior with increasing levels of violence. We see this all over the world, from police brutality in the US to all of the Middle East. At some point, one side has to be the "bigger person" and just behave well until the problem is resolved. Yes, that sucks horribly, but the alternatives are all worse.

    Personally, I see this as an extreme moral failure by conservatives / Republicans, because the Christian values that they pretend to adhere to quite explicitly tells them to turn the other cheek, hate the sin not the sinner, etc. By their own standards, they are the "bad guys," but like the Constitution they follow the parts that are convenient to their immediate wants and ignore the rest. Progressivism is very much an "ends justify the means" philosophy and aside from some shallow lip service has been historically quite happy to resort to violence - we should expect this lunacy from them.

  • SamWah

    Protesting and rioting are easy. Proposing solutions and getting them accepted is hard work and no fun.
    Besides that, I will take BlackLivesMatter seriously when they work to stop blacks killing blacks and black women from aborting their babies.

  • Zachriel

    ErikTheRed: Progressivism is very much an "ends justify the means" philosophy and
    aside from some shallow lip service has been historically quite happy to
    resort to violence - we should expect this lunacy from them.

    Not sure where you get that. Progressives have historically relied upon legal channels, such as exerting political pressure to build support for legislative changes.

  • ErikTheRed

    Oh goodness, where to even begin? I could start with that using political force to impose one's will on others is just violence for people without the guts to pull a gun themselves, but we'll never agree on that so...

    Wilsonian foreign policy
    The early 20th century eugenics movement
    The Great Leap Forward
    Ask anyone who lived in the USSR how peaceful that was
    Ask anyone who's tried to give a speech that people disagree with at any major college campus these days
    Any Black Lives Matter protest
    Anyone who doesn't support progressive policies in Venezuela (a progressive cause célèbre, literally, until it became what everyone with a brain knew it would become)

    And that's just off the top of my head in 20 seconds.

  • Matthew Slyfield

    A couple of sub groups of the early BLM movement put of serious proposals for reforming police accountability and use of force policies.

    It is irrational to try to claim that the entire movement had one monolithic intention from the beginning.

  • Talnik

    It is irrational to state I tried to claim that.

  • Zachriel

    ErikTheRed: I could start with that using political force to impose one's will on
    others is just violence for people without the guts to pull a gun
    themselves

    That would apply to a city counsel installing a traffic light. That doesn't them progressives. Teddy Roosevelt was a progressive, however.

    Progressivism is the term applied to a variety of responses to the economic and social problems rapid industrialization introduced to America. Progressivism began as a social movement and grew into a political movement.

    ErikTheRed: Wilsonian foreign policy ... The early 20th century eugenics movement

    Those were implemented through legal channels, per our previous comments.

    ErikTheRed: The Great Leap Forward ... Ask anyone who lived in the USSR how peaceful that was

    Those are not considered progressive, but communist.

    ErikTheRed: Ask anyone who's tried to give a speech that people disagree with at any major college campus these days

    Provocateurs provoke responses. So? That doesn't justify your claim that "Progressivism is very much an 'ends justify the means' philosophy". You seem to conflating means with ends. Progressives believe in social reform (ends), typically through government action (means).

  • C078342

    What is not clear by "blacks killed by whites?" Perhaps "of the victims" race might have been more clear. But ...

  • John O.

    Sadly there's no easy way to do that without throwing gasoline at the fire.

  • Ray

    Also, worth a read:

    https://www.documentcloud.org/documents/4047131-Jason-Stockley-verdict.html?embed=true&responsive=false&sidebar=false

    The bigger question, is why would the State bring such a flimsy case to trial five years after it happened? Turned out to be a pretty obvious witch hunt. The State's own witnesses essentially blew huge holes in their claims.

  • KenG453

    You're expecting Monets from graffiti vandals. Constructive change is not what BLM is all about. You also seem unwilling to put city policing in context. Given the number of police-black male interactions, and recognizing the limits of human nature, the wonder is that there aren't more stories like Stockley's.
    This is the reality BLM needs to confront, but won't, because the facts are right but the narrative is wrong: http://www.slmpd.org/images/Homicide_Stats_for_Website.pdf
    Most homicides in St Louis involve black men, despite the fact that they make up about a quarter of the population. And this year so far, every homicide suspect is a black man. Every single one. If they truly believe black lives matter, BLM should put its energies into addressing community pathologies, not looting stores and attacking journalists.

  • Bram

    I went through elementary school in the 70's and High School in the early 80's. We were still in that MLK influenced era of striving for a colorblind society that would judge people only by the content of their character. Those days are so far gone. No votes to be had in ignoring race - so now we have politicians and political movements actively inciting racism.

    As for the trial - I didn't pay much attention although it sure sounds fishy.

  • Variant

    Check out the verdict. The case was incredibly flimsy and a complete waste of taxpayer dollars to bring to court. The State was looking for a pelt it seems.

  • Zachriel

    C078342: What is not clear by "blacks killed by whites?"

    It's expressed as a proportion, which requires both a numerator and a denominator. Reviewing the data, it's the number of the offender's race.

    C078342: Perhaps "of the victims" race might have been more clear.

    Here's the link.

    In 2013, the U.S. population was 316 million, of which 42 million were black, and 194 million were white non-Hispanic. Based on this, our figures are reasonably consistent with yours.

    1 in a million whites kill a black.
    13 in a million whites kill a white

    53 in a million blacks kill a black
    10 in a million blacks kill a white

  • Zachriel

    This is what Black Lives Matter is protesting

    That is not correct. Rather, they are protesting killings under the color of law, which are rarely reported as murder. More importantly, they are protesting a pattern of discrimination where actual killings are only a small portion of the perceived affronts.

    For comparison, the number of lynchings in the South during the heyday of the KKK was relatively small as a portion of overall crime, but because of the impunity afforded the perpetrators, it had in inordinate affect on the black population.

  • Dan Wendlick

    It is easier to smash a clock than it is to build a clock. Both are satisfying in their own way. However, when you look at a clock you've built, you get the same feeling of satisfaction. Once you've smashed the clock, the only way to get the feeling back is to smash another clock.

  • wreckinball

    "They had a good plan"

    When did BLM have a good plan? Nobody endorses police brutality so that message is not controversial and is not a plan.
    But from the fictional "hands up don't shoot" farce to chanting about killing police to some of their members actually killing police to violence and rioting they basically are just an awful group.

    On top of that they are overtly racist.
    I don't understand the soft spot in Warren's heart for these hateful folks.

  • wreckinball

    Bingo!
    And folks resent being lectured by BLM folks who won't accept reality. They strive for "equality" but the only reason folks legitimize this ridiculous group is because they are black! A group of white folks that was this compromised would be designated a "hate" group.

  • wreckinball

    "Unfortunately we live in the golden age of ME."

    Good post overall but the reason BLM is appeased is because they are black. That's it. Not the age of me. If I (a white guy) attempted to form a white lives matter organization to combat police brutality none of the BLM tactics would be allowed and the group would be consider a white supremacist hate organization.

  • wreckinball

    Police accountability is an issue but BLM is not the answer.

  • wreckinball

    Yes the appeasement. Don't tolerate violence and rioting , period. The Missouri Governor was excellent stating peaceful protesting is allowed violence and rioting will get you a jail cell.

  • Aggie -

    Thanks wreckinball - actually the reference to the Golden Age of ME was directed toward our elected and appointed public officials. Many of them are careerists would rather pander to implied and actual violence from small belligerent groups and wax smarmy for the journalists on their special interest advocacies, rather then do the difficult thing and quietly abide by their job description on behalf of the greater good - the entire tax base, in other words, instead of a toxic few percent of it.

  • Ken in NH

    Jacobins never have a good plan. Their plan is always to keep decapitating until there is no opposition and the population cowers before them.

  • Jonathan Smith

    You misstate the facts by stating the case against him, not what the defense had to say, or MOST importantly, the facts found by the judge. The Judge did not say anything like what you state as "facts". The judge's decision was well-reasoned, and made sense. What you said was inaccurate and misleading.

  • Orion Henderson

    I read it as prosecutor overreach.

    If they had gone for 2nd degree murder it would have been a slam dunk conviction. But they went for premeditated murder-which seems like a stretch in the heat of the moment. Very similar to the Trayvon Martin case. They should have gone for a lesser charge and gotten the conviction.

    Now whether this was deliberately throwing the case by the prosecution, incompetence, or trying to get votes by going with murder in the 1st, we'll never know.

    Disclaimer-I am no lawyer, so my interpretation of the law may be lacking.

  • Variant

    Yes, that occurred to me as well. Why go for 1st?

    IANAL either, but based on what I read of the verdict, it feels like even 2nd degree is a stretch. The officer really was only guilty of violating departmental policy by having a personal weapon with him. I suppose the ambiguous words he said in the car might have been interpreted at a different level of scrutiny for a 2nd degree case? I'm thinking no, however...

  • Orion Henderson

    I didn't read the verdict. Not that interested really-it's done. But I heard about this case a few weeks ago and read up on the difference between different types of murder. According to Google, this is 2nd degree:

    "Second-degree murder: any intentional murder with malice aforethought, but is not premeditated or planned."

    That sounds like the incident to me.

  • Rick Vogel

    I've always thought that Black Lives Matter was counter-productive.

    To understand why, you need to understand a concept I call moving the margin. There is a range of human reactions to any situation. There are people who would never do something and people who would always do something. In between, there is a break point or margin which can be moved one way or the other. Great examples of moved margins are tattoos and divorce. In the 50's and 60's, both of these were less common. As celebrities and sports figures started getting tattoos or divorces, the margin moved to make this more acceptable. Good, bad, or indifferent, there is less stigma attached and we see more tattoos and divorces now.

    For BLM, I see the margin moved in six different ways all of which are bad.

    First, the reaction of a black guy on the street interfacing with a cop can be to cooperate, to run, or to fight. Since BLM is painting cops as trigger happy racists, the margin is moved to the more risky run or attack options from the safer cooperate option. This will lead to more, not less, incidents. More incidents will move the margin further in the wrong direction

    Second, BLM has inspired or at least influenced people on the far edge and led to more out and out killing of policemen. Dallas, Baton Rouge, and New York have had execution and ambush style attacks on police officers that are somewhat influenced by the BLM movement. there was a 56% increase of shooting deaths in 2016 Even PBS admits to almost 2 dozen police deaths fueled by " fueled by anger over police use of force involving minorities" http://www.pbs.org/newshour/rundown/number-police-officers-killed-job-rose-sharply-2016/ That's BLM's focus. Moving the margin in this direction is not good.

    Third, is the classic psychological displacement. This is the "sucked all the oxygen out of the room" aspect of BLM There are severe problems in the African American community with gangs, inner city joblessness, fatherless households, etc. BLM's emphasis on the police (justified in some cases) allows the leaders of the community to avoid focusing on these problems and gives them a diversion

  • ColoComment
  • An Inquirer

    Quite a bit different than Trayvon Martin case. In the Trayvon Martin case, the victim initiated violent confrontation; The shooter was being attacked and was in a precarious situation of being pummeled by somebody who was experienced in fighting; the physical harm was clearly being done to the shooter in the Trayvon Martin case and a reasonable person would think that the physical harm would continue and get worse. It would be difficult to see what type of charge would stick against Zimmerman in an unbiased setting.
    You do not have those elements in this St. Louis case.
    I have not read the verdict in St. Louis, but in skimming article and comments, I gotta wonder if people see too many TV shows. There seems to be widespread conspiracy theories that cops run around with guns that they can plant at crime scenes.

  • GoneWithTheWind

    Don't be angry at BLM. They are not some kind of justice for blacks organization they are simply a communist inspired and funded anti constitutional left wing arm of the Democrat party and their job is to create havoc that the Democrats can blame on Trump. This is what our country has come to. Imagine if our press was honest and they reported where the BLM funding and manifesto comes from. But no worries because our MSM is also an arm of the Democrat party and they are parroting the same things you said trying to get BLM to riot and maybe kill some more cops so they can sell more news and blame it on Trump so that the Democrats can use that to elect another far left socialist/communist president to destroy our country. I understand that the BLM was busy stealing Nike shoes so maybe they will have time later to kill some police later and blame it on racism or something.

  • C078342

    "killings under the color of law"

    1. What ever does "killings under the color of law" mean? I would assume the FBI is comparing apples and oranges, but you probably don't.
    2. The chart does not show a proportion, it shows a rate: rate of killings (by whatever definition used by the FBI) of blacks by whites, black by blacks, etc. The actual numbers are not important, the rates are - the rates are suggesting your probability are being impacted. : Blacks are much more violent than whites.

  • stevewfromford

    I have read that the drug dealer ran his car into the cops twice before he led them on a high speed chase through a neighborhood. Perhaps that might explain a bit about why the cops were angry. If all that is true how can you blame the cop for being hair trigger? Chasing a known drug dealer with gun offenses after he's rammed your car twice will tend to make anyone fearful.

  • Zachriel

    C078342: 1. What ever does "killings under the color of law" mean?

    "Color of law" refers to an appearance of legal power to act that may operate in violation of law.

    C078342: 2. The chart does not show a proportion, it shows a rate

    A rate is the ratio between two related quantities, in this case number of murders / population of offenders.

    C078342: Blacks are much more violent than whites.

    Your chart also indicates that 99.9946% of blacks are not violent, per your use of the term. Furthermore, if you refer to the original FBI chart, you will see that a murdered white is 6x more likely to have been killed by a white than by a black. So if you are white, you probably should be more afraid of your white family members or neighbors than of some scary black person you never met.

  • C078342

    1. "Your chart also indicates that 99.9946% of blacks are not violent" Show your math.
    2. Perform and report the same calculation for whites.
    3. "a murdered white is 6x more likely to have been killed by a white than by a black" Show your math again, but there are many, many more whites than blacks, so this makes sense.
    4. "be more afraid of your white family members or neighbors than of some scary black person you never met" White family members are more dangerous than unknown blacks?
    5. Why do you use wiki definitions. Can't explain yourself?
    As to rate, it is a mathematical term related to differential calculus: it's basically df/dy, the change in f relative to the change in y. Without getting too technical, velocity is dx/dt: change in distance traveled over the change in time. THe FBI chart shows the rate of murders of race x relative to the numbers of potential perps of race y normalized by the race y population. That is 53.94 black deaths by every 1,000,000 blacks in the population of race y.