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Citizens have right to talk back to police



Published: Thu, August 6, 2009 @ 12:00 a.m.

By KEVIN ALEXANDER GRAY

President Obama reached the wrong conclusion on the controversy between the police officer and the professor.

He said both people overreacted, and by bringing them to the White House for beers, he sought to make the controversy go away.

Instead, as someone who has sworn an oath to uphold the Constitution, he should have taken an unequivocal stand for free speech.

Citizens in this United States have the right to talk back to the police. The cops are not the Gestapo. We should not conclude from this incident that we need to be more servile. Instead, we should conclude that police abuse their authority when they slap a “disturbing the peace” or “disorderly conduct” charge on someone who is standing up for his rights.

In my experience, the mere assertion of one’s rights to a police officer is usually taken by them as a challenge to their authority. It gets their backs up. Especially if the person making the challenge or, “mouthing off,” is a racial minority or a poor white.

Most blacks, browns and poor whites who come in contact with the police have to calculate their situation and modulate their manner, lest they risk arrest, brutalization or even death.

Sean Bell and Oscar Grant are just two of the most familiar victims who received the death penalty at the hands of cops for essentially the crime of being black.

If a citizen asserts his or her constitutional rights, or questions what an officer is doing or speaks in a tone the officer finds unacceptable, this often leads to a charge of disturbing the peace or disorderly conduct. These are catch-all charges that police pin on citizens who refuse to debase themselves with a “yes, sir, whatever you say, sir.” Many black and brown kids that end up going through the revolving door of the criminal justice system are ushered into it by a disorderly conduct arrest.

What’s more, some cops lie.

Detective Mark Fuhrman in the O.J. Simpson case blatantly lied when he said he hadn’t used the “N” word in a decade.

Planted evidence

On Nov. 2, 2006, police in Atlanta killed a 92-year-old black woman named Kathryn Johnston in her own home and then planted evidence and lied about the circumstances. An ensuing investigation revealed many instances of lying and fabricating evidence by police officers.

In the Cambridge incident, officer James Crowley said in his police report that he talked to witness Lucia Whalen soon after he arrived at the home of Professor Henry Louis Gates. “She went on to tell me that she observed what appeared to be two black males with backpacks on the porch.” Whalen’s attorney said her client never mentioned the men’s race to Crowley.

Officer Crowley also wrote that Gates told him, “I’ll speak with your mama outside.” Gates says that the word “mama” didn’t come out of his mouth.

If you believe Whalen, Crowley lied on his report. If you believe Gates, Crowley lied using a stereotypical “black folk talking” buzzword.

The “teachable moment” in the dust up ought to have been a vigorous lesson on our rights, and on how the law is supposed to protect the principle that a person’s home is his or her castle.

Some police have the mistaken belief that they are “the law.” They are not. The law is the law. It’s their job to enforce it.

A person with a badge and a gun and the power to hurt, imprison or kill does not lend legitimacy to our legal system. What lends legitimacy is our belief that the police are dutiful servants of the people — not their arbitrary oppressors.

We, as citizens of a democracy, need to affirm this lesson. We should never have to fear when we stand up for our rights.

X Kevin Alexander Gray is the author of “Waiting for Lightning to Strike: The Fundamentals of Black Politics.” He wrote this for Progressive Media Project, a source of liberal commentary on domestic and international issues; it is affiliated with The Progressive magazine. Distributed by McClatchy-Tribune Information Services.


Comments

1Stan(9923 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

If you are doing something wrong you have a right to be arrested. When you have a problem with why you were arrested then you can argue your case in court. Resisting arrest is a crime for a good reason. Respect for the police who put their lives on the line for the safety of the public should be a no brainer. They take the criminals off the street for your safety.

OJ Simpson who it is well known that he killed two people and didn't like being arrested for it got his day in court. The jury then decided that he should not be punished for the crime. Only at that point was OJ above the law.

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2gypsygirl720(186 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

~~~STAN & LOL,

I agree with you both. Coming from a "police and military" family; we were taught respect for uniforms. As well as, respect for our "elders".

Professor Gates is well-known in the Cambridge HARVARD community. I believe he was stressed out in this situation.

By the same token, so was Officer Crowley. The Officer did NOT know what he could be walking into.

[You all remember the incident in Pittsburgh, PA, recently.]
Perhaps this confrontation could have been avoided, in Cambridge, MA.

Only GOD knows. We should all be thankful it did not end with bloodshed, on either side.

~~~Have a safe day.

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3Eric(196 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

Okay, but do the police have the right to lie? Officer Crowley is a prime example of that, when he lied on the police report about speaking with Lucia Whalen.

People are emotional creatures, and in a stressful situation sometimes may say things they wouldn't otherwise say. Just because someone talks back to the police DOES NOT mean they are breaking the law and need to be arrested. Believe it or not, even though the conservatives have been successful at bugging our houses and listening to our phone calls, they haven't yet appealed the first amendment.

The police always have the upper hand. The police have nothing to lose in arresting someone for disorderly conduct, because they are already on the job and getting paid. And the police's version of an incident always holds more weight than the citizen's. Then, the citizen getting the bogus arrest has to go the station, get fingerprinted, get a mug shot, sit in jail, etc, even when the charge is later dismissed. I have personally heard the police holler and swear at citizens, but of course the thin blue line would prevent them from being arrested. The police need to be the mature ones and control a situation. If the police are going to use their power to arrest, they need to do it with belief that the charge will stick, and not use it simply as a tool of revenge. Slapping a bogus charge of disorderly conduct just because an officer doesn't like what someone said is like a kid on the school yard running to a teacher because another kid called him a bad name. Giving the police unfettered power to arrest at will sounds way too much like fascism.

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4Stan(9923 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

Eric:

"Giving the police unfettered power to arrest at will sounds way too much like fascism."

OJ Simpson and anyone criminally inclined would agree. We could save a lot of money by eliminating all of our police forces. There is no way that you could eliminate criminal behavior. With no control criminal behavior would destroy the productive in society.

Criminals are non productive and are parasites. When parasites are not controlled the host perishes. Civilizations are destroyed when parasites are not controlled. When parasites are controlled civilization flourishes.

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5JeffLebowski(953 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

The message isn't lost on me but comparing the Cambridge case to murder cases is more than a stretch, no?

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6Stan(9923 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

Well Jeff, how loud would the professor have screamed if the police had just driven by while his house was being broken into by others ? He was irritated at the mere fact that he was being questioned. The police should have assumed that anyone breaking into a house was the owner or tenant,RIGHT?

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7JeffLebowski(953 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

I don't have a comment on the Cambridge thing, Stan; my comment deals with the comparison.

Claiming in anonymity to disrespect officers of the law might get you props on a message board, Jenny; in the real world it is going to yield very different results. If self-preservation is an instinct which you possess you should be as courteous as possible in dealing with officers. Seems like a pretty basic and reasonable axiom.

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8JeffLebowski(953 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

Responding that way is fine but your chances of being arrested just went up tenfold. I don't see how this can be argued.

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9cambridge(3101 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

When you interact with the police you are dealing with the matter of the law. In that situation they are in charge. They are trained to evaluate the situation and take charge. They are like everyone else. The less hassle the better. I suggest you don't make a problem where there isn't one.

Some people think they are obligated to be defiant to any authority. If you come off that way to the cops you will lose.

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10JeffLebowski(953 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

cambridge better conveyed what I could not.

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11DoctorGonzo(728 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

"Sean Bell and Oscar Grant are just two of the most familiar victims who received the death penalty at the hands of cops for essentially the crime of being black."

This author is obviously a bigot and cannot wait to bring race into the situation. His article is subliminally geared to make whitey the enemy. He has no real knowledge of constitutional law or interpretation and essentially blames everyone else except black people for their problems.

" Many black and brown kids that end up going through the revolving door of the criminal justice system are ushered into it by a disorderly conduct arrest."
This statement is so ridiculous that I cannot even fathom I am wasting my time with it. What about the other 95% of crimes black and brown kids commit that get them pinched? AM I really to believe most black and brown kids get arrested for disorderly conduct? This is not a rock concert in the 1960's, these people are robbing and stealing with guns and shooting to kill for very small reasons.

This artcle is a waste of space and time by the author. A bigot with an agenda and a lack of knowledge. All the ingredients for tyrannical idiocy.

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12cambridge(3101 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

Jenny....no offence but you make a lot of assumptions. In Gates situation the cop was obligated to investigate the situation. If Gates over reacted and made a problem where there wasn't one, that may have caused the cop to over react.

In my younger days I had a different view of the police and acted like it. Eventually the light came on. In Gates case he very well be one of the most intelligent men in America but for some people there is no connection between intelligence and common sence.

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13the_truth(8 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

Frankly this is one of the stupidest articles I've ever read, and it's mentality like this that causes situations such as the one in Cambridge to happen in the first place.

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14Eric(196 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

We aren't talking about letting convicted criminals freely ravage our towns. We are talking about police officers acting petty and making bogus arrests, with the charges later being dropped. Dr. Gates is a prime example of this. If the police had any kind of case, would the charges have been dropped? I think not. The police were merely using an arrest as a revenge tool because they found offense with the way Dr. Gates was acting. The is not what the police should be doing. They are there to enforce the law, not make it. Simply put, if the police make an arrest that is so weak that the police themselves later drop the charge, that arrest should not have been made to begin with.

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15DoctorGonzo(728 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

This Gates guy gets touted as "one of the smartest men in America"?

I am quite sure the smartest people in America are not teaching Harvard, and we will never ever know they existed.
His initial reaction to play the race card and start yelling nonsense is a clear assertion that he cannot be that bright. An intelligent person would have kept his mouth shut until everything is done.

The police could most certainly have had a case against Gates. Just because it was dropped does not mean it was not ripe. Prosecutors have many many other crimes that require time and man power that weigh more heavily than disorderly conduct.

Gates should have kept his mouth shut and documented the situation afterwards, such as the next day. Take time and review the events and make logical, intelligent inferences. Then, proceed with disclosure if you still believe it is warranted. One of the smartest people in America would never act like Gates did.

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16Stan(9923 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

Gates was showing the world that he was above authority. For being a professor his intellectual qualities are less than adequate. His reasoning is extremely flawed.

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17rocky14(728 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

Good cops should be treated with respect---but there are too many of them who think they are above the law--especially in small towns.
After Gates showed his ID,that should have been the end of it.Crowley should have just walked away.Why do think charges were dropped?
There was fault on both sides.

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18woolyd(579 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

First off we need to get over the OJ case. If the police did not botch the evidence he would have been found guilty. I am in law enforcement but I know it is standard protocol to lie. The fact is if you go to court on a misdemeanor or traffic offense you will be foung guilty no matter what. When you get a speeding ticket the cop does not have to show proof of how fast you were going, they only have to say what a speed and that the radar is calibrated. The so called war on drugs has caused the police to engage in dirty acts in the name of law enforcement. Why do we let a dealer fill the streets with drugs for over a year before they are arrested? So we can get federal charges yet the streets are flooded with the drugs. All Im saying is not all police can be trusted and if they show respect they are more likely to get it in return.

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19Stan(9923 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

woolyd"

"First off we need to get over the OJ case. "

The culture views this case as true justice for the black man. When they are arrested by a white officer they scream injustice. The OJ murder case shows that you can do the crime but not the time.

OJ's luck ran out in Vegas. He took a gamble that he was untouchable by the law and found out different. His supporters will never get over it.

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20woolyd(579 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

All im saying Stan is the LAPD and the Prosecutors meesed the evidence up and lost the case. And he is not the only person ever to get off. The killers of Emmitt Till got off and many others have to.

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21JUST1OPINION(10 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

I remember when I was growing up I was taught that you showed officers respect at all times. Not because of the uniform they wear but for the job that they do. Lets face it, I know I would not do that job for the risk vs reward that is involved. I will admit I have met some bastard cops in my years but I have always showed them respect, and between parties at my house being broken up back in college and MANY speeding tickets not one of those situations has ever got out of hand. So the next time you feel like an officer deserves to be treated like crap by you, remember they are human too and out there risking everything to try and make your world a little better. Better yet, sign up for the academy and try to do their job better than they do!

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22timOthy(802 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

Yeah ! Respect the uniform and their postion of enforcing the Law. But don't give me this Crap that they are special. Most of them are too lazy to do the work of the Public Scetor and lack the education also. Since this is a internet site I know most of you read the News in other towns. Recently in Cleveland, Ohio a Police Captain got caught Stroking his Carrot in a Park looking at kids in his uniform. Now how can you or one respect that?

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23woolyd(579 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

Just1 Opinion you definitely have a point but many officers today are not like the ones we had growing up. Im 31 and there is a difference back when I was a kid and a teen the police officers actually showed the public respect. Most now act and talk to you in any way they feel. They are young arrogant and most dont even know our Constitutional rights.

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24Stan(9923 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

woolyd :

If you desire respect from the police then behave yourself ! Then you will get plenty of respect !

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25woolyd(579 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

Stan ive never been arrested in my life. However I have been pulled over for having a air freshener hanging from my rear view mirror. The cop then tried to use that as probable cause to search my vehicle. Fortunate for me I earned a criminal justice degree (from YSU) and knew what the criteria for probable cause is. I stated it to the cop who was just standing there dumbfounded that I knew my rights. So he issued me a ticket and when i fought it in court the judge was trying to contain himself as he looked at the officer. The judge told this officer to get in the real world and not waste my time with such as bogus ticket. so while i respect those officers that respect me i do not respect those who are out to hurt people and think they are above the law.

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26woolyd(579 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

PS in court the officer gave the judge a variety of reasons for pulling me over. first he said he wasnt sure if i had stopped at the stop sign. second he said i was driving too fast on the street because kids were playing baseball two blocks over. i was driving 15mph on a road with a speed limit of 25mph. Then the officer came back to the air freshener as the reason and claimed it was a winshield obstruction. yet on the stand the officer couldnt describe the air freshener. he improperly wrote the ticket and when i questioned him he said "accuracy when writing a ticket is not an important issue". the judge a former cop looked at him and said "is that so" and dismissed the charge.

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27gleekgal(48 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

I agree with Eric. They abuse their powers, they lie, and most of them think they are Don Juans !!

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28Stan(9923 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

woolyd:

"Fortunate for me I earned a criminal justice degree"

So what are you doing with that degree ? Trying to find angles to get away with things ?

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29woolyd(579 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

Pursuing my masters degree then going to work for either US Marshalls or NYPD as a homicide detective. so no not looking to free the guilty just not looking to harass them. it amazes me that people on here hate Obama and liberals but yet the police are allowed to be liberal when it comes to our rights. I AM ONLY SAYING THAT POLICE ARE HUMAN THEY ARE NO BETTER THAN ANY1 ELSE AND JUST BECAUSE THEY ARE SUPPOSED TO HOLD UP THE LAW IT DOESNT MEAN THAT THEY ALWAYS DO.

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30woolyd(579 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

PS ALL YOU OBAMA HATERS SAY THE GOVENMENT IS CORRUPT AND BAD BUT IN YOUR NEXT BREATH YOU SAY THE POLICE ARE UPSTANDING AND RIGHTEOUS. HOW CAN THAT BE THEY ARE A BRANCH OF THE GOVENMENT SO THOSE WHO CLAIM THIS ARE TALKING OUT BOTH SIDES OF YOUR MOUTHS. ITS HYPOCRITICAL AND NOT TRUTHFUL

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31DoctorGonzo(728 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

I know I always believe everything that comes out of a lawyer's mouth, especially in regards to their clients.

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32Stan(9923 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

woolyd:

Where do you get that Obama hating crap ? I just am not one of his supporters. He champions the killing of the unborn children. I don't support him for that basic reason besides his liberal wealth sharing views.

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33woolyd(579 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

stan i dont support abortion either. i was not talking about you in particular its just many seem to think hes bad and yet he came into a mess.

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34ManOfSteel(16 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

Stan (and all those with similar opinions)--

Your uninformed views demonstrate just how little respect many conservatives (and, I must admit, liberals as well) have for the notion of personal liberty. Any one of the august fathers of republican democracy, from Cicero to Locke to Jefferson, would scorn your obsequious fealty to the representatives of the law as making a travesty of the law itself. Jefferson himself, at the Constitutional Convention in 1787, was quoted as saying, "I think a little rebellion now and then is a good thing." If citizens have no right to question an officer, whose salary and welfare derives from the public trust, then it is not a large leap to suppose that the notion of social compact--- the foundation of Western-style democracy--- is itself obsolescent. Laws, and those who enforce them, must always serve the public good, at both a societal and individual level, and when the balance between liberty and order is upset, rebellion must result, or else one is left with the alternatives of either anarchy or totalitarianism. The authority of thousands of years of irreproachable moral and political opinion, vindicate Kevin Gray's basic premise and pulverize yours. Not a single one of the American founding fathers would have concurred with your shallow sentiments. The officers of the law are to earn respect, and not the other way around; if you would love to have lived in Stalin's Russia, Pol Pot's Cambodia, or Hitler's Germany, you were unfortunately born in the wrong place and time.

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35ManOfSteel(16 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

Oh, and by the way, Obama does not "champion the killing of the unborn". You sound like a parrot of Rush Limbaugh and his mindless cronies who still believe that, despite its prima facie failures, neo-conservatism is the answer to the challenges America faces in the 21st century. Many international organizations no longer rate the US near the top in terms of individual freedoms--- in the political, civil, and personal spheres; we have the conservative saviors Jim DeMint, William Rehnquist, George W. Bush, and Ronald Reagan to thank for this lamentable status quo. By the way, before you label me as a raving liberal, I have personally written and published articles in defense of the unborn's right to life, and been to the March For Life in DC more times than you. I used to be a Republican, but neo-cons such as you (at least you sound like one) repulsed me from the party forever.

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36Stan(9923 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

ManOBS:

You truly have found your niche when you joined the flaming liberals . When you fools talk of freedoms it is mainly your freedom to oppress those who don't agree with you that is uppermost on your agenda .

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37ManOfSteel(16 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

Stan---

Firing federal judges whose political views don't coincide with your own is what I'd call "freedom to oppress those who don't agree with you", and this was a notorious practice of the Bush administration. There's a reason that Bush and his cronies will never be pardoned, and why LEOs who take matters into their own hands should also face the full force of the law; the bedrock of the USA is the principle that noone- president, CEO, LEO, CFO, or the Average Joe-- is above the law, and that laws themselves, and arrests made pursuant to them, may be questioned at any time. If you were really comfortable being arrested for breaking into your own home, or had no audacity to question what might be a violation of your rights, then you would in fact already be in servitude. Oh, and by the way, you inexorable imbecile, I am a libertarian, not a liberal. Read a dictionary and a few books on history and government, and maybe you might learn the difference between the two.

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38DoctorGonzo(728 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

Scoff, scoff, scoff, scoff.

Yeeaaaaahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh!

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39Stan(9923 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

ManOBS:

With your quacker running at top speed you do indeed mirror a flaming liberal . I have no need to break into anywhere so I am not deemed worthy to extend any compassion to those who travel down that path .

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40blkpride(186 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

cops have the right to tell you to shut your *&^%$#% pie hole too!

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41Eric(196 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

Stan, if anybody is a liberal it is you. You constantly say that the welfare moms shouldn't be allowed to get rid of their babies because everyone deserves to live. I guess you would rather pay for a jail cell for the future felons. And you say you aren't liberal?

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42Stan(9923 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

Eric, it is well known the we conservatives champion the right to life . So how should the unborn be selected for execution ?

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43ManOfSteel(16 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

Conservatives don't champion any "right to life"; it is a smokescreen to get the religious vote. If there were no "right to life" movement, there would be no Republican party (at least not one that's viable at the national level; oh wait, that is already happening!).

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44metz87(884 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

Cops have the right to be repspected but then again so do we,it's a two way street that often times is abused. Look at Warren cops up there tihnk hey are god,always in trouble and the only good tihng is they got rid of that jerk Mondolplous. He should have been out years ago.

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45jermuh(16 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

oh ye hypocrits, u oppose abortion but support going into Iraq and killing hundreds of thousands of Iraqis. u say a person is INNOCENT until proven guilty but are still talking about OJ 14 yrs after he was judged not guilty, u have taken officer crowleys words as the truth although it has already been proven he lied, what hypocrits, the man was in his home with pictures on the table and walls of him with other people, after showing officer crowley hs id y couldn't crowley just leave, his job was done there, there was no reason to arrest him, so what his feelings were hurt

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46Stan(9923 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

Jermuh:

"so what his feelings were hurt"

Being a professor he should have realized Crowley was looking after his interests showing up when called to do so . Being a racial bigot who didn't like whites he had to bring up Crowley's MAMA !

You seem to champion getting of scott free as justice . Too bad OJ got juiced in Veagas, eh ? I hate to burst your bubble but there are plenty of blacks who don't look up to OJ .

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47hometownhero(5 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

All citizens have rights. You have a right not to be harrassed by the police just because they don't particulary like what you say.
Black people have been harrassed and arrested for years without committing a crime. We have been pulled over many times for driving while Black. This is 2009 and the harrassment of people due to their race needs to stop.

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48henryviii1509(274 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

I will say it again!

Make it mandatory that everyone that is of able body, that is residing in a household receiving government assistance, go to work 40 hours a week,(like the rest of us), cleaning up the blight that has brought this area to its knees.

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49Chad(1 comment)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

JennyChan please go visit Jackson, Ohio in Jackson County and see how far your mouth gets you. No female facility there so you'll have to post bond at the Ross County Jail in Chillicothe,Ohio.

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50Rokscout(310 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

Stan-

It's apparent that it's okay to blanket all cops as racist a-holes but you can't reverse any of the logic, even if it is fact based. Not without getting your comment removed anyway.
Nice to see where you stand Vindy.

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51TB(1167 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

Stan can't sit here and blame the plight of the country on one race as he is wont to do. Bravo to the Vindy for not allowing bigots to run wild.

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52Stan(9923 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

Too bad crime is allowed to run wild ! If crime in the city is considered serious lets do something serious about it ! I propose that we find jobs for the fine folks who may have a propensity for crime . 24/7 idle time breeds crime !

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53metz87(884 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

It sure does.

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54moved_from_Youngstown(6 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

As Abraham Lincoln stated "NO MAN IS ABOVE THE LAW"

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55moved_from_Youngstown(6 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

AS ABRAHAM LINCOLN STATED NO MAN IS ABOVE THE LAW THAT INCLUDES POLICE OFFICERS. EVERYONE HAS A RIGHT TO SPEAK UP FOR THEMSELVES AS LONG AS THEIR NOT DOING ANYTHING WRONG. I HAVE ALOT OF FAMILY MEMBERS WHO ARE POLICE OFFICERS INCLUDING A BROTHER WHO IS WITH INTERNAL AFFAIRS AND IF IT WAS ME WHO WERE IN PROFESSOR GATES SHOES I WOULD HAVE DONE THE SAME THING, U CANT GO AROUND ABUSING UR AUTHORITY JUST BECAUSE U HAVE A UNIFORM ON, POLICE OFFICERS MUST REMEMBER THERE ARE PEOPLE IN THIS WORLD WHO ARE NOT AFRAID OF THEM AND THE HAVE TO LIVE IN THE COMMUNITY, BECAUSE THEY NEVER KNOW WHEN THE TABLES MIGHT BE TURNED AND THE SHOE IS ON THE OTHER FOOT. I DONT FEAR ANYONE INCLUDING MY MOTHER I DONT LET HER TALK TO ME ANY KIND OF WAY AND I WONT LET ANYONE WITH "AUTHORITY DO THE SAME RESPECT ME AND I WILL RESPECT U, TALK CRAZY TO ME AND YOUR GOING TO HAVE A PROBLEM!!!!!

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56moved_from_Youngstown(6 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

I AM A WOMAN FROM OHIO BUT NOW LIVES IN MEMPHIS, TN. STAN THIS IS FOR U. IT DOES NOT MATER HOW U FEEL ABT ABORTION BECAUSE IN THE END AS A WOMAN WE ARE GOING TO DO WHAT WE WANT TO NOT U OR THE PRESIDENT CAN CONTROL THAT. DNT DWELL ON IT DNT HATE IT JUST ACCEPT IT CUZ IF A WOMAN WANTS TO GET AN ABORTION SHE WILL AND NOT U OR THE PRESIDENT WILL STOP HER UNTIL U BECOME A WOMAN U DNT HAVE A VOICE ON THE MATTER!!!!!

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57andersonathan(671 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

After the first line of people have the right to talk back to the police, they are not the Gestapo. I quite reading, because frankly this person is a idiot. The possible burglar / home owner / loudmouth should have been arrested for running his pie hole and convicted.

And anybody making that statement on TV in front of millions is to stupid to be president.

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58Eric(196 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

Okay BarnBarn, so criminals are good for our economy? What a joke...sounds like it is coming from the mouth of a person who has had plenty of experience as an inmate.

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59JD010101(137 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

Kevin Gray your a moron. You obviously were not taught any respect as a child by your parents. You were probably a rolly poly kid with carpel tunnel syndrom at a juvenile age from playing xbox. When the man is called to your house and he asks you questions and is wondering in the back of his head where is the second man. The caller said there is a second man. And all you do is want to run your mouth with smart azz comments about the man's momma. The man isnt afforded the time of playing the dirty dozens game so, you get to where the silver bracelets and cry about it the next day.

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60Stan(9923 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

BamBam :

So now that we have ascertained that the criminal culture is a viable part of society due to economics being stimulated we should hold them in high esteem . You truly do have an insight that the rest of us don't . Perhaps the Vindy would be receptive to do a series on your views . How about it Vindy ? You could call it the other side of the story.

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61LieDetector(27 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

Once again...waaa...waaa...waaa the other administration did this!!!!.Why is it that a majority of us just pull over and answer questions or take the ticket. If you got a problem with it go to court if your in the right. You dont engage the police!!! But I guess when you have the naacp whipping up hate just so that self proclaimed leaders like shapton and jessie jackson can make a fortune,, I guess I can see it. They dont care about you.....they just preach hate the cops....hate white people.....fight and disrupt....Sad

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62woolyd(579 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

TOO SUPID TO BE PRESIDENT? NOBODY CAN BE A DUMB AS GOVERNOR GEORGE BUSH.

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63Stan(9923 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

woolyd:

"TOO SUPID TO BE PRESIDENT? NOBODY CAN BE A DUMB AS GOVERNOR GEORGE BUSH."

Obama is exceeding all expectations ! He will put the Republicans back in vogue .

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64woolyd(579 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

so Stan are you saying bush was good in his 8 years?

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65Stan(9923 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

So woolyd are you saying that Obama has done something fantastic ? Our unemployment is almost in the double digits and may have already reached that figure . His energy policies on coal and global warming will put electricity costs to historic highs . He has just gotten started with much more mayhem to come .

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66Eric(196 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

city_dweller,

Very well said. Stan is full of inconsistencies. Also, don't forget about the one where he always says the "innocent unborn" should be protected, yet he promotes mobs attacking innocent people who are just suspected (and not even arrested) of committing crimes. Obviously, Stan spends way too much time sitting in his house, collecting his disability, and making senseless comments.

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67woolyd(579 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

Stan with all do respect you did not answer my question. Please do not avoid my question. The unemployment is in double digits but if i remember correctly this recession and job loss started during the Bush/Cheney Nazi Regime. lol. Im not sure about his energy policy but wasnt it the Bush team that was in office when gas was damn near 4.00 a gallon? Lastly isnt Iraq, AfghaniSTAN, recession, and all the other problems caused by the Bush administration mayhem?

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68metz87(884 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

Yeah he did not create all thsoe problems,he had then haned to him when he was elected. They will not be solved overnight,it may take years to do so. people want everything right now,that is not how it works.

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69Stan(9923 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

Eric:

It is the liberals who get disability for being intellectually compromised mostly . Conservatives are told there is no room for them at the trough .

For the liberals who think Obama is a Godsend keep up that line of thought along with excuses for him . He is an OK beer drinker but our bars are full of them . His aptitude for BS isn't accompanied by any logical thinking .

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70XBROWNSX(35 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

Police officers respect those who respect them. My Dad told me at a very young age that if I ever was pulled over, shut the car off, take the keys out of the ignition, light up the inside of the car if it is night, let the officer see immediately where your hands are as he or she walks up to the vehicle.

As a teenager in the 70s, a few times I was pulled over I did all of the above. I did whatever the officer to me to do. I was courteous and polite.

NEVER A PROBLEM. In fact, I even had an officer small talking sports news of the day, without a ticket. As an adult, I have not been pulled over in decades, but my driving record, vehicle maintenance, and safe driving practices never draw attention to myself when I am in traffic.

I don't drink and drive. I don't run from the police. I don't transport drugs on my person or in my car. Bottom line: If I am pulled over, I have all the correct paperwork, valid licence, current vehicle registration, proof of insurance. I have nothing to hide.

Lastly, if your race has a history of committing the MAJORITY of crimes in America, from petty to felony, then chances are you will be pulled over more often. So be it. No racial profiling, it called investigating a group of known lawbreakers. Blame your loser people who are outlaws. If that is not you, simply do the above I mentioned. Nothing to hide, courteous to a peace officer, you have nothing to fear.

Gates was clearly out of line. Hopefully, he'll learn what I knew at age 10 or so...

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71Eric(196 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

I didn't read anywhere that Obama is a Godsend. However, he inherited a mess. Bush was the one who started the bailouts, and made a mess of that. His crew didn't put any contingencies into place regarding the AIG bonuses. The market tanked while Bush was in charge. Obama can't possibly be expected to fix all of Bush's mistakes in 6 months. Stan, you are always advocating respect for authority. Why don't you show Obama some respect, and give him a year to sort things out?

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72Stan(9923 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

Eric:

"Why don't you show Obama some respect"

I will pay homage in 2012 by trying to do my bit that he doesn't toil for four more years !!

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73Eric(196 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

XBROWNSX, I understand what you are saying, but keep in mind that everyone's personalities are different. When in stressful situations with the police, sometimes people say things they wouldn't say otherwise. It might not be right, but it also shouldn't be an arrestable offense. The police have to be the mature ones in such situations. Respect goes both ways. I don't see how it is appropriate for an officer to arrest on a weak disorderly conduct charge, knowing that the charges will be later thrown out.

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74Eric(196 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

Once again, Stan is avoiding the question of what Bush did that was so great, especially considering all of the current problems we are dealing with (unemployment, Afghanistan, high energy prices, etc.) started during his regime.

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75Stan(9923 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

Bush is history and is retired . Now let's discusss Obama , the man of the hour . On the Job Training seems to be having a few bumps in the road .

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76paulydel(1325 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

anybody including Gates is not above the law. He was wrong all the way. the police responded to a call they didn't know this guy and all he had to do was show them hid ID instead of playing the I'm black card. Don't forget the other officer was also black. If you go against any police officer you deserve what you get I don't care if he was rude. If you have a complaint there are ways to handle it and not make an ass out of yourself in public. the only reason ththese chages was dropped was because Gates is a friend of Obamanation and probably did it as a courtesy. In my opinion they shouldn't have dropped the charges and let him pay for his stupidity.

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77andersonathan(671 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

Oh God grow up WAH WAH WAH all over GWB, it was so bad, so terrible he was so stupid. I would have been glad to have another 4 or 8 with George and Dick.
Rather than a incompetent community organizer/ JR senator, from the most political corrupt section of the whole USA, a card carrying socialist. And the only thing I know he must be death to sit in a church for 20 years with a Pastor like Wright and not hear a racial tone. Or just to stupid to know the difference.

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78ManOfSteel(16 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

"Bush is history and is retired". If that's the case, then why is his puppeteer running at the mouth throughout DC, attempting to undermine the current administration. Bush, Cheney, and their cronies/progeny are the most dangerous threat to American security and prosperity since we became independent over two centuries ago. Continuing the laughable policies of Reagan, the Republicans-- the party of "limited government"-- granted almost unlimited powers to the CIA, FBI, and the NSA to violate the rights of their own constituents, practiced unprecedented mendacity in justifying the beginning and continuation of a war that plunged America further into debt and the cesspool of international scorn than ever before, and stood idly by as Social Security and Medicare continued to slide towards irredeemable insolvency. If we had eight more years of these wannabe "leaders", God Himself would have been hard pressed to right their mistakes (and He would be the only one able to do so). Oh, and after seven years of incessant war in Asia, we are no safer than before. The only positive things Bush and Co. achieved, such as increased funding for AIDS research and the continuation of the peace processes in Israel and South Asia, were concepts borrowed from Democrats and/or other "liberals." Reaganomics and neo-conservative social and civil policies have never worked, and like communism, they never will!!!

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79andersonathan(671 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

Man of Tin, get a grip all that hate dude is not good for ones soul. Obama will be naked cured up in a ball shaking when they find him in the big house if he has to go through what GWB did.

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80woolyd(579 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

XBROWNSX. You are right but this isnt the 70's anymore. The reality is since the "war on drugs" police engage in alot of corrupt activities to try to find stuff. Also many police now dont live in the community that they serve and view the community as criminals . So what im saying is alot of cops now feel their above the law and try to enforce their authority when it is unneccesary.

STAN, I still have not had my question about Bush answered. WHY IS THIS? IS IT BECAUSE YOU KNOW HE F!!!!D S@@T UP?

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81Stan(9923 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

Calm down ManOBS ! Obama has been elected elected and all will be well ! He is doing a fine job of creating hatred for the Democrats ! Conservatives could not have found a better plant to sway the opinion their way .

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82jermuh(16 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

xbrownsx, Blacks dont commit the most crimes in the u.s. they are arrested the most , u may want 2 check dept of justice stats before spouting ignorance. maybe the police think like u so they focus on Blacks while the madoffs of the world make offf with the wealth......remember america didnt become the richest nation in the world on her hard work, she became the richest nation because she received free labor for over 300 yrs and continues to do so now through the prison industrial complex

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83jermuh(16 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

xbrownsx, have u ever heard of innocent until proven guilty, why do Blacks have to prove our innocence while whites rights are protected , when Blacks see the police we dont think protect and serve, we see entrap and trick, maybe our perception is wrong sometimes but usually as with crowley it is right on target. Crowley admitted tricking gates to come outside so he could arrest him, that implies that there was no threat, but he arrested him anyway

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84JME(801 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

ManOBS, everything you say is just the opposite of how things actually are.

Stan has it right, the Democrats are doing a fine job of shooting themselves in the foot.

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85Stan(9923 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

jermuh:

"she became the richest nation because she received free labor for over 300 yrs and continues to do so now through the prison industrial complex"

There has been plenty of free labor used on the continent of Africa for many more centuries than than the United States has existed . They even sold off their surplus labor pool for export . To this day there are very few palces in Africa where the black man is truly free let alone prosperous .

It is the Chinese who use prison labor in industrial complexes . Here in the States we feed them and listen to them whine . What few brooms or license plates that are manufactured don't begin to pay for their keep .

How about the success that Don King has had in promoting boxing to make millions ? Only in America can he and black atheletes make millions and live in luxury . Life is what you make of it . Do crime and you will do the time, be you black or be you white .

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86MrReggie(15 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

A man has the right to say whatever he wants it is his constitutional right to say whatever it is he wants especially in his home. At the point where the police were aware that he was the home owner is the point where this whole incident shouldve been over. Remember this is the United states of america, not russia,china, or cuba.

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87andersonathan(671 comments)posted 5 years, 4 months ago

Yes and if a Harvard professor had any coot to him a polite thanks for looking out for me and showing up so soon.
And send the lady next door a bottle of wine for watching out.

Seems everyone forgets to mention Gates had been broken into before?

But he decided to run his pie hole and true color showing Barry O stepped into it.

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