George Floyd and the dominoes of social injustice

  

Category:  Op/Ed

Via:  thomas  •  4 weeks ago  •  49 comments

By:   YouTube

George Floyd and the dominoes of social injustice
Trevor shares his thoughts on the killing of George Floyd, the protests in Minneapolis, the dominos of racial injustice and police brutality, and how the con...

A credible and astute argument regarding the social contract and the differences of the same between Black and White people.


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Thomas
1  seeder  Thomas    4 weeks ago

This, I feel, is one of the best contemporaneous expositions on just why we all feel that something is terribly askew.

 
 
 
Freewill
1.1  Freewill  replied to  Thomas @1    4 weeks ago

Indeed he makes some very good points, particularly that of the social contract.  There is no doubt that police departments and other institutions in many areas have not upheld their part of participating in and enforcing that contract and have repeatedly broken that contract.  They have not lead by example and that needs to change and we must all do our part to see that it does change.

However, there is something to be said for the old adage "Can't fight fire with fire, or gasoline", and then expect things to change. Can we really repair the Contract by continuing to tear it up?  Leading by example doesn't just need to start from the top. Many times it must start with a grass roots efforts to make our own communities better, and show the "enforcers" and "leaders" how we want it to look/work. Burning down buildings and hurting people in our own communities seems to me really counterproductive and sends the wrong message about wanting a fair contract. While I understand how many must feel after seeing this police brutality and other breaches of contract happen over and over again, I also feel that it is not impossible for folks to improve their local police departments by taking a more active role within them and change them from the inside. And not just police departments, but take a more active roll in all aspects of one's community.  A combative attitude and refusal to be part of the change (other than just demanding it), changes nothing.  We can't just demand change, we must take an active role in it.
 
 
 
Thomas
1.1.1  seeder  Thomas  replied to  Freewill @1.1    4 weeks ago

I understand violence begets violence. But I also understand the point of view of the black community that sees nothing changing despite years and even centuries of trying to achieve equality: There is no contract to tear up, because the contract has been burnt and the ashes scattered. How long ago was the Civil War? How long ago was the Emancipation Proclamation? 

I see people saying, "Again?" and acting confused, like they legitimately do not understand how we could be at this social juncture again and again, when we, as a society, have not addressed the underlying issues that cause these protests and riots in the first place. 

Here is another video, but the point that I would like to make is that we have been here before, and not much has changed. If you go to the 30 minute mark and watch from there, I think that it should be clear what my point is.  Of course, it is ok to watch from the beginning if you have the time. 

 
 
 
Freewill
1.1.2  Freewill  replied to  Thomas @1.1.1    4 weeks ago
There is no contract to tear up, because the contract has been burnt and the ashes scattered

I tend to disagree.  If that were the case, riots in the streets would be an everyday occurrence.   People of color would never advance to positions that many have, including President of these United States.  The view that there is no social contract left to salvage, improve, or help to re-write is a gross exaggeration, and can lead people to feel that there is no hope when clearly there is.  Although certainly not perfect, our society works fairly well most of the time, but we can certainly make strides in seeing to it that it works better ALL the time and for ALL the participants.  But that is the key.  Participation.  Without a concerted effort by ALL of us to safeguard our own rights and those of every other citizen around us, and to be held individually accountable for using those rights responsibly, society cannot function optimally.  The more we count on others to protect our rights, and the more we abuse those rights, the weaker our social contract gets.

But I also understand the point of view of the black community that sees nothing changing despite years and even centuries of trying to achieve equality... How long ago was the Civil War? How long ago was the Emancipation Proclamation?

I understand that point of view (or general impression) as well, but do you honestly feel that "nothing has changed" since the Civil War, since the EP, even since the Civil Rights marches of the 60's?  Certainly there are institutions and individuals that continue to foster or exhibit racist behaviors/mindsets.  Certainly one could say (and I do) that truly equal treatment shouldn't take this long and that people of color shouldn't have to wait at all.  It should be automatic, it should go without saying, and we should ALL do everything we can to see to it that any remaining traces of inequality and unequal treatment are vanquished immediately.  We all need to see things from another's perspective and do what we can to right the wrongs.  But to say that "nothing has changed" is simply not accurate and tends to create the impression that it can never change.  As much as we need to focus on the specific things that still need to change, we should also focus on the things that have changed and how we can all help to accelerate those positive changes in our own communities and beyond.

 
 
 
Thomas
1.1.3  seeder  Thomas  replied to  Freewill @1.1.2    4 weeks ago

Perception of our problems is quite often more important than the actual problem. The perception of a large protion of our community, of a large portion of members of our society, is largely the same as the woman at the end of the video. I was not claiming that nothing has changed. I was claiming that the perception of that change is limited, and the change itself is so limited as to be next to none. When we can look at the records of policeing and see parity, that is when progress has been made socially. Until we see such parity, we have the tacit implication and acceptance of racist thoughts guiding our policing efforts.

By the way, I have heard too many stories these past weeks of people who did attempt to change the system from within, only to be rebuffed by the systems that they tried to look up to. 

 
 
 
MUVA
1.1.4  MUVA  replied to  Thomas @1.1.3    4 weeks ago

As a mixed race person big changes have happen the perception is perpetuated by the left if they didn't have to stir up black people  every 4 years the perception would be more like the reality.

 
 
 
Thomas
1.1.5  seeder  Thomas  replied to  MUVA @1.1.4    4 weeks ago

If you think that this is an issue stirred up by some people on the left to gain traction, you are farther away from the reality of the situation than the protesters, no matter your racial background. 

 
 
 
MUVA
1.1.6  MUVA  replied to  Thomas @1.1.5    4 weeks ago

No my friend some on the left most certainly are using race  as a bludgeon for pure political ends.I know how much this country  has change since I was young compared to now it is night and day.

 
 
 
Perrie Halpern R.A.
1.1.7  Perrie Halpern R.A.  replied to  MUVA @1.1.6    4 weeks ago

MUVA,

This is not about stirring up the races for political agenda. This was a thoughtful insight on the issue at large. Did you watch it? 

 
 
 
MUVA
1.1.8  MUVA  replied to  Perrie Halpern R.A. @1.1.7    4 weeks ago

Yes I did and as my father said hot air will float a balloon but it will not fix problems. 

 
 
 
Perrie Halpern R.A.
1.1.9  Perrie Halpern R.A.  replied to  MUVA @1.1.8    4 weeks ago

You have to identify the problem before you can fix it. 

 
 
 
Just Jim NC TttH
1.1.10  Just Jim NC TttH  replied to  Perrie Halpern R.A. @1.1.9    4 weeks ago

"Politics is the art of looking for trouble, finding it everywhere, diagnosing it incorrectly and applying the wrong remedies."

Ernest Benn

 
 
 
Perrie Halpern R.A.
1.1.11  Perrie Halpern R.A.  replied to  Just Jim NC TttH @1.1.10    4 weeks ago

But this is not about politics, is it? You have to watch the video to get that.

 
 
 
Thomas
1.1.12  seeder  Thomas  replied to  MUVA @1.1.6    4 weeks ago

But the inequities seem to be ingrained in society at the most basic level, and while some people on both the left and the right may be using the issue of race to drive wedges between us, those inequities, real or perceived, are affecting the way that policing is done in this country. The very fact that the police turn out in riot gear for a peaceful protest exemplifies this. Continuing to pour money into more policing and equipment and the inequitable distribution of the same does, in my opinion, nothing to address the root causes and only serves to exacerbate the problem. 

I believe that the police have far to much equipment and firepower. 

I believe that much of the money spent on policing could be better spent elsewhere. 

 
 
 
Just Jim NC TttH
1.1.13  Just Jim NC TttH  replied to  Perrie Halpern R.A. @1.1.11    4 weeks ago

Is it not about "identifying the problem before you can fix it"?And who is concentrated on "fixing" it with legislation?

JMHO

 
 
 
Transyferous Rex
1.1.14  Transyferous Rex  replied to  Perrie Halpern R.A. @1.1.7    4 weeks ago

Maybe Noah didn't want to discuss, but he makes several references to the "social contract", which is political theory. When you ask the question of how you'd feel if you watched as the social contract, that you didn't sign, was ripped up every day, you are necessarily asking someone to imagine that the state is out to get you, and hold you to a contract that you did not take part in, i.e., white people's will expressed through the police.  

Candidly, I think he starts off nicely. He goes too far when he alleges, around the 16:20 mark, that "it is only happening to you, and you are the only people who have that skin color." I agree with MUVA. At that point, you are using race as a bludgeon. Noah's comment clearly not supportable, so what is the point of making such a comment, if not to promote a political agenda? 

 
 
 
MUVA
1.1.15  MUVA  replied to  Thomas @1.1.12    4 weeks ago

I agree with a good part of what you posted my problem is the race baiting that is used as place of a argument or solution.I know from my fathers experience in navy 35 years he would have easily made admiral but that systemic racist was part of the country’s past.Fast forward 20 years my brother West Point grad also excepted naval and Air Force academies.He was the first to make captain from his graduating class.A far cry from what my father experienced just 20 years later.

 
 
 
Freewill
1.1.16  Freewill  replied to  Thomas @1.1.12    4 weeks ago
The very fact that the police turn out in riot gear for a peaceful protest exemplifies this

They didn't turn out at all in some places initially, and initially many of those protests were anything but peaceful my friend.  After that, sure, they showed up in riot gear with rubber bullets and tear gas as city blocks and family businesses were being destroyed.  What would you have them wear as they are being pelted with all manner of projectile and burning debris?  Are they not allowed to protect themselves while they are protecting property from those who do not remain peaceful?  After the initial looting and destruction in many cities, how were police to know that other protests would remain peaceful?  What they have been wearing to these protests exemplifies only their desire to do their job and live to go home to their families just like everyone else.  And yes, I hope they understand that this is what the protesters and people of color want too. 

I believe that much of the money spent on policing could be better spent elsewhere

Perhaps.  Certainly I get your point on the fire power issue.  But how many folks who make statements like this are willing to join the force or City Government and see to it that money is better spent from the inside?  From the top down and the bottom up?  How many are actually willing to improve community relations with law enforcement to reduce the amount of force and fire power required to keep neighborhoods safe from those who steal, assault, and kill?  If the money could be better spent elsewhere, then where exactly should it be spent, and are you willing to see to it that it is spent wisely and renders better results? People keep saying that law enforcement should be de-funded and the money should be spent elsewhere, but nobody gets specific about where the money should be spent nor do they provide any evidence that it would actually be more effective or make things better/safer for their community.  What are some specific things that we could do in lieu of law enforcement?

 
 
 
Tessylo
1.1.17  Tessylo  replied to  Thomas @1.1.5    4 weeks ago

'If you think that this is an issue stirred up by some people on the left to gain traction, you are farther away from the reality of the situation than the protesters, no matter your racial background.'

Yes, Thomas.  He always brings that up.  His race(s) that is.  Like it's relevant.  

Then blames the LEFT EVERY TIME.  

 
 
 
MUVA
1.1.18  MUVA  replied to  Tessylo @1.1.17    4 weeks ago

I blame race baiters and no I don’t always bring up my race but since I am black and not a leftist or democrat   I think my race gives me prospective that is pertinent to the conversation.

 
 
 
Perrie Halpern R.A.
2  Perrie Halpern R.A.    4 weeks ago

When I was working in Brownville, Brooklyn in the 80's as a teacher, I came in at the hight of the crack epidemic. The community was very much at odds with the police. The children viewed the police as their enemy. An idea came from the NYPD to have a local police officer for each street to serve that street. He got to know the people, break bread with them. Help out when things went down. Within a year, our police officer Officer Acevedo, knew all the kids on the block and their families. People would just go to him in time of need. He was not viewed as the enemy. 

One day, my classroom guinea pig was guinea pignapped by another student in the building. Because Officer Acevedo had gained the trust of the kids, it didn't take him very long to suss out which kid took our guinea pig, and go to his home and get him back for us. Everyone learned something from the experience and it was such a feel-good story, that the New York Daily News covered the story. 

The program worked because the community became invested in it. I don't know what happened to the program, but this proves that you don't have to dismantle the police, but just think outside the box, and showing kindness will bring out good. 

 
 
 
Freewill
2.1  Freewill  replied to  Perrie Halpern R.A. @2    4 weeks ago

Great story Perrie and a good illustration of what active participation and working together can do to fix/repair the social contract.

 
 
 
Perrie Halpern R.A.
2.1.1  Perrie Halpern R.A.  replied to  Freewill @2.1    4 weeks ago

Thanks Freewill. I agree this issue is about the social contract on so many levels. The police being part of it. 

 
 
 
Thomas
2.2  seeder  Thomas  replied to  Perrie Halpern R.A. @2    4 weeks ago

That is a wonderful story. How about the people outside of the one officer and the one school?

 
 
 
Perrie Halpern R.A.
2.2.1  Perrie Halpern R.A.  replied to  Thomas @2.2    4 weeks ago

He was assigned to a specific area and he was the go-to for the neighborhood. Everyone loved the guy. He really brought civility to the area and trust between the neighborhood and the police. 

 
 
 
Freewill
2.2.2  Freewill  replied to  Thomas @2.2    4 weeks ago
How about the people outside of the one officer and the one school?

Well that is the point Thomas.  You look at what works and you multiply it to other officers, schools, communities all the while improving relationships between people, their communities, law enforcement and leadership.  The point is not to tell such stories so that we can simply look at them from afar and marvel at how wonderful they are.  They are told to show what can work and what we can accomplish if we all step up and do our part.  The idea is to get to a point where there is nothing special about such stories at all, where such examples are not necessary because they are already commonplace, that they become the norm.

By the way, I have heard too many stories these past weeks of people who did attempt to change the system from within, only to be rebuffed by the systems that they tried to look up to.

Of course you have, but is that any reason not to talk about the stories that have worked, or to simply give up on trying to improve the systems from within?  What is the alternative then in your mind?  Even if we trash the existing systems completely, can you guarantee the replacement will work any better, or will somehow be immune to corruption or corrupting factors, or most of all that the new system won't suffer from the same lack of participation as the existing?  We need to stop thinking of each other as enemies and understand that we can work together to improve that which we have already built.

 
 
 
Thomas
2.2.3  seeder  Thomas  replied to  Freewill @2.2.2    4 weeks ago
The idea is to get to a point where there is nothing special about such stories at all, where such examples are not necessary because they are already commonplace, that they become the norm.

That's nice. How come they haven't gotten near that point in the 30 years since that story? 

but is that any reason not to talk about the stories that have worked, or to simply give up on trying to improve the systems from within? 

There comes a time when you just have to scrap things and start afresh. Are we there? I think maybe we are.

As for the specifics of that change, I would hope that there are people much better than I to address that question. At least I hope there are. And it is life, so there are no guarantees. Just the fact that we take the giant step should give pause to people who wish to remain with the same system.

 
 
 
Freewill
2.2.4  Freewill  replied to  Thomas @2.2.3    4 weeks ago
That's nice. How come they haven't gotten near that point in the 30 years since that story ?

Good question, probably need to ask it of the civil and law enforcement leaders and even the people of the area.  Cooperation and working together is not a one way affair.  Also, do you think what we see on the network news tells the whole story?  I'd wager there are many more of these stories that never make the headlines.  The good news stories don't sell as well wouldn't you agree?  What we know for a fact is that crime rates (especially violent crime rates) in NY have been dropping pretty dramatically since the early-mid 90s .  More HERE .  So that's fairly good news isn't it?

There comes a time when you just have to scrap things and start afresh. Are we there? I think maybe we are.

When it comes to revamping training, LE oversight, and the weeding out cops who have a history of brutality, I agree completely.  When it comes to people in their communities taking a more active role in changing their local governments and law enforcement institutions from the inside out and forming them into more the image they want to see, then yes I agree.  But the whole purpose of these changes would be to improve the safety of the community and their relationship with law enforcement right?  Violent crime rates have been dropping significantly in NY since 1994, so completely scrapping that which has created that trend seems kinda counterproductive to me from a public safety standpoint.  Does that make sense?

As for the specifics of that change, I would hope that there are people much better than I to address that question.  At least I hope there are.

I don't mean to be a dick about this Thomas, but perhaps you may have answered your own question in red above. Honestly, if everyone answered the question as to what specific changes (especially wholesale changes) we should make the way you have, is it any wonder that the perception is that nothing has changed for the better when the statistics clearly show that it has?  And how does that answer help us separate from the status quo if you feel the status quo is unacceptable? 

That is not to say we can't continue to improve and make even more positive changes that our communities want to see.  But we can't just leave it to others whom we think might know better.  We need to pull together and do our part in the process of keeping our communities safe.

 
 
 
Kavika
3  Kavika     4 weeks ago

My perception is that as an American Indian male I'm far more likely to be killed in LEO/Indian encounter than a black person is.

Another perception is that as an American Indian I'm far more likely to be stopped by LEO's for ''driving while Indian'' close to a reservation. 

Oh, wait it's not just my perception but both are actual facts. 

 
 
 
Perrie Halpern R.A.
3.1  Perrie Halpern R.A.  replied to  Kavika @3    4 weeks ago

Kavika,

No one is saying that what you are experiencing isn't true. The bigger issue for the Indian community is that we get contracts (treaties) and they are never upheld. Then throw onto that that the most police encounters are far from good. No one is saying it's perception. I am not sure where you got that from.

 
 
 
Kavika
3.1.1  Kavika   replied to  Perrie Halpern R.A. @3.1    4 weeks ago
No one is saying it's perception. I am not sure where you got that from.

Oh, please.

 
 
 
Perrie Halpern R.A.
3.1.2  Perrie Halpern R.A.  replied to  Kavika @3.1.1    4 weeks ago

I meant on this thread and not in general.

 
 
 
Perrie Halpern R.A.
3.1.4  Perrie Halpern R.A.  replied to  Kavika @3.1.3    4 weeks ago

Kavika,

No one is disputing those figures here (so far). If you watched the video, (not sure that you did), this is equally applied to Indians as to the black community...

 
 
 
Kavika
3.1.5  Kavika   replied to  Perrie Halpern R.A. @3.1.4    4 weeks ago

Of course, I watched the video and understood it completely. What I did not hear was anything outside the black/white perception or the rest of the minority community that also suffers the same discrimination. 

Of course, you can say it equally applied to Indians but I did not hear one word in his discourse that would validate that. 

But that's just my perception.

 
 
 
Perrie Halpern R.A.
3.1.6  Perrie Halpern R.A.  replied to  Kavika @3.1.5    4 weeks ago

He was talking in generalities, at least that is how I took it, and I am an Indian. 

On the other hand, we have many well known Indians who could make a case-specific to us. Why doesn't that happen? Why not a guy like Graham Green do that? He is probably the most well known Indian actor out there. 

 
 
 
Kavika
3.1.7  Kavika   replied to  Perrie Halpern R.A. @3.1.6    4 weeks ago
He was talking in generalities, at least that is how I took it, and I am an Indian. 

If he was speaking in generalities I would have imagined he would have said, minority people which is much more inclusive.  I'm aware that you're Indian.

Wes Studi, probably the most prominent and well known Indian has spoken out about it. NCAI has, numerous other organizations and tribal chairman have, AIM has been since 1968....

As you're aware we are a very small minority in the US and I'm sure that you're aware of the ''invisible people'' moniker around our necks. 

 
 
 
JBB
3.1.8  JBB  replied to  Kavika @3.1.7    4 weeks ago

It seems pretty obvious that nobody should be singled out for abuse by law enforcement based on race or politics or cultural heritage or religion or sexual preferences or any other non criminal traits. Police who protect and defend abusive bad cops are also bad cops who should not be imposed upon any vulnerable community...

 
 
 
Thomas
3.1.9  seeder  Thomas  replied to  Kavika @3.1.5    4 weeks ago

I believe that he was only speaking to the black condition from his own point of view. That being said, there are indisputably other minority communities with whom the social contract has also been breached. 

 
 
 
Paula Bartholomew
4  Paula Bartholomew    4 weeks ago

I love his comedy, but I admire this serious side to him.

 
 
 
Perrie Halpern R.A.
4.1  Perrie Halpern R.A.  replied to  Paula Bartholomew @4    4 weeks ago

Ditto. I never thought of him as being so contemplative. 

 
 
 
Tessylo
5  Tessylo    4 weeks ago

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Freewill
5.1  Freewill  replied to  Tessylo @5    4 weeks ago

LOL!  Clever.

 
 
 
MonsterMash
5.1.1  MonsterMash  replied to  Freewill @5.1    4 weeks ago
LOL!  Clever.

Weak minds are easily entertained.

 
 
 
Just Jim NC TttH
5.1.2  Just Jim NC TttH  replied to  MonsterMash @5.1.1    4 weeks ago

SPAM just like the one below............SMH and LMAO

 
 
 
Freewill
5.1.3  Freewill  replied to  MonsterMash @5.1.1    4 weeks ago
Weak minds are easily entertained.

Strong ones can appreciate humor regardless of the political bent.

 
 
 
Tessylo
6  Tessylo    4 weeks ago

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Tessylo
7  Tessylo    4 weeks ago

[Deleted]

 
 
 
Tessylo
8  Tessylo    4 weeks ago

[Deleted]

[LOL.]

 
 
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