Dallas police chief apologizes for conduct of officer who drew gun on NFL player outside hospital March 26, 2009Posted by koreanpower999 in African American, Dallas police, NFL, police misconduct, race, racism, Ryan Moats, sports, Uncategorized.
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Dallas police chief apologizes for conduct of officer who drew gun on NFL player outside hospital 3:33 PM CT
03:36 PM CDT on Thursday, March 26, 2009
Dallas Police Chief David Kunkle stood in front of a dozen news cameras this afternoon at police headquarters to apologize for the behavior of an officer who stopped a family outside a hospital emergency room.
Kunkle said Officer Robert Powell has been placed on paid administrative leave in connection with an incident last week in which he stopped a family rushing to visit a dying mother, detaining them for 13 minutes to write a traffic ticket.
“His behavior in my opinion, did not exhibit the common sense, discretion, the compassion that we expect our officers to exhibit,” the chief told a packed audience of media outlets that included Inside Edition.
During the traffic stop, caught on the officer’s in-car camera, Powell berated the driver, 26-year-old NFL running back Ryan Moats, and threatened him with arrest for running a traffic light.
“I can screw you over,” said Powell, 25. “I’d rather not do that.”
At one point during today’s news conference, Kunkle seemed to restrain himself from being even more candid with his views on the incident.
“When we in the command staff reviewed the tapes,” he said, “we were embarrassed, disappointed — it’s hard to find the right words and still be professional in my role as a police chief.”
The chief also praised Moats and his family for how they handled the officer’s behavior.
“They exercised extraordinary patience, restraint, dealing with the behavior of our officer,” Kunkle said. “At no time did Mr. Moats identify himself as an NFL football player or expect any kind of special consideration. He handled himself very, very well.”
Moats rolled through a red light as he and his wife were en route to Baylor Regional Medical Center at Plano. A Dallas police squad car pulled their SUV over near the hospital’s emergency entrance.
Moats and his wife implored the officer to let them hurry on to the bedside of her ill mother.
“You really want to go through this right now?” Moats pleaded. “My mother-in-law is dying. Right now!”
His wife, Tamishia Moats, said Powell “was pointing a gun at me as soon as I got out of the car. It was the weirdest feeling because I’ve never had a gun pointed at me before under those circumstances.”
Powell then spent long minutes writing Moats a ticket and threatening him with arrest.
Powell could not be reached for comment.
Kunkle, asked about Powell’s reaction to the investigation, said the officer told a member of the command staff that he was just doing his job.
“My understanding is that Officer Powell, even when he saw the videotape, believed he had not acted inappropriately,” Kunkle said.
“I’ve read some of the comments in some of the publications, and the majority of the comments reflect my position — that at the point the officer was told that they were responding to a dying family member, that should have been his concern: to allow those people to get access to that family member.”
The scene, captured by the officer’s dashboard video camera, prompted apologies and the promise of an investigation even before Kunle met the media.
“There were some things that were said that were disturbing, to say the least,” said Lt. Andy Harvey, a police spokesman.
Harvey said Powell told his commanders that he drew his gun but did not point it at Moats or his wife.
The lieutenant said it’s not unusual for officers to draw a gun in traffic stops if they feel threatened.
Moats’ mother-in-law, Jonetta Collinsworth, was struggling at 45 with breast cancer that had spread throughout her body. Family members rushed to her bedside from as far away as California.
On March 17, the Moatses had gone to their Frisco home to get some rest. Around midnight, they received word that they needed to hurry back to the hospital if they wanted to see Collinsworth before she died.
The couple, along with Collinsworth’s father and an aunt, jumped into the SUV and headed back toward the hospital. They exited the Dallas North Tollway, just down the street from the hospital.
Moats turned on his hazard lights. He stopped at a red light, where, he said, the only nearby motorist signaled for him to go ahead. He went through.
Powell, watching traffic from a hidden spot, flipped on his lights and sirens. In less than a minute, he caught up to the SUV and followed for about 20 more seconds as Moats found a parking spot outside the emergency room.
Tamishia, 27, was the first out. Powell drew his gun and yelled at her to get back in.
“Get in there!” he yelled. “Let me see your hands!”
“My mom is dying,” she explained to him.
Powell was undeterred.
“I saw in his eyes that he really did not care,” Tamishia Moats said. “Honestly, I don’t think I cared that he had a gun pointed at me. My train of thought is that I’m going to see my mom in the hospital before she dies.”
Tamishia Moats and her great-aunt ignored the officer and headed into the hospital.
“It was almost like a movie,” she said, “It felt like we had robbed a bank or something.”
Ryan Moats, who stayed behind with the father of the dying woman, said Powell also pointed his gun at him. He said he put his hands on the car because he was afraid that he might get shot.
“I put my hands on the car so he couldn’t say I reached for something,” Ryan said. “He didn’t ask me to put my hands on the car. I just did it to try to protect myself. I was pleading with him.”
He tried to explain the situation to the officer.
“I waited until no traffic was coming,” Moats told Powell, explaining his passage through the red light. “I got seconds before she’s gone, man.”
Powell demanded his license and proof of insurance. Moats produced his license but said he didn’t know where the insurance paperwork was.
“Just give me a ticket or whatever,” he said, beginning to sound exasperated and a little argumentative.
“Shut your mouth,” Powell told him. “You can cooperate and settle down, or I can just take you to jail for running a red light.”
There was more back and forth.
“If you’re going to give me a ticket, give me a ticket.”
“Your attitude says that you need one.”
“All I’m asking you is just to hurry up.”
Powell began a lecture.
“If you want to keep this going, I’ll just put you in handcuffs,” the officer said, “and I’ll take you to jail for running a red light.”
Powell made several more points, including that the SUV was illegally parked. Moats replied “Yes sir” to each.
“Understand what I can do,” Powell concluded. “I can tow your truck. I can charge you with fleeing. I can make your night very difficult.”
“I understand,” Moats responded. “I hope you’ll be a great person and not do that.”
Hospital security guards arrived and told Powell that the Moatses’ relative really was upstairs dying.
Powell spent several minutes inside his squad car, in part to check Moats for outstanding warrants. He found none.
Another hospital staffer came out and spoke with a Plano police officer who had arrived.
“Hey, that’s the nurse,” the Plano officer told Powell. “She said that the mom’s dying right now, and she’s wanting to know if they can get him up there before she dies.”
“All right,” Powell replied. “I’m almost done.”
As Moats signed the ticket, Powell continued his lecture.
“Attitude’s everything,” he said. “All you had to do is stop, tell me what was going on. More than likely, I would have let you go.”
It had been about 13 minutes.
Moats and Collinsworth’s father went into the hospital, where they found Collinsworth had died, with her daughter at her side.
The Moatses, who are black, said Wednesday that they can’t help but think that race might have played a part in how Powell, who is white, treated them.
“I think he should lose his job,” said Ryan Moats, a Dallas native who attended Bishop Lynch High School and now plays for the Houston Texans.
Powell was hired in January 2006. Assistant Chief Floyd Simpson said Powell told police officials that he believed that he was doing his job. He has been re-assigned to dispatch pending an investigation.
“When people are in distress, we should come to the rescue,” said Simpson. “We shouldn’t further their distress.”
Collinsworth was buried Saturday in Louisiana.
Baker In NYC Selling Racist Cookies In Honor Of Barack Obama called Drunken Negro Heads January 25, 2009Posted by koreanpower999 in African American, bakery, Barack Obama, drunken negro heads, new york city, race, racism, stereotypes.
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For those naive people who thought racism would be over with the election of Barack Obama, watch this: WTF???
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Oscar Grant, an 22 year African American man, was killed by a BART policeman who shot him on New Year’s Eve. This tragedy has led to upheaval in Oakland over the past week as it has inflamed ongoing historical issues of racism and police brutality in Oakland. Seattle is not immune as the affluent and whites congregate in North Seattle along with the suburbs to the north and the east, while the poor, working class, and people of color are cornered in South Seattle and areas to the south. Why has this incident in Oakland received almost no coverage from the national media? While the media has been absolutely obsessed with the death of the son of John Travolta and the Caylee Anthony fiasco, which are also tragedies, they have deliberately decided to ignore Oscar Grant’s unnecessary and tragic death. Why does the media continue to ignore the plight of the victims of institutional racism and police brutality in our urban areas?
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Bobby May, treasurer of the Buchanan County Republican Party in Virginia and also a member of John McCain’s Virginia leadership team, wrote a column about Barack Obama that was the epitome of race baiting. Some of the many comments intended to scare white voters in rural Virginia about Barack “Hussein” Obama include having the rapper Ludacris color the White House black, appoint Jesse Jackson and Al Sharpton to high positions in the administration, and change the national anthem to James Weldon Johnson’s, “Black National Anthem”. This goes along with the wider strategy of the McCain campaign to remind white voters that Obama is black and thus is scary and untrustworthy. Palin (aka Bush Jr) has already tried to tell voters that Obama hangs out with “un-American” people. Also, Fox News, conservative pundits, and Republican strategists have already tried to racialize the economic crisis by attacking the Democratic Party’s obsession of funding unqualified minority homeowners along with blaming those scary groups made up of black community organizers like ACORN (Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now). Get ready for more race baiting by the McCain campaign and its Republican supporters and surrogates as they are in desperation time as they are trailing badly and on the wrong side of the issues with a month left to go. Don’t let this garbage work this time!
Recently, it has come out that in his rant against Barack Obama while he thought his mic was off, Jesse Jackson used the “N” word. This was talked about on all the media outlets. It showed Jackson’s hypocricy because he had been one of the most vocal proponents of eliminating the “N” word from the American vernacular in light of the racist tirade by Michael Richards during a comedy routine. Yesterday, on “the View”, there was a heated argument about whether the “N” word should be eliminated or if it’s fine for black people to still use that word.
Most media coverage of this conversation on “the View’ was sympathetic to Elizabeth Hasselbeck’s view that the “N” word shouldn’t be used by anyone including black people. She also got sympathy because she was crying.
So I just wanted to address a few issues. I am on the side of Whoopi Goldberg and Sheri Sheppard on this issue. I think oppressed people can take an oppressive word and find empowerment and agency in turning that word into something positive, which takes away the power from the oppressor. I think I get annoyed when white people think this word should be eliminated because they can’t say it. If white people can’t say it, then nobody else can say it. That’s the rule many times. If white people can’t say it or do it, then no one should be able to do it. When I say a joke or a comment about my own culture, white people will commonly say, “if I said what you’re saying about Asian Americans, I would get beat up.” So thus, the white person will tell me, since he or she cannot say it, then I shouldn’t be able to say it. But context is key. It does matter who is saying it and what is the purpose. This is not to say that I can say whatever I want and it’s ok. There is much discernment that needs to be taken. I shouldn’t just say things loosely and not be respectful of other people. But I don’t think it’s the place of white people to tell people of color what they can or can’t say. When I give into their demands, there is definitely a sense of disempowerment. That’s not to say that you shouldn’t listen to their side and respect their opinions. But I think sometimes we get stuck in this rut where the validity of words and actions are determined primarily by white people. By the way, I am not necessarily taking a side in whether the N-word should be allowed to be used by African Americans or not. I am not an African American and that’s a conversation that needs to happen in the African American community. I’m more dealing with the larger issue of whether white people have the right to tell people of color what they can say or do.
The other issue I want to focus is on is that somehow in a dialogue on race, the conversation stops when the white person cries or when the white person gets hurt. Then the focus and the attention goes to them and the conversation disappears. In the media coverage of the conversation “the View” had, Elizabeth Hasselbeck was made to be a courageous woman speaking truth, while Whoopi Goldberg and Sheri Sheppard were characterized as the angry black women. It just reminded me of the numerous conversations I’ve had in the past, where once the white person would express being hurt, then the conversation would stop and people would try to console that person. Then the focus would be about the pain of the white person and that would be end of the dialogue. Then the default reaction for the people of color is to validate the white person’s feelings. I know as an Asian American, there’s this automatic reaction to apologize and to accommodate to whatever the white person is feeling. Usually, it is followed by the use of unversal language, like, “we’re all the same,” and “we’re all God’s children,” followed by cliches about colorblindness. I am always assuming that we are all God’s children and that yes we are equal in God’s eyes. Duh! So that is true. But that cannot end the conversation. I appreciated that Whoopi Goldberg kept her ground even when Elizabeth Hasselbeck was crying. It’s apparent that Whoopi Goldberg cares about Elizabeth Hasselbeck, but was still courageous enough to stand her ground and not just capitulate her point when the white person expressed how hurt he or she was. I think individual feelings do matter. But sometimes, a dialogue that is constructive and real will go beyond just individual feelings and yes it will hurt people, including white people.
I know the issue is much more complex than what I state. It’s hard to fully articulate everything in one blog post and I know I still have so much to learn. But that’s the question I have – Why does the conversation have to stop when the white person cries.