They Have the Authority to Kill a Minority

I got nothing:

A Minnesota police officer, whose fatal shooting of a black motorist transfixed the nation when his girlfriend livestreamed the aftermath, was acquitted of all charges on Friday.

The officer, Jeronimo Yanez, had been charged with second-degree manslaughter and endangering safety by discharging a firearm in the shooting of Philando Castile.

After the verdict, jurors and Mr. Yanez were quickly led out of the courtroom, and Mr. Castile’s family left immediately. When a deputy tried to stop his mother, Valerie, she yelled “Let me go.”

Later, she said: “My son loved this city, and this city killed my son. And a murderer gets away. Are you kidding me right now?”

he continued: “The system in this country continues to fail black people and will continue to fail us.”

Exactly what does it take for a cop to get convicted of shooting a black man? I mean, there was fucking video tape of it.

*** Update ***

Someone just woke up and failed to hit refresh on the backend of the site and didn’t realize Tom had already posted about this. BTW, you guys are never going to guess who walked around in one low cut Merrell shoe and one midcut Merrell shoe all day today.

66 replies
  1. 1
    TenguPhule says:

    Exactly what does it take for a cop to get convicted of shooting a black man? I mean, there was fucking video tape of it.

    Rich, famous, popular and caught on tape.

    Remember, the fucking jurors got hung up when the last trial with a tape showed the cop SHOOTING THE BLACK MAN RUNNING AWAY IN THE BACK.

  2. 2
    Baud says:

    They always have. Remember that Mothers of the Movement was a big part of the DNC convention.

  3. 3
    SiubhanDuinne says:

    Someone just woke up and failed to hit refresh on the backend of the site and didn’t realize Tom had already posted about this.

    Something this outrageous, I don’t think there’s any problem with multiple posts about it. But it’s your blog.

  4. 4
    debbie says:


    In Cincinnati, it doesn’t even matter if the killer cop is wearing a Confederacy t-shirt under his uniform. Clearly there are few, if any, boundaries for cops.

  5. 5
    Keith P. says:

    Do the Trump thing, and fire the previous FPer so you don’t look like you screwed up.

  6. 6
    Gin & Tonic says:

    BTW, you guys are never going to guess who walked around in one low cut Merrell shoe and one midcut Merrell shoe all day today.

    Wasn’t me. I only have low-cut Merrells.

  7. 7
    ruemara says:

    My country hates me. Not that this is a surprise, but even then, it’s hard to tolerate and go about my business. No wonder I can’t sleep. Which makes it all the more funny since it’s a relief from the waking nightmare. I do love the people who are claiming it can’t be racism since Yanez is latinx. As if adjacent to whiteness doesn’t matter. There’s a fucking hierarchy in the right to murder, you just have to choose the right gang and the right victim. Someone call me when we seem to be progressing towards humane behavior.

  8. 8
    Gin & Tonic says:

    I know you’re never going to read this, but there hasn’t been an open thread since 6:00 am today. And you have the balls to call this a full-service blog?

  9. 9
    Baud says:


    I do love the people who are claiming it can’t be racism since Yanez is latinx. As if adjacent to whiteness doesn’t matter.

    In the previous thread, I mentioned that I just finished Between the World and Me by Ta-Nehisi Coates. In that book, he explains that the cop killing that affected him the most personally involved a black cop.

  10. 10
    Patricia Kayden says:

    @ruemara: I’m trying to remember if any cops have been found guilty for brutalizing or killing Black folks and apart from the Rodney King cops on retrial, I come up blank. The scary thing is that we’re talking about Black folks just going about their business but still getting killed by trigger happy cops. We’re not talking about armed criminals.

  11. 11
    ruemara says:

    @Baud: I guess because it shows that once again, the group you join matters.

  12. 12
    MomSense says:

    Were you wearing pants? That’s the important thing.

  13. 13
    Kathleen says:

    @debbie: Yup. Judge ruled that was inadmissible. I can’t bring myself to follow that trial too closely. I commented about it on the thread downstairs.

  14. 14
    Kathleen says:

    @ruemara: I can’t even imagine, my dear. {{{{{ruemara]]]]]

  15. 15
    Mnemosyne says:


    It’s group identity. One of G’s cousins is Black and became a cop, and although he hasn’t gone totally nuts yet, he’s definitely in that group mentality where cops can do no wrong.

    He hasn’t posted anything on Facebook about this case yet, but it may be too egregious even for him.

  16. 16
    Baud says:

    @ruemara: Yep. And what attitudes are rewarded and which are punished.

  17. 17
    debbie says:


    They need to be made to understand they cannot shoot their fears away. They need to make career changes.

  18. 18
    Mnemosyne says:


    Tom just updated downstairs that the city announced that the cop is going to be fired, at least. But how long until he gets hired by another department that isn’t as picky about officers killing people?

  19. 19
    🌎 🇺🇸 Goku (aka Junior G-Man) 🗳 🌷 says:

    @debbie: That reminds me. I live in Northeast Ohio, and during the election I saw at least one “Support the Police” yard sign in rural parts that I have to drive through from college and home. They also happened to have Trump signs too. Somehow I don’t think they just wanted to support some renewal levy for the boys in blue.

    Several months later, I saw this flag:
    in front of a house that had also supported Trump. I saw another of those flags a month ago somewhere else. Very disheartening

  20. 20
    rikyrah says:

    You have nothing because there is nothing to have.
    A man , who followed the law is dead because of his EXISTENCE.
    Not his actions
    But, how he came out of his mother’s womb.
    Can’t explain it away.
    Can’t justify it.
    Can’t tell me any different.
    He was MURDERED in front of a 5 Year Old child, who will never get past it.

  21. 21
    Mnemosyne says:

    @🌎 🇺🇸 Goku (aka Junior G-Man) 🗳 🌷:

    Anecdotally, my friends in Michigan told me that the people they knew who voted for Trump did it specifically because they hate Black Lives Matter.

  22. 22
    debbie says:


    Remember the Staten Island cop who killed Eric Gardner with an illegal choke hold? Not only did he get off, he landed a desk job with the department and a raise.

    Fuck them all until they stop with this using deadly force for non-criminal activities.

  23. 23
    HeleninEire says:

    So. I live in the whitest country ever. Started coming here 30 years ago. Incredibly Irish and no one else. One of my big concerns about moving here was that there are no people of color.

    Until the EU.

    Immigrants here are integrating the same way they do in America.

    The men who own the Spar (the 7-11 in America) are mostly Indian.

    The women who own the nail places are Asian.

    The cab drivers all have head dresses.

    They are all integrating. Exactly as in America.

    I love it here.

    Also, too, lots of great ethnic food!

  24. 24
    ruemara says:

    @HeleninEire: I’ll be over in 6 months.

  25. 25
    debbie says:


    They are all integrating. Exactly as in America.

    Are there the same kind of resentments toward immigrants as there are here?

  26. 26
    SiubhanDuinne says:


    See you there.

  27. 27
  28. 28
    Mike in DC says:

    No convictions of police for murder or manslaughter while on duty, since 2014. Last conviction was in 2013. 13 total convictions out of maybe 90 cases brought to trial since 2005. They were only bringing charges about 5x a year until the last 2-3 years. 0 for 18 in 2015, 0 for 13 in 2016. This is with prosecutors making an increased effort.
    Two main problems:
    1. The case law latitude given officers is clearly excessive. Even a mistaken impression of a threat can get an acquittal.
    2. Jurors are still exceedingly deferential to the officer and lacking in empathy for the victim. They think about what the victim “must have done wrong”, not what the officer did wrong.

    We have to change the laws to reduce LEO latitude to use deadly force to something sane and reasonable.

  29. 29
    sukabi says:

    John…if you had your pants on no one but you noticed.😁

  30. 30
    Comrade Colette Collaboratrice says:

    @HeleninEire: Um, Helen. Describing ethnic ghettoization by occupation and then talking about how great that is for you, as a white lady, with all the great ethnic food and services and such? I know this was written with all good will in your heart, but it’s really tone-deaf.

    ETA: I thought “exactly as in America” was angry sarcasm until you said you love it. Ouch.

  31. 31
    Baud says:

    @Mike in DC: Wasn’t that cop convicted in Oklahoma? Was that for his off duty crimes?

  32. 32
    MomSense says:



    I wish I could say you were wrong. I said it in the last thread and I’ll say it again here. There is evil at the heart of America.

  33. 33
    Tilda Swintons Bald Cap says:

    As Booman says, the thanks we get for being seriously concerned about this is Donald Trump.

  34. 34
    Mnemosyne says:


    FWIW, from what I’ve heard and read, Europeans are just as xenophobic/bigoted as we are, but their hatred is not as color-based, so the majority of people in Ireland would treat you like they do all Americans.

    And airfares from San Francisco to Dublin are only about $500 round trip. Ask Major^4 — he’s the king of cheap flights.

  35. 35
    🌎 🇺🇸 Goku (aka Junior G-Man) 🗳 🌷 says:

    @Mnemosyne: I’ve heard that too, from you I think. So stupid in how reflexive and unthinking
    some support is for police, especially when POC are involved, like poor Philando

  36. 36
    Citizen Alan says:


    I actually just had the perverse thought that if Yanez had been in plain clothes and then accidentally shot and killed by a white officer, they would have worked just as hard to cover it up and get the white officer acquitted.

  37. 37
    🌎 🇺🇸 Goku (aka Junior G-Man) 🗳 🌷 says:

    @Mnemosyne: Like I’ve said before: I wonder if these countries would still have such robust welfare states if they had the same numbers of minorities relative to their total populations as we do

  38. 38

    @Mike in DC: Peter Liang (NYPD) was convicted of manslaughter last year.

  39. 39
    Baud says:

    @Comrade Colette Collaboratrice:

    ethnic ghettoization by occupation

    I don’t know anything about Ireland, but if these are recent immigrants in a country that hasn’t had much historic immigration, it seems premature to describe it this way. It’s different for the US because we’ve had a long history of immigration from all over.

  40. 40
    🌎 🇺🇸 Goku (aka Junior G-Man) 🗳 🌷 says:

    @Major Major Major Major: Oh for sure! I bet if we just move further to the left on economic issues* they’ll vote for a Democrat in a heart beat

    *As If the party isn’t fairly left now on them

  41. 41
    debbie says:


    As I know you know, our entire history is immigration.

  42. 42
    🌎 🇺🇸 Goku (aka Junior G-Man) 🗳 🌷 says:

    @debbie: Some of it even forced

  43. 43
    HeleninEire says:

    @ruemara: lemme know when you get here.

  44. 44
    HeleninEire says:

    @debbie: All I see is stupid old white men bitching about their privilege. Same old, same old.

  45. 45
    Mnemosyne says:

    @Comrade Colette Collaboratrice:

    Hmmm. I read that comment by Helen totally differently. It seemed to me that she was saying that she was afraid that Ireland would still be lily-white when she went there many years after her first trip, and she was relieved to see that it was not.

    If Ireland has a relatively recent history of immigration (which they mostly do) than most immigrants will still be in the jobs that are easiest for new immigrants to navigate. Ireland is apparently about to get a half-Indian gay prime minister, so there seems to be somewhat less ghettoization of occupations than in the US.

  46. 46
    Mr Stagger Lee says:

    Isis , Al Queda and others will be the least of America’s worries. People of color will not take this much longer. The day will come as Shakespeare noted. Cry Havoc and let slip the dogs of war.

  47. 47
    Dalai Rasta says:

    BTW, you guys are never going to guess who walked around in one low cut Merrell shoe and one midcut Merrell shoe all day today.


  48. 48
    ruemara says:

    @Citizen Alan: Yup. They’ve done it before.

    @Mnemosyne: Truth be told, Europe has a history of integrated neighborhoods. More now, yes, but headed back to medieval times.

  49. 49
    debbie says:


    Alas. I wish there was some place on this planet that was evolved.

    Years ago, I lived in New Hampshire. Not only was it totally white, it was totally bland in every way imaginable. Not a bagel to be found!

  50. 50
    🌎 🇺🇸 Goku (aka Junior G-Man) 🗳 🌷 says:

    @Mr Stagger Lee: If the Civil Rights Movement had failed it could have. Imagine no Civil Rights or Voting Rights Act. Vietnam and the rest of the turbulence of the 60s still happens and you have a recipe for disaster when black GIs return home. One that might have caused the US to implode with the USSR “winning” the Cold War

  51. 51
    EBT says:

    @Mnemosyne: He is being allowed to resign so that he can get another job elsewhere.

  52. 52
    HeleninEire says:

    @Comrade Colette Collaboratrice: Geez so bad you are a fucking asshole. Too bad you think you can ever judge people who are actually on the front line. Hey Wanna talk about my Belfast mother? And my NYC self? LOL. Funny that you think you can judge or scare me.

  53. 53
    dlm says:

    @🌎 🇺🇸 Goku (aka Junior G-Man) 🗳 🌷: That sign, Support the Police, was code for the people voting Trump. They were all over my town. No one had an actual Trump sign on their lawns.

  54. 54
    Mnemosyne says:


    I’m just saying, a nice long vacation in Ireland might be good for your blood pressure. I’ve had AA friends of mine say it was really nice to just be identified as an American like all the other Americans who were visiting.

  55. 55
    TenguPhule says:

    @Mnemosyne: Provided that Teresa May doesn’t cause the Troubles to come around again.

    /Sorry to be the spoilsport, but temperatures seem to be rising from the view of the outside looking in.

  56. 56
    rikyrah says:

    Of Course The Officer Who Killed Philando Castile Was Acquitted, Because Nigger Hunting Season Is (Always) Here
    Damon Young, 6/16/17

    I’m trying right now to find the right words to articulate the surreal inevitability of police-involved killings like this and the verdicts that follow. And I am not able to do it without repeating the millions of words I and countless others have already said when trying to find the right words to articulate the surreal inevitability of police-involved killings like this and the verdicts that follow. And it’s not just the words that are repeated. It’s the phrasing. The points. The punctuation. The pivots. The references. The rising action. The angles. The quotes. The climaxes. There doesn’t seem to be much of a point in not making the entire process templatic, and changing/inserting relevant details about the city or the cop’s name or the number of children the murdered Black person left behind when necessary. After you’ve skinned enough cats you eventually run out of cats.

    Still, I’ll try. Philando Castile is dead and the police officer who killed him is free — acquitted of all charges by a jury of his peers — because it’s nigger hunting season and that’s what’s supposed to happen when something is in season. You buy a gun and some camo. You stalk them. You hunt them. You shoot them. And if the body’s big enough you get a trophy. (Or perhaps just a raise.)

  57. 57
    rikyrah says:

    The King Center‏Verified account @TheKingCenter

    Extol #PhilandoCastile’s virtues, but know: Even if he didn’t serve children, even if he didn’t love his family, he should STILL be alive.

  58. 58
    Lurking Canadian says:

    @TenguPhule: If it’s the one I’m thinking of, he was videotaped shrugging like he couldn’t believe how inconvenient this all was, then shooting the fleeing man in the back, then planting a weapon on the body.

    That guy was probably acquitted, too. After all, the victim might only have been running away to build up speed so he could run up a nearby wall parkour style then bounce off and attack the frightened, frightened officer.

  59. 59
    TenguPhule says:

    @Lurking Canadian:

    That guy was probably acquitted, too.

    No, a mistrial. It seems shooting a man in the back was a step too far for some of the jurors to swallow.

    Then he got nailed in federal court for civil rights violation. Which he plea dealed on.

  60. 60
    nightranger says:

    Wrong way Cole continuing his wierd obsession with white cop on black civilian injustices.

    Does he realized that out of the 100’s of thousands of postive interactions between these two groups monthly, the one that goes wrong is the only one that makes the news, while sitting on his ass in front of his computer in butt fuk virginia, I doubt it. Does that mean I don’t think there is a problem? No. Just not as bad as the media microscope makes it seem and it’s not a black and white thing either. Each situation is different.

    Then again, I will never understand why (don’t kid yourself, it’s still true) he still thinks Griftwald is totally awesome. Or why he thought and probably still does think that fat bastard Kristie is totally awesome.

  61. 61
    bupalos says:

    @ruemara: your country hates itself.

  62. 62
    Wapiti says:

    If a black man carrying a gun is at risk of being killed by the state, to a degree that a white man is not, then are all of our open carry and concealed carry laws racially biased? Are they subject to challenge because of this bias?

  63. 63
    Adria McDowell (formerly Lurker Extraordinaire says:

    @ruemara: There are racists in the Latinx community, too, unfortunately (I’m sure you know this, though).

    @Citizen Alan: You fucking know it! See the Hernandez murder in Houston just recently. We will see how that shit turns out.

  64. 64
    fuckwit says:

    Fuck that shit cause I ain’t the one for some punk motherfuck to be beatin on, and thrown in jail, we can go toe to toe in the middle of a cell. Fuckin with me cause I’m a teenager, with a little bit of gold and pager…

  65. 65
    joel hanes says:


    My favorite pie is strawberry rhubarb with an oversalted butter-dough lattice crust baked to brittle or until the fruit threatens to boil over.

  66. 66
    OnkelFritze says:

    BTW, you guys are never going to guess who walked around in one low cut Merrell shoe and one midcut Merrell shoe all day today.

    Do you ever wonder how often something like that happens and you just don’t notice?

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