Garner death not about race, says daughter

Erica Garner surprised pundits when she said Thursday that her father Eric Garner’s death at the hands of a New York police officer is not a race issue.

“You heard our Chris Cuomo and Brooke Baldwin (CNN anchors) out there and they were saying, they were talking about the diversity in the crowd. It wasn’t just black people; it wasn’t just white people,” CNN host Don Lemon said to Garner during an interview Thursday.

Garner replied: “This is not a black and white issue, this is a national crisis. Like, I believe this is a crisis. I mean for white people to come out and show how deeply they was hurt and like Asians and different people from different nations and different parts of the world to come out and show that they felt the same way I felt on that video. I greatly appreciate it. It is like a sense of I am not the only one that feels this way.”

Lemon pressed on, asking Garner: “‘You said this is not a black and white issue. But in that do you say, are you saying this is not an issue of race? You think it is a racial issue?”

“I really doubt it,” she replied. “It was about the officer’s pride. It was about my father being 6’4″, 350 pounds. And he wanted to be, you know, the top cop that brings this big man down. Because he is just big. I mean, my father wasn’t even doing anything.”

Lemon reacted incredulously, “A lot of people will be surprised because you know this is being made out to be a racial issue and you are saying you don’t think it is about race.”

“Being that my father was black and the officer was white, I mean that’s different races,” Garner said. “But as far as the situation I can’t really say it’s like really like a black and white issue. It is about, you know, the police officers and abusing their power.”

Cartoon roundup

John Cole, The Scranton Times-Tribune

Michael Brown, age 18. Eric Garner, age 43. Tamir Rice, age 12. What do these three males — can’t say “men,” since Tamir was a child — have in common? All three of them were black. All three of them were engaging in activities that would justify questioning by police. All three of them died recently at the hands of 20-something white police officers within moments of being approached by said officers. In Brown’s and Garner’s cases, grand juries determined the officers need face no charges, that the killing of the men was justified. Tamir died less than two weeks ago, on Nov. 22. So far, no charges have been filed in his shooting death. These deaths and the perceived injustice of the grand juries’ verdicts have sparked protests nationwide. Americans are furious: Some claim racism; some cite police brutality and the militarization of police; some support police efforts; some consider the dead “thugs” and the protesters rabble-rousers. Rioters certainly didn’t help the protesters’ cause. President Obama weighed in with an executive order — Surprise! Surprise! — and said cops must now wear cameras. So that’s the answer? Cameras will bring peace on Earth? Tell that to Garner, whose chokehold killing — “I can’t breathe” — was caught on film.

Steve Sack, The Minneapolis Star Tribune
December 4, 2014
Adam Zyglis, The Buffalo News
Rick McKee, The Augusta Chronicle
Bob Englehart, The Hartford Courant
Rick McKee, The Augusta Chronicle

Like country music? You might not after watching this pro-Hillary video

Even though this video is on the YouTube channel of Stand with Hillary, an independent political action committee endorsing you-know-who for the 2016 presidential nomination, we fully expect to find out, after the fact, that it is satire — it’s that ill-conceived. As one YouTube commenter stated, it’s “the perfect culmination of focus studies and polling. And that’s why it sucks.”

What is it? It’s this video, evidently a labor of love from current and former Clinton operatives who believe stuff like this will help the former secretary of state resonate with working folks.

The video only had a few hundred views as of Thursday afternoon, but we’re betting that will change as social media sinks its teeth into such a deliciously mock-worthy mess:

Well, coo-wee, y’all! Let’s stand with Hillary!

#ThingsWeTrustMoreThanObama gaining steam on Twitter

Courtesy of a hashtag on the social networking site Twitter, here’s a collection of things Americans trust more than President Barack Obama.


U.S. Chamber will fight Obama regulations

U.S. Chamber of Commerce President Thomas Donohue said Tuesday that his group is launching renewed efforts to reform the nation’s regulatory process, which he says is currently more about politics than protections.

“There is a compelling need to reform the regulatory process itself not for the purpose of steering it to specific outcomes, but to ensure that we will have rules that really work,” he said, according to The Hill.

“Our regulatory system is increasingly opaque and driven by political agendas. It lacks basic accountability, it often employs flawed data and questionable science, it ignores Congressional intent and too often prevents citizens or their representatives from weighing in on proposed rules in any meaningful way.”

Donohue said that the Chamber of Commerce is prepared to increase lobbying efforts to support Congressional passage of the Regulatory Accountability Act, legislation designed to make agencies consider lower-cost regulatory options.

The business advocate also called on Congress to step up its efforts to combat burdensome regulation by requiring agencies to fully disclose regulatory impact information and allow peer review. He also wants lawmakers to vote on costly rules.

“We currently have a government that has shifted into regulatory overdrive,” Donohue said. “The administration knows time is running out and there is every incentive and temptation to ram new rules through the pipeline and never mind the process, the research, the cost or the benefits.”

Donohue said new EPA ozone regulations could result in more than 600,000 annual job losses.

“How come we have those great broad numbers?” he asked. “Why don’t we know? Because we’re not able to get the facts out of the regulating agencies and it takes forever to sort through what they have done.”

Editor’s note: This story has been updated to fix an editing error.

A vote for Mary Landrieu is a vote against murdering puppies

If the welfare of children isn’t an emotionally charged enough concern to provoke you to vote Democrat, there’s always the welfare of puppies.

That’s the approach one advocacy group is taking in its ad promoting incumbent Democratic Sen. Mary Landrieu of Louisiana.

The Human Society Legislative Fund, which is behind the ad, offers up such a transparently maudlin doggie death fantasy that you have to wonder whether they understand that the voting age in this country is 18 years and older.

What kind of monster would allow a Louisiana dog to be “forced to fight other dogs” or “locked in a small cage for life in a puppy mill?”

Not Mary Landireu, that’s for sure. Landrieu, who was forced into a runoff election against Republican Bill Cassidy, has been polling far behind Cassidy as her pro-Obama reputation has taken a series of hits in the weeks leading up to, and after, the general election last month.

Landrieu is also the only thing standing between Republican racists and President Obama’s sure impeachment, a radio ad also intones.

Again, the voting age is 18 and older. Landrieu’s backers are wasting their money on these ads aimed at credulous children. The runoff election is slated for Saturday, Dec. 6.

Feds warn service members of possible ISIS attacks at home

Federal officials are urging current and former members of the military to review their online identifying information and do away with anything on social media that could draw attention amid threats that Islamic State terror sympathizers could target them in the homeland.

A joint bulletin issued by the FBI and the Department of Homeland Security suggests that ISIS sympathizers in the U.S. could be preparing attacks copying events that took place in Canada, where two uniformed Canadian soldiers were killed in separate attacks last month.

“The FBI and DHS recommend that current and former members of the military review their online social media accounts for any information that might serve to attract the attention of ISIL [ISIS] and its supporters,” according to a copy of the document obtained by ABC News.

The bulletin states that overseas FBI investigations have turned up examples of terror suspects “assessing like-minded individuals who are willing and capable of conducting attacks against current and former U.S.-based members of the United States military.”

Federal officials issued similar warnings for U.S. military personnel in October.

“Soldiers, Government Civilians and Family Members are reminded to be vigilant of their surroundings and report suspicious activities to their respective military or local law enforcement,” said a bulletin issued at the time.

Michigan cop stops suspect for… walking with hands in pockets

A Pontiac, Michigan, man was stopped by police over Thanksgiving weekend for walking with his hands in his pockets on a 32-degree day.

Brandon McKean, who is black, was confronted by the officer after leaving a friend’s house. When, annoyed, he asked the officer why he’d been stopped, McKean was informed, “You were walking by.”

“OK?” McKean replied. “Walking by and doing what?”

“Well, you were making people nervous,” the officer said, as he pulled out his phone in reaction to McKean’s decision to record the encounter.

“By walking by?” McKean again questioned.

“Yeah, they said you had your hands in your pockets,” the officer replied.

“Wow, walking by having your hands in your pockets makes people nervous to call the police when it’s snowing outside?” McKean said.

The officer replied in the affirmative before going on to question, “What are you up to today?”

“Walking, with my hands in my pockets,” McKean replied.

When asked if it was an inconvenience to be stopped McKean informed the officer: “Hell, yeah, just because of the whole police situation going across the country, this is outrageous… There’s 10,000 people in Pontiac right now with their hands in their pockets.”

The cop’s rebuttal, “You’re right. But we do have a lot of robberies, so just checking on you.”

Cartoon roundup

Yesterday Americans gave thanks; today they fight over cheap consumer goods. Enjoy these cartoons celebrating Thanksgiving and reflecting on the following brief breakdown of civility in shopping malls across the country.

RJ Matson

RJ Matson
Nate Beeler, The Columbus Dispatch
Rick McKee, The Augusta Chronicle
RJ Matson, Roll Call
David Fitzsimmons, The Arizona Star

Watch the boneheaded, hypocritical, cynical and lying gaffes Democrats have made in 2014 (so far)

Some of the funniest political mash-ups we’ve seen this year have come courtesy of The Washington Free Beacon, but the WFB may have topped itself with this one.

This lowlight reel of Democrats being condescending, deceitful, slow-witted, Janus-faced and (in a couple of instances) delusional offers a nice capsule summary of all the reasons why the midterm elections were as unkind to the Democratic Party as the Democratic Party was to voters in 2014.

And, except for the turkey footage and the goodbye message at the end, every bit of it is primary source material: It’s Democrats speaking for themselves… badly.

Enjoy and share.

And happy Thanksgiving!

H/T: The Washington Free Beacon

Rand Paul: ‘I mostly blame politicians’ for Ferguson

Following a Missouri grand jury’s decision against filing charges in the shooting death of Michael Brown, Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) weighed in on the situation in Ferguson with a call for government reform.

In an op-ed for Time, Paul said that the situation in Ferguson is largely the result of the failed policies born out of the government’s “wars” on drugs and poverty in America.

“In the search for culpability for the tragedy in Ferguson, I mostly blame politicians,” Paul wrote. “Michael Brown’s death and the suffocation of Eric Garner in New York for selling untaxed cigarettes indicate something is wrong with criminal justice in America. The War on Drugs has created a culture of violence and put police in a nearly impossible situation.

“In Ferguson, the precipitating crime was not drugs, but theft. But the War on Drugs has created a tension in some communities that too often results in tragedy,” the senator continued. “One need only witness the baby in Georgia, who had a concussive grenade explode in her face during a late-night, no-knock drug raid (in which no drugs were found) to understand the feelings of many minorities — the feeling that they are being unfairly targeted.”

Paul has previously noted that War on Drugs policies lead to disproportionate incarceration of America’s minorities. But in his Time op-ed, he argues that the nation needs to rethink more than the criminal justice system.

“Reforming criminal justice to make it racially blind is imperative, but that won’t lift up these young men from poverty. In fact, I don’t believe any law will,” he wrote. “For too long, we’ve attached some mythic notion to government solutions and yet, 40 years after we began the War on Poverty, poverty still abounds.”

In creating changes that prevent future situations like the unrest in Ferguson, Paul argued, requires breaking the nation’s poverty cycle by encouraging personal liberty and responsibility.

“Escaping the poverty trap will require all of us to relearn that not only are we our brother’s keeper, we are our own keeper,” he wrote.

Read the senator’s full op-ed at Time.