November 26, 2014

"Building a jail is building hate."



Closeup from a photograph of the Ferguson-related demonstration that took place in Madison, Wisconsin yesterday. See the whole photograph here, at the Wisconsin State Journal. The caption says that speakers at the demonstration talked not only about Ferguson but also about a proposed new jail here. From the article:
“It’s about Mike Brown, but it’s also about, more broadly, state violence against black communities,” said M Adams, a member of the Young Gifted and Black Coalition. “As a city with a progressive characteristic, it is often easy for us to look to other places and say, ‘Ferguson is terrible’ ... and ignore the ways in which we act out state violence here in our own communities,” Adams said.

The coalition, which organized Tuesday’s protest, opposes the construction of a new jail, saying money for that project should instead be spent on programs in black communities. After the march, protesters packed a meeting of the Dane County Public Protection and Judiciary Committee to discuss the proposal.

The coalition has also called for the release of people incarcerated for what members call “crimes of poverty”....
This message — incarceration as racial oppression — has been cultivated by some who are dedicated to issues of racial justice. Those who are reacting to Ferguson by engaging in criminal violence are stepping on that message.

71 comments:

AustinRoth said...

Those who are reacting to Ferguson by engaging in criminal violence are stepping on that message.

Yes, it is just so inconvenient when facts get in the way of your narrative.

DanTheMan said...

And looting is building love, one assumes?

Tom said...

Think about the assumptions behind the statement "money for that project should instead be spent on programs in black communities."

That mindset is exactly why so many black communities are stunted and crime-ridden. Rather than self-improvement and self-reliance, they always wait for someone else to come in to do something--provide money, "programs," and the like. It's a mindset inculcated by community organizers like Obama, who tell the people that you can't do anything to help yourself; you need people like me.

Lyle said...

Michael Brown, himself, stepped all over that message... as do all the African-American murderers of other African-Americans.

These social justice types don't care about facts or the truth, because they are objectively racialist, if not out and out racists. President Obama is one of them and carries their despicable views to a world wide audience. Disgusting.

tim in vermont said...

Yeah, the old pro-Saddam demonstrators were "getting the band back together" in Burlington last night in front of the Unitarian church.

Anonymous said...

Richard Pryor begs to differ.

The looters aren't so much stepping on the Message as carrying it to its logical conclusion. If "crimes of poverty" are worthy of being winked at and they benefit you, why not go ahead and do them?

Carol said...

programs in black communities

This part was filled in by Social Services.


Anonymous said...

There is no "message", just a slogan, signifying nothing.

As for those "who are reacting to Ferguson by engaging in criminal violence", that's what they do.
And the justice they want is a "justice" a la Mugabe. A "lynching" justice.

C R Krieger said...

I would like to see police shootings treated like Air Force Class A Mishaps (plane crashes).  A team is brought in from outside to investigate.  They go into everything (medical records to training to maintenance rules violations to …).  When the report is done you have a pretty fair report and a good understanding of what happened, if such an understanding was possible.  There is a local Colonel assigned as the Interim Board President, but soon the real Board President arrives and takes over.

The board is NOT about legal outcomes, but about finding out what happened and seeing if changes are needed. The legal issues are handled elsewhere. I see it as being the same in Police Shootings. The Shooting Board finds the facts and makes recommendations, if needed, to avoid future problems. Others handle the legal side. It isn't always about the law and the lawyers, unless you are talking the law of physics.

Given our governmental decentralization, the Board would not/could not mandate changes, but it could recommend and its report being made public would help local citizens in their decisions about how they vote in the next election.

Regards  —  Cliff

Fernandinande said...

"It’s about Mike Brown, but it’s also about, more broadly, state violence against black communities,”

It's about the delusions of racist professional victims.

Funny, the link to "Madison's most wanted" shows 5 of 16 were black; shockingly, there were no Asians.

"The racial makeup of the city was 78.9% White, 7.3% African American, 0.4% Native American, 7.4% Asian, 2.9% from other races, and 3.1% from two or more races."

Laslo Spatula said...

Hire everyone in the community as community organizers. Things'll be ship-shape in no time.

damikesc said...

Know what builds hate?

Pretentious douchebags claiming anybody who disagrees with them hates others.

Seriously, fuck these protestors.

Again, you've done a bang up job curing America of the curse of white guilt. Well played, progressives.

Paul said...

Building a jail keeps the wild animals at bay.

Yes it does not rehabilitate. It does not turn a bad person into a good one.

But it does keep them from committing MORE crimes.

It has it's place.

SGT Ted said...

Incarceration as racial oppression is the old 1960s KGB agiprop still active long after the USSRs collapse.

It is no coincidence that the Revolutionary Commie's are fomenting riots using that language.

traditionalguy said...

Rioting and Looting has become a big time sport with its own ESPN analysts doing pre-game shows and video highlights of the most spectacular molotov cocktail throws and burning stuff. Only the network initials have been changed to CNN and MSNBC,

Since a Jail is the enemy of All Star rioters and looters. Jails must be ended, but a few should be kept in case Tea Party Bad People are found to be real.

damikesc said...

I love that they hate prisons AND how bad crime is in black communities.

Logic isn't a strength.

William said...

Some time back there was an article about rape in South Africa. According to a poll, fifty percent of the women in South Africa claim to have been raped at least once. Among the men, twenty five percent claim to have participated in a rape. Women who are too obviously lesbian in appearance are subjected to a phenomenon called "corrective rape"--that is the rape is accompanied by a severe beating.......Would the women of South Africa benefit from a more aggressive persecution and imprisonment of rapists?

President-Mom-Jeans said...

Obviously not that "gifted."

Probably "special" though, in that Bitchtits Mahal sort of way.

jacksonjay said...

Jail is a college degree for some of these street th..., Oh, sorry, young men. Prison is a graduate degree. How will they ever gain street cred if you don't build jails for them?

Incarceration means they have refused to give in to the man. It also means they ain't gonna let nobody disrespect them. Gentle Mike wasn't gonna let that pussy in the cruiser tell him nothing!

When popo tells me to get the fuck out of the street, you know what Ima do? Ima get the fuck outta the street! Bet I don't get shot!

Anonymous said...

Domestic chaos was such a winning strategy for the Democrats in '68 and '72 that they are pulling out all of the stops for '16.

Brando said...

What an empty slogan. The jail is building hate? Or how about the destroying of communities, the murder or assault of others, the stealing of property--do any of those things qualify as hate?

If you think the police are acting improperly, then go ahead and explain what they're doing wrong and what they should be doing differently. I may even agree with what you have to say! Cops aren't perfect, and law enforcement systems aren't perfect either. I'm sure there's plenty of abuse, individually or systematically. But this Brown case does not demonstrate that at all.

And while the civil liberties of the people must be zealously guarded, I for one am glad that we have competent civil servants keeping the peace and prosecuting criminal suspects. I'd rather have a "hate jail" keeping the most dangerous elements away from the public than to let those least able to protect themselves serve as prey.

Brando said...

"Domestic chaos was such a winning strategy for the Democrats in '68 and '72 that they are pulling out all of the stops for '16."

Watch and see if Hillary doesn't reinvent herself as a "law and order" candidate.

jacksonjay said...

These same idiots claimed that scaling down the militarized response would calm the "protestors". That worked out really well on Wednesday night.

Lauderdale Vet said...

Tangentially, prison overcrowding is an ALEC initiative.

There are a lot of useful things that a lot of people agree on that could be accomplished. Instead, we focus on flawed martyrs who could have very well been in the wrong.

#Ferguson and the ingredients that make things like it possible are tragic on so many levels.

Ann Althouse said...

"There is no "message", just a slogan, signifying nothing."

You're just plain wrong. There is a lot of scholarship and political activism around this theme. Many sincere and hard-working people want it to be the dominant theme in racial politics.

chillblaine said...

Thousands of San Diego commuters are stuck on Interstate 5. About thirty jackass antisocial losers have parked their cars and formed a blockade. Truth to Power!

Lyle said...

Many sincere and hard-working people want it to be the dominant theme in racial politics, because they don't have the character or intellect to deal with black-on-black violence in an honest way.

http://bloggingheads.tv/videos/2745



Michael said...

I am in favor of releasing all of the incarcerated and pulling police services from the underclass communities. We have done enough. The people in jail are all innocent and the cops only cause trouble.

The underclass can "police" themselves if they wish.

There is a ton of scholarship which would support this as a path, a freeway, to social justice.

tim maguire said...

As someone who believes the drug war is today's Jim Crow, I agree with you that this use of the anti-incarceration message undermines the goal of a fairer justice system.

Paco Wové said...

"...a lot of scholarship and political activism ... Many sincere and hard-working..."

Oh, you do crack me up sometimes, Althouse.

jr565 said...

The problem is not crime. The problem is jails. If we just did away with jails it would solve all the problems.

Eureka!

tim maguire said...

You're wrong, Lyle. There are severe disparities in the way the system deals with primarily white crime vs. primarily black crime (see, for instance, the sentencing disparities of cocaine vs. crack cocaine). High incarceration rates are harming communities and you don't have to be liberal to think many of those crimes should not be crimes, should not lead to jail time, or should not lead to the sentence lengths that they do.

Laslo Spatula said...

I would like to see Taylor Swift in a film where she is unjustly incarcerated, and exposes the cruelty of the justice system. There would be several shower scenes. Soapy breasts would be a metaphor. There would be a lot of metaphors.

Laslo Spatula said...

The dehumanizing aspect of seeing Taylor Swift strip-searched might make people reevaluate their thinking on the penal system. The scene should be in slow-motion to better emphasize the point.

jr565 said...

Michael wrote:
I am in favor of releasing all of the incarcerated and pulling police services from the underclass communities. We have done enough. The people in jail are all innocent and the cops only cause trouble.

The underclass can "police" themselves if they wish.


In certain neighborhoods where the people have such problem with cops I'd agree. Do it yourself.
Being a cop and policing the black community is like working for Subway and being sent into a building where they rob you every time you go there. Not worth the hassle.

jacksonjay said...

NAACP scholarship seems very sincere to me.

damikesc said...

You're just plain wrong. There is a lot of scholarship and political activism around this theme. Many sincere and hard-working people want it to be the dominant theme in racial politics.

Sorry, professor, but you're incorrect. It is nothing more than a slogan and it, genuinely, means squat.

It means exactly what the speaker at that moment wants it to mean.

"Use the money for a jail to improve the black community"? We've spent fucking BILLIONS on that fucking community. Guess what? We can't fucking bail out people who want to keep repeating the same idiotic mistakes.

That academics think that this message is serious and intellectual is a damning condemnation of academia as a worthwhile use of money.

You're wrong, Lyle. There are severe disparities in the way the system deals with primarily white crime vs. primarily black crime (see, for instance, the sentencing disparities of cocaine vs. crack cocaine). High incarceration rates are harming communities and you don't have to be liberal to think many of those crimes should not be crimes, should not lead to jail time, or should not lead to the sentence lengths that they do.

No argument.

If these weren't the case, can you make even the tiniest argument that the black community would be BETTER off now?

I cannot. There are some deep pathologies that they will never face up to and they will never try and fix. Those that DO want to improve will leave, as anybody rational would, while the leeches and miscreants will just stay there, whining indefinitely.

What we need to do is stop humoring the black commmunity. Stop treating them with kid gloves. Stop taking their leadership seriously because, let's be honest, civil rights leadership is a collection of morons and hustlers with no beneficial thoughts in their heads.

Laslo Spatula said...

After the nightmare of jail the scene where Taylor Swift has her first shower as a Free Woman would be uplifting.

Laslo Spatula said...

I like the idea of Taylor Swift and a Happy Ending.

Big Mike said...

The coalition, which organized Tuesday’s protest, opposes the construction of a new jail, saying money for that project should instead be spent on programs in black communities.

They could start by teaching young black men not to go physically threatening cops and punching them in the face, and not to jump a honkie that has a 9mm. That would have kept Mike Brown and Trayvon Martin alive long enough to be murdered by one of their fellow black youths, which M. Adams doesn't care about nearly so much.

pduggie said...

"You're just plain wrong. There is a lot of scholarship and political activism around this theme. Many sincere and hard-working people want it to be the dominant theme in racial politics."

That may be but its impenetrable to the average (non-PoC) person.

EMD said...

Soapy breasts would be a metaphor.

Will Taylor have a body double for these scenes?

Anonymous said...

The crack/powder cocaine sentencing disparity was enacted at the behest of black community leaders who saw crack destroying their communities. It only evolved in to a racist white policy when the unintended (but easily foreseeable) rates of incarcerations for blacks spiked.

Rick Turley said...

Looters? The preferred term now is "undocumented shopper."

Big Mike said...

You're just plain wrong. There is a lot of scholarship and political activism around this theme. Many sincere and hard-working people want it to be the dominant theme in racial politics.

I question neither their sincerity nor their work ethic. But I question their ability to cope with reality.

If they want to deal with "crimes of poverty" they can start by developing programs to deal with the root causes of poverty, namely the unbelievably bad decisions people make that keep them impoverished. From inner city teenaged girls having unprotected sex with black men ten or twelve years their senior, to drug use, to young black men reacting violently to a perceived "dis."

Of course all that would be tough. Much easier to run around with signs and try to play on white guilt.

Phil 3:14 said...

The crack epidemic of the 80's was viewed in racial terms.

Why don't we see the heroin epidemic of the teens in racial terms?

Ann Althouse said...

"I question neither their sincerity nor their work ethic. But I question their ability to cope with reality."

Fine. But you're not the person I said was "just plain wrong."

That was Phil D, who said: "There is no 'message,' just a slogan, signifying nothing."

Will you agree with me that Phil D is just plain wrong?

When sincere, hard-working, well-meaning people are trying to say something that you want to argue with, it's not persuasive at all to tell them they are saying nothing. Explain why they are wrong. To do that would require reading their scholarship and argument first and not just the "slogan."

mccullough said...

The crime rate has dropped significantly since the early 1990s. Fewer blacks have been killed as a result. Maybe higher rates of incarceration and longer sentences have nothing to do with it, but those who are against it have a tough argument to make.

Last year 27 police officers were shot and killed in the line of duty, the lowest number in more than 50 years.

Police unions are politically strong in many places and they are not on the same page as the social justice people.

Drago said...

t-man said...
The crack/powder cocaine sentencing disparity was enacted at the behest of black community leaders who saw crack destroying their communities.

The disparities were also partly due to a much greater degree of violence/presence of weapons etc that were associated with crack arrests.

mccullough said...

Drago is correct. People buying crack were not paying for it from their take home wages. Many were commtiing violent crimes, as were the dealers struggling for market territory. New York had over 2,000 homicides a year in the early 1990s.

damikesc said...

When sincere, hard-working, well-meaning people are trying to say something that you want to argue with, it's not persuasive at all to tell them they are saying nothing. Explain why they are wrong. To do that would require reading their scholarship and argument first and not just the "slogan."

At a certain point, there is little benefit in attempting to raise a collection of meandering nothing into a cogent argument.

You can be sincere until you're blue in the face. If you're arguing pointless platitudes, pretending that they are deep is not useful for anybody.

jr565 said...

t-man wrote:
"The crack/powder cocaine sentencing disparity was enacted at the behest of black community leaders who saw crack destroying their communities. It only evolved in to a racist white policy when the unintended (but easily foreseeable) rates of incarcerations for blacks spiked."
The Law of Unintended consequences is itself racist against blacks.
But you're right. Thats exactly the reason why crack was treated differently. When crack is an epidemic society must DO SOMETHING or else they're racist and don't care for black people. So fine, society makes initiatives to treat crack harshly because it so damaged the black community and we don't want to say we don't care about the black community. Only now we're racists because those laws are affecting blacks predominantly.
Because, they're the ones selling crack to their brothers and sisters in the community.
So what do blacks want?

theribbonguy said...

"Looters? The preferred term now is "undocumented shopper.""

I thought it was the "currency-challenged shopper"

Hard to keep up.

ssartor said...

This was my favorite Ferguson protest yesterday:
http://www.nj.com/hudson/index.ssf/2014/11/rally_spurred_on_by_events_in_ferguson_competes_with_jcpd_free_turkey_giveaway.html?

Fernandinande said...

AA: Explain why they are wrong.

Poverty doesn't cause crime and the justice system isn't racist. And building a jail isn't building hate: theft and violence build hate.

http://www.unz.com/article/race-and-crime-in-america/
"Indeed, the race/crime correlation so substantially exceeds the poverty/crime relationship that much of the latter may simply be a statistical artifact due to most urban blacks being poor.

Sigivald said...

What "programs", and who will they actually help, how?

(Now, hey, if he says "end the war on drugs, it's putting lots of people - black and white - in jail for no good reason", I will applaud and shake his hand - and it'll probably make enough space in jails to not need to build more.

But "no jails!" ignores other, actual crimes that hurt the black community.

"Programs" are great for, you know, "community organizers".

But in general I see no reason to believe they typically do any good at all, apart from diverting public money to people who can't do anything productive.

[I mean the people running the programs, mind you.])

Big Mike said...

@Althouse, when I read his comment I thought that Phil D was paraphrasing Shakespeare:

"It is a tale told by an idiot, full of sound and fury, signifying nothing." (Macbeth)

It kind of meshed with the preceding line in Macbeth

"... a poor player that struts and frets his hour upon the stage"

which you paraphrased in your post about Obama being heckled.

But now I'm going to wax philosophical. There are way too many young people -- women more often than men, but both genders are well represented -- who seem to want "points" of some sort for their hard work and sincerity. As a very senior IT guy and past college instructor of computer science classes, I couldn't possibly care less how dedicated you are and how hard you work. Does your code work, yes or no? If the answer is in the positive, I don't care whether you come in late and compensate by leaving early. If the answer is in the negative, then learn how to debug your code more efficiently.

Going back to M. Adams, are I don't care how sincere and how hard-working he may or may not be. There's a lot of hard work to be done to fix even a fraction of what's ailing black communities, and waving few signs at white people and disrupting a few meetings ain't gonna cut it.

Sigivald said...

Our host said: You're just plain wrong. There is a lot of scholarship and political activism around this theme. Many sincere and hard-working people want it to be the dominant theme in racial politics.

Activism, sure.

But activism doesn't make something any more than an empty slogan.

Activism is not in itself meaningful, relevant, or important - activists as a group are self-important narcissistic idiots.

Scholarship, well, I don't hold out much more hope for, given the level of "scholarship" I've seen in "activist"-riddled social sciences.

(Now, there are significant problems with prisons, and how the US imprisons people.

But the scholarship does not, that I've seen, support "building a jail is building hate", especially not in its brainless bumper-sticker level of analysis.)

William Chadwick said...

The "liberal" Hive certainly believes in jails. But only for tax rebels and gun-owners.

damikesc said...


But now I'm going to wax philosophical. There are way too many young people -- women more often than men, but both genders are well represented -- who seem to want "points" of some sort for their hard work and sincerity. As a very senior IT guy and past college instructor of computer science classes, I couldn't possibly care less how dedicated you are and how hard you work. Does your code work, yes or no? If the answer is in the positive, I don't care whether you come in late and compensate by leaving early. If the answer is in the negative, then learn how to debug your code more efficiently.


I agree with this. Expecting participation medals because somebody is really earnest and is trying really hard is asinine if their output is crap.

"Tell them where they're wrong"? It'd be infinitely quicker to tell them what they have correct.

Which is, basically, nothing.

James Pawlak said...

ALTERNATIVE TO JAILS: Short-drop OR no-drop hanging as was NOT considered "cruel and unusual" when our Constitution was ratified---And it without any clause as to "evolving standards of decency.

Chef Mojo said...

I'm picturing Activism and Sincerity out there with Good Intentions, working hard on that neverending paving job on the road to Hell.

Anonymous said...

The coalition, which organized Tuesday’s protest, opposes the construction of a new jail, saying money for that project should instead be spent on programs in black communities.

Who still can think that what ails the Black community will be cured by any program.

Anonymous said...

There are severe disparities in the way the system deals with primarily white crime vs. primarily black crime (see, for instance, the sentencing disparities of cocaine vs. crack cocaine). High incarceration rates are harming communities…

So Black communities would be thriving if only black crack dealers and black crackheads doing time could be back on the street sooner.

Anonymous said...

The coalition...opposes the construction of a new jail, saying money for that project should instead be spent on programs in black communities.

Jail for Black criminals is in fact a program for improving life in Black communities, perhaps the only one with a long unbroken record of success.

Drago said...

William Chadwick: "The "liberal" Hive certainly believes in jails. But only for tax rebels and gun-owners"

And apparently, sitting Republican Governors, especially when those R-governors haven't broken any laws.

Chef Mojo said...

And apparently, sitting Republican Governors, especially when those R-governors haven't broken any laws.

And the lefties loved themselves some grand juries then, didn't they?

Anthony said...

Y'know, the sign is right. Jails are hate made concrete (and steel). A jail is the expression of society's hate for certain acts and the people who commit those actions.

Hate is not a useless, atavistic emotion. It is party of the emotional toolkit humans evolved, and it helps motivate people to protect themselves and others from people who attempt to harm them. Without hate, humans would be much more susceptible to predators, animal and human.

Telling us that a prison is the concrete expression of hate is, therefore, accurate. But it does not carry the moral judgment that the sign carrier thinks it does.

Ann Althouse said...

@Big Mike

Good point about the Shakespeare.

Anonymous said...

" Many sincere and hard-working people want it to be the dominant theme in racial politics."

I have to laugh about that, really.
"Sincere people" and "racial politics", good one.

"Sincere people" like, I suppose, those "sincere" anti-war protesters of yore who collectively went on vacation when Pol Pot started his auto-genocide.

Well, let me expand the quote to express my opinion on those "sincere and hard-working people";
"full of sound and fury, signifying nothing".
I do have other opinions on them, alas not expressible in decent language.

Ps. Sorry for the late answer.

Goju said...

Why is it that so many people go around claiming they believe in that black lives have some intrinsic value? Total BS. Blacks kill blacks at near genocidal rates, and these same people can't even be bothered to comment on it.
From my perspective, it would seem that for these protesters/rioters et al, black lives only have value when it is given to them by virtue of being killed by a white person. Kill each other, they care not the least.
And should someone attack them or a family member, watch how they scream for the police to lock up the perps.
Ann, this is just the same recycled drivel from the 70s prison reform movement. But at least they are recycling, so they do have that green thing going for them.