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  #1  
Unread 10-07-2019, 05:12 PM
Max Goodman Max Goodman is offline
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Default Joshua Brown, hero

https://www.nbcnews.com/news/us-news...ger-s-n1063071

I feel sick. I'm questioning the progress I thought we'd seen away from white supremacy.
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  #2  
Unread 10-08-2019, 02:12 AM
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Julie Steiner Julie Steiner is offline
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Not to defend white supremacists, but the article you cited points to a suspect with a different motive:

Quote:
In an interview with "Today," a lawyer who represented Jean's family and is now working with Brown’s relatives, said Sunday that Brown’s role in the trial caused him to fear “for his life.”

The lawyer, S. Lee Merritt, attributed that fear, in part, to a shooting that occurred in recent months during a birthday party at a Dallas club that Brown attended. Brown was shot in the foot, Merritt said, and a friend of his was killed.

It wasn’t clear what caused the incident, but Merritt said Brown knew the shooter and worried the person “might come back to try and finish the job.”

Brown’s relatives told Merritt that he worried about how the trial’s publicity could leave him more exposed to "people who wished him harm," and how he could be viewed as a “snitch” for cooperating with law enforcement in Guyger’s prosecution.

Brown heard such pushback in the days after the trial, Merritt said.

Merritt said he had no evidence to suggest Brown’s death was in retaliation for his testimony, but he added, “it is certainly worth investigating or looking into and we expect the city of Dallas to apply all of its resources and manpower to figure out what happened."
If he was shot by someone he knew--perhaps another Black man--for the sin of cooperating with the police even to enable a member of the police to be brought to justice, that might be a more horrific and intimidating act of terrorism than if he were shot by a white supremacist.

I suppose it could still have been a white supremacist, particularly if the earlier attempt made framing someone else for this shooting a temptation. It's too early to jump to any conclusions, except that Joshua Brown's decision to testify despite very credible death threats was, indeed, heroic.

I'm reminded that the word "martyr" comes from the Greek μάρτυρος, meaning "witness." Testifying to the truth is a very brave thing to do.

Last edited by Julie Steiner; 10-08-2019 at 02:30 AM.
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Unread 10-08-2019, 09:13 AM
Max Goodman Max Goodman is offline
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It's true that we don't know the details (will we ever, since the Dallas Police are the ones who will be providing them?), and also that my faith in the progress we were making likely grew from a naivety facilitated by my privilege, but I still find the details chilling. I knew racists were angry at him, but I thought they were fringe looneys. That one or more was sophisticated enough to kill him and, at least temporarily, get away, shakes me. Also, I had not been aware that he got enough blow back for testifying--against someone who shot an unarmed man in his own home!--that he feared for his life.

In this case, I don't find it plausible that he was killed by someone who was angry that he worked with the police.
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Unread 10-08-2019, 10:12 AM
Roger Slater Roger Slater is offline
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What confuses me is that I can't see why his testimony was all that crucial in obtaining the conviction in the first place. The basic facts were not in dispute. She entered the wrong apartment and shot an innocent man. Her excuse was that she was very tired. What did Brown add? In a way, he helped the defense because he said that he himself had sometimes accidentally entered on the wrong floor, and once he had even put his key in the lock of the wrong door before realizing his mistake. So he gave support to Amber's story that she actually believed she was in her own apartment and encountered an intruder. I don't think Brown's testimony was very important at all or should have made Amber's defenders angry.
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Unread 10-08-2019, 11:11 AM
John Riley John Riley is offline
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It must be one very monotonous apartment building.
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  #6  
Unread 10-08-2019, 12:04 PM
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Julie Steiner Julie Steiner is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Max Goodman View Post
In this case, I don't find it plausible that he was killed by someone who was angry that he worked with the police.
I find it plausible that someone who had already shot him in the foot, and who had fatally shot his friend in the same incident, might have come back to finish the job, as Joshua Brown's father says Joshua feared would happen.

But I also find it plausible that others who wished Brown harm might have taken advantage of the fact that there was another suspect, too, to deflect suspicion from themselves. Which is why there needs to be a thorough investigation.

And is also why many people, myself included, think the Dallas Police Department needs to hand over that investigation to an independent agency. It's not a good idea to give a group of police officers, who might have had a motive to retaliate against someone who helped convict one of their own, the opportunity to sabotage this investigation and to frame someone else.

I was one of the speakers at this San Diego City Council committee meeting last month. I supported the proposal of Women Occupy San Diego to replace San Diego's currently-toothless Community Review Board on Police Practices with an independent commission, with its own attorneys and investigators and subpoena power, and I spoke in opposition to the City Attorney's pathetically watered-down alternative. At the same meeting, a San Diego Police captain (not the chief of police) gave an update on how SDPD officers in the field are complying with the reporting requirements of California's Racial and Identity Profiling Act of 2015 (AB 953). He mentioned that the officers had not previously been collecting data about that, so it has been impossible to recognize patterns that might indicate implicit or explicit bias in policing, and to address those problems with better training and disciplinary action.

I mention this because in the public comment period after the police captain's presentation, which seemed to me a very good idea to increase police accountability, three people of color took the stand to say that they vehemently opposed having officers collect any data on the perceived race and identity of the members of the public with whom they interact, because in their opinion all officers are racist and can't be trusted not to falsify reports to their own advantage. All three speakers said that they and their friends have experienced multiple stops by the police and demands for identification, for no apparent reason other than being a person of color in public, but they suspected that if data is now collected from these encounters, it will always be altered so that the police will be able to "prove" that any accusations of racial profiling are unsubstantiated. They directed their comments not to the City Council members, but to the largely Black and Brown audience, encouraging them to never, ever cooperate with the police in any way, because doing so "aids the oppressor" and rewards the police for demanding more information from members of their community than they demand from whites.

That's how badly the relationship has soured between the police and certain parts of the Black and Hispanic communities in San Diego.

So I can easily believe that someone in Dallas might be upset enough about someone cooperating with a police investigation to retaliate with violence. Even when that investigation is looking into the shooting of an unarmed Black man in his own apartment by an off-duty white female police officer.

(Then again, I can also believe that someone else might have a motive for intimidating future witnesses from testifying against white police officers. It has happened before.)

Last edited by Julie Steiner; 10-08-2019 at 12:19 PM.
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  #7  
Unread 10-08-2019, 12:23 PM
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Julie Steiner Julie Steiner is offline
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Originally Posted by Roger Slater View Post
I don't think Brown's testimony was very important at all or should have made Amber's defenders angry.
Brown testified that he hadn't heard her tell the victim to put his hands up, as she claimed she had. So his testimony cast doubt on her version of events.
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Unread 10-08-2019, 02:19 PM
Matt Q Matt Q is offline
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He said he heard voices that sounded surprised, but he couldn't make out the words.

So, whatever specific phrase you then asked him if he'd heard, he'd have had to say no, he hadn't heard that. It's hard to see that as contradicting her testimony, at least, not based on what's reported in the linked article

So, it seems that his testimony supports hers firstly by saying that he'd also gone to the wrong floor and door in the past, and secondly that the voices he'd heard had sounded surprised; it seems neutral with respect to what she actually said. So, I think I'm with Roger, on this.

Last edited by Matt Q; 10-08-2019 at 02:36 PM.
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  #9  
Unread 10-08-2019, 04:55 PM
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Julie Steiner Julie Steiner is offline
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This afternoon I learned that drug dealers in Alexandria, Louisiana, have to drive 4 hours and 28 minutes to Dallas, Texas, to find a supplier. Even though New Orleans is only 3 hours and 34 minutes away. Huh.

Here's the start of the relevant part of Joshua Brown's testimony, describing what he heard. He said he couldn't make out what either one was saying, but he didn't hear any sort of "police commands" tone of voice, and the two gunshots were "quick" and "right after" the "meeting by surprise" voices. That's inconsistent with Amber Guyer's account of having said "Show me your hands. Show me your hands" before shooting. Here's the start of the part of her testimony where she discusses coming up to her door, and then confronting Botham Jean.

Last edited by Julie Steiner; 10-08-2019 at 05:17 PM.
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  #10  
Unread 10-08-2019, 07:41 PM
Jim Moonan Jim Moonan is online now
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Interesting discussion while it lasted. But not really -- not in light of what now appear to be the facts: just a drug deal gone bad. Not white supremacy, not hatred, not vengeance, not retribution, not racism, not black lives vs. white lives (though they will live on as conspiracy theories.) The facts point to good old-fashioned soulless American decay and materialism with a dollop of violence on top.

But what to make of the hugs?
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