The black mayor of 70 percent black Baltimore begged blacks to stop shooting each other, all to make room in the hospital for those sick with the Coronavirus.
The black mayor of 65 percent non-white Houston asks criminals to “chill out” and not commit crime during the Coronavirus pandemic.
What does the black police chief (you can bet she was promoted to the position purely on merit…) of one of America’s whitest big cities do?
Seattle’s top cop may want to get her priorities straightened out. In the midst of the global COVID-19 pandemic, Police Chief Carmen Best used her most recent “chief’s brief” update on the coronavirus crisis to urge residents to dial 911 if they are the victims of racist name-calling.
It’s a time-wasting imperative—and one that’s at odds with the First Amendment.
In her briefing, Best called upon the expertise of a former local news anchor, Lori Matsukawa.
“Hate crimes have no place in our community,” said Matsukawa. “We are all trying to deal with the COVID-19 public health crisis together. If you are a victim of a hate crime or hate-based harassment, please call 911.”
“We will document and investigate every reported hate crime,” Best continued. “Even racist name-calling should be reported to police. If you aren’t sure if a hate crime occurred, call 911. We are here to help.”
This is unhelpful guidance that conflates two completely different things. A hate crime takes place when a person, motivated by animus, engages in criminal activity against a protected class. Importantly, the underlying action has to be criminal in nature: vandalism, assault, etc. Mere speech is not generally criminal, except in a few special cases (true threats of violence, for instance). Racist speech could be an element of a hate crime conviction, but engaging in racist speech is not itself a criminal action. In fact, hateful speech is clearly protected under the First Amendment, according to Supreme Court precedent.
Telling people to report racist name-calling to the police is thus bad advice. At best, it’s wasting police officers’ time. But it can actually lead to far worse consequences: Inviting the police to intervene in speech-based disputes between people is a recipe for disaster. Teachers, counselors, and parents, for instance, could reasonably interpret Best’s remarks as an obligation for them to call the cops on kids who use derogatory language. Over-criminalization of teenage misbehavior in schools is one result of the mindset that people—even kids—causing each other offense ought to be a matter for the police to handle.
Yes, the black police chief of one of America’s whitest big cities is encouraging citizens of Seattle to engage in Orwellian acts the Stasi would be jealous of seeing implemented.
What was it Steve Sailer noticed about the authorities in San Francisco trying to keep racial information about the Coronavirus under wraps, in case it might confirm stereotypes by those foolish enough to still engage in pattern recognition in 2020?
From the New York Times:
Amid calls for more transparency, a debate is raging among public health experts over how much data on the spread of the virus should be released.
Thomas Fuller, March 28, 2020
… Across the United States there is even less consistency. New York is listing cases by age bracket, gender and borough despite calls for more localized reporting. Connecticut lists data by town. Florida provides its residents with a wealth of data on the pandemic. The state’s Department of Health has a detailed dashboard and reports showing the spread of the virus — rich with data on the cities affected, the number of people tested, the age brackets of patients, whether they are Florida residents, and the number of cases in nursing homes....
Health departments in the Bay Area make the case that releasing more granular data could heighten discrimination against certain communities where there might be clusters. The first cases in the Bay Area were among ethnic Chinese residents returning from trips to China.
At this point, a hate crime is nothing more than engaging in public acts of pattern recognition.