Why I didn’t hear about this, I don’t know. This is the kind of thing that, if a white girl was involved, would be blogged about until the end of time. I’m talking about a white police officer cold cocking a 17 year old black girl square in the face for shoving him. Watch the video:
Video description: A police officer is struggling to restrain a young black woman who is yelling “Get the fuck off of me”. They are surrounded by young black men and another young black woman who gets involved in the altercation. She starts trying to separate the officer and the girl. The three tussle back and forth and then the second girl shoves the police officer. The police officer responds by punching the girl squarely in the face then pulls her over to the police car as if to handcuff her. One of the men grabs her and pulls her away. The police officer then returns to trying to restrain the first girl, who is still yelling “Get the fuck off of me”. He is pulling on the girl’s clothes and pinning her arms back as bystanders yell “Are you serious?? You’re pulling off her clothes”. He finally finishes attempting to restrain her and starts handcuffing her as she yells “You hit my cousin”. The video ends.
The girl was charged with assaulting an officer. The incident began because the girl yelling “Get the fuck off of me” was stopped for jaywalking. Yes, all that for jaywalking. Apparently the shover, her cousin, had a prior record, but really, does that justify hauling off and punching her in the face? I’m sure you can imagine the kind of uproar there would have been if the cop were black and the girl were white, or even if they were both white, because isn’t it supposed to be wrong for a man to hit a woman under any circumstances? I mean, I thought feminism was all over this shit. But I haven’t heard a peep from anyone except Jezebel and that’s not even a feminist site. Of course, they didn’t exactly go into the story in depth, and their commenters were clueless as usual.
Hopefully everyone just didn’t know, and it’s not a case of white people dismissing something outrageous happening to a woman of color because “it happens all the time” or some such nonsense. Hopefully it’s not because she had a record, or because she was struggling. Please tell me I’ve missed something because it’s really not cool that this wasn’t a bigger deal. [ETA: It's been brought to my attention that at least two other sites did write about this incident, Shakesville, Womanist Musings and Feministing. So excuse the righteous indignation, I'm glad the incident wasn't completely ignored. Though I think it deserves more coverage than it got, especially in the MSM.]
In other news on how valued black people are in WA, a Seattle-area school board member, Michael Kundu, is being asked to resign over an e-mail in which he stated that African-descended children have smaller brains than white and Asian children. Well, actually, Kundu wrote:
“[...] east Asians and their descendants averaged larger brain size, higher intelligence and social organization than Anglo-Saxons and their descendants, and that Anglo-Saxons, in turn, averaged higher scores in those dimensions than did Africans and their descendants.”
He cites research done by Western Ontario University professor John Philippe Rushton as his source. Rushton is not too well-regarded in his field, and his work is often classified by other academics as “propaganda”. I don’t think you need to be an academic to know that research is bunk. I also think you’d have to be pretty stupid to not only believe Rushton’s theories, but then express views supporting them to anyone other than yourself in the mirror. However, I’m just a simple African-descended female, my small brain can’t wrap itself around complex ideas the way white people with their larger brains and higher intelligences can.
Apparently, since the e-mail became public, some students have been asking how their race might keep them from achieving their academic goals. Way to crush dreams, Kundu. Along with the calls for his resignation, Kundu has been receiving missives from presumably right wing racists asking him to keep his position:
“I am … being asked privately by a number of people, including other board members across Washington, to stand up against special-interest groups so that a precedent will not be set which might impact future discussion of difficult controversial subjects like intelligent design, sexual education, religious freedom in schools, etc.”
Special interest groups? You mean black people? The idea that black people have smaller brains is not a “difficult controversial subject”. It’s out and out racist propaganda masked as legitimate scientific theory. Of course the same people who are interested in promoting intelligent design, abstinence education, and “religious freedom in schools” (which I can only imagine involves the “freedom” to mix school and church) are interested in being able to teach students that black people are inferior. This, people, is a great example of how racism, and institutionalized racism, is still alive and kicking despite the fact that there’s a darkie in the White House.
Kundu defends himself by stating that he is not racist (okay then, case closed!) and has never “exhibited discriminatory behavior to a minority group since he took office in 2003″. Also, he’s “championed diversity” during his tenure, helping out minorities by taking risks like “seeking removal of a Confederate flag from a high school”. This is a fancy version of the “I have black friends” excuse.
He now says that he’s “learned that he [Rushton] was definitely racist and used very questionable methods”. If you couldn’t tell that by the fact that the results of Rushton’s “studies” were that black people are less intelligent than pretty much everyone, I think you have some definite racism of your own you need to examine. Some other “studies” Rushton has done led him to the conclusion that men are smarter than women. See a pattern there? It’s not hard to tell his “research” is done after he comes to his conclusion.
I close with a statement from who I imagine is a Nice White Lady, which basically sums up “non-racist” white peoples’ tired reactions when racism is brought to the fore:
“I was offended by [the e-mail],” said Sherri Crenshaw, the board president. “I’m shocked that in this day and age some people have these beliefs.”
Shocked, I tell you! It sure must be nice to live in a world where you’re surprised by racism. Unfortunately, I never am.