Difficult Decisions

August 9, 2014

Saturday, August 9, 2014

Good morning again:

I write to recommend two important articles that offer considerable food for thought and discussion.

The first is an article in Slate titled, White People Are Fine With Laws That Harm Blacks. The author, Jamelle Bouie, discusses a new study

When I want to emphasize a point on criminal justice reform, I lead with the data. There are huge racial gaps in arrests, convictions, and sentences. I’m shocked by the statistics and assume that’s also true of readers.

But according to a new study from Stanford University psychologists Rebecca C. Hetey and Jennifer L. Eberhardt, the stats-first approach to issues of race and incarceration isn’t effective—in fact, it’s potentially counterproductive.

Yes, indeed, that’s what the researchers discovered. Their findings show that racial bias gets worse when whites see evidence of racism.

The second article is by Andrew Pollack in today’s New York Times: Ebola Drug Could Save a Few Lives. But Whose?

This article discusses the ethical issues involved in deciding who should receive dosages of new drugs developed to treat Ebola. Only a few dosages of two new drugs are available and the drugs have not been approved for use in treating Ebola. Whether they will prove to be effective is unknown. The two Americans recently transported to Emory University Hospital have received dosages and appear to be improving, which may or may not be due to the drug, and the decision to treat the Americans rather than Africans has been criticised.

Some of the difficult questions are:

Are the drugs safe to take?

Do they work?

Given the extremely limited supply, who should get the drugs”

Americans or Africans?

Health care providers or patients?

Newly infected or patients in advanced stages of the disease?

Young or old?

Warning: Due to a series of recent events we will be moving to a new community, which as yet is undetermined. We will continue to post articles as time permits, but we definitely will not be able to post daily. We will do the best we can, even if it’s only a drive-by to post an open thread.

Thank you for your patience.


Racists menace public safety and should be banned from owning guns

June 14, 2014

Saturday, June 14, 2014

Good morning:

A person who shall remain nameless posted this comment to my article about banning racists from juries. I post his comment because it is a good example of someone who accepts racist assumptions as a reasonable reaction motivated by a desire to protect family.

This is what he said,

Sorry Fred. Racism is here to stay and you above most must truly know why.
People have guns in drug areas for protection,and most people panic when a probable drug effected loon knocks on your door.
Family importance over rule most other issues that I am aware of.
Sorry for being truthful.

I am disturbed by the author’s casual dismissal of the law of self-defense and his assumption that I “must truly know why” it’s reasonable to confront, shoot and kill an unarmed black teenager knocking on the door and “acting like a drug affected loon,” whatever that means.

Racist assumptions about the behavior and intent of people of color are not reasonable or acceptable under any circumstances. Whether a person is in imminent danger of being killed by another person or suffering grievous bodily harm depends on whether that person is armed and what they are saying and doing. It does not depend on the color of their skin.

Assumptions regarding their intent that are based on the color of their skin are irrational and cannot ever justify using deadly force.

Racism has been around for a long time, but that does not make it reasonable or acceptable.

I do not accept or tolerate it and that is why I did not approve the comment.

We can end racism and a good place to start is by ostracizing them: calling them out, shaming them publicly, and banishing them from the tribe.

We also need to take away their guns and banish them from serving on juries.

They are a dangerous menace to public safety and we need to treat them accordingly.

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Recent studies at Penn State trace light skin color to genetic mutation 10,000 years ago

January 7, 2014

Tuesday, January 7, 2014

Good morning again:

From time to time, we have discussed the question, why racism?

My own view is that we are all basically the same and skin color, like hair color or eye color, is merely a cosmetic difference that has nothing to do with intelligence or anything of substance. I believe racists are stupid and willfully ignorant white people driven by hate who deserve to be publicly confronted and humiliated at every opportunity. I do not believe that racism has ceased to be a problem except for black people who complain about discrimination. In fact, I think that is one of the most idiotic accusations that I have ever heard. Racism has always been a major problem in this country and if anything it’s a bigger problem now than in the recent past because so many racists are so loud and proud about it.

Well, here is an interesting article in Penn State News that traces all light skinned people back to a genetic mutation in a single individual approximately 10,000 years ago.

All instances of a gene mutation that contributes to light skin color in Europeans came from the same chromosome of one person who most likely lived at least 10,000 years ago, according to Penn State College of Medicine researchers.

While the genetics of skin color is largely unclear, past research using zebrafish by the College of Medicine’s Keith Cheng identified a key gene that contributes to lighter skin color in Europeans and differs from West Africans. In 2005, Cheng reported that one amino acid difference in the gene SLC24A5 is a key contributor to the skin color difference between Europeans and West Africans.

“The mutation in SLC24A5 changes just one building block in the protein, and contributes about a third of the visually striking differences in skin tone between peoples of African and European ancestry,” said Cheng, distinguished professor of pathology. Lighter skin color may have provided an advantage due to for the better creation of vitamin D in the lesser sunlight characteristic of northern latitudes.

In this current part of the project, Victor Canfield, assistant professor of pharmacology, together with Cheng, studied DNA sequence differences across the globe. They studied segments of genetic code that have a mutation and are located closely on the same chromosome and are often inherited together. This specific mutation in SLC24A5, called A111T, is found in virtually everyone of European ancestry.

Hopefully, Drs. Cheng and Canfield will soon bury theories of racial superiority based on skin color beneath an avalanche of scientific evidence.


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Let’s play the who-said-this game

October 27, 2013

Sunday, October 27, 2013

Good morning:

Time to play the who-said-this game.

A game the whole family can play

Just read the quote and guess who said it.

First clue: The man is white and in jail.

The jail is full of blacks and they all act like thugs. This may sound a bit radical but if more people would arm themselves and kill these (expletive) idiots, when they’re threatening you, eventually they may take the hint and change their behavior.

Second clue: The man denies being a racist.

I’m really not prejudiced against race, but I have no use for certain cultures. This gangster-rap, ghetto talking thug ‘culture’ that certain segments of society flock to is intolerable. They espouse violence and disrespect towards women. The black community here in [deleted] is in an uproar against me — the three other thugs that were in the car are telling stories to cover up their true ‘colors.’

Third clue: This man is really amazed and irked to discover that the media does not call him a hero.

I am amazed at what is going on with the way the media has been covering this case. Their have been several other shootings here in [deleted], yet they are all either black-on-black or black-on-white, and none of them have garnered any attention from the media. I guess it’s news when someone dares to not to be a victim, but they are twisting it around sand saying I was the ‘bad guy.’

Fourth clue: This man wants a change of venue because the media has not called him a hero.

You are correct, if you chose Michael Dunn. He is charged with first degree murder for shooting 17-year-old Jordan Davis to death in the parking lot of a convenience store in Jacksonville, Florida. Dunn emptied the clip of his 9 millimeter semiautomatic handgun while squeezing off shots at point blank range into an SUV parked next to him because Jordan Davis disrespected his authority as an older white guy by refusing to turn down the music and calling him names. Davis and his three friends were unarmed.

Michael Dunn is stupid because he shot and killed a kid for playing loud music that he did not like and disobeying his order to turn it down. He is also stupid because he does not realize he is a racist and he mailed these statements from jail to relatives and friends not realizing that jailers read mail. Predictably, the statements were published. Now, he wants a change of venue to a place with like-minded people who will give him the keys to the city and throw him a ticker tape parade down main street instead of throwing him in jail.

Someplace like Sanford, Florida in Seminole County.

The best thing Dunn’s lawyer could do right now is to threaten to kill him with his bare hands if he doesn’t shut up.

Quotes obtained from Atlanta Black Star

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