Friday, June 16, 2006


Which side are you on?

I know that the "conservative" blogs will dodge the issue or write this off to the color of the Grand Jury's skin. But what I want to know is how many liberal blogs will admit they rushed to judgment and that there might be a deeper story here. The AP is reporting that A grand jury has declined to indict Rep. Cynthia McKinney in a March incident in which she admitted hitting [or slapping or pushing or something-ing] a police officer who tried to stop her from entering a House office building. Grand Juries don't have to be unanimous to indict, so they tend to over- rather than underindict. And African Americans, contrary to white caricatures, tend to be pretty tough on African Americans who break the law. For the Grand Jury (which I assume from the venue was probably roughly two-thirds African American) to decline to indict means that maybe her story is correct, that she was improperly stopped and that any contact was inadvertent. She may have a case for assault by the officer, or a civil case for harassment. In political debate, there are no good people and bad people per se. There are people who own up when they are wrong, and then there's the rest. I hope I am underestimating how many liberal blogs are in the latter category. But there were sure a lot of liberal bloggers who behaved like perfect asses on this issue.
The press of course won't spin this as a vindication. They'll either ignore it or spin it just the way you suggest they'll spin it. (Remember the story a week or so ago on how the DC Capitol Police were allegedly outraged that it was taking so long to convict her? The possibility that the evidence and facts were all on her side never crossed the article-writer's mind.) Either way, MEC's Media Rule On Accusations Against Democrats (aka: "Shout the untruth, whisper the retraction") is in full effect.
I don't claim to have all the details about the McKinney incident (and I didn't blog about it, before I started blogging) but if she did shove or slap an officer, I've always wondered why it went to a grand jury and not to a local judge to resolve the issue as it basically should be an assault on a police officer or resisting charge... Black or White, you're not allowed to hit or shove a cop...
I will never forget the one time a cop pushed me aside when I was at a demonstration in Washington, D.C., even though this was many years ago. I literally saw red and was so furious I might have hit the guy if I hadn't felt intimidated. It's an awful feeling of anger and frustration. So Ms. McKinney's reaction is quite understandable to me. And, of course, we, as usual, don't know the real story.
Too many right-thinking liberals gloated over this story, and I don't know why. I suspect they are among those who have never been shoved by a cop.
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