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NY Post: NYC sees nearly 30 shot this weekend alone

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Nearly 30 people have been shot across New York City this weekend — with nearly half a day left to go, law-enforcement sources told The Post on Sunday.

As of around 2 p.m. Sunday, 29 victims had been struck by gunfire — one fatally — since Friday, with 11 wounded in just the hours after Saturday ended, sources said.

(cont.)

Maybe that money the NYPD gets should go toward community services that address poverty, drug abuse, mental health, and housing instability. Give money to the things that prevent crime as opposed to the thing that benefits from crime.

Honestly, why would the police want there to be less crime? Less crime means less funding and less funding means smaller paychecks and fewer cop jobs. The police love crime and have no interest in ever preventing it. They will instigate and manufacture crime when there isn’t enough crime. Funding the police is just feeding the beast.

 

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Crime

How to discuss Bill Cosby with Bill Cosby apologists.

Bill Cosby is a rapist. It’s very simple.

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Bill Cosby is probably about to walk out of jail.

Bill Cosby will walk out of a Pennsylvania state prison a free man, after the Pennsylvania State Supreme Court issued an opinion to vacate his conviction.

The former comedian had appealed to the court in December when his lawyers argued that Cosby’s entire life was put on trial that caused him to suffer unquantifiable prejudice.

(cont. Fox 43)

You know what that means: your aunties, hoteps, and secret rapists in the family are about to flood social media with witchhunt claims and whataboutism and deflections away from Cosby’s guilt. So in case you’ve forgotten how to respond to them, here is a refresher for the top three “conversations” Cosby apologists want to pull you into.

ONE. There is no evidence that Cosby assaulted anyone.

Sexual assault really is a war of words in many cases.  Who do you believe?  The accuser or the accused?  Without any physical evidence it is Andrea Constand’s word against Cosby’s. (Andrea Constand is the plaintiff in the case where Cosby was ultimately found guilty and sent to jail, the conviction that was thrown out today.)

But wait!  We have Bill Cosby’s own words where he admits to having sex with teenagers, admits that an agency would send him 5 or 6 models a week and he would “feed them a good meal,” and admits to drugging his dates with Quaaludes.  We have those statements coming out of his own mouth.

This is a long quote so I’m gonna throw it in italics instead of blockquote it, for easier reading.

COSBY DISCUSSING HIS RELATIONSHIP WITH 19-YEAR-OLD THERESE SERIGNESE

Q: Did you give her quaaludes?

A: Yes.

Q: What effect did the quaaludes have on her?

A: She became in those days what was called high.

Q: She said that she believes she was not in the position to consent to intercourse after you gave her the drug. Do you believe that is correct?

A: I don’t know. … How many years ago are we talking about? 197(6)? … I meet Ms. Picking in Las Vegas. She meets me backstage. I give her quaaludes. We then have sex.

COSBY DISCUSSING THE TEENAGE MODEL HE HAD A SEXUAL ENCOUNTER WITH

Q: She says that just days after … she told you that she did not drink, you told her to come over to (your townhouse) and served her amaretto. Do you recall serving her amaretto?

A: No.

Q: That you told her to sit next to you on the couch and that you put your arm around her and began massaging her shoulder and arms suggestively. Did that occur? … This occurred sometime after you met her parents.

A: I need clarification on time.

Q: She’s 17 and I believe throughout the time she knows you she becomes 18 or 19.

Q: On a later occasion you had her masturbate you with lotion. Did that ever happen?

A: Yes.

Q: (She) used the lotion to rub your penis and make you ejaculate?

A: Bingo.

COSBY DISCUSSING A TEENAGER WHO FILED A POLICE COMPLAINT AGAINST HIM

A: I fed her dinner, gave her three drinks. We went then to the living room. We went through acting, elementary moves. We then went to the sofa. We laid down together. I was behind her.

Q: Was she lying down or sitting up?

A: No, she was down.

Q: Did she fall asleep?

A: Yes.

Q: What did you do when she fell asleep?

A: I got up.

Q: Did you engage in any type of sexual contact with her while you were on the couch?

A: No.

Q. Are you aware that the woman’s statement was that on the night of the dinner at your New York townhouse, “At some point Cosby and the woman were sitting on a sofa and Cosby was massaging her back?”

A: Yes.

Q: “Cosby then lowered his pants in an effort to receive oral sex?”

A: “In an effort to receive oral sex,” that did not happen.

Q: “The woman rebuffed Cosby’s advances and was immediately sent home, driven by Cosby’s driver?”

A: And that is not true.

(cont. DailyMail UK)

We have Bill Cosby’s own testimony to establish that pattern of behavior and point straight toward guilt.  Plus, we have fifty women telling the same story over and over and over, how this man would invite them somewhere, drug them, and assault them.  They didn’t sit in a room and compare notes and they have absolutely no reason to make any of this up – there’s no money to be made, no fame to be had, and no punishment to dole out.

TWO. The “victims” waited so long to accuse him which means they’re making it up for money.

Let’s take Andrea Constand first because she’s the one who actually had the criminal suit.  Constand tried to pursue this right when it happened.  She went to the police (the way she’s supposed to), gave her statement (the way she’s supposed to), and let the police do their work (the way she’s supposed to).  Nothing happened and the district attorney at the time did not file charges in the case, citing “insufficient evidence.”  So, Constand sued Cosby in civil court and the two of them reached settlement.

Fast forward to present day, and a floodgate of women have now told stories similar to Constand, which establishes a pattern of behavior.  Along with that, a judge unsealed Cosby’s deposition testimony in Constand’s civil case where he admitted to some of his questionable behaviors under oath, and the current prosecutor decided to take on Constand’s case before the statue of limitations ran out.

Let’s be clear:  I seriously doubt the current prosecutor, Kevin Steele, cares that much about justice.  However, Cosby’s story was huge, he wanted to be elected, and he used this case as part of his platform for election.  He promised that if elected county prosecutor, he would go after Bill Cosby.  It made a big splash, he was elected, and here we are.  However, his motives don’t affect Cosby’s guilt or the facts of the case.  Steele had higher ambitions than justice for Constand, but the point is still the same:  she deserves justice.

And the other women who’ve also told their stories years and decades after the fact probably found strength in numbers.  It’s hard to be a 20something woman accusing America’s Favorite Dad of sexual assault at the height of his popularity.  It’s much easier to hear someone else tell their story and not only find strength in not having to stand alone, but also find strength in the distance between the present and when it happened.  You’re not a 20something starting out – you’re an established 40something.  He’s not America’s Dad and arguably the most powerful person on primetime – he’s a fading star way past the height of his fame.  And it’s not fair that he was able to do this for so long to so many people and then have the nerve to castigate others on how they behave.

THREE. These allegations were cooked up to keep a Black man from buying NBC.

This one makes me laugh but WOW it really won’t die! It is not hard to google for 3 seconds and find out everything you need to know.

1) Bill Cosby was never in line to run NBC.
2) Bill Cosby wanted to buy NBC in the early 90s even though the company was **never for sale** and the rumors of its sale kept persisting because ratings were down.
3) Even at its lowest point, NBC was worth almost $5 billion dollars. Bill Cosby has never been a billionaire. Even if NBC was for sale at any point, he couldn’t afford it alone. He’d have to join hands with a bunch of other people – and those other people most certainly would have been white.

This is not a witch hunt against a Black man who was about to “make major moves” or however you want to phrase it. This last round of allegations was largely the result of Hannibal Buress making comments about Bill during a stand-up routine. Did a group of racist white people approach Hannibal to plant the Cosby story again because Bill was about to buy NBC at today’s price? They went to a 2nd-tier comedian and hoped the comments would go viral?

One last NBC note about a frequent refrain I’ve seen on Hotep Twitter: white folks using 30 year old allegations to keep a Black man from buying NBC.

If any of the “explanations” about white folks trying to take down Bill include any references to 30 year old allegations, just nip it in the bud, because the accusations were not 30 years old the first time he was accused. Nor the 2nd. Nor the 3rd. They certainly weren’t 30 years old in 1992 when these people swear he was initially going to buy NBC. And if they’re referring to the age of the allegations in the present, NBC is worth tens of billions of dollars right now, so clearly Bill Cosby was not about to buy it in the past few years.

So that’s it. You need not let any Bill Cosby Apologists waste your oxygen, but if you must be around them – maybe you’re related to them or they sign your paychecks, I dunno – remind them that Dr. Huxtable is not Bill Cosby.  Dr. Huxtable was a great television character.  Bill Cosby is a creep who admits his creepy behavior, went to jail for it, and is now has his conviction overturned because of how it was prosecuted.

But on that Dr. Huxtable tip…I just want to remind y’all that the first draft of the Cosby Show saw the Huxtables as a limo driver and a plumber.  It was then rewritten at Pill Cosby’s request, and they became a doctor and a lawyer.  And Bill Cosby decided to play a gynecologist.

 

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Crime

Cash bail is about privilege, not community safety.

Kyle Rittenhouse killed two people and is walking around getting sponsorships.

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In 2010, Kalief Browder was arrested and eventually sent to Rikers Island for grand larceny. Robert Bautista called 911 and reported a robbery — two Black males had stolen his backpack that contained cash, a camera, and an iPod. Police said Browder fit the description and Bautista said Kalief was the robber, but police frisked Browder and he had nothing on him. Bautista said he was robbed two weeks ago (the date kept changing) and at one point said he wasn’t actually robbed, that it was just an attempted robbery. There were enough inconsistencies coupled with a lack of evidence that Browder most certainly would have been found not guilty at trial, but the police (in theory) can’t serve as judge and jury, so they arrested him, booked him, and threw him in jail.

The year before, Browder had pled guilty in a case where he was accused of stealing a bakery truck and crashing it into a vehicle. Browder said he was just a bystander, but took a plea deal to be sentenced as a minor as he had originally been charged as an adult. This charge meant Browder was on probation, so even though his family came up with the bail money to release him from Rikers while he awaited trial, the probation office blocked the request.

We have a kid who was afraid of going to trial as an adult and pled to a sentence as a minor for a non-violent crime he says he didn’t commit. Now he’s been accused of another non-violent crime he says he didn’t commit, and he’s being kept in jail, away from the public, because he’s a repeat offender who is a danger to society.

Kyle Rittenhouse murdered two people on video. He loaded up his gun and had his mom drive him across state lines so he could get in on the action during a protest and intimidate strangers with his illegal weapon. He ultimately shot three of those people after a confrontation and two of them died.

Which one of them is a danger to society? Someone who allegedly crashed a van and allegedly stole a backpack, or someone who is on video shooting three people as the result of a confrontation he initiated by not minding his business?

According to the justice system, Kalief Browder is the danger because Kyle Rittenhouse is walking around free as a bird.

Kyle Rittenhouse, the Illinois teenager charged with killing two men during the Jacob Blake protests in Wisconsin this summer, made bail on Friday and walked out of jail, officials said.

MyPillow Inc. founder Mike Lindell and former “Silver Spoons” child actor Ricky Schroder played key roles in “putting us over the top” in coming up with $2 million for bail, according to Rittenhouse’s defense attorney Lin Wood.

(cont. NBC News)

Legally, bail is supposed to be determined by seriousness of the crime, ties to the community, the flight risk posed by the defendant, and the danger posed by the defendant to his or her community. Kyle Rittenhouse’s bail was $2 million as opposed to $10,000 because he murdered two people. However, in reality, the amount of bail set means nothing if it’s not pegged to the accused’s ability to raise that money. Bail for possession of a controlled substance is usually around $2,500 for a first offense. If you have no way to actually raise that money, it might as well be $2 million. There are no celebrities looking to donate to your cause when you’re in jail for carrying around cocaine you’d plan to take to a party. If you commit a murder for Amerikkka, people will raise money for you. If you get caught with cocaine on a night out, you may be stuck in jail for years.

A few months ago, I wrote a blog called “What I’ve Learned as a Black Man” about some of the ways being Black in America has altered my path from that of a white person in this country. I want to pull a little piece out for this.

—————————————————————

I was walking along 125th Street one night when four policemen came out of nowhere and told me to put my hands up because I fit the description of a robbery suspect in the area. This was around the time Kalief Browder had committed suicide after being released from Rikers because he had been locked up for three years for the crime of fitting a description. I thought that would be me. One of the cops slammed me up against a wall face first, which is what saved me. I had been wearing a baseball cap and a hoodie, like this.

When he pushed my face into the wall, the cap was knocked off and my hair came tumbling out. I have a lot of hair.

The frisking stopped and one cop put their hands in my head to see if it was a wig that could be taken off. They were looking for a bald Black man and clearly that wasn’t me.

—————————————————————

I’ve been stopped and frisked by the NYPD five times over the past decade living here, but that was the first time I feared for my safety because there was nothing I personally could do to avoid being arrested. I could plead my innocence, but it wasn’t up to the cops to decide. I would be sent to jail, and as an underemployed Black man without a family living paycheck to paycheck in those days, I would have no way to raise any amount of bail.

I knew I was innocent, so I knew I wasn’t a threat to the community. I had no money, so I knew I wasn’t a flight risk. I knew that I was more afraid of the consequences of not showing up for my trial date than I was afraid of potentially being found guilty of something I didn’t do. But the system didn’t know that. The system would assign an arbitrary number as the price of my freedom, a number that I wouldn’t have been able to meet. I would have been sitting in jail, waiting for my case to go to trial. I would have lost my job because I couldn’t show up. I would have lost my apartment because I couldn’t pay the rent. After hopefully being found not-guilty, I would be sent back into the world homeless with no possessions, trying to start over, because I didn’t have the money to get me out of jail for a crime I didn’t commit.

And that’s the best case scenario with no money. If I was arrested today, there’s a decent chance I could die in jail, awaiting trial, after contracting coronavirus. Texas has more incarcerated coronavirus deaths than anywhere else in the country, and in the county jails, 80% of those deaths were people who haven’t been convicted of anything.

Over 230 people have died from Covid-19 in Texas’s correctional facilities — and in county jails, nearly 80 percent of them were in pretrial detention and hadn’t even been convicted of a crime, according to a new report.

The 231 figure is likely to be a conservative count. As the researchers note, TDCJ and county jails update death reports after autopsies are conducted, sometimes months after the fact. Additionally, many people have “died without ever having been tested for COVID,” and others died due to a preexisting conditioned worsened by the virus and are not counted in this figure.

(cont. VOX)

After homelessness or death, there is a third outcome, another extended consequence of being denied bail and incarcerated based on an accusation.

Kalief Browder sat in jail for three years while the prosecution delayed his trial. He was bullied, abused, and beaten by inmates and guards, spending a cumulative two years in solitary confinement. He attempted suicide three times while he was locked up, and a few months after his release (because Bautista went back to Mexico and the prosecution no longer had a witness), his tried again and was sent to a psychiatric facility. After two more stints at the facility, Kalief succeeded in taking his own life because he couldn’t move past the injustice that had happened to him. The City of New York paid his family $3.3 million last year in a civil suit, but no one has been held individually responsible for delaying his trial for three years and keeping him behind bars where he was tortured and abused and broken.

We don’t actually know how many people are in jail because they’re too poor to bail themselves out because there’s no standardized method set up for reporting that. An oft-reported figure of 450,000 people sitting in jail without having been convicted of a crime also includes people the justice system has deemed unbailable, which would have applied to Kalief Browder because he was denied bail due to his probation. There is a study that says 9 out of 10 felony defendants are too poor to meet the bail that has been set for them, so even without a specific number, we know that thousands and thousands and thousands of people can’t make bail. We also know from prison records that almost half of our prison population is behind bars due to drug offenses, meaning these are non-violent criminals who aren’t a high risk threat to the community. If 90% of people awaiting trial can’t afford bail and half the people passing through our legal system have drug charges, then 200,000 non-violent criminals are sitting in jails across the country, losing their jobs and their homes, contracting illnesses, and watching their mental health deteriorate sometimes past the point of no return, because they simply don’t have enough money to buy their freedom.

I don’t know where I would be right now if I didn’t have any hair, if I had been arrested and charged and given a bail amount that I couldn’t make, but I do know I wouldn’t be walking the streets of my community with sponsorships from coffeebrands.

 

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