NY Leader: Black Lives Matter will launch armed ‘peace officers’ in ‘war on police’

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NEW YORK CITY – One of the self-proclaimed leaders of the Black Lives Movement in New York says they plan on launching an armed branch of “peace officers”.

He says it’s to combat police brutality in black communities during the so-called “war on police”.

The comments were made in an interview with the Daily Mail.

BLM New York chapter Chairman Hawk Newsome talked about plans of the group to follow in the footsteps of the Black Panthers Party by matching fire with fire – when necessary.

“We’re talking about self-defense. We’re talking about defending our communities,” Newsome said. “You know what it’s like to see a taser pointed at a 7-year-old, you know what it’s like to see a 67-year-old black woman … pepper sprayed and pushed to the ground?”

He said they are getting ready.

“We are preparing and training our people to defend our communities.”

He went on to say that he took part in a national conference in Los Angeles of party leadership.  The purpose, he says, was to discuss how the movement can create a “pathway forward” for people.

According to Newsome, the plan is called “Black Opts”  – short for Black Opportunities.  He said it details how the movement can help to liberate black people.

“We have black Special Forces officers advising us, and we will teach and train people in our communities, the Black Opts department of Black Opportunities,” Newsome said.

The Black Panthers Party had also created “peace officers”.

They open-carried firearms while patrolling black communities, saying it’s to deter police brutality.

According to Newsome, the BLM “peace officers” would also be armed and open carry guns in states that allow it.

“We pattern ourselves after the Black Panthers, after the Nation of Islam, we believe that we need an arm to defend ourselves,” Newsome explained.

“We will build and train peace officers to keep the peace in our communities, to defend our communities, to keep our communities safe.”

According to its website, the New York chapter is at the forefront of the movement.  It’s the biggest of the 40 chapters which the organization operates world-wide.

Newsome’s bio shows he worked as a project manager at a law firm before becoming full-time activist.

He also says his chapter has grown into one of the most effective ones in the world, and that it’s raising funds for a “war chest”.

Newsome said they plan to build a headquarters in an unused church in New York.

“When we start talking about black opportunities and building our war chest to defend ourselves from the war on the poor. .. to defend ourselves against the war that is anti-blackness in America, then people will have to meet a certain criteria.”

On Sunday in Times Square, they’ll launch the “blueprint” for communities across the country.

Now for those who argue that all cops are racist killers, we thought we’d share with you some stats.

Since last week, all we have seen and heard in the mainstream media is about the “systemic” racism in police departments, and how police officers kill African Americans at a higher rate than whites. A recent report citing data from the Washington Post disputes that notion.

Clearly, what happened in Minneapolis last week to George Floyd was an outrage.

Any right-thinking American and an overwhelming majority of police officers condemn what was done to that man. He did not deserve it.

Police officers are better than that and we should demand that they are.

Now, we have politicians on both sides of the aisle, strictly from the standpoint of trying to score cheap political points, saying that there is some kind of inherent bias against African Americans by the police.

So, Daniel Horowitz took the Washington Post’s searchable database on police shootings and did some digging. It did not take long.

Let’s look at one glaring statistic first, outside of police shootings. According to the Chicago Sun-Times, in 2019 in the city of Chicago…one city…315 African American males between the ages of 15 and 40 were victims of homicide. Let’s just get that out of the way.

Meanwhile the Washington Post database showed that in 2019, nine unarmed African Americans were shot dead by police, while 19 unarmed whites were similarly killed.

So, one does not need to be a math major to see that over twice as many unarmed whites were killed in 2019 than African Americans. If you watch the news, however you get an entirely different story.

Now, George Floyd was not shot by police. Still as Horowitz points out, if there existed a trend where police officers were hunting down African Americans for the purposes of killing them, it is not reflected in the 2019 shooting tally.

Horowitz cited a poster on Twitter who actually analyzed the nine shootings of black males in 2019, and in each case, the suspect was in the process of using potential deadly physical force against either an officer or a civilian.

There are scores of cases on record where an unarmed individual was able to overpower an officer, gain control of their duty weapon and then kill them.

The nine cases are as follows:

In the first case, a Knoxville officer shot and killed Channara Pheap after Pheap “choked him, grabbed his Taser and used it on him during a struggle at a local apartment complex. The officer, Dylan Williams, had his story corroborated by five witnesses.

The second incident involved a shooting in Los Angeles, where a Deputy from the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department shot Ryan Twyman, who was under investigation for illegal gun charges (he was not armed at the time).

Twyman attempted to back his car up into the deputy. In the interest of transparency, there is some question as to how much danger the deputy was in.

The next incident occurred in Fort Worth, Texas, where a woman was shot through the window of her home after she pointed a gun at an officer through that same window.

It is not known why this was classified as a shooting of an unarmed person. Her 8-year-old confirmed she pointed the gun at the officer.

In the fourth incident cited, Deputy Glen Sims shot Christopher Whitfield. According to Sims, he shot Whitfield “accidentally” during a scuffle.

Whitfield had broken into a convenience store. Sims claimed that Whitfield had struck his gun during the struggle, causing it to go off. Full disclosure, Sims had previously been fired for a domestic incident, however he regained his job.

He had a couple of other arrests on his record as well, so it is unclear how he was able to still serve as an officer. This one is questionable.

The fifth incident involved in incident in Edmond, Oklahoma, where Isaiah Lewis was shot to death. He was running naked and charged at an officer, beating him unconscious. A second officer shot and killed him.

The next case involved a career criminal who was shot and killed near Boerne, Texas by a Texas Department of Public Safety trooper on I-10. That followed a physical altercation between the trooper and the suspect, Marcus McVae.

The seventh shooting was in Blythevile, Arkansas, where officers were dispatched to a store where an employee was attacked.

The suspect, Marzues Scott was tracked down to a hotel parking lot. A female officer became involved in a physical altercation, where Scott knocked her to the ground, striking her several times in the head.

She fired her service weapon, striking Scott, who continued being aggressive toward her while she lay on the ground. She fired another shot, killing him. The prosecutor ruled the shooting justified.

Incident number eight occurred in Baltimore where Kevin Bruce Mason was killed after a standoff with officers. He had a previous history of shooting at police in a similar standoff.

He was warned not to approach and refused to comply with orders. Officers fired several shots. He was found later in the house and had succumbed to his injuries. It does not appear any officers were ever reprimanded in this incident.

Number nine involved Officer Jovanny Crespo of the Newark (NJ) police department, where he shot and killed Gregory Griffin after a pursuit.

An officer involved said that one of the two men in the car pointed a gun at him several times during the chase. In a previous traffic stop, which he also fled, the officer said he saw a gun in the car.

A second man in the car, Andrew Dixon was also shot in the face during the same incident. Dixon was later charged with possessing a gun loaded with hollow point bullets.

Somehow a grand jury indicted Crespo for aggravated manslaughter. That particular case appears to still be pending.

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The poster from Twitter who examined the nine cases did offer a couple of caveats. The database did not include all police related deaths, only shootings. Also, he wanted to make it clear that police are not always justified in shooting people who are armed.

So, what does this all mean? Let’s say that maybe out of the nine cases three or four are questionable. That still means that at least where  it concerns deadly force situations, this is not exactly open season on African Americans by the police.

Horowitz notes that according to the Department of Justice Bureau of Justice Statistics, police have contacts with approximately 53 million people each year, often having multiple encounters with the same people.

Last year, researchers from both the University of Michigan and the University of Maryland said:

“We did not find evidence for anti-Black or anti-Hispanic disparity in police use of force across all shootings, and if anything, found anti-White disparities when controlling for race-specific crime.”

The said that based on the study conducted of 917 officer-involved fatal shootings published in August 2019, it was found that “officers are less likely to fatally shoot Black civilians for fear of public and legal reprisals” and therefore “all else equal, this would increase the likelihood that a person fatally shot was White vs. Black.”

They concluded that “per capita racial disparity in fatal shootings is explained by non-White people’s greater exposure to police through crime.”

Clearly, police are “gun-shy” (no pun intended) when it comes to using force against African Americans by and large.

Monday night, five police officers were shot, and one is in critical condition, while a police officer was run down by a car in New York City and a group of officers was mowed down in Buffalo, New York.

Last year, 49 police officers were killed, with 30 percent of the suspects being African American, according to the FBI’s Uniform Crime Report.

Thus far in 2020, the number of police officers killed year to year is more than last year, which is stunning considering that the country has been virtually shut down for nearly three months up until we got the “riot exception” to the lockdowns.

Is race an issue the cause of these police killings? No. It is a personal responsibility issue.

While people are protesting the death of Mr. Floyd (and peaceful protests are deserved), where are the protests for the 82 people shot this past weekend, 22 fatally? Oh, and that was only in Chicago.

Statistically, African Americans are killed by homicide at a rate of eight times that of whites.

Yet what have we seen since the pandemic took hold? Progressive officials have released tens of thousands of known criminals back onto the streets, some of them violent felons.

In New York, the NYPD’s crime data for 2018 showed that of the 209 homicide suspects that year where the race was known, 149, or 71 percent were either black or “black Hispanic.” Forty, or 19 percent were “white  Hispanic,” while just 14 (6.6 percent) were white. So, 93.4 of homicides in New York where the race was known were committed by “minorities.”

Now for victims. Out of 289 homicide victims in 2018, where the race was documented, only 26 or 9 percent were white. Blacks or “black Hispanics” comprised 196, or 68 percent of victims while 54, or 19 percent were “white Hispanic.”

In a tale of two cities, over the years, at least up until Bill de Blasio became mayor, New York had taken a more aggressive law enforcement tone.

The city used to have something on the order of 2,000 murders annually. Aggressive crime-fighting approaches by Mayor Rudy Giuliani and continued by Michael Bloomberg drove those numbers way down, which saved countless African American lives.

Contrast that with Baltimore. That city in 2015 took a “hands-off” approach to policing that has kicked off several years of record murders, which have victimized primarily African Americans.

The fact of the matter is that while the death of George Floyd was a senseless, appalling act, the fact remains that by and large police officers across the nation should not be punished for the sins of one officer.

Clearly something needs to be done to weed out the bad actors among the ranks of our law enforcement officers.

But when you look at where people are complaining about their voices not being heard, about systemic injustices in the criminal justice system in their communities, there is a common thread. Look at who has been running these cities for decades. If nothing is changing, you need to look at the people in charge. 

What was the definition of insanity again? Doing the same thing over and over yet expecting different results. Nothing will change until the mindset of the people who run these cities changes. Instead of treating people as victims constantly, give them the tools that they need to succeed. That will make a huge difference. Hopefully, it isn’t too late.


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