This editorial is brought to you by Mike Simonelli is a retired US Army officer with 30 years of military service who fought in Iraq and Afghanistan; an active police officer in New York for 22 years; the Suffolk County PBA Sgt-at-Arms and holds a master’s degree in National Security Studies from American Military University. His book in policing can be found at www.jdfinformation.com.
In the name of social justice and in accordance with public educators push toward Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI), Kneel by Candace Buford can be found in your children’s school library.
Apparently, school officials are not concerned about making the children of law enforcement families feel inclusive. Here’s what you should know about the book.
Published in 2021, Kneel is a novel set in a small Louisiana town where Rus, the high school football star becomes outraged over recent events involving a “prejudiced” white police officer and black males, one of which is the arrest of his teammate Marcus.
Readers familiar with current events will notice the author slightly modifies actual deadly police incidents to use as the basis of her tale of racism and police violence against blacks.
The deaths of Eric Garner in NYC, George Floyd in Minneapolis, Ahmaud Arbery in Georgia, and controversial shootings of any unarmed black male by the police are subtly referenced as proof to support statements in the book like: “Black kids were being killed by white people.
And they were scared of us?”; “I’m tired of knowing there will be another police-involved murder of an innocent Black man in a few months.”; and “White people treat us like animals.”
The book is as rich in such prejudice against whites as it is in irony. In one scene the author villainizes the police as trigger happy racists when dealing with blacks: “Cops saw a hooded figure with black hands and assumed he must have been up to no good.
What the officer thought was a concealed weapon in his pocket was just a bag of M&M’s.” But soon after in a scene where Rus complains about his interaction with the police, the author introduces Gary, a black friend known for being up to no good.
Gary’s response to Rus is, “You say the word, and I’ll take care of them, nah mean? Westmond wannabes, cops – you name it. I got your back. He tugged at his waistline, where he concealed his signature pistol.”
Perhaps the reason the police are extra vigilant around hooded figures with black hands is because of real life characters like Gary, “an officer’s chance of getting killed by a black assailant is 18.5 times higher than the chance of an unarmed black getting killed by a cop.”
This oft overlooked detail brings us to the scene where in response to the lies being spread about his teammate, Rus laments, “Did you hear the stuff they’re saying about Marion? What happened to getting your facts straight?
These people hadn’t bothered to research the whole story. They’d spun it into the story they wanted, and we’d be the ones paying the price.” The authors use of her main character to express this legitimate concern while she violates it by writing an entire book based upon selective facts and half-truths is the epitome of irony.
Here are some facts to round out the whole story and demonstrate why Kneel is pure fiction.
- The police are not randomly and unjustifiably murdering people of any color. Despite having hundreds of millions of public interactions in a typical year, there are only around 1,000 deadly police incidents annually, of which between 90-95% of the subjects killed were armed.
The remaining 5-10% killed are typically in the presence of an armed accomplice, trying to run the officers over or physically assaulting the police. In the past three years, Deputy Sheriff James Blair, Police Corporal Keith Heacook, and Deputy Constable Neil Adams were all murdered in the line of duty by such unarmed subjects.
- Of the 6,997 deadly police shootings between 2015-2021 found in The Washington Post Database, 3,073 (44%) were white and 1,621 (23%) were black. In 2019, one of those subjects was Ethan Murray, an unarmed white male that was acting suspiciously and was justifiably shot by police when making a furtive motion to his waist area where they feared he had a concealed weapon.
- According to FBI Uniform Crime Reports, from 2018-2020 there were 1,744 whites killed by blacks and 834 blacks murdered by whites – that’s more than a 2:1 ratio. The media narrative of one such murder, the shooting of Ahmaud Arbery in 2020 centered on racism, but no such suggestion accompanied any of the hundreds of times blacks murdered whites.
What has been the end result of burying these facts as novelists, politicians and activists push inflammatory rhetoric demonizing our police and dividing us between black and white?
The Wall Street Journal reported, “in 2020, murders across America exploded nearly 30% to 21,570, the largest single-year increase ever recorded by the Federal Bureau of Investigation.”
In 2021, 73 felonious murders of America’s law enforcement officers was a 49% increase from the previous year and the most since 1995. As Rus said, “They’d spun it into the story they wanted, and we’d be the ones paying the price.”