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  1. #1
    Atomic Punk
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    Default A Chokehold Didnít Kill Eric Garner, Your Disrespect for the NYPD Did

    If you thought cops killed Eric Garner, you got it wrong. Itís the lack of respect for cops that did.

    Thatís pretty much the sentiment behind a bizarre press conference held by police unions on Tuesday, in which representatives talked angrily about how nobody in New York loves them anymore.

    In their remarks, the reps picked up a fight with the cityís medical examiner, slamming the official autopsy report of Garnerís death as wrong and ďpolitical,Ē and accusing everyone from the mayor, to the media, to civil rights advocates of distorting the truth.

    Call it semantics, but the man looked like he was being choked when a bunch of officers pushed him to the ground, while arresting him for selling loose cigarettes on a Staten Island sidewalk on July 17. Garner's last moments of life have been witnessed by hundreds of thousands of people in a video captured by a bystander.

    https://news.vice.com/article/a-chok...r-the-nypd-did




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  2. #2
    Atomic Punk lovemachine97(Version 2)'s Avatar
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    This and several other recent videos, as well as countless other reports of police abuse and overreach are truly scary. Obviously, the vast majority of cops are honorable, but as with most things, it only takes a minority to wreak havoc on citizens. And in the vast majority of these cases, nothing happens. No cops are disciplined, no one loses their job.

    I think cops have a tough job. But they wield a lot of power, and they should be held accountable when it is abused. We also should fire cops that can't cut it.

    But let's get one thing clear. How Eric Garner was killed is a lot less important than why he was killed. He was killed because cops thought he might have been in possession of untaxed cigarettes.

    The per pack tax can be as much as $6, which means a pack of cigarettes can go for $12, which is why up to 60% of cigarettes in New York are black market.

    I guess if you can't afford the government's prices, you're taking your life in your hands.

  3. #3
    Gird your loins Daisy Hill's Avatar
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    I agree with much of that. Most police officers are honorable and have the communities best intention at heart.

    but some go into the police department for the wrong reasons and they need to be weeded out. Others just don't measure up and they need to be fired just as in any other job.

    but they have powerful unions and huge political capital and makes for a bad environment for weeding out the bad seeds.


    that video does not show the entire history of the police and this man. He is a big guy who doesn't seem to understand that when the police want to cuff you and put in their car, resistance is illegal. The only way to take a guy like that down is in force, and crazy things happen in a pile up. All those officers want to go home to their families, no one is going to let someone get out of control like this guy could get....but there are better ways to accomplish this with a non violent offense like selling untaxed cigarettes for goodness sakes

    That didn't look like a traditional choke hold to me. The fact that he could repeatedly say "I can breathe" shows that he could breathe.

    but for me the interesting part of the story is that cigarettes are still legal to sell and that the government works so hard to get their cut of a product that should not even be available. could you imagine getting cigarettes approved by the FDA as a commercial product today?

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    Atomic Punk lovemachine97(Version 2)'s Avatar
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    I think this goes to something larger, though. Yes, black market cigarettes are illegal and resisting is illegal. From what I understand, it is technically true that if you can speak, you can breathe.

    So if you're pro cop, you're going to point out that it technically wasn't a chokehold or that it was done while he resisted. You'll probably also point out that he had been warned not to sell untaxed cigarettes and that he's not a small man.

    And if you're standing there with Eric Garner, you're going to say that he wasn't actually selling cigarettes that day, he was minding his own business, and that after being taken down he kept saying, "I can't breathe!"

    Problem is that this particular guy had asthma, and while perhaps technically true that he "could" breath, he wasn't breathing normally, and he died. So perhaps it wasn't technically a chokehold and perhaps training says that if a guy says he can't breathe, he actually can. But those tactics resulted in a dead man who was merely suspected of a crime. So we should probably address the manner in which we took him down and kept him down, even if they followed protocol.

    We could get lost in all of this, so we should focus on the larger issues. Legal tactics or not, they killed a guy. Resisting or not, they killed a man who was no threat to them when they killed him. And the biggie--this was all over untaxed cigarettes, a problem that the government--represented here by the police--caused themselves.

    This, of course, is but one of many similar scenarios involving police killing or seriously injuring people. It is one of the few that had video. Of course, that didn't matter for Kelly Thomas, whose cries for his daddy in the moments before death did nothing to help him against Fullerton PD. And video does nothing for the growing number of people killed or hurt by police with no camera around.

    Garner didn't willingly give his life, but a big part of me isn't the least bit concerned that he resisted. Maybe we should resist more to oppressive taxation, especially the kind that harms the poor the most.

    Then when we start talking about the strip-searched guys in New Mexico, the Kelly Thomases, the grandmothers beaten on the side of the freeway, and the countless cases of police militarization that have injured or killed people (just google Radley Balko and police), we have a real problem here that needs to be addressed. Or, perhaps, resisted.

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    Master Bluesman Elwood P.'s Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by lovemachine97(Version 2) View Post
    Garner didn't willingly give his life, but a big part of me isn't the least bit concerned that he resisted. Maybe we should resist more to oppressive taxation, especially the kind that harms the poor the most.
    Careful here. There is no upside to resisting cops. None. Get yourself a lawyer, sue everyone with a vowel in their name if need be. Now if you're talking about resisting in the political arena, then I'm all in, we need to resist most all taxation brought about by self-serving politicians. Cops don't make asinine laws but they do have to enforce them. I'm not saying they don't act bone-headed some times but if this poor guy had simply crawled into the cruiser, he'd be enjoying life somewhere today.
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    Atomic Punk lovemachine97(Version 2)'s Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Elwood P. View Post
    Careful here. There is no upside to resisting cops. None. Get yourself a lawyer, sue everyone with a vowel in their name if need be. Now if you're talking about resisting in the political arena, then I'm all in, we need to resist most all taxation brought about by self-serving politicians. Cops don't make asinine laws but they do have to enforce them. I'm not saying they don't act bone-headed some times but if this poor guy had simply crawled into the cruiser, he'd be enjoying life somewhere today.
    Completely disagree. Not saying we must always do it, but to say there is "is no upside" period, in my opinion, is folly.

    A while back, there was a man named John Price for whom a large mob resisted the cops. Most of them were faculty and students at Oberlin College. Price was being held in a hotel and after a standoff, citizens raided the hotel, overpowered law enforcement, and took Price. They were able to give him safe passage to Canada. Now, many might say this was really stupid and that they just should have let Price go with the cops and hire a lawyer.

    Of course, this was 1858 and Price, a Black slave, was being held under the Fugitive Slave Act. While the FSA was fully enforced in every state in the union, the people of Oberlin, OH believed everyone should be free.

    They were right. And they were right to resist law enforcement that night.

    One might say that's an aberration. It's not. What this story should be is a starting point in realizing that laws, the people who pass them, and the governments that enforce them are often times evil and immoral.

    Instead of submitting at all times, we should stand up for others and their rights and stand up against what is wrong.

    Slavery is a thing of the past, but there are plenty of restrictions placed upon us that we should object to, and oppressive taxation is one of them.

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    Master Bluesman Elwood P.'s Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by lovemachine97(Version 2) View Post
    What this story should be is a starting point in realizing that laws, the people who pass them, and the governments that enforce them are often times evil and immoral.
    And, incredibly stupid. I agree completely.

    What I'm talking about is logically and wisely identifying your adversaries and doing battle with them. New York city is ground zero for stupid laws being passed under the guise of personal protection. But it's the mayor and politicians who are to blame not the cops. I just think that you're Mis-identifying your enemy. Even if the only issue is police brutality the answer isn't to physically take on every cop on the street, it's to take on the police commissioner, the mayor and city hall. Getting down and taking on a cop is only going to end bad for everyone involved.
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  8. #8
    Forum Frontman It's Mike's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by lovemachine97(Version 2) View Post
    Completely disagree. Not saying we must always do it, but to say there is "is no upside" period, in my opinion, is folly.

    A while back, there was a man named John Price for whom a large mob resisted the cops. Most of them were faculty and students at Oberlin College. Price was being held in a hotel and after a standoff, citizens raided the hotel, overpowered law enforcement, and took Price. They were able to give him safe passage to Canada. Now, many might say this was really stupid and that they just should have let Price go with the cops and hire a lawyer.

    Of course, this was 1858 and Price, a Black slave, was being held under the Fugitive Slave Act. While the FSA was fully enforced in every state in the union, the people of Oberlin, OH believed everyone should be free.

    They were right. And they were right to resist law enforcement that night.

    One might say that's an aberration. It's not. What this story should be is a starting point in realizing that laws, the people who pass them, and the governments that enforce them are often times evil and immoral.

    Instead of submitting at all times, we should stand up for others and their rights and stand up against what is wrong.

    Slavery is a thing of the past, but there are plenty of restrictions placed upon us that we should object to, and oppressive taxation is one of them.
    do you really want to compare someone selling illegal cigarettes to someone escaping slavery?

  9. #9
    Atomic Punk lovemachine97(Version 2)'s Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by It's Mike View Post
    do you really want to compare someone selling illegal cigarettes to someone escaping slavery?
    Quote Originally Posted by Elwood P. View Post
    And, incredibly stupid. I agree completely.

    What I'm talking about is logically and wisely identifying your adversaries and doing battle with them. New York city is ground zero for stupid laws being passed under the guise of personal protection. But it's the mayor and politicians who are to blame not the cops. I just think that you're Mis-identifying your enemy. Even if the only issue is police brutality the answer isn't to physically take on every cop on the street, it's to take on the police commissioner, the mayor and city hall. Getting down and taking on a cop is only going to end bad for everyone involved.
    For me, this stuff is all interconnected. No, selling black market cigarettes to the vast majority of people does not have the same impact as slavery. But to me liberty is liberty and rights are rights, and nowadays it isn't just one big sweeping hook like slavery that is going to take things away, it's going to be a subtle but constant chipping away.

    We went from smoking in a restaurant, to part of the restaurant, to the bar, to outside, to down the street. So smokers relegated themselves to just pure bars and strip clubs. Then they outlawed that. So smokers were left to their own houses and cars, as well as outside. Then they outlawed smoking outside. In the meantime, they kept raising the price of cigarettes as a means of dissuading people from using them, and in some places like NY, they more than doubled the price of a pack. Some people switched to e-cigarettes, which essentially emit water vapor, and those were banned everywhere a cigarette was banned.

    Now, I am not a smoker, but this all amounts to neo-prohibitionism.

    I am not saying Garner's life was worth this fight, but come on now. The laws shouldn't be what they are, the taxes shouldn't be what they are, and the police shouldn't be willing to kill a guy who didn't really resist all that much--it's not like he was a danger at any point.

    And the guy yelled about being harassed. Was he harassed by the NYPD for the cigarettes or was he harassed a lot by NYPD because he's Black? Who knows? But with all the other problems in the world, do we need police harassing guys selling untaxed cigarettes? Do we need them putting those guys into chokeholds when they get antsy?

    Look, we have these laws that are oppressive and wrong on one side. Elwood points out that this is the enemy. But we also have the militarization of the police, as well as video and stories on seemingly a weekly or daily basis about police doing strip searches on routine stops, shooting at unarmed vehicles, beating people to a pulp (or death), violating rights (it's apparently no longer legal to take pictures anymore if you follow this stuff--9/11 and all), putting false drug hits on cars, using SWAT, tanks, and flashbangs to take down poker games and small-time drug dealers--and hurting and killing many, many innocent people in the process.

    So, yes, there is a problem with police too. I'm not saying we should rise up and universally fight the police, but I am saying that we need to realize this is a big problem that needs to be addressed, and maybe Garner's life will not have been for nothing if it brings this to light.

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    Forum Frontman It's Mike's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by lovemachine97(Version 2) View Post
    For me, this stuff is all interconnected. No, selling black market cigarettes to the vast majority of people does not have the same impact as slavery. But to me liberty is liberty and rights are rights, and nowadays it isn't just one big sweeping hook like slavery that is going to take things away, it's going to be a subtle but constant chipping away.

    We went from smoking in a restaurant, to part of the restaurant, to the bar, to outside, to down the street. So smokers relegated themselves to just pure bars and strip clubs. Then they outlawed that. So smokers were left to their own houses and cars, as well as outside. Then they outlawed smoking outside. In the meantime, they kept raising the price of cigarettes as a means of dissuading people from using them, and in some places like NY, they more than doubled the price of a pack. Some people switched to e-cigarettes, which essentially emit water vapor, and those were banned everywhere a cigarette was banned.

    Now, I am not a smoker, but this all amounts to neo-prohibitionism.

    I am not saying Garner's life was worth this fight, but come on now. The laws shouldn't be what they are, the taxes shouldn't be what they are, and the police shouldn't be willing to kill a guy who didn't really resist all that much--it's not like he was a danger at any point.

    And the guy yelled about being harassed. Was he harassed by the NYPD for the cigarettes or was he harassed a lot by NYPD because he's Black? Who knows? But with all the other problems in the world, do we need police harassing guys selling untaxed cigarettes? Do we need them putting those guys into chokeholds when they get antsy?

    Look, we have these laws that are oppressive and wrong on one side. Elwood points out that this is the enemy. But we also have the militarization of the police, as well as video and stories on seemingly a weekly or daily basis about police doing strip searches on routine stops, shooting at unarmed vehicles, beating people to a pulp (or death), violating rights (it's apparently no longer legal to take pictures anymore if you follow this stuff--9/11 and all), putting false drug hits on cars, using SWAT, tanks, and flashbangs to take down poker games and small-time drug dealers--and hurting and killing many, many innocent people in the process.

    So, yes, there is a problem with police too. I'm not saying we should rise up and universally fight the police, but I am saying that we need to realize this is a big problem that needs to be addressed, and maybe Garner's life will not have been for nothing if it brings this to light.
    there are a lot of law abiding people who have been abused by the cops. how bout we use one of them as the example?


    I got a good chuckle out of your" the vast majority of people" think slavery had more of an impact than taxes on cigarettes. Can we find those who think cigarette taxes are a bigger issue and throw them in the ocean please. Sharks need food.

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    Atomic Punk lovemachine97(Version 2)'s Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by It's Mike View Post
    there are a lot of law abiding people who have been abused by the cops. how bout we use one of them as the example?


    I got a good chuckle out of your" the vast majority of people" think slavery had more of an impact than taxes on cigarettes. Can we find those who think cigarette taxes are a bigger issue and throw them in the ocean please. Sharks need food.
    Writing classes teach you not to assume the opinion of everyone, so that seeps its way into my writing today ;-)

    I guess the whole point is that Garner's actions are essentially meaningless. NY doesn't care about the tax revenue or they would find an equilibrium point where the black market is quelled and people pay for legal cigarettes.

    This is just so unbelievable to me. Garner wouldn't sell bootleg cigarettes if it weren't for governmental policy. This is also a waste of time for police who don't need to be wasting time chasing down this huge bootleg market. It could all be avoided with a change of public policy.

    In Fullerton, CA, Kelly Thomas was breaking the law by loitering on a bar's property (parking lot) and allegedly peering into cars. When police arrived, he would not stand up, so he was resistant as well. If a citizen or group of citizens decided to step in to the aid of Mr. Thomas and stop cops from beating him to death, they would be taking on the cops. Would they be just or unjust in their actions?

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    Forum Frontman It's Mike's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by lovemachine97(Version 2) View Post
    Writing classes teach you not to assume the opinion of everyone, so that seeps its way into my writing today ;-)

    I guess the whole point is that Garner's actions are essentially meaningless. NY doesn't care about the tax revenue or they would find an equilibrium point where the black market is quelled and people pay for legal cigarettes.

    This is just so unbelievable to me. Garner wouldn't sell bootleg cigarettes if it weren't for governmental policy. This is also a waste of time for police who don't need to be wasting time chasing down this huge bootleg market. It could all be avoided with a change of public policy.

    In Fullerton, CA, Kelly Thomas was breaking the law by loitering on a bar's property (parking lot) and allegedly peering into cars. When police arrived, he would not stand up, so he was resistant as well. If a citizen or group of citizens decided to step in to the aid of Mr. Thomas and stop cops from beating him to death, they would be taking on the cops. Would they be just or unjust in their actions?
    If they didn't about the tax revenue then the cops would leave him alone. They do care. A lot.

    You're making the mistake of thinking the spot on the curve where tax is maximized also equals the point where illegal cigs aren't sold. That's most certainly incorrect. I'd rather sell 10 widgits for 100 dollars each and know 10 illegal widgets are being sold than to sell 20 widgets for 35 dollars each.
    Eliminating the black market via lower taxation will certainly lower taxes collected.

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    Atomic Punk lovemachine97(Version 2)'s Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by It's Mike View Post
    If they didn't about the tax revenue then the cops would leave him alone. They do care. A lot.

    You're making the mistake of thinking the spot on the curve where tax is maximized also equals the point where illegal cigs aren't sold. That's most certainly incorrect. I'd rather sell 10 widgits for 100 dollars each and know 10 illegal widgets are being sold than to sell 20 widgets for 35 dollars each.
    Eliminating the black market via lower taxation will certainly lower taxes collected.
    They did it because the legitimate businesses are complaining that guys like Garner are selling them in front of their businesses. That's why the cops were called.

    But based on your example above, there are also people who have stopped smoking based upon price who will not buy black market product. So the widget market isn't limited to 20 people. The larger, overarching reason for an oppressive, sin tax is to coerce people to stop that behavior. If 10 people who were no longer smoking at all decided to buy at the cheaper price, you actually come out on top when 30 people buy a widget at $35 each.

    Besides, there are other costs to this, like wasting valuable and finite police resources chasing down the majority of the cigarette market when the murder, burglary, and robbery clearance rates are much lower than they should be.

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    Gird your loins Daisy Hill's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by It's Mike View Post
    there are a lot of law abiding people who have been abused by the cops. how bout we use one of them as the example?


    I got a good chuckle out of your" the vast majority of people" think slavery had more of an impact than taxes on cigarettes. Can we find those who think cigarette taxes are a bigger issue and throw them in the ocean please. Sharks need food.
    This guy said he was tired of being hassled by the police. So here's a notion. obey the laws. I don't know of any law abiding citizen who lands of the police radar and stays there as a subject for harassment for no reason. Perhaps, if you look at cases such as this, you will see a pattern of behavior that makes a person a target for investigations. This guy was protecting his rights....his perceived right to operate an illegal enterprise?

    If you say there are no victims to this crime you are wrong...the victims are the law abiding shop keepers who are paying for licenses to sell taxed cigarettes and losing sales of cigarettes and associated sales to guys like this.


    everyone talks of the "slippery slope" of eroding freedoms but what about the slippery slope of crime?..when is it ok to operate a "slightly illegal" business just because you don't like the law?

    you don't like the law, you change the law, you run for office...that's the way it's done.

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    Atomic Punk lovemachine97(Version 2)'s Avatar
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    Guys, we're all law-breakers. There are so many laws on the books that are so complicated that if law enforcement were 100% efficient, we'd all be criminals. If our own President were caught smoking marijuana under his own enforcement, he'd have done hard time and never been President. If no one had ever broken the law and smoked pot, why would anyone ever argue that we should think about it being legal? If no one were gay, why would we ever think about changing those laws? It often takes law-breakers in order to rid ourselves of oppressive, stupid, or nanny-state laws.

    Ever email a friend a song or copy it to CD for them? You've violated the Digital Millennium Copyright Act. That's punishable by $500,000 or up to 5 years in prison. Ever buy something online out of state without sales tax, then not claim it on your state's "use tax" at the end of the year? You're a tax evader. Ever let someone underage have a sip of beer or wine? You've committed a big crime in many states. Thanks to a vague Computer Fraud and Abuse Act, violating a website's terms of service make you a felon.

    Do you actually come to a complete stop at a stop sign? Have you ever exceeded the speed limit? Ever used the shoulder to turn right in lieu of a right hand turn lane? We've all committed crimes; we just haven't been caught. Show me someone who has broken no law and I will show you a liar.

    So where does Garner's crime fall in all of this? Sure, he's technically stolen a sale from a legit shop and he's evaded taxes. But so has almost any online shopper in California who has also ever sent a song to a friend to "check out."

    Since Garner's death, several awful NYPD stories have come out. But none of us are "law-abiding." Any of us could be Garner, honestly.
    Last edited by lovemachine97(Version 2); 08.12.14 at 12:41 AM.

 

 

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