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View Full Version : Buying a house while black . . .


ColoradoGuy
04-23-2012, 07:59 PM
. . . also can be dangerous, at least in Georgia (http://www.ajc.com/news/couple-held-at-gunpoint-1423138.html).

I'm not sure I'd want neighbors like that -- armed, dangerous, and bigoted.

Don
04-23-2012, 08:44 PM
. . . also can be dangerous, at least in Georgia (http://www.ajc.com/news/couple-held-at-gunpoint-1423138.html).

I'm not sure I'd want neighbors like that -- armed, dangerous, and bigoted.
Stupid neighbors. Even stupider cops. They couldn't bother with a single phone call to a realtor or bank, or call the son to bring in the papers, before arresting someone?

That said, I've always met neighbors beforehand and/or carried the papers in my move-in box in just in case. Somebody has always showed up when I've gotten a new place. I must look suspicious.

Roger J Carlson
04-23-2012, 08:57 PM
Too bad the neighbors didn't mind their own business, like this guy: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=P5C4hSLBdEc

(um, skip the ad)

Chrissy
04-23-2012, 08:58 PM
AAAAAAAAAAAARRRRRRGHHHHHH!!!! IDIOTS!!!!

I cannot believe they arrested him. That is SO despicable.

What a sweet man that homeowner is. I want better neighbors--a better community--for him and his family!

:rant:

Lyv
04-23-2012, 09:11 PM
Too bad the neighbors didn't mind their own business, like this guy: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=P5C4hSLBdEc


You make it seem like the only two options are minding one's business and holding people one finds suspicious at gunpoint. You do realize the neighbors could have simply called 911 and left it at that, don't you? This situation could have gone even more wrong, and led to yet another tragedy.

And I'd like to ask the George Zimmerman/cop wannabes what you'd do if you were committing no crime, doing nothing wrong, and some stranger came up to you with a gun. You wouldn't know what they wanted from you, so what would you do?

Roger J Carlson
04-23-2012, 10:07 PM
You make it seem like the only two options are minding one's business and holding people one finds suspicious at gunpoint. You do realize the neighbors could have simply called 911 and left it at that, don't you? This situation could have gone even more wrong, and led to yet another tragedy.
Quite true. I also think there is an alternative to calling them stupid, despicable bigots.

Lyv
04-23-2012, 10:13 PM
Quite true. I also think there is an alternative to calling them stupid, despicable bigots.

Which part do you dispute?

Mclesh
04-23-2012, 10:21 PM
With neighbors like those, I really wouldn't want to be part of that neighborhood. There are kooks everywhere, but this is taking it a bit too far.

Around my neighborhood, when there's an empty house and someone starts to work on it, it is assumed that they either own the home or have hired someone to do the work. Why bring a gun and insert one's self into the situation? As Lyv said, a simple call to 911 could have been made.

Roger J Carlson
04-23-2012, 10:29 PM
Which part do you dispute?The part where we make a judgment on their personalities based on a 500 word article. The man was black, so they must be bigots. They carried guns, so they must be kooks. They made mistakes so they must be stupid.

This rush to judgment...say, isn't that exactly what they did?

Lyv
04-23-2012, 10:32 PM
The part where we make a judgment on their personalities based on a 500 word article. The man was black, so they must be bigots. They carried guns, so they must be kooks. They made mistakes so they must be stupid.

This rush to judgment...say, isn't that exactly what they did?

Yes, I figured I wouldn't get a straight answer. But then, there was no way to get that point from your comment and from you posting a video of a burglary.

Ari Meermans
04-23-2012, 10:36 PM
AAAAAAAAAAAARRRRRRGHHHHHH!!!! IDIOTS!!!!

I cannot believe they arrested him. That is SO despicable.

What a sweet man that homeowner is. I want better neighbors--a better community--for him and his family!

:rant:
(bolding mine)


This. So very much this.



Stupid neighbors. Even stupider cops. They couldn't bother with a single phone call to a realtor or bank, or call the son to bring in the papers, before arresting someone?

That said, I've always met neighbors beforehand and/or carried the papers in my move-in box in just in case. Somebody has always showed up when I've gotten a new place. I must look suspicious.

IF I was the nosy type, I'd have called the realtor. Not being the nosy type (at all), I'd have waved and said hello. If they'd responded, I'd have introduced myself, etc.

What a hell of a "Welcome Wagon" they got.

Roger J Carlson
04-23-2012, 10:44 PM
Yes, I figured I wouldn't get a straight answer. But then, there was no way to get that point from your comment and from you posting a video of a burglary.Sorry. My fault for trying to see a measure of complexity in the issue.

Lyv
04-23-2012, 10:47 PM
Sorry. My fault for trying to see a measure of complexity in the issue.

But you didn't do that. At least that's not remotely what you did with the post I quoted. You posted a video of a burglary and made a comment that had nothing to do with what you are now saying was your point.

Your point in posting a video of a burglary was to object to the characterization of the gun-happy neighbors? Then, to be frank, you made your point poorly.

Roger J Carlson
04-23-2012, 10:50 PM
Thanks for the critique.

ColoradoGuy
04-23-2012, 11:55 PM
Sorry. My fault for trying to see a measure of complexity in the issue.

Oh, there's complexity aplenty. It starts in Virginia in 1619.

regdog
04-24-2012, 12:01 AM
I'd put the house back on the market and move to a neighborhood where the neighbors and cops aren't such asshats.

veinglory
04-24-2012, 12:13 AM
Holding someone at gunpoint is not a small 'mistake'. In fact, I would have assumed it was some kind of crime?

veinglory
04-24-2012, 12:14 AM
I'd put the house back on the market and move to a neighborhood where the neighbors and cops aren't such asshats.

After suing for enough to cover costs.

Lyv
04-24-2012, 12:22 AM
Since the original article is from 4/20, I looked for an update. The latest I can find (http://atlanta.cbslocal.com/2012/04/23/charges-dropped-against-new-homeowners/)is from 4/23 and states that charges have been dropped. Who was charged? The homeowners who were just trying to change their locks. They spent a night in jail. I can't find a thing to say that the neighbors who held them at gunpoint were in charged or even in any way inconvenienced.

Chrissy
04-24-2012, 12:25 AM
Holding someone at gunpoint is not a small 'mistake'. In fact, I would have assumed it was some kind of crime?

Perhaps it's covered under the "Stand Your Vacant Lot" law?

:rolleyes:

virtue_summer
04-24-2012, 12:25 AM
Too bad the neighbors didn't mind their own business, like this guy: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=P5C4hSLBdEc

(um, skip the ad)
So we should all pull guns on people we don't know in our neighborhoods because those people might, possibly, could be, even if we have no reason to think so, be committing a crime?

Magdalen
04-24-2012, 12:33 AM
Neighbors! Can live without 'em!! We've been here (on a very neighbor-friendly block) seven years, have exchange pleasantries with neighbors on all sides, wave from the yard when lawning, etc. But who really knows what lurks in their hearts? Last Spring, at about 10:30 pm on a Thursday night, a giant-sized yellow-jacket flew into my kitchen while I was coming up the stairs. It was at least thrice this big:

O

I was trapped on the stairs as the alien buzzed the landing!!

I SCREAMED, repeatedly calling for the hubs who finally woke up. Did I mention that the neighbors window is right across from the back door landing?

Hubs finally woke up and killed the damn thing and went back to bed. Ten minutes later there's a knock at the door and you guessed it -- the local police. I guessed (correctly) that the neighbors had called, quickly explained about the bee and did let them in the door. They asked to speak to my husband!@@ (OMG, they thought I killed him!!) Hubs came out, waved and went back to bed. The cops left. All was well in whitebread land.

Sorry for the derail, but It was my best story of last year.

PS I was holding a large barking lab on a leash the whole time.

Roger J Carlson
04-24-2012, 12:53 AM
So we should all pull guns on people we don't know in our neighborhoods because those people might, possibly, could be, even if we have no reason to think so, be committing a crime?I don't think that at all. Do you? Because I think that would be quite unwise.

icerose
04-24-2012, 01:15 AM
Insanity.

A call to 911 would have sufficed, and the officer doing the slightest bit of leg work would have prevented the whole mess. I can't even imagine being greeted by gun point at the house we just bought.

Ditto for our backyard neighbors who just bought the foreclosed house and started working on it.

Zoombie
04-24-2012, 01:23 AM
There's racism. There's being a douchebag. One can have the latter without the former, and even if there was the former, there was definitely the latter.

These neighbors are douchebags.

Mharvey
04-24-2012, 02:58 AM
Yeah, I don't know what else to say about this other than those neighbors are idiots. Not necessarily malicious idiots, but idiots with racial prejudice. Let's just say, if a white man and a white woman were inspecting the house, I doubt they'd have gotten the rifle.

The police... hard to say. Residents of a neighborhood claim strangers are breaking into a house, those strangers can't produce proof they own it (even if they do)... what do you do in that position? Take them down to the station to straighten it out sounds reasonable. Though, if they also didn't also take the rifle-toting yokels with them as well (not sure if they did), that would be something I'd pick on.

A call to 911 would have sufficed.

Also this. Unless these are like the Georgia Hills and help is 30-45 minutes away (maybe, not a geographic expert), I don't see why anyone would feel the need to take this matter into their own hands.

benbradley
04-24-2012, 04:17 AM
It looks like the police have decided to change their minds about who was doing something illegal.

Newton County may charge neighbors after home buyers' arrests
http://www.ajc.com/news/newton-county-may-charge-1424231.html
Porterdale resident Robert Canoles said he has no second thoughts about interrupting what he thought was a robbery in progress Thursday night at his neighbor's house -- though he may end up facing criminal charges just four days after deputies lauded his armed response.
...

rugcat
04-24-2012, 04:34 AM
The police... hard to say. Residents of a neighborhood claim strangers are breaking into a house, those strangers can't produce proof they own it (even if they do)... what do you do in that position?.Not hard to say at all.

You have a middle aged couple who have driven right up to the house and begun working on it, in plain sight, with no attempt at concealment. You have their car. You have their IDs. (I assume since they drove there they at least had their driver's licenses.)

They have tools (since they're changing the locks.) They claim the house is theirs. They give you the name of the real estate license agent. Even if it turns out the house was illegally foreclosed on, or there was some other issue, it's a civil, not a criminal matter.

You get all the information you need about the situation and write a report. You do NOT take them into custody and charge them with loitering and prowling.

Oh, and as a neighbor if you see something you think is suspicious next door, you call the cops. You don't take your AR-15 out, confront them, and hold them at gunpoint. This is the way tragedies happen.

And of course, the response of the neighbors and cops had nothing to do with race, I'm sure.

ColoradoGuy
04-24-2012, 04:50 AM
And of course, the response of the neighbors and cops had nothing to do with race, I'm sure.

Of course not. Besides, as we all know, both sides do itTM. And those shrill people who point out blatant racism are the true racists.

muravyets
04-24-2012, 04:57 AM
The part where we make a judgment on their personalities based on a 500 word article. The man was black, so they must be bigots. They carried guns, so they must be kooks. They made mistakes so they must be stupid.

This rush to judgment...say, isn't that exactly what they did?
Would it be better to rush to the judgment that they're intelligent, reasonable, tolerant people who don't take the law into their own hands and somehow that's why they did something so rash, stupid, suspicious, and potentially dangerous?

A rushed judgment will usually have to be amended later, but nevertheless, there is still wisdom in the old adage that things that look, swim and quack like ducks are usually ducks.

And if someone acts like a bigoted moron, there's a fairly decent likelihood that a bigoted moron is what that person is.

At any rate, being a bigoted moron is a better excuse for acting like one than simply having chosen to act like one even though one is smart enough to know better.

Mharvey
04-24-2012, 05:44 AM
Not hard to say at all.

You have a middle aged couple who have driven right up to the house and begun working on it, in plain sight, with no attempt at concealment. You have their car. You have their IDs. (I assume since they drove there they at least had their driver's licenses.)

They have tools (since they're changing the locks.) They claim the house is theirs. They give you the name of the real estate license agent. Even if it turns out the house was illegally foreclosed on, or there was some other issue, it's a civil, not a criminal matter.

You get all the information you need about the situation and write a report. You do NOT take them into custody and charge them with loitering and prowling.

Oh, and as a neighbor if you see something you think is suspicious next door, you call the cops. You don't take your AR-15 out, confront them, and hold them at gunpoint. This is the way tragedies happen.

And of course, the response of the neighbors and cops had nothing to do with race, I'm sure.

Fair points, but I'm not a dumb guy myself. I wouldn't have thought to ask about the real estate agents. Maybe if were the other gentleman trying to prove I owned the house, I might have considered that... but then again, I was just threatened by guys with rifles and might not have been thinking straight. Or they might have tried the real estate agent and gotten a busy signal. With no one to corroborate the story, no proof they owned the place, and eye-witness testimony (no matter how unreliable) that said they were trying to break in, you'd just let them go without holding them for a few hours until everything got sorted out? I'd say that would be a very ballsy call.

And as far as the other common sense stuff, I'm sure every police officer can tell stories about stupid people committing crimes. Besides, I seem to recall that being a valid robbing technique. You don't conceal your intentions, look like you own the place or are doing repairs on it... all the while robbing it blind.

The gun-toting yokels on the other hand... probably another story. I'm with you on them. I'm just not sure there's enough evidence here to support the cops went out of their way to be malicious, racist or even exhibited particularly bad judgment, given the circumstances. It does seem like they dropped the charges in a hurry once they got confirmation of all the facts.

missesdash
04-24-2012, 05:56 AM
I just try to avoid places where their might be backwoods, trigger-happy individuals. You know, like anywhere below the mason dixon :gone:

Kidding! Sort of... :D


ETA: did you see what kind of guns they were carrying???? What the hell do people do with guns like that? Hunt squirrels? Ugh, what idiots.

Yorkist
04-24-2012, 06:10 AM
Holding someone at gunpoint is not a small 'mistake'. In fact, I would have assumed it was some kind of crime?

It is. It's called assault with a deadly weapon (http://www.criminalattorneyusa.com/assault-deadly-weapon.aspx).

I'm just not sure there's enough evidence here to support the cops went out of their way to be malicious, racist or even exhibited particularly bad judgment, given the circumstances. It does seem like they dropped the charges in a hurry once they got confirmation of all the facts.

Bad judgment such as arresting the victims of a crime and then praising the criminals?

Mharvey
04-24-2012, 06:12 AM
Bad judgment such as arresting the victims of a crime and then praising the criminals?

At the risk of a cliche, hindsight is 20/20.

I'll lambaste police when I feel they've screwed up huge (*cough* Travyon Martin/UC Davis *cough*), but I tend to give them the benefit of the doubt when things are unclear. We don't have enough information to know for sure what the arresting officer knew (or could prove) at the time.

Manuel Royal
04-24-2012, 06:24 AM
"I don't know what they can charge me with," Canoles said late Monday afternoon, before the interview with authorities. "This is my Second Amendment right. Look, this is the county out here, and we protect our own."I don't think this guy is a Constitutional scholar. Maybe he'll find out he can be charged with trespassing, and misdemeanor or felony assault with a deadly weapon. (There's no law here in Georgia against just being an ignorant asshole, or they'd have to arrest half the General Assembly.)

veinglory
04-24-2012, 06:27 AM
He wasn't on his property, he was on theirs, so I have no idea what that has to do with anything.

ColoradoGuy
04-24-2012, 07:39 AM
It does seem like they dropped the charges in a hurry once they got confirmation of all the facts.

Or that they dropped the charges, and are reportedly thinking about charging the guy with the gun, when all the publicity came out. I think that is the more likely.

AncientEagle
04-24-2012, 07:41 AM
I don't think this guy is a Constitutional scholar. Maybe he'll find out he can be charged with trespassing, and misdemeanor or felony assault with a deadly weapon. (There's no law here in Georgia against just being an ignorant asshole, or they'd have to arrest half the General Assembly.)
I live in Georgia too, and I say your count is low. They'd have to arrest at least two-thirds.

backslashbaby
04-24-2012, 12:10 PM
Or that they dropped the charges, and are reportedly thinking about charging the guy with the gun, when all the publicity came out. I think that is the more likely.

Well, and this part:

...
District Attorney met Monday with the Kalonjis and their attorney, Don Samuel. Samuel typically handles a higher-wattage clientele, including NFL star Ray Lewis, former Atlanta Thrashers (http://g.ajc.com/r/Cy/) phenom Danny Heatley and rapper T.I.
The lawyer said he took the case as a favor to Bruno Kalonji, who had taught his kids soccer. Charges against the elder Kalonjis were dropped while the sheriff promised an internal investigation into the deputies' actions.
The Kalonjis said they were also given assurances that their new neighbor will face charges for what Samuel called his "vigilante justice."
...

I love it when folks know when to go straight to a good lawyer :D Especially a high-profile one who knows your son socially!

http://www.ajc.com/news/newton-county-may-charge-1424231.html

Atlantis
04-24-2012, 02:51 PM
When I was a young kid I came home from school and no one was home so clever me opened one of the windows that faced opposite the street and crawled in (window opened on ground level) unlocked the door and took my bag inside. We lived opposite my school and a high school. A few moments later I got a knock on the door and it was two old people looking at me nervous and asked "Do you live here little girl?" and I looked at them and went "Um, yeah!" and they were like "Oh, okay then," and shuffled off. It was good of them to do that. They would have been within their rights to call the cops on me. I did break into my own house and they wouldn't have known what they were seeing. They did the right thing talking to me and then leaving it at that.

Who pulls a gun on someone for walking around a house? That is frightening. I've never seen a gun in my life and hope that I never will. I find it hard to fathom people so willing to whip out a gun and threaten someone with it or shoot them for no real reason. This story is disgusting. What I did was suspicious. I crawled through a window!! I think back on that story now and laugh myself silly about it.

These people had a key and opened the front door. If I saw that it wouldn't even register in my mind as weird. I thought just think meh.

Celia Cyanide
04-24-2012, 05:15 PM
The part where we make a judgment on their personalities based on a 500 word article. The man was black, so they must be bigots. They carried guns, so they must be kooks. They made mistakes so they must be stupid.

This rush to judgment...say, isn't that exactly what they did?

Their rush to judgement was when they assumed the couple was breaking into the house. The appropriate response would have been to call the cops. What they did was completely over the top.

Lyv
04-24-2012, 05:54 PM
Or that they dropped the charges, and are reportedly thinking about charging the guy with the gun, when all the publicity came out. I think that is the more likely.

I do, too.

I've been thinking about this story. Both times my husband and I closed on houses, we went back to work after the closings and got to our new house after work, after dark. Both times, I got there well before my husband and had no papers of any kind to indicate ownership. At the closings, he put the documentation in his briefcase and all I had was a single key. I sat in our current house with one tiny lamp lit, wandering in rooms that didn't have overhead lights with a flashlight. It never occurred to me I'd need any. I never have to worry about things like this, and my being so white I glow in the dark, imo, is why.

Lyv
04-24-2012, 05:57 PM
Their rush to judgement was when they assumed the couple was breaking into the house. The appropriate response would have been to call the cops. What they did was completely over the top.

Very. And dangerous.

We tend to discuss the motivations and fears of the gun-toters in these cases, but give less attention to what the innocent person or people think of the strangers pointing guns at them perceive. We know, after the fact, that the strangers weren't trying to mug them or harm them, but the people on the other end of the gun don't. This time, no one went for the gun, no one had a heart attack because a gun was pointed at them, no one got trigger happy. This time.

Chrissy
04-24-2012, 06:00 PM
I do, too.

Me three.

Yorkist
04-24-2012, 07:34 PM
We tend to discuss the motivations and fears of the gun-toters in these cases, but give less attention to what the innocent person or people think of the strangers pointing guns at them perceive. We know, after the fact, that the strangers weren't trying to mug them or harm them, but the people on the other end of the gun don't.

This.

I'm having trouble even talking about this because, you know, not only have did these folks flee a brutal regime:


Kalonji, who grew up in the Congo, said the experience brought back painful memories.
“There, they put me down with the gun to my head, and come here, the same,” he said.
But they're roughly the same ages as my parents. I've recently gone through that life transition where I come up with transparent excuses to visit in order to, you know, fix certain household stuff and do anything that requires climbing a ladder or going up into the attic, which they find infuriatingly patronizing I'm sure, and... well. Let's just say that the idea of anyone assaulting my parents at gunpoint fills me with such a boiling rage that my neural synapses don't fire properly, and if I were that homeowner, I might be the one in jail.

Sorry if my overprotective feelings make anyone around here feel old. *hugs boomers*



When I was a young kid I came home from school and no one was home so clever me opened one of the windows that faced opposite the street and crawled in (window opened on ground level) unlocked the door and took my bag inside.

Hell, I ended up climbing through a window at least once weekly when I was a teenager. Because I, y'know, got locked out of the house. Yeah.

In fact, of all the hundreds of times I've brazenly climbed through a front window at my parents' house, which includes at least once every time I visit now because my parents forget to make sure I'm inside before they lock up since I no longer live there, I have never once gotten questioned. Hell, cop cars have driven by while I was in the process of doing so. And I've never had a problem. Because I'm white.


:(

Manuel Royal
04-25-2012, 04:20 PM
I'm trying to understand the mental state of the neighbor. I can understand someone owning a gun. I can understand someone having the right to use a weapon to defend himself, or someone else, from harm. But this idiot thought he had the right to point a gun at two people because he thought, possibly, they were committing a nonviolent property crime.

Guns are small machines for killing people. You don't point a gun at somebody unless you're willing to kill them (unless you're some kind of utter moron who thinks a gun is a toy). The actions in this story only make sense if the man looked out of his house and said, "I think those people are breaking into that empty house. For that, I'm willing to kill them both, for lo, I hold the power of life and death."

Mr. Pocket Keeper
04-25-2012, 04:27 PM
This.

I'm having trouble even talking about this because, you know, not only have did these folks flee a brutal regime:


But they're roughly the same ages as my parents. I've recently gone through that life transition where I come up with transparent excuses to visit in order to, you know, fix certain household stuff and do anything that requires climbing a ladder or going up into the attic, which they find infuriatingly patronizing I'm sure, and... well. Let's just say that the idea of anyone assaulting my parents at gunpoint fills me with such a boiling rage that my neural synapses don't fire properly, and if I were that homeowner, I might be the one in jail.

Sorry if my overprotective feelings make anyone around here feel old. *hugs boomers*





Hell, I ended up climbing through a window at least once weekly when I was a teenager. Because I, y'know, got locked out of the house. Yeah.

In fact, of all the hundreds of times I've brazenly climbed through a front window at my parents' house, which includes at least once every time I visit now because my parents forget to make sure I'm inside before they lock up since I no longer live there, I have never once gotten questioned. Hell, cop cars have driven by while I was in the process of doing so. And I've never had a problem. Because I'm white.


:(

(Bolded mine.)

You know that?

How?


First, I just want to say that these people were wrong. Obviously wrong. They were idiots and they were morons. (Talking about the neighbors more than the cops.)

But…seeing that a charge of racism is just about as bad as you can get nowadays, it drives me nuts when that charge is thrown around willy-nilly.

When I was much younger, and in school, four black men held me up at knifepoint and stole my brand new winter jacket. Not a single racist word was thrown around. They said nothing for me to believe that there was any other reason for the robbery other than the fact that they wanted my jacket. But, they were black and I am white. Should I just assume racist intentions?

My Grandmother was mugged and knocked to the ground by two black guys. They stole her purse. Again, not a single racist word was uttered, but they were black and she was white. Should I assume that racism was behind the mugging?

Point is, how about we wait till we have some proof…and maybe it is there…but, how about we have some proof before the racism charge is just thrown onto the bonfire.

fireluxlou
04-25-2012, 04:56 PM
Quotes (http://content.usatoday.com/communities/ondeadline/post/2012/04/men-accused-of-pointing-gun-at-new-homeowners-changing-locks/1#.T5fruqtYtZE)from the Canoles on their arrest:

It took four days for events to turn completely around, with charges of loitering and prowling dropped against the Kalonjis, and the criminal charges filed against the Canoles. Robert Canoles says he was initially praised by responding officers, the Associated Press reports.

"I don't know what they can charge me with," Canoles said late Monday before turning himself in, the Journal-Constitution reports. "This is my Second Amendment right. Look, this is the country out here, and we protect our own."

Chrissy
04-25-2012, 04:59 PM
"I don't know what they can charge me with," Canoles said
aggravated assault, false imprisonment and criminal trespass

This is what they can, and did, charge you with. Idiot.

benbradley
04-25-2012, 10:18 PM
The idiots father-and-son anti-crime team are out on bond:
http://www.ajc.com/news/father-son-who-held-1425343.html

Mharvey
04-25-2012, 10:26 PM
Yeah, they're idiots. They're also idiots without criminal intent, so prosecuting them will be an uphill battle. Just be thankful stupid people + guns didn't equal catastrophe in this instance.

I think spending a few days in jail and posting a $17,000 bond was a big enough of a dopeslap in this case. Sooner this goes away, on all sides, the better now.

Jcomp
04-26-2012, 01:15 AM
Guns are small machines for killing people. You don't point a gun at somebody unless you're willing to kill them (unless you're some kind of utter moron who thinks a gun is a toy). The actions in this story only make sense if the man looked out of his house and said, "I think those people are breaking into that empty house. For that, I'm willing to kill them both, for lo, I hold the power of life and death."

Word.

shawkins
04-26-2012, 01:20 AM
Not to derail, but just once I'd like to see Georgia make the national news because somebody did something surprisingly intelligent and / or non-racist.

Jcomp
04-26-2012, 01:24 AM
Not to derail, but just once I'd like to see Georgia make the national news because somebody did something surprisingly intelligent and / or non-racist.

Well, the NBA playoffs are coming up. Maybe the Hawks will make some national news with a surprising run into the Finals--*breaks up laughing*

All right all right, but the NFL Draft is this weekend. I'm sure the Falcons will find the missing piece to propel them to a Super B--*nearly kills self with laughter*

Ok, ok, all jokes aside, I'm sure next year the Bulldogs will--*doubles over with laughter, ribcage shatters violently*

benbradley
04-26-2012, 02:30 AM
Not to derail, but just once I'd like to see Georgia make the national news because somebody did something surprisingly intelligent and / or non-racist.
"Event happens in Georgia in which races get along." Hmm, I don't think it's THAT rare, but I doubt it would sell many newspapers or attract many online ad clicks (though maybe The Onion is lurking). Like anything, it's the over-the-top incidents that get in the news.
Well, the NBA playoffs are coming up. Maybe the Hawks will make some national news with a surprising run into the Finals--*breaks up laughing*

All right all right, but the NFL Draft is this weekend. I'm sure the Falcons will find the missing piece to propel them to a Super B--*nearly kills self with laughter*

Ok, ok, all jokes aside, I'm sure next year the Bulldogs will--*doubles over with laughter, ribcage shatters violently*
Every once in a few years Georgia Tech (known for its hot-shot engineer graduates much more than than for its football program) beats UGA.

You best not find yourself in between a Tech fan and a Dawgs fan. It's no laughing matter...

Magdalen
04-26-2012, 07:15 AM
Since I got exactly O reppies for my post #22, I'm guessing many found it un-bee-lievable??? How 'bout if I say it happened on a magnolia-infused Georgia night last Spring??

benbradley
04-26-2012, 10:00 AM
We interrupt this thread with a news update: The Lawyer Speaks:
http://www.ajc.com/news/lawyer-gun-wielding-newton-1425877.html

Yorkist
04-26-2012, 11:12 AM
(Bolded mine.)

You know that?

How?

You've never spent much time in the South, have you?

backslashbaby
04-26-2012, 11:29 AM
Yeah, they're idiots. They're also idiots without criminal intent, so prosecuting them will be an uphill battle. Just be thankful stupid people + guns didn't equal catastrophe in this instance.

I think spending a few days in jail and posting a $17,000 bond was a big enough of a dopeslap in this case. Sooner this goes away, on all sides, the better now.

I don't know if intent comes into play in a lot of our criminal prosecutions. Or shall I say that just because someone is an idiot, that's not a valid excuse under our legal system? ;)

Crazy folks are taking the idea of what rights they have too far. I don't care if you really, really swear-on-your-mama's-grave thought these Black folks were breaking into the house, people don't take kindly to being held at gunpoint for no damned reason! The law supports "reasonable" this and that, but all of this playing sheriff with your own gun is going to prove to be batshit insane behavior once in court, imho. Not reasonable.

They held regular, everyday homeowners at gunpoint over nothing. It's not just a misunderstanding, and I hope they get the book thrown at them for their crimes. Gunpoint is no joke.

Yorkist
04-26-2012, 12:27 PM
I don't know if intent comes into play in a lot of our criminal prosecutions. Or shall I say that just because someone is an idiot, that's not a valid excuse under our legal system? ;)

Nope, it's not. Ignorance of the law is not a defense.

And on the matter of intent, they intended to point a gun at someone, and they did, and that is a crime called assault with a deadly weapon (probably misdemeanor assault).

Crazy folks are taking the idea of what rights they have too far. I don't care if you really, really swear-on-your-mama's-grave thought these Black folks were breaking into the house, people don't take kindly to being held at gunpoint for no damned reason! The law supports "reasonable" this and that, but all of this playing sheriff with your own gun is going to prove to be batshit insane behavior once in court,

Word.

sassandgroove
04-27-2012, 12:59 AM
shawkins, for what it is worth the HGTV Green Home 2012 is in Georgia.

Manuel Royal
04-27-2012, 05:09 AM
Not to derail, but just once I'd like to see Georgia make the national news because somebody did something surprisingly intelligent and / or non-racist.Well, we did have the Olympics in '96. Sorry about the terrorist bombings.

TerzaRima
04-27-2012, 06:07 AM
Not to derail, but just once I'd like to see Georgia make the national news because somebody did something surprisingly intelligent and / or non-racist.

let's see. one time I saw part of a U-GA game on ESPN and they showed Uga, the mascot and everyone squeed for about 10 minutes.

Oh wait, you stipulated "surprisingly intelligent".

backslashbaby
04-27-2012, 12:36 PM
:ROFL:

Hey, GA has some very impressive universities! And the CDC (don't knock it; my cousin works there ;) ).

Torgo
04-27-2012, 12:52 PM
Just read the article. AR-15s?!? Holy Jebus. I start to wonder whether, having acquired a fantastically efficient and expensive battlefield rifle, everything starts to look like an opportunity to use one.

Roger J Carlson
04-27-2012, 05:25 PM
You've never spent much time in the South, have you?Because, yanno, all Southerners are red-necked bigots.

sassandgroove
04-27-2012, 06:36 PM
Too bad the neighbors didn't mind their own business, like this guy: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=P5C4hSLBdEc

(um, skip the ad)

Quite true. I also think there is an alternative to calling them stupid, despicable bigots.

The part where we make a judgment on their personalities based on a 500 word article. The man was black, so they must be bigots. They carried guns, so they must be kooks. They made mistakes so they must be stupid.

This rush to judgment...say, isn't that exactly what they did?

Sorry. My fault for trying to see a measure of complexity in the issue.

I don't think that at all. Do you? Because I think that would be quite unwise.

You've never spent much time in the South, have you?

Because, yanno, all Southerners are red-necked bigots.
I fail to see what point you are trying to make. First you post a video of a house break-in where apparently the person didn't do anything to help his neighbor. Are you saying that's better than the guys who acted as vigilantes? Becuase it's not. It's as bad a committing the crime becuase by not calling the authorities, andknowingly let it happen, the person becomes complicit in the crime.

Then you say we are snapping to judgment from a 500 word article and that you are trying to see the complexity of the issue, but I see no attempt to share that insight with anyone else. So are we so politically correct now that we have to bend over backwards to not use the obvious evidence before us to discern events in our world? We have to go out of our way to not call a duck a duck? Do you honestly think that anyone here, at AW, thinks all white people in the south are rednecks?

Did you not notice Yorkist is FROM THESOUTH? Yorkist was asking how Lyv knew she was safe because she was white, because Yorkist -I would ASSUME- is saying that racism exists against whites as well as blacks. Yorkist never implied all white people in the south are rednecks.
And Yorkist, if I am wrong, nevermind.

Thanks.

Roger J Carlson
04-27-2012, 08:17 PM
I fail to see what point you are trying to make. First you post a video of a house break-in where apparently the person didn't do anything to help his neighbor. Are you saying that's better than the guys who acted as vigilantes? Becuase it's not. It's as bad a committing the crime becuase by not calling the authorities, andknowingly let it happen, the person becomes complicit in the crime.

Then you say we are snapping to judgment from a 500 word article and that you are trying to see the complexity of the issue, but I see no attempt to share that insight with anyone else.

I'm sorry you don't get my point, but I don't see any point in simply reiterating it.

So are we so politically correct now that we have to bend over backwards to not use the obvious evidence before us to discern events in our world? We have to go out of our way to not call a duck a duck?

Once upon a time, it was intuitively obvious that black people where lazy, inferior, even sub-human. It behooves us not to repeat that mistake -- with anyone.

Do you honestly think that anyone here, at AW, thinks all white people in the south are rednecks?

Did you not notice Yorkist is FROM THESOUTH?

I don't know what people actually believe, but I see quite frequently here in P&CE about how "people from Texas" are this or "people from Mississippi" are that. It irks me because making generalizations about some groups will get you called a racist or sexist or ageist or some-other-ist, while generalizations about other groups is simply "obvious evidence".

The fact is generalizations about ANY group are untrue and, yes, we should be extremely careful about calling a duck a duck because people are not ducks. People are individuals and shouldn't be treated as anything different.

And in case you didn't notice, I'm NOT FROM THE SOUTH, and it doesn't make any difference.

sassandgroove
04-27-2012, 08:36 PM
How does a statement like
Because, yanno, all Southerners are red-necked bigots.
help anything when it is obtuse and not relevant to the person you are responding to?

Roger J Carlson
04-27-2012, 08:57 PM
How does a statement like help anything when it is obtuse and not relevant to the person you are responding to?I suppose an irrelevant response to an irrelevant response might be seen as obtuse. On the other hand, it might be seen as ironic. Since this is a writer's site, I'd hoped for the latter.

benbradley
04-27-2012, 08:57 PM
Here, Roger, take one of these: :sarcasm :sarcasm :sarcasm

rugcat
04-27-2012, 09:32 PM
The fact is generalizations about ANY group are untrue and, yes, we should be extremely careful about calling a duck a duck because people are not ducks. People are individuals and shouldn't be treated as anything different.Generalizations about groups are often quite accurate. The problem lies only when attributing any group generalization to a particular member of that group, with no evidence.

If one meets a person from Mississippi and immediately makes assumptions about him or her simply because they are from Mississippi, for example, that's stupid and shows prejudice.

But if one notices that Southern states are the "most religious" (except for Utah) and that the New England states are the "least religious" that tells you something about the different cultures of both areas.

http://www.gallup.com/poll/153479/mississippi-religious-state.aspx

When polling shows that 80% of Alabamians oppose gay marriage, but only 40% of Coloradans oppose it, it's valid to make certain assumptions about the cultural difference in the two areas.

Gun culture in Texas is far different than gun culture in Oregon. Racial attitudes are different in Mississippi than in Rhode Island.

Noting those differences and commenting on them is not the same as stating that every single individual in each state shares the same cultural beliefs. Noting that a particular type of behavior of action is not unusual or unexpected in certain areas of the country is perfectly valid.

Roger J Carlson
04-27-2012, 09:42 PM
People are individuals and shouldn't be treated as anything different.



The problem lies only when attributing any group generalization to a particular member of that group, with no evidence.

Then we agree.

Chrissy
04-27-2012, 09:44 PM
http://www.bing.com/Dictionary/search?q=define+generalize&qpvt=GENERALIZE&FORM=DTPDIA

generalizeDefinition
gen·er·al·ize

VERB

1.
intransitive verb make sweeping statement: to state a supposed general truth about something on the basis of limited or incomplete evidence

2.
transitive and intransitive verb express something general: to express something general on the basis of particulars

3.
transitive and intransitive verb give wider use to something: to use something in a wider or different range of circumstances, or be used in this way

4.
transitive verb make something generally known: to bring something into general use or to general knowledge ( usually passive )

5.
intransitive verb medicine spread: to spread to other parts of the body

6.
transitive and intransitive verb logic make inference: to infer a general conclusion from particulars or a universal statement from an instance

Roger J Carlson
04-27-2012, 10:18 PM
To generalize is to be an idiot.
--William Blake

rugcat
04-27-2012, 10:24 PM
To generalize is to be an idiot.
--William Blake

Poets often have a pithy way of putting things.

icerose
04-27-2012, 10:41 PM
I don't consider calling a set of individuals racist, when they in fact acted in a very racist way. I seriously doubt they pulled serious military grade machine guns on any of their white neighbors moving in.

If someone were to call all people from Georgia, bigoted backwater, gun-toting racists, then you'd have a point, Roger, but they're not.

And just because not everyone in Georgia fits the description above, doesn't mean that no one does.

When they aren't doing something that screams "All black people are criminals so I'm going to grab my gun and go hold them at gun point." Then I won't consider their actions racially motivated. If they even had a habit of pulling their gun out every time someone moved in and held them at gun point, I wouldn't consider it racially motivated, just super paranoid and stupid.

As for the stupid label, it fits too because they brought out freakin machine guns against unarmed individuals, with a key, who were working on an empty house. No one was in danger. There was no need to pull out the guns. A call to 911 would have been more than enough. Hence the stupid label.

escritora
04-27-2012, 10:52 PM
The father-son team seem like class A idiots. I believe they would have gone over with guns if the couple was white and not interracial. That said, I'm glad the men were charged.

I have more of an issue with how the cops handled the situation. I hope that they get reprimanded in some way.

Roger J Carlson
04-27-2012, 11:11 PM
If someone were to call all people from Georgia, bigoted backwater, gun-toting racists, then you'd have a point, Roger, but they're not.

I'm not sure which point you think I'm making, but the "generalize" business was something of a rabbit trail not directly tied to the original topic. These digressions can be confusing, but threads go where they will sometimes.

Xelebes
04-27-2012, 11:19 PM
Poets often have a pithy way of putting things.

Though I do have to commend the stichomancy attempted.

Yorkist
04-28-2012, 12:21 AM
First of all (thank you, sass), for the benefit of anyone that neglected to read the location clearly displayed beneath my avatar, I am from the South. Secondly, I am from Mississippi. Not just, like, I live there; I mean, greatx10 Grandpa Yorkist lived there. So:

Once upon a time, it was intuitively obvious that black people where lazy, inferior, even sub-human. It behooves us not to repeat that mistake -- with anyone.

You can spare me your faux Michigander outrage for a generalization that I never made. Aw, us poor white folks in Mississippi, we surely need you northerners sticking up for us. How ever will we get along otherwise? We really need you to jump up and defend idiot rednecks that assault 60-somethings with a deadly weapon just to ensure that no one assumes they are racist just because this is the South. I'm calling it. I can't speak for Georgia, but if this happened in Mississippi, there is about a .001% chance that these guys would have done the same thing to a white couple of the same age. These sorts of people suck and I don't like them, my friends and family don't like them, and the term we would use for anyone who would assault 60-somethings at gunpoint because they thought they may have been breaking into someone's house in the bright light of day would either have "redneck," "trash," or "ass" somewhere in it, and probably all three of those. Whether the couple was black, white, or any other color of the rainbow wouldn't make a difference, at least to my kin. Racism is just the crap icing on a turd cake. But that my black 25-40 year old friends' parents are much more vulnerable to this kind of shit than mine are? I couldn't deny that without being intellectually dishonest, and why would I want to?

Someone asked me how I knew that I didn't get harassed for breaking into my own house several dozens if not several hundreds of times (I was a teenager once, ahem, and I also tend to forget my keys a lot) because I'm white.

My response was, "You haven't spent much time in the South, have you?"

You attributed that to a generalization of all southern people, which is obviously false. The South is a place. All southerners are a group of people. A southerner is a person. For that matter, lots of southerners are black. My own state has the highest ratio of black people per population in the union, IIRC - it's about 40%. And I am a southerner. And "southerner" is a term that I never used. This is a stupid comment on all levels.

This was a question about why I knew what I knew based on where I am from. The reason why I said "the South" instead of "Mississippi" is because my location reads "the dirty south," which is, by the way, a tongue-in-cheek term of endearment for the lower gulf coast states, and I didn't want to generate confusion.

The reason why I know this is that there are a lot of dumb racist idiot rednecks here. I don't like them. My family doesn't like them. My friends don't like them. My high school didn't like them. My university didn't like them. We don't like them, not just because they give us a bad name, but because they make our state less pleasant to live in, slightly for white people who breathe through their noses, and much more for black people, who are just as southern as we are, by the way.

My statement - that I know the reason that I was not harassed is because I am white - is not just based on acknowledging my white privilege, which by the way, more people should do. It is based on experience. I was lucky enough to grow up in one of the most progressive parts of the state. Nonetheless, in my upper-middle class neighborhood which was fairly racially integrated and tended to get along as everyone kept their grass short and followed the HOA restrictions, I can recount several events in which black people (some of them neighbors) were harassed, always by neighborhood outsiders. Such as when a black businessman bought our little clubhouse, a historic building that had been sitting vacant for several years, with the intent of turning it into a restaurant/dining hall/place for weddings/etc. (which the neighborhood found awesome, of course, for our property values and also neighborhood pride - it was so sad to see that pretty 200-year old Cape Cod sitting empty). And on the weekend before the opening some of those idiot racist rednecks spray-painted racial slurs all over the oldest building in our entire city, which had served as a civil war hospital, amongst other functions. This happened around 2005, not 1960.

And of course my black friends seemed to get pulled over in my neighborhood quite frequently when they were on their way to visit me. I've never gotten pulled over in my own neighborhood. Coincidence? Doubt it.

Now, would you like me to recount some of the choice phrases I've heard from dumb racist redneck idiots that are perfect strangers, just over the last couple of years? They aren't the subtle, accidental, unintended racism that get people's panties in a twist when it's pointed out to them. They are unapologetically vile hatred. Off the top of my head - these first three are from older idiot racist rednecks and the last three are from the under-thirty idiot racist redneck crowd, and I heard them in Mississippi, Alabama, Georgia, and Tennessee (I'm all over these days):


Anyone faint of heart should probably look away right now.


"What a pretty dog you have there!" (She's 120 pounds.) "I'd like to get a look at the ____'s face who tried to break into your house."

"Let me guess (for an appointed judgeship), they hired a black woman?"

"Can you believe they let ____s in here?" (at a restaurant)

"What's your dog's name? (My other dog, black lab.) I want to get my own black lab and name her Lakeesha."

"The only time I'll say 'ma'am' to a black woman is when she's making my food." (at a fast food place)

"I think that white people came from Adam and Eve, and _____s came from monkeys. Jesus was a Jew, so Jews must be white. Don't ever say anything bad about Jews." (At a party)

I'm sure you can fill in the blanks. Once again, this all happened circa 2010, not 1960. You don't think there's a reason that John Grisham wrote A Time To Kill? Faulkner wrote Light in August? Greg Iles wrote The Quiet Game? Morgan Freeman directed Prom Night in Mississippi?

Now, there are some Mississippians, some southerners, that aren't racist but would like to sweep this sort of thing under the rug because it's embarassing. I'm not one of them. Yes, there is racism everywhere. Yes, Mississippi has come very far, as has the whole South. And I'd be the first person pointing this out if someone from a state with zero racial diversity tried to paint racism as if it were an exclusively southern evil. However, refusing to acknowledge that the racism here is aggressive, vile, and far too many people don't even feel the need to hide it well enough to not make horribly racist comments to perfect strangers? Denying that would make me a fool.

But you know what? I'm quite sure that very few of us would care for your northern outrage, least of all this trash.

ETA: And if my words seem strong, think about how it would sound if a white person criticized a black person for their imagined racism against black people, all the while not acknowledging that they are, in fact, black. I seriously do not appreciate this. At all.

Roger J Carlson
04-28-2012, 12:51 AM
You can spare me your faux Michigander outrage for ageneralization that I never made. Like Icerose, you missed the fact that my "faux Michigander outrage" (thanks for the lovely generalization, btw) was not aimed at your statement but Sass's:
So are we so politically correct now that we have to bend over backwards to not use the obvious evidence before us to discern events in our world? We have to go out of our way to not call a duck a duck? Yeah, I do think we have to go out of our ways to avoid characterizations because "obvious evidence" is subject to change. Perhaps even about Michiganders.

Aw, us poor white folks in Mississippi, we surely need you northerners sticking up for us. Well, that wasn't what I was doing. I was trying to highlight how you airly dismissed Mr. Pocket Keeper's question. To wit:
Someone asked me how I knew that I didn't get harassed for breaking into my own house several dozens if not several hundreds of times (I was a teenager once, ahem, and I also tend to forget my keys a lot) because I'm white.

My response was, "You haven't spent much time in the South, have you?"

You attributed that to a generalization of all southern people, which is obviously false.
Exactly. Instead of answering his question, you shot him down with hyperbole.

My statement - that I know the reason that I was not harassed is because I am white - is not just based on acknowledging my white privilege, which by the way, more people should do. It is based on experience. I was lucky enough to grow up in one of the most progressive parts of the state. Nonetheless, in my upper-middle class neighborhood which was fairly racially integrated and tended to get along as everyone kept their grass short and followed the HOA restrictions, I can recount several events in which black people (some of them neighbors) were harassed, always by neighborhood outsiders. Such as when a black businessman bought our little clubhouse, a historic building that had been sitting vacant for several years, with the intent of turning it into a restaurant/dining hall/place for weddings/etc. (which the neighborhood found awesome, of course, for our property values and also neighborhood pride - it was so sad to see that pretty 200-year old Cape Cod sitting empty). And on the weekend before the opening some of those idiot racist rednecks spray-painted racial slurs all over the oldest building in our entire city, which had served as a civil war hospital, amongst other functions. This happened around 2005, not 1960.

And of course my black friends seemed to get pulled over in my neighborhood quite frequently when they were on their way to visit me. I've never gotten pulled over in my own neighborhood. Coincidence? Doubt it.

Well, there you go. An actual answer. Would that have been so hard to do in the first place?

Yorkist
04-28-2012, 01:23 AM
Like Icerose, you missed the fact that my "faux Michigander outrage" (thanks for the lovely generalization, btw)

Uh, that doesn't bear on "generalization" any more than what I posted earlier on this thread is a "generalization." Do you think I'm trying to paint faux outrage as a Michigan-specific thing? I was pointing out that you are, in fact, not from the South, but from Michigan (at least, that's what your location says). I am from the South.

YOU are the one with the faux outrage. There is no "Michigander outrage." If I misplaced a modifier or something, that may be confusing, but regardless: You as a not-southerner are expressing outrage on behalf of southerners who I, a southerner, supposedly unfairly generalized.

was not aimed at your statement but Sass's:Bullcrap. You accused me of generalizing:

Originally Posted by Yorkist http://absolutewrite.com/forums/images/buttons/viewpost.gif (http://absolutewrite.com/forums/showthread.php?p=7224070#post7224070)
You've never spent much time in the South, have you?
Because, yanno, all Southerners are red-necked bigots.

What Sass said:

Do you honestly think that anyone here, at AW, thinks all white people in the south are rednecks?

Did you not notice Yorkist is FROM THESOUTH?You directly responded thusly:

The fact is generalizations about ANY group are untrue and, yes, we should be extremely careful about calling a duck a duck because people are not ducks. People are individuals and shouldn't be treated as anything different.

Ergo, you accused me of generalizing a second time.

And by the way:

And in case you didn't notice, I'm NOT FROM THE SOUTH, and it doesn't make any difference.Yeah, it really does. It is quite offensive, actually.

Yeah, I do think we have to go out of our ways to avoid characterizations because "obvious evidence" is subject to change.Yeah, not going to mention what I think of this.

Well, that wasn't what I was doing. I was trying to highlight how you airly dismissed Mr. Pocket Keeper's question. To wit:

Exactly. Instead of answering his question, you shot him down with hyperbole.Actually, it was a fair question, with a yes or no answer. I did not say: "Clearly, you have never spent time in the South."

Chrissy
04-28-2012, 01:44 AM
The father-son team seem like class A idiots. I believe they would have gone over with guns if the couple was white and not interracial. That said, I'm glad the men were charged.

I have more of an issue with how the cops handled the situation. I hope that they get reprimanded in some way.

+1 on both points.

Every time I think about the fact that these homeowners spent a night in jail.... I see red. Guilty until proven innocent? It baffles the mind.

backslashbaby
04-28-2012, 04:09 AM
I think NC should secede from the south ;) And at least large parts of VA should, too.

Actually that's not fair, either, as we have some counties where racism runs rampant. There just isn't a good phrasing to describe my area. I do hate hearing about 'the South' just because it's such a varied place, so it's hard to categorize. Or it is if you include all the places folks consider themselves Southerners (dunno about certain states alone).

I was gobsmacked by the racism up north and in other countries, and I wasn't expecting it. I thought since I lived in 'the South' that I'd seen what racism was like nowadays. Nope!

Your stories sound like a different generation to me, no kidding. I mean, if you wanted to scrape the bottom of the barrel and go out of your way to do it, you'll find folks here who would say those things, I'm sure. In general public? No, that would be very strange and it would not go over at all.

I believe you that those things are easy to come by where you've lived, but I'd be gobsmacked by it, myself. And I'm born and raised in the South (with one detour period in Chicago) :).

Yorkist
04-28-2012, 04:37 AM
Backslash, yeah, every part of the South is different - not just states, but intra-state regions, individual counties... I have a few friends from NC and it's a different universe. One with inferior barbecue. :)

The vast majority of the time, incidents like that do not happen. But they do occur and I am often horrified by the lack of reaction. The vast majority of white Mississippians in the places I've lived are quite chill, but every once and a while... And again, there are certain counties where I just will not go. Ever see Prom Night in Mississippi? It's a documentary by Morgan Freeman about Charleston county's first integrated prom. In 2008. It's a real eye-opener.

Alessandra Kelley
04-28-2012, 05:16 AM
I think NC should secede from the south ;) And at least large parts of VA should, too.

Actually that's not fair, either, as we have some counties where racism runs rampant. There just isn't a good phrasing to describe my area. I do hate hearing about 'the South' just because it's such a varied place, so it's hard to categorize. Or it is if you include all the places folks consider themselves Southerners (dunno about certain states alone).

I was gobsmacked by the racism up north and in other countries, and I wasn't expecting it. I thought since I lived in 'the South' that I'd seen what racism was like nowadays. Nope!

Your stories sound like a different generation to me, no kidding. I mean, if you wanted to scrape the bottom of the barrel and go out of your way to do it, you'll find folks here who would say those things, I'm sure. In general public? No, that would be very strange and it would not go over at all.

I believe you that those things are easy to come by where you've lived, but I'd be gobsmacked by it, myself. And I'm born and raised in the South (with one detour period in Chicago) :).

I was born and raised in New England. (And the only reason I'm not a x10 generation New Englander is because the men in my father's family were reallllly late bloomers. Seriously. My granddaddy was born in 1911 and his granddaddy was born in 1814.) My family was abolitionists, and not the ship-em-all-to-Africa ones either, but ones advocating full citizenship and rights for blacks.

But ...

I know I have racist thoughts. I know I don't treat people fairly. And I know I have a lot of privileges, probably a lot more than I ever notice, because I'm white.

There's plenty of racism in the north, and I sometimes think it's abetted by a sense of superiority about racism in the south.

I grew up just outside of Boston. And it's Boston hockey fans who just dogpiled on a black hockey player who made the winning shot against their team. (http://www.ktvn.com/story/17795131/fans-let-loose-with-racist-comments-after-loss)

It was in Boston where this happened (http://askthephotographer.com/wp-content/uploads/2008/04/mainphoto-copy.jpg) in 1976.

And that abolitionism in my family? People -- northern people -- gave my family a lot of grief for it. In 1838 a Philadelphia -- Philadelphia!! -- mob tore down an abolitionist hall while my great-great-great-great grandmother was in it, then tried to tear down her house.

Sometimes I think people in the southern states have come to a lot better terms with their racism than we people in the northern states have with ours.

benbradley
04-28-2012, 05:24 AM
I'm about halfway between Atlanta (where I lived 95 percent of my life) and Chattanooga (which I've visited for an hour), and I listen to WUTC from Chattanooga and the folks on that radio station talk funny...

zanzjan
04-28-2012, 05:47 AM
There's plenty of racism in the north, and I sometimes think it's abetted by a sense of superiority about racism in the south.

I think I agree with that.

I grew up just outside of Boston. And it's Boston hockey fans who just dogpiled on a black hockey player who made the winning shot against their team. (http://www.ktvn.com/story/17795131/fans-let-loose-with-racist-comments-after-loss)

Yeah. As a Boston native and lifelong resident of the state, I'm still cringing. Maybe it's because I don't spend much time among sports fans, but I really did think we were at least a little better than that.

Eye-opening for a lot of people here, though, so maybe some good will come of it.

muravyets
04-28-2012, 07:43 AM
Denial is the one constant in American attitudes about racism. In the south, racists pretend what they're saying and doing isn't racism, while in the north, racists pretend they don't do and say such things at all. Makes it hard to have a constructive public debate. I grew up in NYC where it's not unheard of to dismiss Boston as a racist city, and that's a laugh coming from the city that gave us the race-based violence of such places as Howard Beach.

The way I learned finally that I'm probably not racist was when I moved from NYC to Vermont and felt uncomfortable because it was too white. I kept wondering where all the other people were, and the reaction was just a little bit along the lines of "what other people?" I have this idea that racists prefer not to be in an integrated society. To me, a segregated or homogenous society is weird and scary. (Note: Vermont isn't noticeably racist, comparatively; it's just isolated.)

Even so, I have to admit that when this latest incident of racist spasming happened in Boston, I felt slightly vindicated. As a New Yorker, when I moved to the Boston area, I used to catch crap for talking about Boston's past racist reputation (when it happened to come up in conversation), as if none of it had ever happened and was just a lie made up by New Yorkers who can't stand that the Yankees suck. I admit I did feel superior, seeing that ingrained racism still existing. Every now and then I have remind myself of my own hometown's history.

clintl
04-28-2012, 07:55 AM
Well, the next time Bostonians make that denial, remind them that the Red Sox were the last major league team to integrate, and that didn't happen until Jackie Robinson had already retired.

The truth is there is no state and no region in the US that doesn't have a racist past.

Anaquana
04-28-2012, 07:56 AM
I completely agree with Alessandra. There's plenty of racism up here, but I think we're able to hide it a bit from the rest of the country because we're seen to be so progressive.

Also, hello to my fellow Happy Valleyer, Zanzjan!

muravyets
04-28-2012, 08:29 AM
Well, the next time Bostonians make that denial, remind them that the Red Sox were the last major league team to integrate, and that didn't happen until Jackie Robinson had already retired.

The truth is there is no state and no region in the US that doesn't have a racist past.
Well, that'll be one way to make sure none of them ever speaks to me again. ;)

And yes, that's absolutely true. It's a pretty common, universal, human habit to claim personal pride in social history, as if the people of today are somehow smarter and more talented and highly effective because some people who lived in the same place long ago were smart and talented and effective. But none of us really gets to claim any pride in having a history that is less racist than other places. Not by much, at any rate.

Alessandra Kelley
04-28-2012, 02:40 PM
The way I learned finally that I'm probably not racist was when I moved from NYC to Vermont and felt uncomfortable because it was too white. I kept wondering where all the other people were, and the reaction was just a little bit along the lines of "what other people?" I have this idea that racists prefer not to be in an integrated society. To me, a segregated or homogenous society is weird and scary. (Note: Vermont isn't noticeably racist, comparatively; it's just isolated.)


I had a similar experience. When I was still young, my family, possibly in a spasm of hippie-induced romanticism, pulled up stakes and moved us to a series of barns and hovels in rural Illinois and Wisconsin. I, who had grown up in a fully (if, on the grownups' part, uneasily) integrated, diverse urban environment, was shocked by the lily-whiteness and casual racism of northern Door County, where ethnic diversity meant which part of Scandinavia you were from, or the small farming village near Galena where half of the population were first cousins. I spent my adolescence in a pretty, if deadly dull, 99% white small town in Wisconsin's resort area, appalled at the presumption and entitlement and obliviousness around me. I never felt comfortable, not until I finally lived in a big, ethnically diverse city again.

But I am still aware of unjust and racist impulses in my thoughts that I have to guard against, and I have to assume I'm missing some of them. And, looking back on it, my family was poor but we could live in wealthy white areas and derive some of their benefits, something a black family would have found nearly impossible.

And as a youngster, I'm afraid I felt a sense of superiority to the casually racist people around me because I had known and been friends with black and hispanic and Asian people where they painfully obviously knew nothing of them; when of course the thing about racism is to work against it, not simply to feel annoyed at and superior to those who practice it. And that, I think, I was too much of a coward to do.

Romantic Heretic
04-28-2012, 05:29 PM
Much the same happened to me when I moved to a small town in British Columbia.

There was one (1) black family. There were also plenty of natives but neither were really regarded as 'part of the town.' It was like a fair part of the population existed in another dimension.

I moved back to Toronto after a couple of years and never left. I'm far more comfortable here.

icerose
04-28-2012, 06:03 PM
I'm in Utah and we definitely have it out here. I hate hearing it and witnessing it. Even if people don't have out and out racism we all have bias. Some of it is harmless enough, but some of it is not, and we always will have bias.

The racism in my parts tend to be more focused on "them Mexicans". I think it's all stupid, but people are always going to be looking for someone to other.