Force Perspective

Force Perspective

By now, you have most likely seen the video of the young student from  Spring Valley High School being reprimanded by the resource officer- Ben Fields- so I’ll spare your eyes a posting of the video, but here’s a link. Since the video went viral about two days ago, it has sparked some debate over whether Fields’s actions were justified.

In the video, you see clearly how Fields handles the student, but you don’t know much about how he “went from 0-60”, as Professor Marc Lamont Hill put it, or why he is in the classroom to begin with. As it has been reported, the student in the video was being disruptive to the class by having her cell phone out and not turning it into the teacher when he asked her to give it to him so he could continue with the class. Since she refused, the teacher called for the resource officer to remove her from class. Then… well… you’ve seen the video.

So this all brings up numerous- related- questions. First and most obvious, was the officer justified in his use of force? But this also calls into question the purpose of having officers in schools and also the obligations students and teachers have to each other.

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Religious Freedom and Public Rights

Religious Freedom and Public Rights

Hi all!

I recently ran across a Rachel Maddow story about North Carolina’s House of Representatives reviewing a proposal that I thought would open a conversation on the tug and pull between “religious freedom” and the law. The proposal would allow county magistrates to reject marriage licenses to people based on their religious beliefs. In the video, Maddow notes that under the new law…

…Magistrates could refuse to marry gay and lesbian couples, or couples who were remarrying after a divorce, or couples with one Buddhist and one Jew, couples where one person is white and one person is black- like the good ol’ days.

-Rachel Maddow

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Innocent Until Proven Guilty

Innocent Until Proven Guilty

Originally posted on July 21st on an older version of this blog

Hi,

As I am sure we have all heard in one way or another within the last year, there has been a case in Florida which has garnered national attention: The State of Florida vs. George Zimmerman in the death of Trayvon Martin. I wanted to write the last weekend about what I could, but researching the case took much longer than expected. That turned out to be good as a lot of interesting things have surfaced since the end of the trial.
I will do my best to remain impartial but as a Black man and a White man who knows the implication of this verdict, bias may slip into my logic. If you find it so, please bring it to my attention.
This will no doubt be the hardest post I have written so far as a man of logic and thought, and as a man who lives in a country where I am statistically more likely to be killed with no punishment for my destroyer just because I look a certain way and the assumptions that come with that. But that is why I must write it. And so, here we go.