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Monday, April 18, 2016

The Morning Roundup: With All Due Respect to the Hollywood

Posted by on Mon, Apr 18, 2016 at 8:31 AM

Morning. This weekend was beautiful, so here's a video of our governor embarrassing himself and this state on national television.

click to enlarge Pat McCrory deep in thought. - NBC NEWS / YOUTUBE
  • NBC News / YouTube
  • Pat McCrory deep in thought.

1. Pat McCrory went on Meet the Press and boy, was it painful.

This video is...just watch it. 


Meet the Press host Chuck Todd rightly compared McCrory's extremely dumb argument to arguments against the Civil Rights Act, while McCrory flailed and used the extensively whiteboarded phrase "private sector's HR director" multiple times. The best (worst) exchange comes around the 7:40 mark when Todd asks McCrory if he talked to any transgender people before signing the law, and McCrory replies, "Not...but I've met with transgender people in the past and since..." before completely fucking up the name of the Human Rights Campaign.

Later, he says, verbatim, "With all due respects to the Hollywood...the new Batman and Robin movie is playing in China," to which Todd responds, "OK." 

Whoever at the McCrory campaign had the bright idea to put this guy on Meet the Press, to debate an issue he still has no concept of, even as we're nearing the one-month anniversary of this law's passage, is probably working on his or her résumé right now.

2. The family of Akiel Denkins and the NC NAACP is requesting a federal investigation of his death. 

N.C. NAACP head Rev. William J. Barber II and legal counsel Irv Joyner held a press conference on Saturday calling for a federal investigation into the February 29 death of Akiel Denkins at the hands of Raleigh police officer D.C. Twiddy. Last week, Wake County District Attorney Lorrin Freeman declined to press charges against Twiddy.

"That information is not consistent with what the officer's narrative is about what occurred," Joyner said, but rather that it indicates he was running away or trying to defend himself, consistent with him being shot in the back. "There is no evidence from anybody that Akiel Denkins was armed, it is only the testimony of the officer indicating that he was armed and even the officer doesn't suggest that during the chase, [Denkins] pulled a gun and tried to shoot him."

[Denkins' family's attorney Priscilla] McKoy said that it appears to the people of the community in southeast Raleigh that police officers charged with serving and protecting them are above the law.

"If Officer Twiddy had been poor and black, or even just poor, he would be in jail right now, and he would have to prove his claim of self-defense before a jury, during a trial, in a court of law," she said. 
Meanwhile, the N&O's Barry Saunders has a good column out on the police response following Freeman's announcement, which was to swarm the Southeast Raleigh neighborhood where Denkins died with a police presence. 

Raleigh top cop Cassandra Deck-Brown has often said she favors community policing, in which officers interact with residents, get to know them as human being and not just as suspects. That was missing after Freeman’s decision, as residents and community leaders noted the increased police presence but no increased interaction. The officers in the cruisers and SUVs parked or cruised past slowly, eyeing residents warily.

By showing up en masse Wednesday, police and city brass sent the implicit message that they expected trouble of a type that had not occurred even as rumors flew in February that Denkins was shot in the back as he fled. They ought to be able to comprehend why some residents felt they were being antagonized, even mocked, by the show of force on standby.

3. Planes: 10,000. Birds: ...1?
click to enlarge The red-cockaded woodpecker, a McCrory voter hammering away at The Hollywood. - ANDY REAGO & CHRISSY MCCLARREN / FLICKR
  • Andy Reago & Chrissy McClarren / Flickr
  • The red-cockaded woodpecker, a McCrory voter hammering away at The Hollywood.


The N&O had an interesting story in Sunday's paper about a model airplane club in Chatham County being told to "vacate" the airstrip they use because it interferes with a new U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service plan to protect a rare species of bird, the red-cockaded woodpecker. The story is worth a read, and has some great quotes.

[State Sen. Valerie] Foushee and more than a 100 club members watched a parade of planes soar into the sky: replicas of WWII-era P-51 Mustangs, P-47 Thunderbolts and T-28 Trojans. Two model Sopwith Camels, of WWI and Red Baron fame, twisted and spun in a mock dog fight.

“We promote STEM,” said Foushee, referring to what educators call Science, Technology, Engineering and Math. “I’m standing here looking at a sky full of science and engineering and math.”

Birdwatchers and foresters were elated by the news.

“What do you think about the RCW’s at Jordan Lake...,” wrote district forester Mark Bost. “Only the biggest news to hit the NC Forest Service in forever??????”

Seems like the birds are finally set to pick up a long overdue W against their arch-nemesis, planes.

4. Triangle Brewing Company is closing up shop. 

After nine years, the owners of Durham's first microbrewery are putting it to rest as Triangle Brewing Company is closing on May 2. From the owners' press release:

We began in the earliest days of the craft beer boom that we are all still witness to today. At a time when names like Highland Brewing, Red Oak, and Carolina Brewing Company were far from household names, when Top of The Hill, Carolina Brewery, and Front Street Brewing were local curiosities, and Sierra Nevada and Samuel Adams were the alpha and omega of craft as far as most people were concerned...

We can never say thank you enough so we hope you’ll settle for hearing it just this once, Thank You. While we always brewed for us we never once lost sight of the fact that we were only able to do so because there were a great many people that agreed with us about what it meant to brew great beer.

So rather than sing songs of friendships forged and memories made we instead want to take this opportunity to invite you all for one more round. On Saturday, April 30th we will send this venture out in style. The breweries doors will open at 4pm and stay open until the last drop of beer is gone. We hope that you will all join us for one more Golden Moment, and accept our sincere and never ending gratitude for helping us live our dream while allowing us to be a part of your lives. We look forward to seeing you all then.
That's it. Have a good one. 

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