The Morning Roundup: Things Are Bad | News
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Thursday, July 7, 2016

The Morning Roundup: Things Are Bad

Posted by on Thu, Jul 7, 2016 at 8:44 AM

click to enlarge Spotted in Durham this morning by our own Allison Hussey. - ALLISON HUSSEY
  • Allison Hussey
  • Spotted in Durham this morning by our own Allison Hussey.

Good morning. The world is still mostly trash. 

1. Last night, someone else was killed by the police.

Not even forty-eight hours after the death of Alton Sterling in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, Philando Castile - a 32-year old Minneapolis-area man, a legal gun owner who complied with the police's orders, a school cafeteria worker for over a decade - was shot and killed by a police officer in his car, in front of his girlfriend (who filmed the aftermath of the encounter and streamed it on Facebook live) and his young daughter.

From the Washington Post

The video startled police reform advocates across the nation, who expressed a mixture of frustration and fatigue.

“Philando Castile should be alive today,” DeRay Mckesson, a prominent member of the Black Lives Matter movement who worked in nearby Minneapolis, wrote in a text message early Thursday morning.

“I don’t know what else to say,” Mckesson said of the video. “He should be alive today. He is not alive because a police officer murdered him in cold blood.”

Castile is at least the 506th person shot and killed by police so far in 2016, according to a Washington Post database that tracks such shootings.

[...]

At one point, an officer can be heard talking to Reynolds’s daughter.

“Can you stand right here, sweetie?” a male officer says.

“I’m gonna get my mommy’s purse,” the girl says, her face flashing on screen as she picks up her mother’s still-recording phone.

“Is that your phone?” the male officer asks.

The video then cuts to Reynolds sitting in the back of a squad car.

“Don’t be scared,” she tells her daughter, before addressing the camera.

“My daughter just witnessed this,” she says. “The police just shot him for no apparent reason, no reason at all.”

“It’s okay, Mommy,” the little girl says, as her mother sobs. “It’s okay. I’m right here with you.”

“Y’all please pray for us,” Reynolds says at the end of the video. “I ask everybody on Facebook, everybody that’s watching, everybody that’s tuned in, please pray for us.”

I don't even know what to say about this. The video is just heartbreaking. We should all be ashamed to live in a country that allows this to happen with such frequency and inhumanity, and continues to do nothing about it, other than provide even more cover for terrible, godawful police officers who shirk their training and their duty to the people they're supposed to protect.

This is a crisis and has been for years. We all need to be angered by it, and do something about it. 

2. Meanwhile in Wake County...

A Raleigh man attempted to shoot a Wake County deputy and made it into custody alive.

A deputy was patrolling the area of Old Creedmoor Road and Raytown Road Tuesday when a motorist said a man was standing near the road and pointing a shotgun at drivers, Wake County Sheriff Donnie Harrison said.

The deputy located the man, later identified as 62-year-old William Bruce Ray, and approached him.

Ray pulled out a handgun after the deputy wrestled the shotgun from him.

Ray fired a shot from the handgun during the altercation. The round did not strike anyone.

The deputy was able to apprehend Ray and take him into custody.

Ray was charged with assaulting a law enforcement officer with a firearm and damage to personal property.

Harrison said the Sheriff’s Office is investigating why Ray was pointing a gun at passing cars but said Ray had been drinking heavily.

Can you guess his race?

3. Hand of Hope considering legal action against Raleigh for rejecting rezoning request.

The N&O's Andy Specht has a good tidbit about Hand of Hope's quest to open a pregnancy crisis center right next to an abortion clinic in west Raleigh, which was rejected on Tuesday night.

“We’ve got a ton of lawyers ready and willing to interpret why they failed us,” said Tonya Baker Nelson, director of A Hand of Hope, which encourages pregnant women to pursue alternatives to abortion. “They’re looking into our legal options.”

Nelson said the group’s request complied with Raleigh’s development guidelines. The city’s Planning Commission – residents appointed by the council to judge whether such land-use requests comply with codes – unanimously recommended approval of the request.

[...]

“The Raleigh City Council has discriminated against A Hand of Hope Pregnancy Center by denying it the right to use its own property as it sees fit, because it offers women’s healthcare and alternatives to abortion,” Tami Fitzgerald, the group’s executive director, said in a statement.

How much do you want to bet the legislature jumps into this issue if it isn't resolved by the start of the next session?

4. What's it like to get ejected from a Trump rally?

Logan Smith, communications director of the local liberal advocacy group Progress NC, got ejected from the Trump rally for yelling, "Trump's hands are so small! They're so tiny! They're like a baby's hands!" which is the funniest reason anyone's ever been ejected from a Trump event. (You can see the video at the end of our coverage of the event.)

The N&O talked to him about it:

Smith was among several protesters who interrupted Tuesday’s Trump rally, although the number of disruptions was smaller than at previous events in North Carolina. Smith said he was inspired by similar protests at Trump’s Dorton Arena rally several months ago.

“It’s very important that no matter where Trump goes to spew his hatred and extremism, that he is challenged,” Smith said. “I think that all Americans have a responsibility to stand up against bigotry when they see it.”

So why did Smith pick Trump’s hands as the subject of his outburst?

“With a guy like Trump, his ego is his driving force, and the most effective way in my view to challenge him is to make fun of him and point out what an absurd buffoon of a man he is,” he said. “He has already shown his diminutive hands get very under his skin when people bring that up.”

God bless you, Logan. 

That's all for today. Try to keep your head up.

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