Monument to Monument march

Protesters cover a statue honoring Confederate soldiers in front of the Galveston County courthouse, 722 21st St. in Galveston, on Friday., June 19, 2020. Close to 100 people marched from the 1859 Ashton Villa, where a statue of a legislator holding the bill making Juneteenth a holiday stands, to the courthouse to call for the removal of the Confederate statue, named “Dignified Resignation.”

“In this enlightened age, there are few I believe, but what will acknowledge, that slavery as an institution is a moral and political evil in any country.”

Later I’ll identify the source of that quotation from 1858.

I acknowledge that for too long our history has been presented as if only white men did anything worthy of note. For that reason, when I was a state senator, I was proud to sponsor legislation establishing a Texas Juneteenth Commission for the purpose of erecting a monument to that iconic holiday at the Texas capitol.

Over the past several weeks, cities and counties and gutless politicians across Texas have sheepishly joined a nationwide stampede to remove Confederate monuments. They’ve been joined by a clueless rabble intent on destroying or defacing monuments — and not just Confederate ones.

If you understand our history you’ll know it isn’t simple. However, to the mobs tearing down and defacing icons across Texas and the nation, it's simple — all history is bad.

Even the media has been swept up in this crusade. CNN’s Angela Rye opined that Washington and Jefferson monuments “need to come down.” Perhaps taking a cue from Rye to expand their target list, the Lincoln Memorial Plaza and the World War II Memorial in Washington have been defaced with spray paint. Even a monument to Black soldiers who served in the Union Army was vandalized in Boston.

Here in Texas the same historical, perhaps hysterical, stupidity has emerged. A San Antonio Express News on-scene reporter tweeted that a Black Lives Matter protest was headed to the Alamo because of the “Confederate monument there.” No such monument exists. There's a Cenotaph monument to the Texian and Tejano Alamo defenders, and the next day it was defaced with spray paint.

We’ve moved far beyond the proverbial slippery slope.

Because it will be difficult to go back, we need definitive criteria going forward. Which monuments are to survive?

Let’s consider Abraham Lincoln. During one of the 1858 debates with Stephen Douglas, the future “Great Emancipator” explained: “I am not, nor ever have been, in favor of bringing about in any way the social and political equality of the white and black races” … “I as much as any other man am in favor of having the superior position assigned to the white race.”

Lincoln's prejudices weren’t limited to Blacks. During another debate with Douglas, Lincoln opined: “I understand that the people of Mexico are most decidedly a race of mongrels … there’s not one person there out of eight who is pure white.”

In Lincoln’s 1861 inaugural address, he endorsed a constitutional amendment that would forever protect slavery, saying the amendment should be “express and irrevocable.”

Lincoln's overriding goal was to save the Union, and he wrote to abolitionist Horace Greeley: “If I could save the Union without freeing any slaves, I would do it.”

Was Lincoln opposed to secession? Consider remarks he made in Congress in 1848:

“Any people anywhere, being inclined and having the power, have the right to rise up and shake off the existing government, and form one which suits them better. Nor is this right confined to cases in which the whole people of an existing government may choose to exercise it. Any portion of such people that can, may revolutionize, and make their own of so much territory as they inhabit.”

This is exactly what the seceding states did in 1861.

One more thing to consider: Buffalo soldiers were the iconic Black U.S. cavalrymen who served on the frontier during the Indian wars. Couldn’t Native Americans claim Buffalo Soldiers were participants in a genocidal war against an entire race of people — the American Plains Indians — resulting in their enslavement on reservations?

If we’re going to measure Confederates of 150 years ago by today’s standards, who’s next? Lincoln? Buffalo soldiers? Our nation’s founders? Our Texas heroes?

It appears, unfortunately, they are all next.

The source of that quote above?: U.S. Army Colonel, later Confederate General Robert E. Lee, in a letter written home while stationed on Texas frontier duty three years before the Civil War.

History isn’t simple at all.

Jerry Patterson is a retired Marine Vietnam veteran, former state senator, former Texas Land Commissioner and lives in Austin.

Recommended for you

(65) comments

David Hardee

This is the best rendition of the impurity and imperfections swirling in our society generating the many opposing factions over the images amid us.

These circular arguments have no real way of concluding except hate and destruction which are both the lowest and worst of human nature.

It is reasonable that the identity of those wanting to and benefiting from the continuing irritations have primarily self-interest of power and or money as their goal. I submit they are Political activists and the media. Individual names are too many to list. It is reasonable that proportionally the biggest cadre of narrators of irritations would be those who are shepherd(s) of the minority flocks.

The solution is one person at a time shaking free from groupthink and performing a self-evaluation with intent to construct a life that is based on the actual reality and not the selfish reality they built.

Charles Douglas

Mr. Patterson are asking questions now which I have been asking from the beginning, but the LEFT don't want to hear questions like those you are asking nor facts you pointed out in this Op-ed! Look at it from this point of view, a lie don't care who tells it. All a lie wants or cares about, IS THAT IT GETS TOLD! Progressives are scared to death that Trump will destroy the spell they've held over BLACK AND BROWN voters for ages, so they have doubled down on deceit, deception, using welfare, food stamps, along with just plain old lying in order to keep minorites in political bondage! If you tell a lie long enough, good enough, and get others to believe the lies told, much POWER, can be had and MAINTAINED! After all these years of voting Democratic, African-Americans are still holding their hats standing and waiting for better housing, better schools, better jobs, and better opportunities! How is this so? Lies! See, they pump minorities up to believe that conservatives are racist, ..that America is RACIST toward minorities, and that it needs to be burned down or torn down! They encourage the tearing down of statues, the changing names on schools, rewriting of books, deleting words out of our vocabulary, and fundamentally changing this nation to be more in line with other nations not as exceptional as this great nation is! Mllions and millions of BLACK and BROWN immigrants are pouring into this country for a better life every year! Why? Let me put it another way. Why are all these immigrants, not risking their lives to get into Russia, Cuba, or China? All these decades of Progressive control over cities like Baltimore, Detroit, Chicago, San Francisco, and African-Americans are still bringing up the rear,...still listening to Democratic promising and Racial Hyperbole, and STILL VOTING Democratic! Now! You tell me, can you now understand why Joe Biden was not afraid to get on national TV and put African-Americans down, by saying, " If yall don't vote for me, WHY, Y'all ain't BLACK?"

Emile Pope

Lincoln didn't lead a revolt against this country that led to hundreds of thousands of deaths. Lincoln didn't fight to preserve an abomination. At the end of the day the confederacy was an attack upon this nation simply to keep people enslaved. And a monument to it doesn't belong here.

Carlos Ponce

" At the end of the day the confederacy was an attack upon this nation simply to keep people enslaved." Simplistic view of a complex situation. There was more than that.

Carlos Ponce

"Lincoln didn't lead a revolt against this country that led to hundreds of thousands of deaths." Of course not, Emile. He was a Republican. It was Democrats who led a revolt against this country that led to hundreds of thousands of deaths (over 600,000).

Bailey Jones

"I acknowledge that for too long our history has been presented as if only white men did anything worthy of note. For that reason, when I was a state senator, I was proud to sponsor legislation establishing a Texas Juneteenth Commission for the purpose of erecting a monument to that iconic holiday at the Texas capitol."

That is just about the most useless statement on racial justice that I have ever read.

Charles Douglas

MINNEAPOLIS—When Medaria Arradondo became this city’s first black police chief in 2017, the department was in trouble. His predecessor had abruptly resigned after an officer killed an Australian woman who called for help, and a spate of shootings of minorities was straining an already fraught relationship with the city’s black community.

Chief Arradondo, a veteran police officer who once accused his own department of racist employment practices in a lawsuit, promised changes. He made data on the use of force available to the public, required officers to turn on body cameras at the beginning of each call and ended low-level marijuana enforcement.


Here we see what caused the death of Mr. George Floyd! We can see and observe an ultra dysfunctional police department on the loose, operated by a Democratic Chief of Police, in a city led by a Democratic Mayor, existing in a State led by a Democratic Governor! Last week we had a Democratic Speaker Of The House ( In name only )...state that Republicans were trying to get away with the murder of Mr. George Floyd, who was murdered in Minneapolis, by a rogue Cop with a history of problems which were ignored by Democrats! That was the most useless and the MOST idiotic statement concerning racial justice I have ever heard uttered out of an elected official's mouth, but it is to be expected from someone like Pelosi! She is the Chairman of the deceive "The MINORITIES Committee!"

Carlos Ponce

"I acknowledge that for too long our history has been presented as if only white men did anything worthy of note." That certainly does not reflect kindly on his alma mater where he received a degree in history in 1969 (Texas A & M). No wonder he was beaten by Dan Patrick for Lt. Gov. and George P. Bush for Land Commissioner.

David Hardee

Well, this thread is going into the circular arguing that constantly results in a griping, and then restating the basis for the gripe, then an additional detail and the griping and reiteration and adding continues on and on. That is what we get in most all attempts to have a debate instead of concentrating on a central point/theme.

History and statues are incidental. The history has been stated with every point of view. The reasons for historical acts have been sufficiently massage for their goods and bad(s). The historical persons have been qualified, dissected, and hypothesized totally.

So can we concentrate on today's acts? Our society is in chaos today over pluralism/elitism relation to racism, homophobic-ism etc-ism.

The confederate statues, murders of blacks by police are today's events. And the reasons are that today's reality is that those without sufficient power in all its forms get unfair and unequally treatment between the majority and several minorities. Major group issues are white majority has privileges and superiority and systemic pluralism/elitism/racism. Today's proof of these white faults are the dastardly deed of police to blacks, voter suppression, LGBT rights, stifling Immigration, wage inequities for women, opportunities favor whites, democracy creating problems that socialism will fix, distribution of wealth, and etc. All these problems are nested in the white majority mostly that subset of men.

Now can we stick to discussing the central theme? What to do about the systemic white superiority syndrome of men. Go with that discussion. There is a solution.

We call it Democracy - majority rules - law and order - law is not a person or his actions - nothings perfect - etc,, and conform or use the process to make changes without disturbing the peace.

Now discuss and recommend a better way.

Charles Douglas

Sure thing Mr. Hardee, I'll give you the only way available at this time, You might not want to hear this, but here is the answer, and the only hope we have: We are dealing with a spiritual force operating in the earth because of the FALL of man which is constantly perpetuating hate, selfishness, upheaval, and destruction! No, human power or efforts alone can defy these spiritual powers. We can talk about pulling down statues, the evils of slavery, the consequences of hate, and the inhumanity of racism until hell freezes over, but as long as a DEVIL is at liberty and loosed in this earth, there will also be oppression, depression, hate, persecution, and racism! He is the aurthor of them all! He came into the world to Steal, Kill and Destroy! He doesn't have favorites, for he HATES ALL MEN & he wants to KILL US ALL! There was hate and injustice in the world one hundred years ago, because the devil was here then, and there is hate and injustice today, becase he is still here! Our answer to the Devil is in Christ Jesus, ( 1 john 3:8 ) ..for he was manifested to DESTROY the works of the Devil, and to Seek and to save that which was lost! ( Luke 19:10 ). We need to spread his word, his virtues, attitude, and his love! We need to be a shiney memorial, dispensing love to one another which he gave freely onto us. You dont fight hate with hate, and ypu dont fight fire with fire! Now suppose you tell us how to eradicate evil and the works from HELL from the face of the earth. Go ahead, I'll listen, ...[wink]

David Hardee

Excellent start - the center is Society and the mores. But we can't let religion, especially a single religion, have the solution - because we will then begin comparing and evaluating religions and the institutions similar in having a specific set of their God/prophet/minister/etc. teaching that impact on their particular members/constituents/etc. We have to find that element that effects and forms the psyche of every citizen (human) and that is the place we find the ROOT(S) good/bad to make the universal effects needed and wanted.

Jack Cross

I'm concerned about black lives mattering, I'm concerned that too much attention is paid to tearing down statues and burning down business putting people out of work.

While this is a noble cause, it takes attention away from the 100 shooting a couple of weeks ago on a single weekend where 14 people were killed including 3 young kids.

I'm also concerned about 73 percent of babies being born out of wedlock, they tell kids raised in a single family do poorly in school. George Floyd life matters, there is hardly any argument about that, but all the young kids, some as young as 14 shooting into homes and cars in LaMarque matter too.

I guess my point is that I agree with the George Ford killing, but how does the burning and looting advance the lives of young black kids that have nothing to do with the police. How can both black and white people who support black lives matter movement be taken seriously when they do all this destruction over a unjust police killing and then ignore the self destruction in black communities all across America.

The doors of opportunity is open to all, but we all have to take responsibility of our choices in life.

Emile Pope

You agree with the George Ford killing???

David Hardee

Charles got us a good point of more isolating our attention for debate. His suggestion is the beliefs of our society relative to view/judging our selves in relation to our neighbors' belief as to the conduct/acts we commit and the attitudes and purposes of those acts. Acts attitudes and purposes can have broad ranges and will be on occasions not best. The challenge is not perfection but frequency and severity. If the frequency and severity is too anti-social (devious, criminal, totally selfish, etc) the society is chaotic at least and dastardly at worst, and not the best possible.

We need another start or refinement of Charles's suggested start.

Come on - more comments!

Charles Douglas

Yeah but mine is the.only method which will work against the orchestrator of all dysfunctional evils plaguing mankind on this earth! The simple reason Satan is running "BUCK" wild in the earth today is because we have humans here who think they know more than God! I will give you and example, ..all the phony polls on who will win the election in November! Don't you believe them, ...but go ahead if you must, just remember when November gets here you were told! I knew months ahead of time this PANDERMIC was going to happen, so I stocked up on stuff before there was a hoard on everything, just like I knew before nobody had a clue, that Satan was going to attack Trump and make an all out effort to supplant his people in place after the takeover! ( hint: It pays to worship where God prophesies by his SPIRIT! Don't much get by the Holy Ghost! ) [wink]

Emile Pope

David Hardee

Emile, If the destruction of history is anyone's source of pride then those minds are jaded with the sociopathic disease/desire of vengeance and unredeemable. These sociopath/destroyers should be placed securely away and isolated from ability to infect others. History will record their destructive event and the end result is that their vengeance will be recorded in history. Effectively they accomplish nothing more than the preservation of what they intended to destroy with their vengeance as a footnote.

Carlos Ponce

I heard the group Lady Antebellum wants to change their name because "antebellum" refers to the time before the Civil War. They wanted "Lady A" but that name was taken.

Two suggestions:

Lady Anti-bellum: "Anti-bellum" meaning they're against war. But some may construe that meaning they were against the specific war that led to emancipation.

Second choice:

Lady Antifa.

Jim Forsythe

They will be known as Lady A.

Carlos Ponce

The name "Lady A" is already taken. Is Jim okay with a white band usurping the name of a Black entertainer?

"Seattle-based blues singer Lady A, who is Black, blasted the country group in an Instagram post, saying: 'How can you say Black Lives Matter and put your knee on the neck of another Black artist? I'm not mad..I am however not giving up my name, my brand I worked hard for. #GodWillFightMyBattle #TheRealLadyA #LadyABluesSoulFunkGospelArtist #TheTruthIsLoud"

She told Rolling Stone that no one from the group — featuring members Charles Kelley, Hillary Scott and Dave Haywood — reached out to her prior to revealing the name change.

'This is my life,' she told the magazine. 'Lady A is my brand, I’ve used it for over 20 years, and I’m proud of what I’ve done. This is too much right now'."

Jim Forsythe

Carlos, you are a few days behind. They worked with Lady A and now both of them are going to use the name.

"The country group formerly known as Lady Antebellum will keep its new name, Lady A, after connecting with blues singer Anita White who has been using that same name for more than 20 years, the band's publicist Tyne Parrish confirmed Tuesday to USA TODAY."

"Both parties intend to continue using the name."

Being called Lady A is not new for the band as their fans have called them Lady A from almost the very first time they played.

The name of the band came from the style of the house that they first used in some of their videos. Antebellum homes refer to large, elegant mansions.

Carlos Ponce

No matter, I don't listen to either.

Jim Forsythe

If you are not a fan, why did you post in the first place?

Both are very good performers.

Carlos Ponce

It was just a suggestion, Jim.

Dan Freeman

The decisions about statues commemorating the Confederacy can be simple. Most were constructed more than 30 years after the Civil War. There was widespread belief in the words of Robert E. Lee who feared they would “keep open the sores of war.” We should paraphrase Lincoln’s words “With malice toward none; with charity for all; … let us … bind up the nation's wounds.”

The bulk of the statues went up after 1890 as a testament to Jim Crow laws and a reinforcement of segregation. It follows that all such statues erected as assertions of white supremacy must come down. If they were put up by the Ku Klux Klan or the United Daughters of the Confederacy, they must be removed. Mississippi has acknowledged the oppression represented by its former flag. Texans can do better, Mr. Patterson.

Carlos Ponce

"Most were constructed more than 30 years after the Civil War." During Reconstruction it would not be wise to erect a statue with all those carpetbaggers and scalawags running around!

"The bulk of the statues went up after 1890 as a testament to Jim Crow laws." Opinion, not fact.

"such statues erected as assertions of white supremacy " Opinion not fact.

Question for Dan: How many statues were erected by the KKK.

Being erected by the United Daughters of the Confederacy is not grounds for removal. From their website:

"The United Daughters of the Confederacy totally denounces any individual or group that promotes racial divisiveness or white supremacy. And we call on these people to cease using Confederate symbols for their abhorrent and reprehensible purposes. We are saddened that some people find anything connected with the Confederacy to be offensive. Our Confederate ancestors were and are Americans. We as an Organization do not sit in judgment of them nor do we impose the standards of the 19th century on Americans of the 21st century."

Dan Freeman

I will cite the most egregious of many examples, the Stone Mountain memorial to the “Lost Cause.” I quote from a portion of “A Condensed History of the Stone Mountain Carving: “The carving on the side of Stone Mountain has a controversial history that involves strong connections to white supremacy, Confederate Lost Cause mythology, and anti-Civil Rights sentiments. From the beginning of efforts to create the carving in 1914, early proponents of the carving had strong connections to the Ku Klux Klan and openly supported Klan politics. Helen Plane, leader of the United Daughters of the Confederacy and credited with beginning efforts to create the initial carving, openly praised the Klan and even proposed Klansmen be incorporated in the carving. Sam Venable, owner of Stone Mountain, sanctioned Klan meetings on the mountain and remained highly involved with the group for many years.” This is one of many such memorials to the anti-American movements represented by these memorials.

Remember reconstruction was responsible for public health, free public education, and widespread civil rights. When reconstruction was overturned beginning about 1877, the Southern Democrats abetted by the Lily White Movement in the Republican party, these public goods were restricted to the white population. It is interesting that in Texas, US history ends with Appomattox and restarts in 1877.

Carlos Ponce

"The United Daughters of the Confederacy totally denounces any individual or group that promotes racial divisiveness or white supremacy. And we call on these people to cease using Confederate symbols for their abhorrent and reprehensible purposes. We are saddened that some people find anything connected with the Confederacy to be offensive. Our Confederate ancestors were and are Americans. We as an Organization do not sit in judgment of them nor do we impose the standards of the 19th century on Americans of the 21st century."

Charles Douglas

Ahhhhhhh-Phooey! Even Staunch Democratic Supporter Leo Terrell, who is a successful civil rights lawyer says ,..all of what we are seeing taking place now is just a clever distraction by the LEFT! I never thought I would see the day Mr. Terrell would quit lying and covering up for the deceptions and lies perpetuated by Progressives, but he has. He is catching much criticism and flack from his peers, associates, and family for doing so too! Leo says, it is okay to be concerned, for BLACK LIVES ...lost at the hands of the police. He says that he often sues the police,... with him being a civil rights attorney, but when thousands of young BLACK kids, and family members are killed in our inner-cities controlled for years by Democrats, and the LEFT says nothing very telling of what their real intentions and feelings are! Leo said when Al Sharpton only comes out race-baiting at certain times ...we know he is getting paid! It does make a man wonder! It is like saying you care about one son but could give a (#$÷) about that child's twin brother! It does not wash! Leo went on to say what I have being screaming for a long time, that the LEFT is profitting off the backs of minorities, and are helping to keep them in want, lack, and in need! This is advantageous for the LEFT, because then they can keep blaming others for the troubles, the woes, the poverty, the unemployment, and sorry conditions minorities are known to live in, under their leadership mainly because they ( minorities ) keep voting for DEMOCRATS!

Ted Gillis

David, “majority rules” is not a democracy, when the majority creates rules or laws to marginalize the minority. That is why the civil rights act was passed in the first place.

Carlos Ponce

The House of Representatives works under "majority rules".

When it comes to non-presidential elections, "majority rules".

When it comes to the Electoral College which actually elects the president, "majority rules".

In SCOTUS, "majority rules".

In a true democracy, "majority rules".

And how was the Civil Rights Act passed? MAJORITY RULES.

Ted Gillis

To protect a minority!

Funny how that works.

Carlos Ponce

Majority rules!

Wayne D Holt

It's really pretty simple for most people, no matter what color their skin happens to be.

If you want justice, if you want equality of opportunity, if you want a peaceful and productive society, if you want a country where your character determines how you're judged...for most Americans, that's something we can stand shoulder to shoulder in solidarity with and figure out how to get to that place in this generation.

If you want a pass on looting, on burning down businesses, on shouting down and shutting down any opinion that differs with you, on race baiting to promote discord and conflict, most Americans are going to just walk away, as we should.

We have in this moment a great opportunity to make a quantum leap in correcting what has been allowed to fester in our justice system's treatment of minorities. There are those behind the scenes who want to take this moment and redirect it into a condemnation of everything America stands for or has ever been. Nothing will be accomplished with that effort but the destruction of the last best hope for freedom and equality for all.

Bailey Jones

We have in this moment a great opportunity to make a quantum leap in correcting what has been allowed to fester in our justice system's treatment of minorities. There are those behind the scenes who want to take this moment and redirect it into a condemnation of everything going on except our justice system's treatment of minorities. Nothing will be accomplished with that effort but the destruction of the last best hope for freedom and equality for all.

Stop making excuses and fix our justice system's treatment of minorities.

Carlos Ponce

Relatively speaking we are not talking about a substantial number, Bailey. Bad Cops are brought to the courtroom. Why are some acquitted? Prosecution over charging. Aim for what you can legally prove, not what the mob demands. The Wendy's shooting is such a case. Based on the reason SCOTUS case penned by Ruth Bader Ginsberg, the officer should be acquitted. Look for the officer's lawyers to seek a change of venue.

Bailey Jones

Is that another excuse? If it's a small problem it should be easy to fix, am I right? So fix it.

The number of Catholic priests who bugger little boys is quite small, or so I've been told. Yet there has been a culture of denial and secrecy within the church for decades. Same thing. Small number of perps, large culture of denial and a lack of transparency and accountability.

Interestingly, both institutions are often defended by the same people.

Stop making excuses and fix the problem.

Carlos Ponce

Relatively speaking there are far more non-Catholic clergy that molest the young. Now THAT'S a problem.

Back on topic, the laws on the books are sufficient. The problem lies with police bureaucracy. "Bad cop? I see NOTHING, NOTHING!"

Expect more nationwide riots when the Atlanta officer is finally acquitted. The case warrants persecution on manslaughter charges, not first degree murder. Prosecution over reach to appease the mob.

Jim Forsythe

"Sleeping in a drive-thru must not end in death,"

Carlos Ponce

Sleeping in a drive thru, fighting police, giving the officer a concussion, stealing the officer's taser, firing the taser at him will not end well.

Jim Forsythe

This is the reason we need to reform policing. The way we are doing policing is not the best way. what we are doing now. Using chock holds, death because of sleeping in a drive-thru, man dies when someone calls the police because he looked suspicious. Training and professionals in mental health and such are what is needed. Until we are honest and start changing, the results will be the same.

"All you're saying is, "There's a problem, but I don't care."

Carlos Ponce

So Jim says when a person being arrested fights the police, gives an officer a concussion, steals his taser, runs, turns and shoots the taser at the officer's head that is a call for police reform????

As Uncle Joe says: "COME ON, MAN!"

Jim Forsythe

No, that's not what I said. When 2 officers can not keep one person from doing what he did, there is a problem. The important thing is to keep it from getting to the point of deadly force.

Training is needed.

All over the USA, we do not train in a standard way.

The reason why training is important is that this is not the first time this has happened for a shooting that involved officer Rolfe. Maybe if officer Rolfe had been required to receive training after the Jackie Jermaine Harris shooting, the outcome for Rayshard Brooks would have different.

Details have emerged about the past behavior of the Atlanta police officer who fatally shot Rayshard Brooks in the back. Apparently, Garrett Rolfe, who has been fired from the force and is currently facing felony murder and other charges for shooting and killing Brooks, has been named as one of three officers involved in a 2015 incident where an unarmed, Black man named Jackie Jermaine Harris was also shot by police. Harris was shot by officers during a car chase and arrest, according to court records and police incident reports.

The officers fired five shots, and Harris was struck once in the back, according to court testimony.

"None of the police put in the report that they shot the man, none of them," according to a transcript of the hearing. "And they sent him to Grady [Hospital] with collapsed lungs and everything, and the report doesn't mention it.

Carlos Ponce

Bottom line, Jim, in the 2015 incident in which Jackie Jermaine Harris had stolen a truck which he used to ram the patrol car, then roll the truck over the patrol car, the three officers were cleared of the shooting of Jackie Jermaine Harris, who survived the incident.

Feb 21, 2020

Chief Erica Shields, City of Atlanta Police Department

My office has thoroughly investigated the following matter:

Officers involved: Mauricio Castro, Carl Harp, Garrett Rolfe

Date of incident: August 21, 2015

Allegation: Officer involved shooting

Victim: Jackie Harris

We have determined that there was no criminal conduct related to the actions of the above named officer(s). Therefore, our investigation of the matter is concluded, and no criminal charges will be brought against them by the Fulton County Office of the District Attorney.

Paul Howard, District Attorney

Carlos Ponce

Jackie Jermaine Harris had used the stolen truck to try to run over the officers (He did run over the patrol car.) Under USA v Fokker, firing upon Jackie Jermaine Harris was justified since the officers lives were in danger or at least serous injury sustained. Opinion from Justice Ruth Bader Ginsberg.

Yes, Jackie Jermaine Harris was not armed with a firearm but running over someone can still kill a person. Or does Jim not think being run over by a truck could result in death or serious injury?

Jim Forsythe

You missed the major point. An officer lying on an official document meeds retraining. As it was a Hung jury, he could be retried.

Garrett Rolfe, 27, who among three officers who shot and wounded Jackie Jermaine Harris after the chase, but they never reported firing their weapons.

Carlos Ponce

"they never reported firing their weapons"

If you hear the dash cam conversation with the police lieutenant you will hear them reporting gunfire.

“He was gonna hit me or one of you with the truck," you can hear Rolfe say in the video. "I mean the shots were through the front windshield.”

Rolfe: “You never know, I mean.”

Lt. “No, I was right here. I saw it. Y’all did everything y’all could to make him stop.”

Other Officer: “I did tase him. I tased him first.”

Rolfe: “You know how the media is now.”

Rolfe: “{Expletive} they’re not gonna screw us or anything are they?”

Lt. “You’re fine. Don’t worry about that right now. OK. You’re fine.”

Rolfe: {Expletive}

Lt. “You’re fine.”

Rolfe: “God, the way the atmosphere is right now.”

Rolfe: “I mean, God, with the atmosphere. They’re gonna charge us. Ah, {expletive} The way Paul Howard is?”

Other Officer: “It’s a carjacked vehicle, on the HIT…”

Rolfe: “It’s all on video. It’s all on video. It’s all on video.”

Rolfe: “In my mind, I know it was justified. But it’s just with way with the atmosphere now.”

Other Officer: “Don’t worry about it. Don’s second guess yourself. Don’t act nervous. Just do what you gotta do.”

Rolfe: “I mean I’m surprisingly calm.”

The dashcam audio and video are part of the official report, Jim.

To bring up this incident from 5 years earlier is a red herring since the officers were all cleared by the district attorney, Paul Howard.

Joe Mancuso

Carlos Ponce Jun 30, 2020 11:47pm

"Under USA v Fokker..."

"Opinion from Justice Ruth Bader Ginsberg."

I'd like to read this opinion. Can you please provide a link?

Jim Forsythe

You are trying to read something into that's not part of the investigation.

On the official investigation report, none of the officers wrote down that sho0te were fired.

We will see what the outcome is, in the months to come

Carlos Ponce

Easier to comprehend in Tennessee v. Garner (1985) with justice Byron White writing the decision.

"Under the Fourth Amendment of the U.S. Constitution, a police officer may use deadly force to prevent the escape of a fleeing suspect only if the officer has a good-faith belief that the suspect poses a significant threat of death or serious physical injury to the officer or others."

Carlos Ponce

Jim writes, "You are trying to read something into that's not part of the investigation." The dashcam video and audio was part of the investigation.

Joe Mancuso

No, Carlos, let's stay with your first source.

The only case I can find for "USA v FOKKER" is actually "US v FOKKER SERVICES B.V" and has nothing to do with use of force by the police. It has to do with Deferred Prosecution Agreements and was settled on April 5, 2016 in the United States Court of Appeals for the Distric of Columbia Circuit.

As, this case was never heard by the Supreme Court, Justice Ginsberg couldn't have written the opinion.

So, please provide the link for your source. I'm sure I can comprehend it.

Carlos Ponce

Well excuse me for trying to make things easy for you.

Jim Forsythe

It's not about the dashcam but about the honesty of the officers. "none of the officers wrote down that shots were fired"

Carlos Ponce

Looks like Jim is having red herring for breakfast, lunch, supper and even a midnight snack.

Carlos Ponce

Based on the recent SCOTUS case....

Joe Mancuso

Both of the following are from this thread.

Carlos Ponce Jun 29, 2020 8:16pm

"Based on the reason [sic] SCOTUS case penned by Ruth Bader Ginsberg [sic], the officer should be acquitted"

Carlos Ponce Jun 29, 2020 8:20pm

"Based on the recent SCOTUS case...."

Carlos, I'm assuming you're referring to the "Kisela v Hughes" ruling that was decided on April 2, 2018.

The Supreme Court granted a policeman qualified immunity for a shooting. Justice Ginsburg DISSENTED in this case. And, she didn't author the dissent, Judge Sotomayor did with RBG joining.

So, unless you're referring to a different case, the police in the Rayshard Brooks shooting would not be acquitted based on the opinion penned by RBG since she didn't write the opinion and actually joined in the dissent.

If I'm mistaken about the case you're referring to, please provide a link to the case you are referring to.

Carlos Ponce

Tennessee v. Garner (1985) with justice Byron White writing the decision.

Joe Mancuso

So Carlos Ponce is LYING!

Carlos Ponce Jul 1, 2020 9:25am

"Well excuse me for trying to make things easy for you."

Carlos Ponce Jul 1, 2020 10:54am

And then you repost the source you cited for just one of the cases after you got caught LYING!

Both of those replies were in place of citing a source for either of the 2 lawsuits that you originally based your arguments on.

You're not trying to make things easy for me, you're trying to get out of being caught, YET AGAIN, LYING! And twice in the same thread! RBG didn't write the opinions in either of the first two cases you reference and the first case you referenced has absolutely nothing to do with the topic of the conversation!

Well, Carlos, it's mighty LIBERAL of you to LIE about things and think it's alright. I'm going to slightly change one of your lines, "They call our candidate (Biden) a liar but won't use the same standard for a local contributor (Carlos)".

If you don't have enough confidence in what you're posting and have to LIE to prove your point, maybe you need to rethink your point!

So, prove me wrong about you LYING, Carlos. Show me the sources for the first two cases you referenced, not the one you cited after you got caught LYING. And, by the way, since you always seem to make a big deal out of being a "Christian" conservative, you should already know that LYING is a venial sin!

And, yes Gary, we're once again at the point where Carlos's arguments will probably get silly. So, Carlos, until you provide the requested sources, I'll not be continuing this conversation.

So Carlos Ponce is LYING!

Carlos Ponce

Joe you asked me for a link, I provided one. Next time you ask me to help you find something I'm not going to answer.

Bailey Jones

This is really simple. We have a problem with racial justice in this country. Any response to that statement other than "let's fix the problem" is simply an admission that you aren't interested in fixing the problem.

"There's a problem, but you're rioting."

"There's a problem, but you're kneeling during my football game."

"There's a problem, but you're tearing down confederate statues."

"There's a problem, but you're talking about defunding the police."

"There's a problem, but it's Democrat controlled cities."

"There's a problem, but it's just a few cops."

"There's a problem, but policing is hard, you try it."


What you're all really saying is, "There's a problem, but I don't care."

Carlos Ponce

rioting - is against the law

kneeling during my football game - No football game going on during the kneeling unless they want to end the play.. They're kneeling during the National anthem. There is kneeling after the game as Christian players from both teams gather at the 50 yard line to give thanks to God.... but you don't hear about that.

tearing down confederate statues - Confederate soldiers are considered veterans and marring or destroying their statues is against the law.

defunding the police - they can't see the ramifications of that. So sad.

Democrat controlled cities - Now THAT'S a problem.

a few cops - Look at the numbers. Over 99% of peace officers are doing a great job!

"There's a problem, but policing is hard, you try it." It is.

Bailey Jones

Police reform is about the police. It's not the police who are rioting, so what does that matter? It's not the police who are tearing down your precious white power monuments, so what does that matter? It's not the police who are tweaking your privilege during NFL games, so what does that matter?

None of this has anything to do with the police or police reform. All you're saying is, "There's a problem, but I don't care."

Carlos Ponce

Bailey, in the past as a student did the teacher ever punish an entire class for the actions of one or a few students? That's not a good practice. That sounds like what you want to do: punish all police nationwide because of the misdeeds of a few.

Bailey Jones

All you're saying is, "There's a problem, but I don't care."

Welcome to the discussion.

Keep it Clean. Please avoid obscene, vulgar, lewd, racist or sexually-oriented language.
Don't Threaten. Threats of harming another person will not be tolerated.
Be Truthful. Don't knowingly lie about anyone or anything.
Be Nice. No racism, sexism or any sort of -ism that is degrading to another person.
Be Proactive. Use the 'Report' link on each comment to let us know of abusive posts.
Share with Us. We'd love to hear eyewitness accounts, the history behind an article.

Thank you for reading!

Please log in, or sign up for a new account and purchase a subscription to read or post comments.