Here are a couple of facts that the media is either downplaying or ignoring completely.
1. Eric Garner was breaking the law and had done so repeatedly. He had 31 previous arrests and was reported by shopkeepers in the area for selling cigarettes illegally. We can argue all day that it is stupid that he can’t sell cigarettes he already bought but Eric Garner was never going to settle that issue with a group of officers.
2. Eric Garner could have avoided all of this by not resisting arrest. Period.
3. The choke-hold is NOT illegal. It is impermissible. There is a difference.
4. Eric Garner was not choked to death, he had no strangulation marks or broken bones in his neck. The guy was 350-lbs, had asthma and a heart condition. Not necessarily in cop-fighting shape. The coroner stated that the choke-hold, as well as compression to the chest, caused Mr. Garner’s death. That compression? Could it be a 350-lbs man handcuffed and laying on his chest after struggling with cops.
According to medical examiner spokeswoman Julie Bolcer, Garner was killed by “…the compression of his chest and prone positioning during physical restraint by police… Asthma, heart disease and obesity were contributing factors…”
The medical examiner, while ruling the death a homicide, said there was no damage to neck or windpipe and so therefore it isn’t a chokehold.
5. He could breathe. Saying, “I can’t breathe” is a good indication you can. I’ve almost choked to death, trust me, you can’t talk .Was he in distress? Absolutely.
6. The Grand Jury clearly did not see an intent to kill Garner. In fact, no can argue he tried to kill him. Maybe manslaughter would be appropriate but it’s pretty doubtful a grand jury would view this as anything more than an accidental death that occurred after a confrontation with police.
7. Cops are not hunting black men in the street.
O’Reilly then pulled out two statistics that seemingly hurt Smiley’s allegations that police officers are indiscriminately targeting black people.
“Do you know how many blacks were killed by police by gunfire last year?” O’Reilly asked.
“Off the top of my head, I don’t,” Smiley replied.
“The number is 123,” O’Reilly said. “Do you know how many whites were killed? 326.”
“There are 43 million-plus black Americans — 123 were killed by police gunfire,” he continued. “There isn’t an epidemic of this. … But when it happens it’s extremely troubling.”
When a stunned Smiley asked O’Reilly if he really doesn’t see a “pattern” on the issue, the Fox News host replied, “I don’t because the statistics don’t say there’s a pattern.”
“Again, 123 deaths out of 43 million-plus is minuscule — every death is a tragedy, I’m with you,” he added. “Three times as many whites are shot by police than blacks. I don’t think it’s hunting down blacks.”
8. There will be no DOJ Civil Rights charges. Folks, and this is important, in order to have a Civil Rights charge brought you need to prove the officer intended to deprive Garner of his Civil Rights because of his race. You need that extra requirement for the case to be a civil rights violation in these circumstances. You don’t have that.
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