Eric Holder’s damn punks: Phillip Morris

Posted: March 18, 2015 by gamegetterII in Uncategorized

By Phillip Morris, The Plain Dealer

Eric Holder’s damn punks: Phillip Morris

Eric HolderU.S. Attorney General Eric Holder on the shooting of two Ferguson, Missouri police officers: “This was not someone trying to bring healing to Ferguson,” he said. “This was a damn punk who was trying to sow discord in an area that’s trying to get its act together.”Carolyn Kaster, Associated Press

CLEVELAND, Ohio — Damn punk!

That’s a good start. Perhaps we’re getting somewhere. Precise language matters when cultural norms are explored or uncomfortable conversations broached. Perhaps we can build something useful from U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder’s widely noted Ferguson invective.

Holder was in the ballpark when he used the description “damn punk” to describe the person who shot and wounded two police officers in Ferguson, Missouri early Thursday morning as a protest ended.

Holder didn’t know the identity, race or sex of the shooter when he issued his angry insult. But he knew enough to make a calculated judgment. He knew that the would-be killer needed to be called out and labeled in a way that few leading black officials have been willing to use in branding the lethal parasites who routinely terrorize and destabilize urban communities.

It’s about time.

“This was not someone trying to bring healing to Ferguson. This was a damn punk who was trying to sow discord in an area that’s trying to get its act together and trying to bring together a community that has been fractured for too long,” he said.

That’s one useful way of looking at the attack. But it may not have been as Machiavellian or orchestrated as Holder deduced. Eric Frein, for instance, the survivalist accused of killing one Pennsylvania state trooper and severely wounding another last fall, more neatly fits the description of a sociopath, a damn punk with intent to kill cops and destabilize communities.

Frein reportedly confessed to authorities that he killed the troopers in an attempt to “wake up people” and to force change in government. The Ferguson shooter appears to be a different kind of damn punk, but potentially just as lethal.

This was a damn punk who was trying to sow discord in an area that’s trying to get its act together.

St. Louis County law enforcement officials say that Jeffrey Williams, 20, the man arrested in connection with the officers’ shootings, told them he was actually aiming at someone who had robbed him earlier. The Ferguson cops just happened to get in the way of the bullets.

Skeptical investigators, much like Holder, still believe that the attack was an ambush aimed at law enforcement — even though Williams was not recognized by the organized protesters as one of their own. Who knows?

What is important here, however, is to cultivate a greater focus on the damn punks who terrorize American streets. While it is currently en vogue to demonize police, America’s inner cities teem with ruthless young men who routinely kill and maim with a shocking disregard for life — not because of twisted political motives.

And that is why the passion contained in Holder’s anger must be amplified. The damn punk — or punks — of whom Holder spoke represent a far greater threat to urban America than the police departments now under community fire and U.S. Department of Justice scrutiny.

Jeffrey Williams may be innocent of the felony assault charges he faces in Ferguson. Time will tell. He may indeed be the non-productive, harmless man his family described for The New York Times — an unemployed male who lives with his pregnant girlfriend and spends his time playing and betting on video basketball games.

Or, he may be a young man who would fire recklessly into a crowd to avenge himself.

Or, he may be a would-be cop killer.

Regardless, America loses on all counts.

That’s why Holder’s contempt for damn punks must become a more pronounced sentiment for fed-up communities with long histories of ignoring or tolerating serious internal threats. Each successive generation of young punks makes it more difficult to break concentric circles of dysfunction, hopelessness, despair and violence.

It’s time those communities, under siege by these punks, started publicly identifying and rejecting those whose sole purpose is to kill, steal, leach and destroy. Damn punks are the core of the problem — not blue uniforms.

Thank you, Mr. Holder.

  1. iamajuicer says:

    The thing that bothers me the most is, it is not a black issue. I grew up in a poor white neighborhood. Most of us obeyed the law but there would be a few cops that would stop us for no reason, they would ask us questions and start to falsely accuse us of stuff. There were times one of us in our neighborhood would get fined for something that we didn’t do. It was cheaper to pay the fine because if you fought it you usually lost and the police would harrass you more. You learned which police offers to get out of site of and which ones were a part of the community very quick. When these cops were asking you questions you did not move at all or they would start postuering. They would ask misleading questions trying to get you to confess things you knew nothing about. We were fortunate because most of the police officers were not like that. But the few that were caused a lot of misery.


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