Tuesday, June 09, 2015

Deep In The Heart of Texas

Eric Casebolt subdues the "threat" of unarmed 15 year-old girl
Is this truly 21st century America? Pinch me please because sometimes I really have to wonder.

In the wake of the shocking videotape of McKinney, Texas police corporal Eric Casebolt (pictured left) violently throwing 15 year-old Dajerria Becton (also pictured left, face down) to the ground and pulling a loaded handgun on two teenage boys who tried to come to her aid, national outrage is once again focused on the violent physical overreaction of a white American police officer in yet another confrontation with unarmed black citizens.

Kudos to Brandon Brooks, the 15 year-old teenager who filmed the incident. According to an article on ThinkProgress.org, Brooks observed, “I think a bunch of white parents were angry that a bunch of black kids who don’t live in the neighborhood were in the pool,” he said. However, he maintains, many of the kids who were handcuffed and told to get on the ground were ‘innocent bystanders.’"

So much already has been, and will be, said about this (latest) incident on mainstream and social media, as well as around water coolers, locker rooms and in homes around the country, that there's nothing I can add other than to say how profoundly shocked I am at the treatment of this child.

It was just last Friday June 5th that I blogged about chicanery in Texas, just hours before a local resident named Sean Toon called 911 in response to a confrontation that broke out at the Craig Ranch North Community Pool between 19 year-old Tatyana Rhodes, who was hosting a barbecue at the pool, and two local white women who allegedly began yelling racial slurs at the guests.

According to reports, the women were upset that a large number of young people of color (including Hispanics and people of Arab descent) had crashed the poolside party by hopping over the fences and began directing derogatory racial slurs at some of the young attendees.

Tracey Carver-Albritton
When Rhodes intervened and confronted the two woman about their words, a woman she identified in a video interview as "Kate" slapped her in the face before the other woman, tentatively identified on Twitter as a Bank of America employee named Tracey Carver-Allbritton (pictured left); physically began attacking Rhodes.

As you likely know by now, it all unraveled from there before corporal Eric Casebolt arrived on the scene; according to an article on Heavy.com, Casebolt was one of a group of officers named in a 2008 federal lawsuit "for racial profiling, harassment, failure to render aid and sexual assault." after he yanked down the pants of a black motorist who'd been stopped at the side of a road and began shining a flash light at his anus to search for contraband. (I guess that's what he was searching for anyway...)

So he does have a documented history of excessive physical confrontation with people of color as a police officer.

According to former FBI Assistant Director Tom Fuentes who reviewed the widely-circulated video of the incident outside the pool in McKinney, in an interview with CNN said Casebolt was, “...out of control. He clearly has no self-discipline. He lost control of his temper. Nothing good can happen at that point. Thankfully he didn’t shoot somebody,”

So for the first time in the brief history of this humble blog, we have a three-way tie for this week's George Lincoln Rockwell Award; which recognizes those distinguished individuals who best emulate the divisive philosophy of the founder of the American Nazi Party.

Corporal Eric Casebolt, the woman identified as "Kate" who slapped Tayana Rhodes, and Tracey Carver-Allbritton who is seen on video joining "Kate" in physically attacking the teenager, will all share in this week's "Rockwell".

The disturbing nature of the incident at the community pool in McKinney, Texas has attracted so much media attention that it seems to have overshadowed the news that former North Charleston South Carolina police officer Michael Slager was indicted on murder charges earlier today by a grand jury after cell phone video of him shooting unarmed Walter Scott in the back after fleeing a traffic stop on foot.

No trial date has been announced and it's obviously a long way before Slager appears in court, but it's important to note the significance of a white police officer facing murder charges for the unjustified use of deadly force to kill an unarmed African-American man in this nation; a country that as of now, does not actually keep accurate records of the number of people killed by police each year.

Eric Casebolt has been placed on leave while the McKinney Police Department conducts an investigation, but time will tell if he actually faces charges for his lapse in professional behavior.

Want to weigh in? Click this link to a petition calling for Casebolt to be fired posted on the ColorOfChange.org Website.

But for now he, "Kate" and Tracey Carver-Allbritton give new meaning to the lyrics, "Deep in the Heart of Texas." 

10 comments:

Land-Frau said...

isn't there a saying...innocent before prooven guilty? emotions are cooking high on this incident but it would be wise to wait for the outcome of investigations before condemning people an make them suspect to prosecution and violence. A clear head and unbiased point of view is asked for.

D.D. Walker said...

One thing you cant argue with is a video. Multiple videos. You can clearly hear whats being said and done...and by whom. So I agree...innocent until proven guilty... but that doesn't mean you ignore what's clear and obvious for the sake of being politically correct. There IS no justification for a grown woman, black or white, to become physical with a child. There is NO justification for ANYONE to insult another human being by using racial slurs and inciting racist comments... again, ALL CLEARLY HEARD in the VIDEO, not someones personal account only, but a VIDEO. There is NO justification for a half naked, unarmed, 14 year child of ANY color to be manhandled in THAT fashion by a police officer. Period. The VIDEO clearly shows the officers only going after the black kids... The WHITE CHILD that filmed the video gave an interview where he states the same. So yes, we are all for innocent until proven guilty... but until you see your own unarmed child wrangled onto the ground screaming for her mommy for no valid reason while a grown man pulls her hair and kneels on her back... Don't hide behind political correctness and "due process". Right is right and wrong is wrong. Period. They condemned themselves them minute they used racial slurs, told the black kids to "go back to their section 8 housing" and/or became overly violent with children ON CAMERA. So is the lens lying too? Just because someone may be the same color as you, doesn't always make them right. To me, its biased to see something ON CAMERA, and you still don't acknowledge it was wrong simply because you may not know what led up to it. Is there truly a reason that you could hear to justify a grown white woman calling black kids niggers? Is there a reason you could hear that would justify that cop being so violently physical with an unarmed child? If you can think of a reason... that's an entirely different post within itself... and I digress...

Patrick Bush Jr said...

It is amazing that you choose to say innocent until proven guilty. Why do you think african Americans are upset. The rule for us is guilty we must prove our innocence. Far to often we are shot by these judge dreads. Thus denying us the right to be tried by are peers. If guilty then guilty. See you just shoot dogs when they do bad. They cannot decipher right from wrong. That is how blacks are viewed. Why do you think they call us animals.

Trish said...

"Innocent until proven guilty" should more readily apply to citizens - in this case the children at the party - than to out of control police officers. He has resigned. His own police department has disowned him. Go away and troll your hate elsewhere.

Barbara White said...

Funny no one mention that the children were innocent until proven guilty. There were white children that didn't live in that community and black children that did live there not one officer bothered to check. They came there with the mindset that the people of color were the problem eventhough you have two women that look 50 slapping a child. Its so convenient to cry file... SHAME ON YOU!!!!!!! The police were called for a fight, why didn't they talk to the parties involved in the altercation. Because once they got there they decided these children....CHILDREN..... were guilty.

culturegeist said...

Land-Frau: Innocent Until Proven Guilty isn't just a saying. It's a foundation of the American legal system that dictates a person is assumed to be innocent of any wrongdoing until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law.

Unfortunately corporal Eric Casebolt totally ignored that when he pulled up to the scene and began running around like he'd just been choppered into a hot LZ in Vietnam.

Go back and check the links I posted, we're talking about a police officer who was previously the subject of a federal lawsuit for overt and excessive use of force against an African-American motorist who had the misfortune to have been stopped on the side of the road.

Had Casebolt actually acted with the professionalism expected of someone who holds a badge, he wouldn't have just pulled up to the scene and started assaulting teenagers without consulting the officers who were already on sight and speaking calmly with some of the teens who'd attended the party.

I respect your opinion and appreciate you taking the time to comment, but I believe on some level you are made uncomfortable when presented with a clear case of not just inherent and blatant bias on the part of law enforcement, but a shocking example of the two-tier justice system that exists in the United States today. One that's based on race and ethnicity.

Did you read the comments of the 15 year-old of Brandon Brooks (I believe that's his name), the young white man who videotaped the incident? He reported that the police completely ignored him as he walked around taping the incident while they not only assaulted an unarmed 15 year-old teenage girl in a bikini, but chased down and handcuffed totally innocent bystanders who'd attended the party but had the misfortune to have had dark skin.

What this incident shows is a clear example of a nationwide epidemic that has corrupted the ranks of law enforcement in America, undermined their authority and damaged their ability to work in communities of color. This incident demonstrates that SOME police officers need no provocation or justification other than to simply see someone with dark skin to begin exercising use of force that is totally unwarranted for the situation at hand.

This incident shows a total failure of command and control by superior officers at the scene, and demonstrates what happens when the internalized racial bias of an individual police officer is unchecked by the agency that hired him and allowed to run rampant as an agent of the municipal authority tasked with protecting the public.

Perhaps you missed the part of the video when he pulled out a loaded handgun and pointed it directly at two teenage boys. As you wrote, a "clear and unbiased" point of view was called for in this situation; but that's not what we got from corporal Casebolt.

As for the two adult women identified as "Kate" and Tracey Carver-Allbritton who (as witnesses on the scene attest) initiated the incident by using derogatory racial epithets and physically attacking a 19 year-old girl, maybe you need to lecture them about the meaning of 'Innocent Until Proven Guilty'.

culturegeist said...

Land-Frau: A couple other thoughts. As DD Walker's comments above demonstrate, those women had NO business putting their hands on that child in the first place; nor did this nut-bag Casebolt. Unfortunately what's clear in this situation as Patrick Bush's comments point out; these women and officer Casebolt did not see these kids as humans at all - they dismissed them as sub-human.

Before you direct your ire at me for expressing my opinion on this incident which has sparked outrage around the globe amongst people of all races and backgrounds, I suggest you take some time to examine the legal reasoning of the Supreme Court in cases like Dred Scott v Sanford (1857) which reinforce the concept of African-Americans not as humans entitled to equal access to the rights and freedoms laid out in the Constitution; but, as provisions in the text of Article I, Section 2 of the original Constitution state, "...three fifths of all other persons [i.e slaves]"

What millions of people around the globe have witnessed in the outrageous behavior of corporal Casebolt in McKinney, Texas is the byproduct of generations of the mass internalization of this idea (reinforced by the highest court in the land) of people of color not being human.

So you keep on listening to vacant, uniformed extremist media figureheads like Megyn Kelly on Fox News who had the audacity to claim that that 15 year-old Dajerria Becton, the girl thrown to the ground and assaulted by corporal Casebolt, was 'no angel' in an effort to demean her character in violation of the principle of "Innocent Until Proven Guilty" you evidently hold in such high esteem.

By all means keep on doing so if it makes your conscience feel better about what took place at the Craig Ranch North Community Pool last Friday evening.

Like many in this country, I'm not sure you're really prepared to grasp the deeper impacts of the larger societal truths of what happened there. And for that I don't blame you at all; you're simply a product of the divided American culture you were raised in and I feel nothing but pity for you and your delusional perceptions about the society you live in. -Culturegeist

Land-Frau said...

I do not live in your country and what I read about the racial incidents makes me shudder and happy that I do not live there. you do no longer live in the land of the free. what I wanted to point out is,that the internet is not the bible and scenes in a video CLIP are not always what they seem to be. just wanted to look at the incident objectively. no use to call me a hater for that. fortunately I see people,not colour of skin but you in the USA with your hate towards each other have lost that ability. I am not defending myself, just give you my point of view and btw..the mistreated " child" is supposed to be 20 years old ( which in no case gives a person of law the right to treat her like that) and the one white woman...maybe,and I say maybe,because I have not been there..fortunatlely..was just trying to seperate the fighters? I wish all of you peace and a clear head!t

ihateracist said...

Yea benefit only reserved for white people. Michael Brown Tamir Rice, Walter Scott and others don't get that same benefit.

Kaysplace said...

No, the girl who was dragged by the cop was 15. She is not the same girl who hosted the party. White and black teens said the white women yelled racial slurs at the people of color. When the teens admonished them for their language, one hit the 19 year old hosting the party. This is the eyewitness account of black and white teens who were present.