Friday, June 12, 2015

The Week End

Apparently mercury was in retrograde which may explain a few things both in my personal life and the world in which I live.

The insanity that surrounded the Police assault on the pool party in Texas has made me laugh my ass off as the Officer was undergoing stress which is why abusing and assaulting bathing suit wearing teens was the apparent excuse he has made to explain his behavior and actions. And given that is Texas expect him to turn up in another precinct near you in the near future. Darren Wilson had similar history.  Remember him?

Then we have a quick report that once again Texas the land down under (ironically the world of Australia is less bizarre than this State) has disbarred a Prosecutor for misconduct. Say it isn't so. The story of this case was profiled in many Texas Journals and I first heard of it in Grits for Breakfast where a passing note was made about this development.  Let's hope for more.

Then today I woke up to the bizarre story of a Spokane woman who is the head of the NAACP there and she is white.  Well one would say that this is a step forward for racial equality and the idea of color blindness in where white individuals can foster and encourage black equal rights. Remember is is against the law to discriminate hiring on the basis of color so sure I will go with it. Well the problem there is that she tells everyone she is genetically black and that seems to be the problem. I have to admit the ## Twitters have been hilarious comparing this clearly confused woman with Caitlyn Jenner.

Just to note that gender identity vs racial identity are relevant issues. Read Black Like Me ? This is the book where journalist, John Howard Griffin literally changed "color" to experience racism first hand. Or what about Michael Jackson and his unrelenting pursuit of "whiteness?" And yes color like gender is a element of one's genetic composition, so while you can change the outside the chemistry model inside remains the same. So, yes, it is a relevant comparison despite the twitters that say otherwise.

And my favorite and last is the never ending saga of a "heroic" firefighter who after being found not guilty for beating a homeless man apparently has extended his range to include cab drivers. Well he deserved it apparently. Heard of just stiffing the fare? Makes a point without all the arrests. And once again Unions of municipal employers are usually quite supportive and then again not.

Union won’t help firefighter accused in attack on cabbie

The Seattle Times
June 11, 2015
By Christine Clarridge

Bellevue Police say a video depicts former Seattle firefighter Scott Bullene allegedly assaulting a cab driver and taking his cell phone on December 22, 2014. The incident can be seen in the bottom-center of the frame.

The union that backed Scott Bullene, a former Seattle firefighter who was seeking reinstatement, has withdrawn support following the release of a video showing Bullene allegedly attacking a cabdriver during a road-rage incident.

The Seattle firefighters’ union has dropped its support of former firefighter Scott Bullene in his effort to win his job back after being fired last year when he was charged with attacking homeless men.

Scott Bullene, 46, was fired in August after he was charged with malicious harassment and assault, but was acquitted by a Seattle Municipal Court jury. The Seattle Fire Fighters Union, Local 27, then filed a grievance appealing his termination.

But last month, as Bullene was driving to an employment-arbitration hearing, he was arrested by Bellevue police and subsequently charged with second-degree robbery, accused of assaulting a cabdriver and stealing his phone. Police say the Dec. 22 incident in downtown Bellevue was captured on video.

Bullene pleaded not guilty to the robbery charge and is scheduled for a case-setting hearing July 9, according to the King County Prosecuting Attorney’s Office.
“I believe we will establish that the taxi driver was the aggressor,” Bullene’s attorney, David Allen, wrote in an email. “Scott was legally defending himself at the time and no robbery occurred.”

Related
Police video: Scott Bullene allegedly assaults cab driver in Bellevue

Kenny Stuart, the president of the Seattle Fire Fighters Union, could not be reached for comment, but he had said the union would wait to learn more about the robbery charge before deciding whether to continue its support of Bullene.

“We represent our members, but we represent the integrity of the process as well,” Stuart told The Seattle Times last month.

Confirmation that the union had dropped its grievance came from Paul Olsen, the director of the employment section in the Seattle City Attorney’s Office.

Olsen said while Bullene may still have legal options to pursue reinstatement, it is “most likely the end of the road for Mr. Bullene.”

Bullene and fellow firefighter Robert Howell were fired in August after they were accused of assaulting several homeless people March 15, 2014, at Seattle’s Occidental Park.

In charging documents, the City Attorney’s Office said Bullene, Howell and Bullene’s girlfriend, Mia Jarvinen, had left a Seattle Sounders game when they came across people sleeping on the Fallen Firefighters Memorial and became outraged. They were accused of kicking and hitting several individuals while allegedly yelling about being taxpayers who were sick of the drain “homeless” people placed on society.

Bullene, Howell and Jarvinen were all acquitted of the assault Dec. 10.

Twelve days later, according to Bellevue police, Bullene allegedly assaulted a cabdriver at the intersection of Northeast Fourth Street and 106th Avenue Northeast.

The cabdriver told police he had been cut off by the driver of an Audi Q5 and then, while they were both stopped at a red light, the driver of the Audi rolled down his window, pointed his middle finger at the cabdriver, cursed him, and spat in his direction, the charging documents say.

When the cabdriver got out of his car to take a picture of the Audi driver with his cellphone, the driver of the Audi allegedly got out his car and pushed the cabdriver “hard on his chest,” trying to force the man back into his cab, court documents say. The two men tussled until the driver of the Audi snatched the cabdriver’s phone and drove off, the charging document says.

A video of the incident, released by Bellevue police to The Times under a state public-disclosure request, shows two men tussling in the street before one man is seen pushing the second man into his vehicle before driving off.

Police and prosecutors say that after the encounter, the Audi driver left the phone at a nearby business, then tried to report its location anonymously.

Police tracked the vehicle’s license-plate number and found it registered to Bullene’s girlfriend, Jarvinen. Court documents say the victim and several witnesses identified Bullene as a potential suspect in the road-rage incident.

The city says the union is still providing legal representation to Howell, who is also trying to win back his job as a Seattle firefighter.

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