Police called on state representative for canvassing while black

Originally published at: https://boingboing.net/2018/07/05/police-called-on-state-represe.html


Glad everyone walked away from this. I’m trying to teach my boys not to call the men with guns unless you actually need to call the men with guns.

ETA: … with the specific corollary instruction that loud music or engines ARE NOT capital crimes


From the description, her behavior would appear a lot like someone casing houses for later robbery. Doing it so obviously would be a good indication that’s not what she was doing, though. That said, I can’t think of a quick differential between what she was doing and casing houses.

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Damn, a couple of JWs came to my door the other day. I didn’t realize they were routinely risking their lives in doing so. People’s paranoia is reaching epic heights.


We have periods of walking scammers in my neighborhood. When persons show up that have no identifying clothing, name tags, actual identification or a torn piece of paper with scribbles on it instead of a clipboard etc. I’m calling the man.

Most politicians canvassing here usually have big buttons on, a bag of swag and a clipboard of brochures. Clearly not a threat (depending on whether or not that person is on the same political team)


she asked him if she could meet the woman who made the call, but she was not available.

Never to busy to be a racist bigot, but got no time to splain your self.


I make the phrase shorter because I figure that’s how often they’d actually benefit from making such a call.


Roger That!


I’m roughly 98.3% sure the caller was white.


lotsa time to be ashamed and hide and not unlearn their racism, though.


It’s so sad it’s come to this.

I think this is one of those things where one would need to rule in planning a robbery, rather than rule out planning a robbery. Was she looking in windows, taking pictures? Going into people’s back yards? Trying doors? No? Then not casing. Otherwise it’s just casual racism.


how about the fact that she was knocking on the front door and talking to everyone who was home? or giving them campaign materials if they wanted it?

what she was doing bears almost no resemblance to “casing” the neighborhood and the slightest bit of attention to her actions would have told anyone that.

personally i think white people who call the police on people of color for things like this should be charged with attempted assault when the person of color ends up unharmed and assault or attempted murder when innocent people end up injured or dead as a result of it.


It only just occurred to me - what if this wasn’t garden variety racist paranoia? What if she just meant to interfere with political canvassing?


It is very possible.

Someone above quoted from the BB post about the racial identity of the caller not being white and they said I am 98% sure they were white…which is probably not off base even if it is still an assumption. right?

So when we see this…and the look of this woman (forget her skin color, think about her appearance in terms of clothing and style)…its clear she wasn’t a potential burglar. If I saw someone like this in my neighborhood I would assume: politician, sales-person, religious acolyte, etc.

The person who called has only two rational reasons…racism or political. everyone else can make their own determination of the percentage likelihood of either one. I don’t have enough facts, its all speculative (even if reasonable speculation).


“Got the 5-oh called on me while drumming up votes. Selfie of me with said policeman NOT killing me! #whowouldathunkit


Before that happens, we’d need to see police involved shootings treated as assault. At some point, the one weilding the gun needs to be held accountable.


She was reported to be interacting with her phone a lot after each house. That could be taking pictures. Our police department has asked people to report these behaviors. I get emails from our neighborhood watch contact when there’s someone going door-to-door. Sometimes they’re of the nature ‘just a sales person with X company’ or the more shady “I’m trying to raise money for Y event”. In our town, you are required to register for a permit to go door-to-door. You get a bedge with your picture which you are required to keep on your person in a conspicuous location. Company reps often wear clothing with their company name/logo. Meter readers wear clothing stating what they are in bright colors and park a vehicle near the entrace to the community that shows the name of the utility and that they are reading meters. When politicians canvas, they bring along one of their supporters from the neighborhood to introduce them.

These processes and behaviors are designed to help distinguish someone legitimate from someone shady. Registering for a permit is particularly helpful as the police have access to the database and can correlate reports with registered people to rule out criminal intent–and to save dispatching an officer to investigate what is legitimate activity.

The photo in the article doesn’t show me if she was doing any of those things, so I can’t make any assumptions about what the individual who reported her saw or did not see. @navarro makes those assumptions and jumps to some rather odd conclusions and I’d rather not do that.

How’s that? Criminals can be identified by their clothing?

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true that! but this shit of calling 911 on people of color who are doing things which are either legal or harmless has got to stop and ought to be criminalized whether or not the police shooters get held accountable or not.


From the sound of the description, ones imagination can create a scene with all sorts of filled in details that appear to be many things.

If we were to put a white person in our imagined scene, derived from the text plus our own imaginations for which we and not others are responsible, what would it “look” like then?