Here’s a fact:  the dead woman was unarmed.  Another fact:

“All the shots in the incident, which began about 2:14 p.m., were fired by police trying to stop her.”

Here’s spin:

Afterward, House Speaker John A. Boehner (R-Ohio) took to Twitter to thank the police. “We all owe the Capitol Police a debt of gratitude for their work every day; no finer examples of professionalism & bravery,” Boehner wrote.

On the House floor, legislators rose for a round of applause after Minority Whip Steny H. Hoyer (D-Md.) praised Capitol Police for providing protection for the Capitol complex.

House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-Va.) spoke after the round of applause, telling the police force, “We really appreciate it.”

The chamber also stood and applauded for the staff of the House Sergeant at Arms.


Now, this hardly seems a time to applaud.  It appears a mentally ill woman with a one year old child in her car was gunned down.  What on earth is there to be happy about?

I don’t know enough about this to fault the police, but just as a prima facie matter, killing – shooting to death – an unarmed woman with a child in her car is extremely troubling.

Some days I just don’t know what has happened to us.  I see and interact with normal, ordinary and humble people every day and can’t imagine any of them thinking that this incident was anything to be applauded.  Is there something in the water in DC?  Is everyone there so drunk with power and privilege that they can witness something like this and their knee jerk reaction is to curry favor with the law and order constituency by mindless flattery, totally out of place under the circumstances?

I hope someone brings some sanity to bear on this incident in the coming days, other than me.



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4 responses to “Spin

  1. Wow. Just wow…. Reminds me of the cheering crowds in Phoenix when Jodi Arias was found guilty of pre-meditated murder. As if ending her life, basically, would somehow bring Travis back…..Same people are cheering an unarmed woman with a one year old child being gunned down. These people have a void that will never be filled.


  2. I had the same reaction, especially as I am very near DC and will be going to that very area for rehearsals on Saturday – if it is not still closed off. The justifications and assurances about the state of the officers came too quickly and glibly, as if this woman’s life was not as important as that of the police. I have not heard that she was mentally ill but this was my immediate suspicion. Did they shoot to disable the car first, or even to disable her, or was it automatically “shoot to kill”?
    I have heard no commentary about the woman’s possible state of mind, only gungho celebration of the victory of the police – paranoia and hypersensitivity appear to have obliterated normal concern. I would like to have heard the way in which the woman was addressed during the initial altercation. Police are often not endowed with great communication and interactional skills and a heavy-handed, even threatening – to her – approach from the get-go might have set off an extreme reaction in an already disturbed individual.
    We shall see what the next few days reveal behind all the self-righteous posturing…….


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