Wednesday, January 27, 2016

DeRay McKesson on The Daily Show: Misstating facts again

trevor noah
Deray McKesson on The Daily Show with Trevor Noah
Deray Mckesson was a guest on The Daily Show last night with Trevor Noah.  Noah first points out that McKesson is wearing an Apple watch, which Noah opines is odd for someone who is oppressed.  I agree.  Then Noah addresses the latest project from Campaign Zero, of which Mckesson is a founder.  McKesson says his organization requested police policies from 100 large US cities in order to assess their policies on excessive force.  Noah inquires about a screenshot from a 2004 Houston Police Department document he had taken from Campaign Zero's site - the document contained many redactions where use of force policies should have been.

McKesson: "Police are refusing to even tell us how they engage in the (illegible).
Trevor Noah: "Why would they want to tell black people, or anyone, how not to get shot?"
McKesson: "They don't want to be held accountable, that's why they are not even telling us."
McKesson: "We didn't know that they were going to hide the policies from us."

McKesson is talking about the firearm portion of the use of force policies.

 HPD has had the same basic policies in place since 1984 (see .pdf below) - and these policies can be found online. Also, part of the HPD's use of force policies are outlined here on page 5.  The Texas Attorney General has apparently ruled that some of their guidelines are redacted in order to maintain officer safety.  Between these two documents, it should be easy to figure out their policies.  The three blanks left on your police force survey next to "Houston", are definitely answered within the pages I've provided.

I also want to address one other thing McKesson brought up during his interview:

McKesson: "Black people were not taught to read for 200 years."

Nor were most people in the world prior to the 1900's.  In 1800, only 12% of the world's population was literate.  Furthermore, according to Henry Louis Gates, "almost half of all of the slaves arriving in this country were shipped here from two main sources: Senegambia [...] and Angola."  Also, "5 million slaves who came to the Western Hemisphere from Angola; more than half went to Brazil. Far fewer, in terms of absolute numbers, came to the U.S. (since the U.S. received dramatically fewer numbers of slaves than did Brazil, or even Haiti or Cuba or Jamaica, for instance). But the percentage from Angola was comparatively high."

In Africa and South-East Asia more than 90% of the population never went to school as of 1870. In Angola today, only 33% of the country, aged 65+, are literate. In the Central African Republic, the literacy rate is only 13%.

In the United States in 1900, the literacy rate was 95% for US-born whites, 86% for foreign-born whites, and 55% for blacks; by 1920, the rates had increased to 98%, 87% and 77%, respectively.