By Jeff Childers
Good morning C&C, it’s Monday, a brand-new week! Your roundup today includes: San Fransisco’s DA does NOT yield to the mob over security guard who killed homeless black trans person; more stores close in downtown San Fran; Kennedy questions government honesty and accuses the CIA of killing his uncle; serious first-world problems like manipulative, nudging tip screens; Rufo likes the legislative session; shun the new Moderna “happy meal” shots; masker starts to catch on; mumbler makes case for re-election; and your amusing Monday video to start the week off right.
🗞 *THE C&C ARMY POST* 🗞
🪖 Yielding to popular demand from some Florida readers, I took a look at Florida’s new package of elections security laws (SB 7050), and everything looks fine to me. I couldn’t find any bans on citizen lawsuits or on getting copies of election data. My longer answer, along with helpful links to double-check me, is available in this tweet:
I wonder if that some of the issues folks were concerned about might have been removed in amendments? If I overlooked something, let me know (preferably using line numbers from the bill) and I’ll check it out.
🗞💬 *WORLD NEWS AND COMMENTARY* 💬🗞
🔥 Among all the news of the New York subway strangling, trans protesting, and a veritable flood of clips of riots and daylight sneak attacks, it’s easy to miss the good news when it comes along. Like last week’s New York Times story headlined, “Guard Who Fatally Shot Man at a Walgreens Won’t Be Charged, Prosecutor Says.”
You might remember Brooke Jenkins, San Fransisco’s replacement District Attorney, after woke S.F. citizens recalled Jenkins’ useless Soros-funded predecessor, Chesa Boudin (if that’s his real name).
Jenkins seems to have gotten the message.
Michael Anthony, 33, is a security guard at a downtown San Fransisco Walgreens. On April 27th, officers responded to a report of a shooting at his Walgreens and found a victim, later identified as Banko Brown, who had been shot and killed.
Brown was a homeless “trans man” (a biological woman) of color. Security guard Anthony was briefly arrested for homicide.
Then, highly-organized and well-funded leftist activists went berserk after Anthony was released without charges. Here is one example of the high-production-value materials immediately available to leftist protestors in San Fransisco:
Can you imagine what would happen if folks put up similar banners labeled, “Justice for Ashli Babbit?“ Just saying.
In a statement last Monday, District Attorney Jenkins said that charges were dropped because prosecutors could not prove to a jury beyond a reasonable doubt that the guard was guilty of a crime after they reviewed statements from witnesses and the guard, along with video footage of the April 27 episode at a store on Market Street.
Here’s Jenkins explaining her decision not to prosecute:
Over last week, a swarm of intersecting victim groups furiously clamored for Anthony’s prompt prosecution, organizing passionate protests, indignant parades, irate crowds berating the board of supervisors meetings, and fiery letters to the District Attorney’s office demanding justice.
Note also, for later, that protestors have essentially shut down the Walgreens, which has had to put up security wire in front of the store. It’s too bad that some of this passion and money devoted to Banko’s death couldn’t have been used to get her some mental health treatment that she obviously needed. Where were all Banko’s supporters when she was wandering the streets yelling at birds?
DA Jenkins refused to release the video, citing it as evidence in an ongoing investigation. It’s smart of her not to release it, since activists would just use it to make online memes and even more expensive flyers and banners.
What we do know about the video is that it apparently shows that homeless Banko — I know you’re going to find this hard to believe — probably assaulted Mr. Anthony after being stopped for shoplifting. But Ms. Jenkins said in a statement, “This was a shoplifting that, really, based on the facts, turned into and escalated into a robbery, and the armed security guard did, ultimately, end up using lethal force. The evidence clearly shows that the suspect believed he was in mortal danger and acted in self-defense.”
Ms. Jenkins called the Brown’s killing a “tragedy,” but said, “We cannot bring forward charges when there is credible evidence of reasonable self-defense. Doing so would be unethical and create false hope for a successful prosecution.”
What we don’t know is whether Banko was hopped up on free, City-provided testosterone. I’d give it even odds.
🔥 This next story might have something to do with the sudden outbreak of sanity in the San Fransisco DA’s office. The San Fransisco Standard ran a story last week headlined, “Nordstrom to Shutter Both Downtown San Francisco Stores, Citing Difficult Conditions.”
Oh, no, not another one!
It’s okay, it’s more cheap downtown real estate coming up for sale! Great buying opportunities for woke billionaires. The two Nordstrom stores together occupy almost 360,000 square feet of retail space.
In an email last Tuesday, Nordstrom’s chief retail officer explained to employees that “the dynamics of the downtown San Francisco market have changed dramatically over the past several years, impacting customer foot traffic to our stores and our ability to operate successfully.”
Haha, the “dynamics” of downtown, that’s a good one. He means like the exciting “dynamic” situation when a homeless lunatic like Banko Brown suddenly and unexpectedly assaults you in broad daylight for no reason.
The Westfield mall’s owner was more blunt and less politically correct. His statement said the Nordstroms’ closure “underscores the deteriorating situation in Downtown San Francisco.” It explained, without mincing words, “a growing number of retailers and businesses are leaving the area due to the unsafe conditions for customers, retailers, and employees, coupled with the fact that these significant issues are preventing an economic recovery of the area.”
He’s not wrong. A few weeks ago, Whole Foods closed its flagship downtown store at Eighth and Market streets, citing concerns about staff safety and deteriorating conditions in the area. The Standard said since the start of the pandemic, some twenty (20) retailers have now shuttered stores or announced closures in the Union Square area.
The fleeing retailers include popular fixtures like Disney, Abercrombie, Saks, DSW, and Banana Republic. Mayor London Breed has been criticized for letting San Fransisco’s downtown fall apart, which seems to be the inevitable result when you have one-party democrat leadership.
Meanwhile, billionaires like Peter Thiel are complaining that Florida’s booming real estate is too expensive. What could the difference be?
🔥 Robert Kennedy, Jr.’s presidential run sure has some interesting features. Kennedy — a long-time, reliable liberal on nearly every issue except vaccines — is still getting plenty of eyeballs despite being told he will never debate Joe Biden in the democrat primaries. And he’s saying some pretty remarkable anti-big-government stuff that I’m guessing most democrats have not heard too often before:
Kennedy is on some kind of a roll. Yesterday, the New York Post ran a startling story headlined, “Robert Kennedy Jr. Blames CIA for JFK Assassination, Fueling Controversial Claim.”
During an interview yesterday with John Catsimatidis on WABC 770 AM’s “Cats Roundtable,” Kennedy explained, “There is overwhelming evidence that the CIA was involved in his murder. I think it’s beyond a reasonable doubt at this point.” He repeated, “The evidence is overwhelming that the CIA was involved in the murder, and in the cover-up.”
Obviously, Kennedy isn’t the only one who believes that the CIA was involved in the JFK assassination. Nor has the democrat party been a stranger to big-government skepticism; after all, democrats came up with all the slogans like “question authority,” “loyal opposition,” and “dissent is patriotism.” But since the Obama administration, when the federal government exploded with new permanent employee hires at a breakneck pace, democrats have seemed just fine with trusting the deep state to support their policy goals.
RFK’s suggestion that the government can’t, in fact, be trusted to tell the truth is a radical, narrative-smashing notion to ordinary democrats. And his head-on assault against the deep state is either deeply heroic or insanely reckless.
🔥 The Wall Street Journal ran a hard-hitting piece this weekend headlined, “Tipping at Self-Checkout Has Customers Crying ‘Emotional Blackmail’.”
You know, they might have a point. After I just had to CHECK MYSELF OUT, what am I tipping for, exactly? How deftly the checkout person swiveled the screen around so I could tap the buttons?
I get it that service people are underpaid, and I am a generous tipper. But I can also understand people’s frustrations when there isn’t really so much “service” as much as “self-service.”
On the other hand, if it helps small business, I’m all for it. But the Journal pointed out the special and keenly obvious case of … the Airport.
The Journal told the story of Garrett Bemiller, who “enjoyed not removing his AirPods” or even making eye contact with anyone when buying an early-morning bottle of water at a gift shop at Newark Liberty International Airport a few weeks ago. He was caught off-guard when he saw the option pop up on the self-checkout screen prompting him to add 10% to 20% to his $6 bottle of water.
“Just the prompt in general is a bit of emotional blackmail,” said the 26-year-old, who works in public relations in New York City. He skipped the tip.
I think the Journal is on to something. There is a kind of guilty pressure to not pick that dreadful, off by itself “skip” button. It should be labeled “bad person.” That would be more accurate about how it makes you feel.
The ubiquitous tip screen is part of the set of psychological tools, honed during the pandemic, called “nudging.” Some of us are getting tired of being nudged every time we turn around. I think they’re getting close to discovering the outer limits of “nudging.”
🔥 Anti-CRT expert Chris Rufo seemed pleased with Florida’s recent legislative session, pointing out another one that yesterday’s list omitted: higher education laws to help shed odious DEI programming:
Like I told you, it was a historic legislative session.
💉 Now there’s one more thing to avoid. Moderna’s next corporate chapter involves brewing up a “combo” shot, kind of like a happy meal, except less happy, that in one annual shot will cover a whole slew of viruses like covid, flu, RSV, plus any other ones they can think to jam in there at no extra charge. And don’t worry, all those crazy mixed-up vaccines will definitely be good for your immune system. Really terrific.
Also don’t worry about the week you spend in bed after the “unhappy meal” shot, that’s not a sign that the jab just terribly hurt your body, it just shows it’s working.
I hated to do that to you, but you need to know what to watch out for.
😷 Progress! We’re down to one at a time at this point.
Michelle and I attended a packed art festival this weekend, and I did not see a single mask anywhere. It took me a minute to figure out what I was missing; but then I got it. I watched like a hawk, and didn’t even see a single unfortunate case like the young lady pictured above.
You know, it might help with her long covid symptoms if she’d take that thing off. Just saying.
🔥 Does Joe Biden look to you like a man with the gas to run another presidential campaign? Even a campaign from the basement? Never mind whether he has the energy to “take the 2am phone call” or whatever.
Watch this clip, and then you tell me:
Also, it is just me or did one of Biden’s handlers know better and try to stop him before he fumbled through his answer?
🔥 For your Monday funny video, enjoy this standup bit about transportation:
Well, he has a point.
Have a marvelous Monday! I’ll see you guys back here tomorrow for much more tasty C&C.
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© 2022, Jeff Childers, all rights reserved
The views expressed in this commentary are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the official position of Citizens Journal Florida.