Futility of “Colorblindness”: David Clarke and the Absurdity of Using Black Skin as Cover for the “American Way”

David Clarke, a sheriff for Milwaukee County, Wisconsin, wrote an inflammatory op-ed for the Hill newspaper. In the column, Clarke attempts the impossible to–

  • offload police responsibility for killings of citizens (black, brown, and white) onto the group Black Lives Matter (BLM);
  • ignore the suffering of the deceased’s families, friends, and communities; and
  • discredit and condemn BLM (and Occupy Wall Street) as responsible for the war veterans that preyed upon police officers in Dallas, Texas, and Baton Rouge, Louisiana.
david clarke and spouse
David Clarke, Sheriff of Milwaukee County, Wisc., and spouse

In short, the column was a masterpiece of deflection of the broken image of police officers–“Officer Friendly“; the social media video of the killings of Alton Sterling and the aftermath video of the shooting of Philando Castile (and the many instances of killings before them) put an end to that image for good. Image-conscious people do not like to be unmasked, and thus the response will be fierce.

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Most disturbing of all was Clarke’s attempt to deflect criticism by using his black skin color as cover for his apology for white supremacy and white superiority. It is the reason why white supremacists use Clarke and Larry Elder to continue the abuse of black people–to state it’s not white people doing it but a black (white) person. It’s quite unseemly and perverse for people who say they are black to turn around and attack black people (while simultaneously asking for exemption from the debasement that they argue for others). I have no respect for abusive and hate-filled people like Clarke and Elder.

The essence of the column is that the so-called American way is the status quo, including white supremacy, absolute respect for authority figures, and police killings of unarmed people. People who question this status quo are threats that must be quashed. The column is quite irresponsible for a law enforcement official to make, as it encourages ignoring the First Amendment of the Constitution, accepts white supremacy (and black exclusion) as a legitimate part of the culture of the United States, and encourages authoritarianism. All three are unacceptable.

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Virginia Slave Law, 1705

Part of the solution is clear:  The police departments must remove predatory police officers from their ranks immediately. For background information, read Babiak, Paul and Robert D. Hare (2006). “Snakes in Suits:  When Psychopaths Go to Work.”

Federal Reserve Board: H.2 Release for Week Ending July 9, 2016; H.4.1 Release (Balance Sheet) for Week Ending July 14, 2016

The Federal Reserve Board (Board) publishes a weekly digest of its activities on its website. The digest is called the H.2 Release and is published every Thursday. The release for the week ending July 9, 2016, is below.

H.2 Release–Actions of the Board, Its Staff, and the Federal Reserve Banks; Applications and Reports Received

Category Action Taken
Bank Holding Companies KeyCorp, Cleveland, Ohio — to acquire First Niagara Financial Group, Inc., Buffalo, New York, and thereby indirectly acquire First Niagara Bank, National Association.

-Approved, July 8, 2016

Regulations and Policies Conformance Period for Volcker Rule — extension to July 21, 2017, for banking entities to conform their legacy covered-fund activities and investments that were in place before December 31, 2013, in accordance with section 619 of the Dodd-Frank Act.

-Approved, July 5, 2016

Federal Reserve Board: Balance Sheet (H.4.1 Release)

The Board publishes data of factors affecting reserve balances. The digest is called the H.4.1 Release, and they are published every Thursday (or the next business day if the publication date falls on a federal holiday). The release for July 14, 2016, is below.

[Note: The blog will cover the line titled “Total Factors Supplying Reserve Funds.”]

H.4.1 Release–Factors Affecting Reserve Balances

Total factors supplying reserve funds (as of July 13, 2016): $4,517,653 (in millions of dollars). (On September 26, 2007, this amount was $900,473 (in millions of dollars)).

(See the release for further information.)

Federal Reserve Board: H.2 Release for Week Ending July 2, 2016; H.4.1 Release (Balance Sheet) for Week Ending July 7, 2016

The Federal Reserve Board (Board) publishes a weekly digest of its activities on its website. The digest is called the H.2 Release and is published every Thursday. The release for the week ending July 2, 2016, is below.

H.2 Release–Actions of the Board, Its Staff, and the Federal Reserve Banks; Applications and Reports Received

Category Action Taken
Bank Holding Companies Bank of the Ozarks, Inc., Little Rock, Arkansas — to merge with Community & Southern Holdings, Inc., Atlanta, Georgia, and thereby acquire Community & Southern Bank; and election by Bank of the Ozarks, Inc., to become a financial holding company.

-Approved, June 27, 2016

 

Ohio Valley Banc Corp., Gallipolis, Ohio — to merge with Milton Bancorp, Inc., Wellston; and for The Ohio Valley Bank Company, Gallipolis, to merge with The Milton Banking Company, Wellston, and thereby establish branches.

-Approved, June 27, 2016

 

 

 

 

 

Banking Supervision and Regulation Comprehensive Capital Analysis and Review — no objection to the 2016 capital plans of 30 bank holding companies; requirement for Morgan Stanley to submit a new capital plan by the end of 2016 to address certain weaknesses in its capital planning processes; and objections to the 2016 capital plans of Deutsche Bank Trust Corporation and Santander Holdings USA, Inc., on qualitative grounds.

-Announced, June 29, 2016

 

Regulation TT (Supervision and Regulation Assessments of Fees) — 2015 supervisory assessments, assessed companies, and related matters, pursuant to the Dodd-Frank Act and Regulation TT.

-Approved, June 27, 2016

 

 

 

Regulations and Policies Mortgage Servicing Assets — interagency report to Congress on regulatory capital requirements for mortgage servicing assets for banking institutions.

-Published, July 1, 2016

 

 

Enforcement Century Bank of Florida, Tampa, Florida — written agreement dated August 25, 2009, terminated June 23, 2016.

-Announced, June 28, 2016

 

Pilot Bancshares, Inc., Tampa, Florida, and Pilot Bank — written agreement dated July 7, 2010, terminated June 23, 2016.

-Announced, June 28, 2016

 

 

 

Federal Reserve Board: Balance Sheet (H.4.1 Release)

The Board publishes data of factors affecting reserve balances. The digest is called the H.4.1 Release, and they are published every Thursday (or the next business day if the publication date falls on a federal holiday). The release for July 7, 2016, is below.

[Note: The blog will cover the line titled “Total Factors Supplying Reserve Funds.”]

H.4.1 Release–Factors Affecting Reserve Balances

Total factors supplying reserve funds (as of July 6, 2016):  $4,516,025 (in millions of dollars). (On September 26, 2007, this amount was $900,473 (in millions of dollars)).

(See the release for further information.)

Federal Reserve Board: H.2 Release for Week Ending June 25, 2016; H.4.1 Release (Balance Sheet) for Week Ending June 30, 2016

The Federal Reserve Board (Board) publishes a weekly digest of its activities on its website. The digest is called the H.2 Release and is published every Thursday. The release for the week ending June 25, 2016, is below.

H.2 Release–Actions of the Board, Its Staff, and the Federal Reserve Banks; Applications and Reports Received

Category Action Taken
Testimony and Statements Monetary Policy — statement by Chair Yellen before the Senate Committee on Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs on June 21 and the House Committee on Financial Services on June 22, 2016, on the semiannual monetary policy report to the Congress.

-Published, June 21, 2016

 

 

Banking Supervision and Regulation Supervisory Stress Tests — 2016 results.

-Announced, June 23, 2016

 

Personnel Division of Banking Supervision and Regulation — appointment of Mary Aiken and Michael Hsu as associate directors; David Lynch, Molly Mahar, Catherine Piche, and Suzanne Williams as deputy associate directors, and Keith Ligon as assistant director.

-Announced, June 20, 2016

 

Division of Consumer and Community Affairs — appointment of Carol Evans as associate director and David Buchholz and Marisa Reid as deputy associate directors.

-Announced, June 21, 2016

 

 

 

 

Federal Reserve Board: Balance Sheet (H.4.1 Release)

The Board publishes data of factors affecting reserve balances. The digest is called the H.4.1 Release, and they are published every Thursday (or the next business day if the publication date falls on a federal holiday). The release for June 30, 2016, is below.

[Note: The blog will cover the line titled “Total Factors Supplying Reserve Funds.”]

H.4.1 Release–Factors Affecting Reserve Balances

Total factors supplying reserve funds (as of June 29, 2016):  $4,511,153 (in millions of dollars). (On September 26, 2007, this amount was $900,473 (in millions of dollars)).

(See the release for further information.)

Federal Reserve Board: H.2 Release for Week Ending June 18, 2016; H.4.1 Release (Balance Sheet) for Week Ending June 23, 2016

The Federal Reserve Board (Board) publishes a weekly digest of its activities on its website. The digest is called the H.2 Release and is published every Thursday. The release for the week ending June 18, 2016, is below.

H.2 Release–Actions of the Board, Its Staff, and the Federal Reserve Banks; Applications and Reports Received

Category Action Taken
Bank Branches, Domestic Compass Bank, Birmingham, Alabama — to establish a branch at 5900 Quebec Street, Fort Worth, Texas.

-Approved, June 16, 2016

 

Forms Forms — final Board review to extend without revision the Consumer Satisfaction Questionnaire (FR 1379), Notice of Branch Closure (FR 4031), and Survey to Obtain Information on the Relevant Market in Individual Merger Cases (FR 2060).

-Approved, June 16, 2016

 

Personnel Office of the Chief Data Officer — appointment of Phillip Daher as assistant director.

-Approved, June 15, 2016

Office of the Secretary — appointment of Yao-Chin Chao as assistant secretary.

-Approved, June 15, 2016

Regulations and Policies Accounting Standard — interagency statement on a new accounting standard, issued by the Financial Accounting Standards Board, about credit losses on financial instruments.

-Announced, June 17, 2016

Host State Lending Ratios — interagency release of the host state loan-to-deposit ratios used by the banking agencies to determine compliance with the Riegle-Neal Interstate Banking and Branching Efficiency Act.

-Announced, June 17, 2016

Enforcement Affinity Financial Corporation, Newport Beach, California; and Waterfield Financial Services, Inc. (now known as Affinity Financial Centers, Inc.), Indianapolis, Indiana — issuance of a consent cease and desist order.

-Approved, June 5, 2016 (A/C)

First National Bancshares, Inc., Goodland, Kansas — written agreement dated September 10, 2009, terminated June 7, 2016.

-Announced, June 14, 2016

 

Federal Reserve Board: Balance Sheet (H.4.1 Release)

The Board publishes data of factors affecting reserve balances. The digest is called the H.4.1 Release, and they are published every Thursday (or the next business day if the publication date falls on a federal holiday). The release for June 23, 2016, is below.

[Note: The blog will cover the line titled “Total Factors Supplying Reserve Funds.”]

H.4.1 Release–Factors Affecting Reserve Balances

Total factors supplying reserve funds (as of June 22, 2016):  $4,527,770 (in millions of dollars). (On September 26, 2007, this amount was $900,473 (in millions of dollars)).

(See the release for further information.)

Futility of “Colorblindness”: Red Cross Poster Associated Negative Connotations to Nonwhite Characters; Mere “Apology” Insufficient

The Washington Post reported on the following story. A user of a pool looked at an American Red Cross poster and felt uncomfortable because the characters that displayed the so-called uncool pool behaviors were generally nonwhite. The posters were created by the American Red Cross and distributed. Seemingly, throughout the process, no one noticed this particular issue.

American Red Cross former pool safety poster; photo of poster taken by Margaret Sawyer

The response from the Red Cross was unsurprising, denying racial “intent” and promising to correct the situation. However, the situation is not overt discrimination but the formation of mental negative connotations and then representing those negative ideas with nonwhite characters or people.

A quote from Reverend Thomas Merton’s book, “Seeds of Destruction” (Letters to a White Liberal), page 19-20, demonstrates the weakness of reliance on claims of lack of “intent”:

We have been willing to grant the Negro rights on paper, even in the South. But the laws have been framed in such a way that in every case their execution has depended on the good will of white society, and the white man has not failed, when left to himself, to block, obstruct, or simply forget the necessary action without which the rights of the Negro cannot be enjoyed in fact. Hence, when laws have been passed, then contested, dragged through all of the courts, and finally upheld, the Negro is still in no position to benefit by them without, in each case, entering into further interminable lawsuits every time he wants to exercise a right guaranteed to him by law.

(Note: Emphasis, above (in bold), the blog author’s.)

A mere “apology” is insufficient to address this issue. The negative associations in the poster (and elsewhere in the culture of the United States) will have to be unearthed, raised to the sunlight, examined, and dealt with totally. As seen with Antonin Scalia (1936-2016), the United States’ cultural practices need much attention and correction in order to be truly inclusive of all people.

The work of Jane Elliott is a good start to begin the inquiry.

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Federal Reserve Board: Semiannual Monetary Policy Report to the Congress, June 2016

Monetary Policy Report, June 2016

The Monetary Policy Report hearings were held on June 21 and 22, 2016.

Monetary Policy Report (June 2016):  http://www.federalreserve.gov/monetarypolicy/files/20160621_mprfullreport.pdf.

U.S. House of Representatives U.S. Senate
June 22, 2016, 10:00 a.m., House Financial Services Committee June 21, 2016, 10:00 a.m., Senate Banking Committee
Press release: http://financialservices.house.gov/news/documentsingle.aspx?DocumentID=400784 Press release: http://www.banking.senate.gov/public/index.cfm/hearings?ID=AE3F42A6-5EDC-4B23-ABE1-0A182114B3B4
Testimony: http://www.federalreserve.gov/newsevents/testimony/yellen20160621a.htm