Friday, July 22, 2016

Animals, funsters, and a certain impaler

From recent correspondence

Edited by Morris Dean

Wonderful nature pictures on! But lots of them so only watch when you have lots of time.

Since you love elephants so much, why don’t we start a campaign to have them removed from the GOP logo? Surely that’s almost as bad as having your face ripped open for your tusks.

The 2016 article “Surprising New Evidence Shows Bias in Police Use of Force but Not in Shootings” [Quoctrung Bui & Amanda Cox, NY Times, July 11] discusses the highly interesting study by Roland Freyer, a black professor of economics at Harvard, on racial bias in police use of force.
    Contrary to the Black Lives Matter movement, Freyer finds that blacks are less likely to be shot compared with whites, or, statistically more significant: equally likely to be shot. However, this is only in Houston and NYC. Equivalent data for most other cities is not available. Excerpt:

A new study confirms that black men and women are treated differently in the hands of law enforcement. They are more likely to be touched, handcuffed, pushed to the ground or pepper-sprayed by a police officer, even after accounting for how, where and when they encounter the police.
    But when it comes to the most lethal form of force — police shootings — the study finds no racial bias.
    “It is the most surprising result of my career,” said Roland G. Fryer Jr., the author of the study and a professor of economics at Harvard. The study examined more than 1,000 shootings in 10 major police departments, in Texas, Florida and California.
    The result contradicts the image of police shootings that many Americans hold after the killings (some captured on video) of Michael Brown in Ferguson, Mo.; Tamir Rice in Cleveland; Walter Scott in South Carolina; Alton Sterling in Baton Rouge, La.; and Philando Castile in Minnesota.
    The study did not say whether the most egregious examples — those at the heart of the nation’s debate on police shootings — are free of racial bias. Instead, it examined a larger pool of shootings, including nonfatal ones. [read more]
We always need to foster the inner child and keep the fun times coming. Some people never get too old to enjoy life:

This kid will be a success. I would have given a mark of 100 to the kid whose teacher gave him a zero on the following test. Each answer is also well written, as well as being clever and often funny. The teacher just had no sense of humor.
Q1. In which battle did Napoleon die?
    A. his last battle
Q2. Where was the Declaration of Independence signed?
    A. at the bottom of the page
Q3. River Ravi flows in which state?
    A. liquid
Q4. What is the main reason for divorce?
    A. marriage
Q5. What is the main reason for failure?
    A. exams
Q6. What can you never eat for breakfast?
    A. lunch & dinner
Q7. What looks like half an apple?
    A. the other half
Q8. If you throw a red stone into the blue sea what will it become?
    A. wet
Q9. How can a man go eight days without sleeping?
    A. no problem, he sleeps at night
Q10. How can you lift an elephant with one hand?
    A. you will never find an elephant that has one hand
Q11. If you had three apples and four oranges in one hand and four apples and three oranges in other hand, what would you have?
    A. very large hands
Q12. If it took eight men ten hours to build a wall, how long would it take four men to build it?
    A. no time at all, the wall is already built
Q13. How can you drop a raw egg onto a concrete floor without cracking it?
    A. any way you want, concrete floors are very hard to crack
More on the question how we change the mindset of people to not go around shooting others: employment! – idle hands create idle and twisted minds.
    America desperately needs its roads – and bridges, in particular – upgraded. Put the idle hands to work! Idle people spend entirely too much time inside their own heads.

My health has been deteriorating some. I am taking steps to diagnose and correct some chronic issues like teeth, hip replacement, etc. Diagnosis is always stressful as you probably know. Just had a colonoscopy yesterday. A-OK, but the night before I made the mistake of reading a portion of my historical study of Romania. I was halfway into the biography of Vlad the Impaler when I suddenly realized this is not the kind of material I should be exposing myself to prior to my exam. Ouch!
    Did you know that “Vlad III is revered as a folk hero in Romania and Bulgaria for his protection of the Romanians and Bulgarians both north and south of the Danube. Following his raids on the Ottomans, a significant number of Bulgarian common folk and remaining Boyars resettled north of the Danube to Wallachia and recognized his leadership.” (Wikipedia)

Grateful for correspondence, Morris Dean

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