Why’d it happen?
Events in states far removed from our own sometimes seem to beg for comment purely for the satisfaction of knowing I’ve put my opinion on public record.
That’s just what happened July 15 in Minneapolis. There, police say, 31-year-old police officer Mohamed Noor, a Somali-born American, college graduate and reported “diversity hire,” while seated in the passenger’s seat alongside his partner in their patrol car, shot Justine Ruszczyk Damond, a 40-year-old Australian national and bride-to-be who had summoned them to investigate a suspected crime in a nearby alley.
So what happened? News accounts said Justine approached the cruiser’s driver’s side door in her pajamas about 11:30 p.m. to talk and was shot immediately. Both officers’ body cams and the camera inside the patrol car were reported to have been off at the time Noor fired his fatal bullet through the driver’s side window into the woman’s abdomen.
As of deadline at week’s end, the Minneapolis Police Department (who, along with that city’s mayor, were publicly rejoicing two years ago because Noor had been hired as a Somali officer) wasn’t talking.
Can’t say as I blame them considering the massive ramifications and ripple effects this stunning act caused.
Noor’s presence on the police force in light of the way Damond was so needlessly slain raises legitimate questions. Why was this former property and hotel manager hired? It appears to have been a political move to pacify the nation’s swelling Somali population Minnesota has invited in. The 2010 census shows about 25,000 of an estimated 85,000 Somalis in the U.S. live in Minnesota, most arriving as UN refugees in recent years.
The conservative news outlet World Net Daily reported that Noor is one of five Somali officers hired through the Minneapolis department’s affirmative action program. The city reportedly has had a difficult time recruiting minority candidates.
A story published in the United Kingdom’s Daily Mail said Noor had told friends (whom the newspaper later interviewed) that he was startled to see a woman approaching them in the dark after hearing a loud bang and thought she might be armed. So he shot her.
The news account also said Noor told friends that he felt isolated for his race because he is “an immigrant, a Muslim and not white.” The Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension issued a statement three days after the shooting saying Noor was refusing to be interviewed, the Mail said. Noor also had two open complaints filled against him when this happened, according to news accounts.
This slaying has the unfortunate potential to become far more malignant when you consider the obvious cloud it invariably casts over so many good and decent Somali refugees in the nation today. But the ugly thing is what it is. And innocent others unfortunately will feel the ramifications from this single rash act.
Noor already has been cast in some media as the “Killer Cop” from Somalia who for a reason police couldn’t or wouldn’t explain killed the beautiful yoga instructor who’d needed his help. The whys lingering over that life-altering moment will swirl around the issue for as long as he and his family live.
I noticed some media initially steered clear of revealing Noor’s chosen faith. The fact is that he is an acknowledged Muslim. And that fact can’t help but fuel questions, suspicions and uninformed generalizations in light of ongoing jihadist violence in America and many other nations worldwide. To not acknowledge this fact about Noor is to choose avoidance and denial over presenting facts to the public under the twisted rationale of political correctness.
And any newspaper I know that purposefully doesn’t explain fully what it knows as fact because of a purely ideological need to feel protective of any specific group earns neither credibility nor trust from its readers.
So, without facts from the Minneapolis police to separate rumors and supposition from truth, so many questions are left to dangle without even one worthwhile explanation. And this is one police shooting that badly needs honest public explanation and a rapid resolution even without the conspicuously missing bused-in rioters and looting.
Outhouse over well
Yesterday in my online column I lamented the loss of common sense across society with several examples. And somehow, I managed to overlook the most obvious example of all.
It requires zero common sense, as in nada, for a state’s government to quickly and quietly allow a hog factory containing up to 6,500 swine to set up a mega-raw-waste-producing facility within the precious Buffalo National River watershed only six miles above this economic and recreational boon to Arkansas and its people.
This illogical move is akin to the appalling lack of common sense among those who would build their outhouse for a very large family above their well.