• The blancmange is here:


    Somewhere my possession is an essay by Peter Kreeft incorporating a discussion of compassion and the manner in which crucial elements of caritas are excised to produce something incomplete and substandard.


    Somewhere else I have a bit of satire wherein the author imagines Alan Alda elected President of the United States and inaugurating the Department of Caring (Carol Burnett, Secy.). Well, it was a satire at that time.

    St. Louis might actually benefit from a well-ordered metropolitan police department. Such agencies tend to be run by men who leave the ‘compassion’ to others.

  • Doc Anthony

    “Carla Mae Streeter, professor emerita of the Aquinas Institute of Theology, says the region is currently ‘overlooking people who just want to be visible,’ who are left wondering, ‘Do you even see me?’

    Yeah. Like that innocent no-name store clerk who was bullied, robbed, humiliated, and terrorized — on a video seen by an entire nation — by a Mr. Michael Brown. Maybe he’s wondering something as well.

    Not one apology, not one protest march, not one packed church service, not one fancy civil rights icon, not one news anchor, not one sympathetic governor nor attorney-general nor President, to ever say “I’m sorry and what Michael did to YOU, merits just as much media attention and protesting and justice and empathy and publicity and air-time as the entire Ferguson situation.”

  • DaveV

    What ever happened to innocent until proven guilty?

    You know, the mantra the Black Community unceasingly harps on and on about?

    The policeman in question has done nothing wrong until convicted of a crime.

    What if his side of the story is correct? We hang an innocent man just to make Al Sharpton and his mob happy?

    Are they not Americans too?

  • Jack

    Trying to produce compassion through political and social action is trying to produce it ex nihilo and that is impossible. You need other virtues to cultivate it. The problem is that for decades, society has been denigrating such virtues — ie self-discipline, humility, etc.

  • Jack

    The not-so-hidden premise behind the article is that the Ferguson officer was guilty. Remove the premise and there is no article.

  • Pingback: BCNN2 » Blog Archive » More Than 60 Cities Sign the Charter for Compassion to Make St. Louis a More ‘Compassionate’ City After Ferguson()

  • Neon Genesis

    So innocent until proven guilty only applies to white policemen and not black kids in your eyes?

  • Neon Genesis

    Remove your foolishness and you have no account.

  • Do you wake up every day looking for new opportunities to utter stupid non sequiturs?

  • Michael Brown was filmed by a security camera undertaking a strong arm robbery. There are also eyewitnesses who immediately called the police. There isn’t any exculpatory evidence anyone knows about.

  • This is a reply the editors saw fit neither to delete nor to mark as ‘low quality’, which is a good measure of the judgment of the editors.

  • Larry

    So the officer did not shoot an unarmed man to death?

    He is guilty of the act, the issue was whether it was excusable or not.

    IMO, there are almost no reasonable fact patterns where a person with a firearm can be threatened to use deadly force against someone lacking a weapon. It makes no different whether the dead person was a thug or a saint. Unarmed, not brandishing something that looks like a weapon or can be mistaken for one, makes for a very tough reasonable excuse for using deadly force.

  • IMO, there are almost no reasonable fact patterns where a person with a firearm can be threatened to use deadly force against someone lacking a weapon.

    In the service of public order and justice, no one subcontracted the task of producing a definition of justifiable homicide to you, nor would they if they were the least bit prudent.

    Standards delineating permissible and impermissible use of deadly force vary from jurisdiction to jurisdiction but are commonly influenced by context (domestic v public spaces), circumstance, and jury’s assessments of reasonable beliefs on the part of parties in question. Which party was armed (and whether or not one party or another knew the status of the other party) will influence the answer to the last question but provide no definitive answers.

    If you do not like the standards, you can complain to the Missouri legislature. You better be a better rhetorician than you are here.

  • Larry

    What part of IMO did you not understand? Its called an opinion. Everyone has one. This is mine. You can accept it or find some fault with it. I don’t really care. It is not a legal argument nor a dissertation.

    Personally, I find very few credible excuses for a person with a firearm to justify deadly force against an unarmed person. Sure plenty of courts do so. But they tend to base it on a lot of nonsense. Usually by making irrelevant attacks on the reputation of the victim.

    In my opinion, the only relevant facts concerning the victim are whether they were armed or could be mistaken for being armed when confronting the law enforcement officer. Fleeing a cop is not grounds for using deadly force. Being a raging d-bag to a cop is not grounds for using deadly force.

    Whether the police followed the laws and standards concerning justifiable homicide is still an open question. That is why they have courts and juries. What isn’t in question is that he committed an act of homicide.

    You have your opinions as to the situation. I have mine.

  • I understand you find ‘very few credible excuses’. Someone who is not in the business of continually playing the adolescent know-it-all might just ask why penal codes and police procedure take the shape they do. In any case, the grand jury is not in the business of evaluating things according to your opinions, but according to Missouri law.

    ts called an opinion. Everyone has one.

    Some people have informed opinions. Then there’s you.

  • Larry

    Art, all you do is fling poo and make nasty minded comments. You can call that an informed opinion, but it wouldn’t make it so.

    Sorry, but anyone in law enforcement who is armed, who can’t keep control of a situation with an unarmed person without using lethal force, has no idea what they are doing. It may be legally excusable by a court, but it still makes them incompetent or moronic.

    If the cops had beat the crap out of the guy with the various blunt instruments they carry on their person:
    1. There would probably be no fatalities
    2. There would probably be no rioting
    3. The case against the cops would never make it out of the grand jury

  • Probably not going to happen due to the unique political nature of this place.

    “St. Louis” doesn’t mean what most people around the country think it means. The City of St. Louis separated from the County of St. Louis well over a century ago and is effectively its own county.

    It used to be the easiest thing in the world to start your own town in St. Louis County. You got at least 50% of the people in your proposed town to sign a petition saying you wanted to become a town, you presented it to the County Council and it was a done deal. There are currently a little bit over 90 of them, some big, some former subdivisions.

    Most of the smaller ones contract with the St. Louis County Police Department to provide police services. But many of the larger and older ones like Ferguson, Florissant, Kirkwood and my own Webster Groves have police forces of their own. The SLCPD can come in to work with these but only if they’re asked to.

  • Most places outside the Southern United States have unnecessarily fragmented service provision and strong suburban resistance to any sort of service consolidation. It’s the same deal where I grew up. Greater St. Louis is unusual in that it splays over six counties, and has a mess of postage stamp municipalities. It’s absurd what you’ve done to yourself. It would be sensible if you could:

    1. Persuade Illinois to cede Madison and St. Clair counties.

    2. Draw new county boundaries. Sort the low density areas and the non-contiguous dense settlements into about 3 surrounding counties. Have one county with an adjustable boundary for the continuous tapestry of high density areas.

    3. Assemble about 50 boroughs from the extant municipalities and swatches of unincorporated territory in the dense settlement.

    4. Contrive a sensible division of labor between county and municipal government, leaving the latter as the default service provider and vesting the former with the police force, the child protective and foster care apparat, the transit authority, arterial transportation, and some interstitial and downstream services.

    5. Staff your police force properly and deploy them optimally. The homicide rate in St. Louis City is 40 per 100,000. That’s a scandal.

    Of course it will never happen.

  • TGrant

    An Open Letter to Those Who Do Not Understand:

    Dear Reader,

    I have seen your comments condemning the actions of the protestors in Ferguson and saying that they just don’t make sense. To that I say:

    Did your early experiences include extreme sensory and developmental deprivation? Were you surrounded by miles of violence and constant danger, concentrations of poverty and multi-generational dysfunction? Were most, if not all, adults you in your life (including your teachers) inarticulate and functionally illiterate (only able to read and relate at a 4th grade reading level)? Was the soil and air where you lived contaminated with neuropathenagins and other toxins? Had almost every male in your community spent time in prison (most beginning when they were teenagers)?

    What does the phrase: There but for the grace of God (i.e: the fortune of my circumstances) go I” mean anything to you?

    Do you think that if you were born into one of America’s “sacrifice zones” that somehow YOU are so special that biology would not apply to you?
    HOW DO THE REST OF US ignore what happens every day to the children in our own country? How do we expect healthy and intelligent behavior from those who grow up experiencing only the opposite? How do we ignore the legacy and consequences of our own history? How do we conveniently blame it on others –whether it is the people who live in these areas, the political party opposite our own, or those who transgressed in the past (so that we don’t have to take any responsibility ourselves)?
    It is physically impossible for the problem to cure itself. We have to make significant targeted changes that are aligned with reality –and in harmony with our promise of liberty and justice for all.

    This is not to excuse to the behavior of those who have done damage in Ferguson. However, nor should excuse those who say they don’t understand (or that it ‘doesn’t make sense”)…and then make little effort to inform themselves and take meaningful action.