“All black people, leave this blog now.”

Awww.... do I have to leave?

No, not really. You can stay. (I want you to stay).

But, apparently, that statement makes me guilty of the crimes of “bias” and “intimidation and harassment” in the state of New Jersey.

A 16 year old boy grabbed a public address system microphone at a New Jersey Wal-Mart store and said “Attention, Wal-Mart shoppers: Will all the black people please leave the store. Thank you.” (source) He and his friends then ran out of the store, and were off to more of whatever it is 16 year old dipshits do.

For some reason, this incident sparked an investigation that finally led to this dangerous scofflaw being apprehended.

The boy, from Atlantic County, was charged by Gloucester County authorities with bias and intimidation and harassment in connection with the episode last Sunday. If convicted, he could face up to a year in a juvenile detention center, officials said. His name was not released because he is a minor. (source)

This was, of course, learned at a press conference that Police Chief Rafael Muniz and Prosecutor Sean Dalton held about the incident. (source)

Just to get this out of the way: I don’t support what he did.

But, that doesn’t change the fact that I find the arrest to be very disturbing. “Bias” is a crime? I may have chosen to be open to people of all races and creeds, but would I not have the right to make that my personal choice if I lived in New Jersey? Is this what we have come to? A 16 year old kid engages in a stupid prank. Everyone knew it was a prank. “Witnesses said store officials took about 5 minutes before announcing that the statement was a prank and apologizing.” (source)

Instead of that being the end of it, there was a police investigation, and a police press conference, and this 16 year old moron has to face the possibility of a year in jail?

In my opinion, the only person in this equation who belongs in jail is the dipshit cop who decided that this incident required not only a police investigation, but an actual arrest.

15 Responses to “All black people, leave this blog now.”

  1. Ken says:

    Before I get too outraged or worried, I’d like to see a charging instrument or at least have someone knowledgeable cite the specific code section or provision he’s charged with violating. This sounds suspiciously like legally illiterate reporting to me.

  2. Sean F. says:

    Remember when there was a thing called justice and the spirit of the law was more important than the letter?

    Me neither, but it’s nice to dream.

  3. Josh says:

    Press release: http://washingtontwppolice.org/uploads/Bias_10-10011.pdf

    I will look up statute for “Bias Intimidation / Harassment.”

    This is pretty crazy..

  4. Josh says:

    2C:16-1. Bias intimidation

    a. A person is guilty of the crime of bias intimidation if he commits, attempts to commit, conspires with another to commit, or threatens the immediate commission of an offense specified in chapters 11 through 18 of Title 2C of the New Jersey Statutes; N.J.S.2C:33-4; N.J.S.2C:39-3; N.J.S.2C:39-4 or N.J.S.2C:39-5,

    (1) with a purpose to intimidate an individual or group of individuals because of race, color, religion, gender, disability, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, national origin, or ethnicity; or

    (2) knowing that the conduct constituting the offense would cause an individual or group of individuals to be intimidated because of race, color, religion, gender, disability, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, national origin, or ethnicity; or

    (3) under circumstances that caused any victim of the underlying offense to be intimidated and the victim, considering the manner in which the offense was committed, reasonably believed either that (a) the offense was committed with a purpose to intimidate the victim or any person or entity in whose welfare the victim is interested because of race, color, religion, gender, disability, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, national origin, or ethnicity, or (b) the victim or the victim’s property was selected to be the target of the offense because of the victim’s race, color, religion, gender, disability, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, national origin, or ethnicity.

    • MikeZ says:

      Interesting.

      I’d still suspect prosecution would be difficult. From his speech, I don’t see an attempt to intimidate. He didn’t care how the black people felt he just wanted them to leave. Now if he said, “All black people get out, so us whiteys can plan our summer lynching schedule” or “All black people get out or you’ll get a savage beating” that seems like it would technically constitute intimidation.

      Certainly the kid is a douchebag but this seems protected.

      • Halcyon 1L says:

        You don’t need specific intent as long as the *victim* was intimidated, and the victim was selected because of race under 2C:16-1(a)(3) and 2C:16-1(a)(3)(b).

  5. […] is one person I can see being engaged in the “bias, intimidation and harassment” discussed by Marc Randazza in his post. A 16-year old kid said some hurtful things towards African-Americans over a Wal-Mart PA system, […]

  6. Logan says:

    Meanwhile, of course, sex offenders are being released back into the population without ever serving jail time. Fun…

  7. Jozef says:

    I used to live in NJ, and I believe bias was only a crime (or misdemeanor or whatever) when associated with another crime. It simply added to the punishment. Kinda like sodomy in Georgia until recently.

  8. The kid was an obvious ass. Would you have him charged with anything?

    Banned from the franchise for two years seems fair to me. That and his parents need to sell his WII and cut off the data plan to his cell phone. Look at me parenting on the internet!

    I once took over the drive-though at a Hardee’s when they refused to refund my money or let me out of the store. It was the switchover from nighttime food to breakfast food, but no one told the girl at the counter she was supposed to have switched. They were overwhelmed with angry customers and long lines at the drive-through.

    I got tired of waiting for the my food, wanted my money, and was locked in (they did that to keep additional customer’s from coming in).

    So rather than be part of the problem, I started taking orders at the drive-through. “Welcome to Hardee’s. May I take your order?”

    Then it as orders were placed I said things like, “Piss off, you hoser.” Or I’d repeat their order back incorrectly over and over again until they got mad and left. I told people, “I’ve been here for 20 minutes and I haven’t got food yet. What makes you think you’re going to?” Etc.

    I must have gotten rid of a dozen customers for them.

    The manager kicked me out of the little drive-through booth several times, but as soon as she went back to the kitchen I returned to taking orders. Finally she threatens me with the cops, tells me if I do it again she’ll call ’em. So I do, she does.

    She has to unlock the doors to let them in. She tells her story. I say, “This lady has my money and won’t return it and won’t let anyone leave.”

    The cop didn’t arrest me. They made sure I got my money back and sent me on my way. The manager told me I couldn’t return to Hardee’s (like I would want to at that point). The next night I saw the same cop at Perkin’s and he says, “We’re not going to have any problems are we?” I told him it depended on if they got my order right.

    What I did was arguably more egregious than what this kid did. I would have hated to have gone to jail for it.

  9. jesschristensen says:

    While I’m sure that this is giving the kid too much credit… I wonder if perhaps he wasn’t telling black people to leave because of his bias, but was instead poking fun at Wal-Mart for its history of racial bias in employment? Yes, too much credit to the kid. Though, were I his defense attorney, that’s what I might go with as his defense.

  10. hawkhead says:

    Unrelatedly, MJR, you may be interested in this:

    http://volokh.com/2010/03/22/cyber-civil-rights-symposium/#comments

    • I wish that I could muster enough giveafuckness to give a fuck about what Danielle Citron and a few other abjectly useless morons have to say as they scream “discrimination” loud enough that the rest of the do-nothing academy give a fuck.

      Not to say that Citron’s article deserves anything better than being used to line the floor of a jack off booth, but I have said my piece on it. Others who give it a critical eye will see it for what it is.

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