You Are Dumb, which is not a blog, posts new columns every weekday, except for a couple of days each month when it doesn't. It is also a Twitter feed, @youaredumb, with content in a similar vein but much shorter. My spinoff food site, Forkbastard, can be found easily enough by the clever.
Memo to Steve King and Sunil Dutta: YOU ARE SPECIAL DUMB.
Obviously, the best dumb quotes since last Wednesday are all gonna be Ferguson, so if you're sick of that, well, you've got bigger problems than this column because very little else is being talked about anywhere. Just know that, before you skip today's IDIOTS SAY THE DAMNDEST THINGS, that it includes an important milestone in the history of You Are Dumb Dot Net.
"This idea of no racial profiling. I've seen the video. It looks to me like you don't need to bother with that particular factor because they all appear to be of a single, you know, of a single origin, I should say, a continental origin might be the way to phrase that." - Iowa congressman Steve King.
Ladies and gentlemen, we doubted. We thought this day would never come. We thought Louie Gohmert had left Steve King in the dust. But with this, Steve King regains his crown as AMERICA'S STUPIDEST CONGRESSCRITTER.
Not for the idea, as dumb and as execrable as it is, that police can't be singling out protesters based on race because all the protesters are black. I mean, it's a horrible misread of the situation, a deep misunderstanding of what racial profiling is, and a generally clumsy approach, but that's all in line with Steve King being America's Second-Stupidest Congresscritter.
No, he retakes his crown by somehow thinking "they all appear to be of a single, you know, of a single origin" would be an OK thing to say, and adding the "continental" made it even more acceptable. That's not how dog-whistling works. You don't find synonyms for "African-American" to convince people you're not talking about African-Americans. You use euphemisms that give you plausible deniability. "That community", for example. Or using "Western value system" as an antonym. For fuck's sake, even the tired old "urban", or "ghetto", would be slightly more effective than "of a single continental origin". That's just lazy. Oh, right. "Lazy". Another common dog-whistle.
So, congratulations, King. You are once again your namesake, albeit of the congressional turd hill.
"Even though it might sound harsh and impolitic, here is the bottom line: if you don’t want to get shot, tased, pepper-sprayed, struck with a baton or thrown to the ground, just do what I tell you. Don’t argue with me, don’t call me names, don’t tell me that I can’t stop you, don’t say I’m a racist pig, don’t threaten that you’ll sue me and take away my badge. Don’t scream at me that you pay my salary, and don’t even think of aggressively walking towards me. Most field stops are complete in minutes. How difficult is it to cooperate for that long?” - Los Angeles cop and "professor of homeland security" Sunil Dutta, thinking he's defending modern police work.
I mean, do I even need to spell it out? Unpack it? Motherfucker just laid it right out there. The penalty for questioning a cop, arguing with a cop, being rude to a cop, threatening to sue a cop, or calling a cop names? A baton beating, a pepper spraying, 50,000 volts, or any number of bullets riddling your flesh.
With the possible exception, under some interpretations, of "aggressive walking", none of the things he mentioned are illegal. He just doesn't like it. And if he doesn't like it, he'll use the authority and power at his disposal to hurt you. Not because it's his job, but because he can.
This telling paragraph, by the way, five paragraphs into an article whose premise is, straight up, and I'm quoting, "Cops are not murderers." Really? What do you call someone who'll shoot you for yelling at them? Because I'm pretty sure that when anyone else does it, that shit is second degree murder.
Sunil Dutta THINKS HE'S ONE OF THE GOOD ONES. He name-checks the ACLU. He talked about his time investigating bad cops in Internal Affairs. He thinks he's being helpful. But he's exactly the embodiment of authoritarian bullshit that's exactly what's making Ferguson a pit of chaos right now. The authorities demand compliance. If you defy them, they hurt you. FREEDOM.