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Slapstick litigation

September 27, 2021

It may be that the Keystone Cops were based on reality. Also, you'd be surprised what Critical Race Theory is teaching us as it sweeps the nation.

Milt Policzer

By Milt Policzer

Courthouse News columnist; racehorse owner and breeder; one of those guys who always got picked last.

Slapstick comedy fans will enjoy the description of an attempt at shoplifting that appeared last week in a federal judge’s ruling in Nevada.

The action begins when a handgun the suspect stole fell out of his pants. Police closed in. The suspect ran — right into a mannequin.

Chaos ensued.

This included a store employee jumping on top of the shoplifter — and the police then jumping on the store employee. Litigation ensued — by the employee against the police.

Those of you who have an opinion on whether some judges have interesting biases may want to look at this ruling.

First, there’s this: “Defendants did not intend to stop Plaintiff when they purportedly grabbed and hit him.”

So they only intended to slow him down?

And then this: “Plaintiff fails to show sufficient facts exist as to whether the City of Henderson inadequately trained Defendant Officers.”

OK, that sounds reasonable — until you read the next couple of sentences. One officer “conceded he never had training with an armed robber.” Another officer “admitted to never receiving training on striking with the buff (sic) of a rifle.”

You can’t inadequately train if you don’t train at all.

Is this real? Sometimes I think everyone and everything is fake. Are we in the Matrix?

I know I’m thinking this way because I spend too much time looking at the internet and watching TV. Lately, I’ve become obsessed with a game show on Netflix called "The Circle" that nicely, if not intentionally, illustrates what I’m talking about.

Contestants on the show are isolated in luxury apartments and can only communicate with their rivals via a closed internet sort-of-thing so that Cylons can’t hack into the game.

You win the game by somehow convincing the other players to vote for you. You can’t vote for yourself, so someone has to win. It’s like "Survivor" except without the athletics and torture. My kind of game.

What I find most fascinating is how most of the players seem intent on ferreting out the so-called “catfish” players who don’t use their real identities — even though the “real” players are just as dishonest (or at least self-serving) and manipulative as the fakes. Why should they care that they’re interacting with a real or fake face?

I bring this up because I got an email supposedly from the president of The Heritage Foundation (but who knows?) offering me a free “eBook” on spotting and fighting “critical race theory” — which apparently “has taken our nation by storm.”

When you try to get this tome, you’re directed to a page asking for donations. Surprise! Well, not really. For some reason, I get emails from every part of the political spectrum and they all want money. I’m not saying this is bad — just true.

Anyhow, I got the eBook, which is more like an ePamphlet, and learned some astonishing things about critical race theory.

It turns out that this theory that has somehow invaded schools, workplaces, houses of worship and the military demands (!) that “Americans work to dismantle laws, traditions, norms, institutions, and free-market enterprise — the entire American system itself.”

The theory also teaches “that concepts such as being on time, hard work, and literacy are products of white values, and should be rejected by minorities.”

A lot of teachers might be surprised that they’re teaching this. Good thing there’s a pamphlet letting us know.


I have no idea whether anyone really believes this or whether this is catfishing, but I don’t care. They’re not getting my vote.

Some grounding in reality always works best on reality shows — and in fantasy.

Categories: Op-Ed

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