Listening to the House


Today, I listened to the US Congress House debate the clean CR. Just as I tuned in, after a few minutes, the House stopped abruptly with little notice. I wondered what was the cause so I looked at a news site and the news was there was shooting on the Mall in Washington DC. I witnessed history. They ended because they thought they were in danger and wanted to hide. Some person rammed a barricade to the White House, resisted arrest, panicked and started a chase through Washington DC. The press reports clearly said there was an “exchange” of gun fire. It turns out there was “no exchange” of gunfire it was just the police shooting and killing the woman, the driver in a black sedan who had rammed the white house barricade and fled.

Anyway, this event or series of events was portrayed in the media as a “shooting” and there were preventive lockdowns on the Hill.

* Don’t believe the early reports about any event in the news.

Late today the media said it had information that the woman had mental health problems. At this point I treat that as disinformation. At least the media said that they didn’t have any information on the motivation of the woman ramming the barricade and fleeing the scene. Media reported the woman was from Connecticut. The irony is that the government has shut down and there are 800,000 furloughed federal employees. One media account this evening even interviewed a couple walking on the Mall that were furloughed federal employes coming to talk to their representative about the government shutdown. Another irony was that the capital police are working without pay. Another irony, which escapees me, is that Congress continues to get paid.

Washington was on edge after the Navy Yard shooting a few days back so I think many drew the conclusion that this was another shooting. It was not. Apparently, there was an infant in the car with the woman that somehow escaped injury. Apparently,one policeman was injured in the high speed chase when his police car ran into a barricade.

I might also say that the House debate was highly partisan. Each side blaming each other for the government shutdown. Since the House is controlled by Republicans they enjoyed a one sided debate where the Democrats were stifled by a procedural rule. It was quite the spectacle. Total dysfunction.

UPDATE: The media is now saying the woman was suffering from depression. “Relatives have said that she may have suffered postpartum depression.”-a quote from the news. And there was a report that the woman had a head injury about 1 year ago.

UPDATE: Some are questioning the use of deadly force on an unarmed woman and the need to escalate to a high speed chase. Others said that the police did the best they could given that it could have been a more dangerous threat.

UPDATE: At this point I still don’t know the details of the life of the woman. I feel sorry for her. It was so desperate. There is so little in the news as followup. Just the sensationalism of the day.

Who would want to be the police? Always having to deal with the public, always on guard and in crisis. And as Jo says, the police are shooting to kill these days.

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