Parmvir Singh: Say His Name
Every day seems to bring another crime video. This one is especially grim. The store clerk gave the thug everything he demanded, and posed no threat at all to him. The thug shot him simply because he, the thug, is an animal.
Chris Copeland, 26, of Tupelo, is charged with capital murder, meaning he’s eligible for the death penalty.
Tupelo police said Copeland tried to rob a Chevron store Sunday morning, Sept. 11. During the attempted robbery, he allegedly shot Parmvir Singh, 33, of Tupelo, in the head.
During his court appearance, investigators said Copeland pretended to make a purchase and Singh was behind the counter.
Police said Singh surrendered some money and opened a safe for Copeland. Copeland then ordered Singh to the floor, jumped over the counter, then shot the victim, according to authorities.
Copeland ripped out what he believed to be surveillance footage and left the store, police said.
“With 27 years in law enforcement, this may be one of the worst ones I’ve ever seen,” Police Chief John Quaka said. “The victim was literally executed in the back of the head inside his store where he was trying to make a living. It is just absolutely outrageous. The prosecutor said it best — ‘it’s monstrous.’”
Copeland was denied a bond.
Quaka said Copeland has a criminal history. He previously faced burglary and larceny charges. Copeland was free on MDOC probation at the time of his arrest on Sunday and had an outstanding warrant.
Maybe we should rethink mass incarceration. People like Copeland are not fit to live among decent people like Parmvir Singh.
The Los Angeles-based pseudonymous writer Peachy Keenan, in American Mind, talks about how she was nearly killed because she ignored her instincts about not going around a group of dodgy looking black men, out of fear of being racist. Excerpts:
My son emerged from the gym with his team. I stared at him and realized that if they had walked out ive minutes earlier, it might have been a bloodbath. Rounds had gone through at least two nearby cars, including one containing the parent of a boy on the team, but by some miracle no other innocent people were hurt.
The cop, a Latino guy, advised me to stay away from the park, since it’s near the projects that “the gang controls.” He was telling me to listen to my inner racist! What if I’d pulled up to the parking lot, taken a look at the group of men, and decided not to go in? Would that have been the right thing to do—or the racist thing to do?
As the police officer talked to me, furious people from the neighborhood stood on the other side of the police tape and yelled things like, “Fuck you! Get the fuck out, this is our neighborhood!” Looking back, I probably should have apologized to the polite young man who screamed “white bitch,” since my “racism” is certainly what drew the police to his park that afternoon—it may have even instigated the shooting.
She goes on:
Maybe if 32 year-old mother-of-two Eliza Fletcher had been a little bit more “racist,” she would not have been kidnapped, beaten, raped, and murdered in Memphis last week. A slightly more racist woman might have decided that jogging in darkness through a city with a sky-high murder rate and a woke DA who refuses to keep dangerous predators incarcerated wasn’t a good idea. A slightly more racist woman might have chosen to do a Peloton ride in her living room instead.
Last year, a beautiful young UCLA student named Brianna Kupfer was working all alone in a fancy furniture store in Los Angeles when she was brutally stabbed to death by a man who wandered in. Her gut had told her he was dangerous. She even texted her boss to report that she “was getting a bad vibe” about the killer minutes before he attacked her. Maybe if she’d been slightly more racist, she would have left the store and waited for him to go away. But instead, she dismissed her fear—perhaps because she had been instructed for years to ignore your gut feelings so you don’t look racist—and stayed put.
Brianna was stabbed twenty-six times and bled to death before help arrived.
I had just read Keenan's essay this morning before getting in the car to drive. I turned on NPR, and listened to the host giggle and gush while talking to a black gospel singer about her group's new album, and focusing on a song inspired by the murder of George Floyd. It made me mad -- not because the song is bad (it's very good), or because the Floyd killing wasn't an outrage (it was), but because here we are, two years after the Floyd killing, and our national media are still wetting their pants over white supremacy. Meanwhile, if we hear about the Parmvir Singhs at all, it's to note what happened to them, and quickly to move on. Joe Biden held a White House summit this week to fight white supremacy. Are we going to see a White House summit to fight against the kind of scumbags that killed Parmvir Singh, Eliza Fletcher, Brianna Kupfer, and any number of black victims whose names and faces rarely make the news? Who will write the rousing gospel number memorializing Parmvir Singh? As Peachy Keenan writes:
There were no rallies, marches, or protests in honor of Eliza Fletcher or Brianna Kupfer. No one bothered to organize a commemorative riot, or even host an honorary CVS looting in their names. No Target was ceremoniously burned to the ground in her honor. No one screamed “SAY HER NAME!” at a candlelight vigil attended by weeping mayors and city officials. No t-shirts were printed up with their faces on them. The President and Vice President stayed silent. Nancy Pelosi did not kneel for two minutes in silence in the halls of congress. No one held a press conference and said, “Brianna Kupfer looked like she could be my daughter.”
Nothing will happen because of Kupfer, Fletcher, and Singh -- at least nothing visible. But things will happen quietly. You can't make people not notice.
Just down the road from me, New Orleans has the highest crime rate in the US, with a murder rate almost four times greater (per 100,000 residents) than Chicago's. The Wall Street Journal reports:
This year to date, the New Orleans homicide rate is up 141% compared with the same period in 2019, according to the Metropolitan Crime Commission Inc., a nonprofit that works to reduce crime in the city. Shootings are up 100%, carjackings 210% and armed robberies up 25%. The homicide rate is on pace to surpass last year’s rate, which was the worst since Hurricane Katrina in 2005.
In New Orleans, city officials and residents point to an overwhelmed police department as a major factor. The city has about 50% to 60% of the officers it needs to offer adequate protection for residents, estimated Ronal Serpas, who was the city’s police superintendent from 2010 to 2014 and is now a criminal justice professor at Loyola University New Orleans.
“We’re in a crisis of crime and a crisis of confidence in this city,” he said.
This is in part a gift from the Obama Justice Department:
Police officers and political leaders, including Democratic Mayor LaToya Cantrell, say the department has been hobbled in part by fallout from a decade-old agreement between the federal government and the city to address corruption and other issues, which they say has resulted in crackdowns on officers for minor infractions. Police officers are leaving the force more quickly than the city can replace them, making it easier for criminals in the city.
“The criminals are more bolder and more brazen,” said New Orleans Police Superintendent Shaun Ferguson. “They do not believe they will face any consequences for their actions.”
The local DA, Jason Williams, is -- surprise! -- one of the George Soros "soft on crime" district attorneys you've heard so much about. Crime is going to kill the Crescent City if they don't get it under control. One more clip from the WSJ:
Ranelle Leitch, 64, has been coming to New Orleans from her home in Hunt, Texas, a few times a year for decades to enjoy the city’s restaurants with her husband, a retired dentist. For one favorite restaurant, they used to take the St. Charles streetcar back to the French Quarter after dinner. Then a waiter warned them to take a car instead. They now rarely leave their hotel when it’s dark. “At nighttime, we don’t roam the streets,” she said.
I thought for half a second recently about moving to New Orleans, a city that would fit me perfectly, but I decided against it. I don't want to be robbed or murdered, and I have no faith that it's going to get better there anytime soon.
The WSJ mentions two especially horrible New Orleans murders in this current wave. Augustine Greenwood, 80, was shot to death by a stray bullet as she left her grandson's high school graduation. Here she is:
The other one was Linda Frickey, 73, who died when she was dragged to death in a carjacking. Her arm was severed. Four teenagers -- a 17-year-old boy, and three younger girls -- were arrested and charged. Here she is:
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Say their names: Augustine Greenwood and Linda Frickey.
Do you think American society, as it stands today, has the focus and the determination to stop this crime wave? No, me neither. What's it going to take? Parmvir Singh's people are the kind -- Asian immigrants -- who build up society and cities, not burn them down. Our country is not administered -- not at the governmental, business, academic, media, or private institutional level -- by people who give a rat's ass about the Parmvir Singhs, who never cause trouble, and who just want to live decent lives of work and accomplishment, and raise their children to do the same. This is increasingly not a country that works for them.