The Memphis Police Affirmative-Action Distraction
Understanding what *didn't* go wrong in the Memphis PD.
1. Race Stuff
Over the last week noticed something strange: I didn’t see any conservative defenses of the police who murdered Tyre Nichols. In fact, I even saw a couple conservatives criticizing the Memphis cops for being incompetent / criminally culpable. Like, for instance, this guy.
At first I thought this was a positive sign—we finally got an example of police misconduct so egregious that reflexively “law-and-order” types were able to see it, too.
But then I got a sinking feeling. Maybe these guys were working another angle?
Surprise: They were working another angle. They were criticizing these police because the cops in question and the Memphis police chief are black and this fact set became a stalking horse for trying to argue that it was woke affirmative action that killed Tyre Nichols.
I want to say here that I’m absolutely open to the idea that hiring incentives could lead to unqualified people being given badges and guns. Hiring standards for police are too lax almost universally. We want stricter standards for police hires.
If relaxed hiring standards or affirmative action or whatever you want to call it leads to incompetent cops, that is a bad thing. And we ought to know about it and stop it.
But you will be shocked—shocked!—to find out that in this particular case, the “affirmative action killed Tyre Nichols” arguments are (a) being deployed in bad faith and (b) are simply wrong on the facts.