Dear Mom - A commentary on the Candice Owen video attacking George Floyd
I know this looks convincing and legit because Candice Owens is black, articulate, passionate and it looks like she did her research because she brings "facts" to the argument but I have some concerns I'd like you to take into consideration. #candiceowens
First, let me start by saying that I consider myself a good listener.
As a nurse, I actively work to identify when my biases are influencing the way I assess things so I've developed a number of ways to evaluate situations that allow me to take a step back and see reality as objectively as possible.
I have worked to understand logic and fallacies in debate, I've learned how to interpret statistics in my nursing courses and I study body language because as a nurse, sometimes people lie to me and knowing whether to be cautious with the information I gather can be really helpful in developing a solid plan of care.
So, just so you know, I watched the whole thing with an open mind twice and I have some thoughts you should consider.
I have a few concerns.
The first problem is that she brought a straw man argument to the conversation which made me really disappointed.
You only bring a straw man to an argument when you are creating content without someone debating you to call you out.
A straw man argument is usually used to manipulate and throw off your debate opponent because it distracts from the real argument.
"A straw man (or strawman) is a form of argument and an informal fallacy based on giving the impression of refuting an opponent's argument, while actually refuting an argument that was not presented by that opponent. One who engages in this fallacy is said to be "attacking a straw man"."
In fact, she brings in an ad hominem attack on George Floyd (and later blacks in general) to support her straw man argument. #georgefloyd
"Ad hominem (Latin for 'to the person'), short for argumentum ad hominem, is a term that is applied to several different types of arguments, most of which are fallacious. Typically it refers to a fallacious argumentative strategy whereby genuine discussion of the topic at hand is avoided by instead attacking the character, motive, or other attributes of the person making the argument, or persons associated with the argument, rather than attacking the substance of the argument itself. The most common form of this fallacy is "A makes a claim a, B asserts that A holds a property that is unwelcome, and hence B concludes that argument a is wrong"."
I know she's a good debater and she knows about ad hominem attacks because she's called people out for using them against her when she's debating people live on Fox news.
Black conservatives get attacked by black liberals so she's accustomed to defending herself.
That to say, I know that she knows what she's doing.
The #blacklivesmatters movement is not about elevating the status of the black people who are killed by police officers, which she claims, it's about the problem that black people in America have to live in fear because they are black and because law enforcement officers treat them differently.
I'll leave a link to a good resource for statistics if you want to do your own research.
I'll say more about her stats later.
Disproportionate violence against the black community and systemic racism is the message that's TRYING to be heard right now while people like Candice are trying to distract from the message with a straw man argument like the one she presented in her video.
So just to be clear on how her argument was a straw man argument: She focused on the false narrative that BLM is trying to elevate George Floyd and other blacks who are killed by police officers to the status of martyrdom when that's not true.
I haven't heard that narrative but then again I've stopped listening to Fox or CNN.
See the BLM website to hear their message before judging based on her video.
Please see the article about Charles Kinsey getting shot while laying down with his hands up. He was a mental health worker trying to help his autistic client when he was assumed, because he was a black man, that he was dangerous enough to be shot. #charleskinsey
The real narrative is that black mothers and fathers live with the fear in the back of their minds that their children, growing up in a world where blacks can be shot just for being black, will become victims just like the countless people they see on the news every day.
Next is that I see an ad hominem attack which is also a logical fallacy used to distract from the original argument.
Attacking George Floyd's character doesn't address the fact that we saw a white man kneel on a black man's neck while he was handcuffed and saying he can't breathe until he died and the fact that this happens too often in America.
This is an example of why blacks see law enforcement very differently than whites.
She glosses over this and then brings out his wrap sheet which is meant to make you feel like she's making an argument against the BLM movement when in reality she's using it to push a totally different agenda.
Attacking George Floyd's character has nothing to do with #BLM or #systemicracism, it's just meant to make you think there was some justification for what happened.
The argument she's trying to make is that he was a black criminal to tug at your value of justice so that you'll believe more of her agenda.
To get into her agenda, let's address her background.
She's a #blackconservative who writes books about black conservatism in America and heads a movement called #Blexit that's goal is to convince blacks to leave the democratic party.
I love that we are all able to have different views in America but there's more to this.
She works with writers from Fox news.
That's a huge red flag for me.
I'd say the same if she worked with CNN.
Believe me when I say that CNN and Fox love to hold us in the balance of these seemingly opposing fake narrative arguments to keep their view count soaring.
Shame on them.
So, I'm highly suspicious that much of what we thought of as a "well researched" video from a concerned citizen, was created by a team of political strategists; the same people who write for Kelly Ann Conway and the rest of the Fox pundits.
She's brilliant, and that's why she's paid by Fox to come on their show and debate, but any good writer will consult other expert writers before making such bold statements in the face of political upheaval.
All I'm saying is that it sounds like a team effort to me when it looks, to people who don't know her, like a random video from the internet that just happened to go viral.
Just like everything on #Foxnews and #CNN, this was built to divide us.
Her statistics are flawed, too...
#BLM is trying to get the message out about #systemicracism which puts black people behind bars more than whites.
She uses the same statistics that prove this fact then turn them around to use it against the black community.
I'm telling you, mom, this is some well-calculated brilliant spin work.
Not only that, but she uses language that tugs at the white fear of black people by portraying black people as criminals.
So after she's done with her ad hominem straw man argument she segues into her real agenda which is promoting conservative politics and the republican agenda with statistics that are true but only true because of systemic racism in America.
I hope you see the same problem I'm seeing.
Next, I have to talk about her body language.
Her eye movements tell a lot.
It's well documented that when people lie they make certain eye movements.
She repeatedly closes her eyes for more than 1 second and blinks her eyes rapidly and shakes her head.
While this doesn't prove anything, it's body language that people use when they are lying or feel uncomfortable with what they are saying.
She looks in certain directions that people look when trying to tell a story they've rehearsed.
This proves nothing but it's just an observation.
I hope this helps you see that there is more to this story than what's available on a surface level.
I really appreciated our conversation about the black lives matters movement and as we are all learning and growing during this stressful time so thank you for keeping an open mind.