Senator Rand Paul said Wednesday that he “blames the politicians” in New York for instituting “bad laws” that led to the death of Eric Garner at the hands of a police officer’s choke hold – the latest case to stir race related protests in the US.
Paul explained that Garner was targeted by police for selling loose cigarettes – a direct result of poor political maneuvers in the big apple.
“I think it’s hard not to watch that video of him saying ‘I can’t breathe, I can’t breathe’ and not be horrified by it. But I think there’s something bigger than just the individual circumstances.” Paul explained.
“I think it’s also important to know that some politician put a tax of $5.85 on a pack of cigarettes so that[‘s] driven cigarettes underground by making them so expensive.” The Senator added.
“But then some politician also had to direct the police to say ‘hey we want you arresting people for selling a loose cigarette.’ And for someone to die over breaking that law, there really is no excuse for it. But I do blame the politicians. We’ve put our police in a difficult situation with bad laws” Paul urged.
Indeed, in November 2013, Mayor Michael Bloomberg signed a bill which increased “enforcement on vendors who attempt to evade taxes.”
The black market now accounts for over half of all cigarettes consumed in New York State. Cigarette smuggling has increased 59 per cent since 2006 in response to a 190 percent hike in cigarette tax during that same period.
As we noted in our report Wednesday, Garner was essentially summarily executed with an illegal chokehold for avoiding taxes.
Video footage clearly shows that Garner was not resisting arrest and was not acting aggressively towards the officers. The 43-year-old father of six begged for his life, telling officers he couldn’t breathe, before dying moments later in what the medical examiner’s office ruled a homicide caused by the chokehold.
Former New Jersey Superior Court Judge Andrew Napolitano said Wednesday that the grand jury in New York clearly should have indicted officer Daniel Pantaleo. The judicial analyst said the case was different to the Michael Brown case in Ferguson, Missouri.
“I think it is clearly a case for criminally negligent homicide,” Napolitano said on the Hugh Hewitt radio show. “I think that the use of deadly force, this is not Ferguson, Mo. This is not somebody wrestling for your gun, this is not where you shoot or be shot at.”
“This is choking to death a mentally impaired, grossly obese person whose only crime was selling cigarettes without collecting taxes on them. This does not call for deadly force by any stretch of the imagination.” Napolitano stated.
Napolitano added that he was surprised by the grand jury decision. “This tells me that the district attorney didn’t want an indictment,” he said. “If any DA wants an indictment, he can get one. The cliche is that a grand jury would indict a ham sandwich.” he added.
View the aftermath of Garner’s arrest below.
Steve Watson is a London based writer and editor for Alex Jones’ Infowars.com, and Prisonplanet.com. He has a Masters Degree in International Relations from the School of Politics at The University of Nottingham, and a Bachelor Of Arts Degree in Literature and Creative Writing from Nottingham Trent University.