Yesterday evening, my not-quite-2-year-old daughter asked for a piece of spicy shrimp that I was eating. I knew she wouldn’t like it, so I shook my head and told her, “Trust me, little baby person, you won’t like this.”
Unconvinced, she continued to ask—and for context, her asking is just her looking at me and saying “Please” (pronounced “peas”) over and over again—and then made the face she makes right before she’s going to cry. So I gave her a piece and watched her chew it for a few seconds, spit it out and make a face at me like, “Why would you give me that nasty thing to eat, Daddy?” I replied with my best “You shouldn’t have asked, little nebby baby person” face and continued watching TV. I am a questionable parent.
Anyway, one hidden benefit of having a baby is that she provides me with a better understanding of the spectrum of whiteness. Particularly the grade of whiteness that would drive a person to racially profile, body-slam and cuff someone who’s guilty of nothing but “standing while light-skint” ... and then sue that same person for defamation of character.
Officer James Frascatore says in court papers that city officials didn’t support him after video surfaced of the 2015 incident outside a Manhattan hotel. He says Blake painted him as an “out of control and corrupt officer” in the book “Ways of Grace,” in which the star athlete detailed the arrest.
“The recriminations for mistakenly arresting a celebrity started immediately,” according to the lawsuit.
Frascatore said he was initially suspended but then placed on desk duty. He alleges that a police watchdog group tasked with investigating leaked his disciplinary record before the encounter with Blake, and then Blake suggested in television and in print interviews that Frascatore was somehow a dangerous, violent officer. Disciplinary records are supposed to be kept private by law.
“Blake’s defamatory statements about Officer Frascatore were circulated to millions of readers and viewers in print, on-line, and through mobile and social media,” the lawsuit says.
Thanks to fatherhood, when men like James Frascatore go peak mayo and get mad that the people they injured and harassed for no reason say, “Hey, you injured and harassed me for no reason,” the (lack of) logic finally makes sense. I just tell myself to think of them as 2-year-olds with palates not yet ready for shellfish. Now we just need something to distract them with—Elmo? Pictures of dogs? A Patagonia catalog?—before they start crying.