On the same day a grand jury decided to not indict a NYPD police officer in the death of Staten Island man Eric Garner, Rep. Peter King (R-NY) decided to show his complete lack of empathy or compassion by blaming Garner for his own death. NYPD Officer Daniel Pantaleo was informed Wednesday afternoon that a grand jury had returned ‘no true bill’ and he would not be charged for killing Garner.
This occurred despite the medical examiner ruling Garner’s death a homicide and there being clear video evidence that Pantaleo used a chokehold on Garner during an arrest. An arrest, I remind you, for selling loose cigarettes on the street. The NYPD had banned officers from using chokeholds in 1993. The medical examiner stated that Garner’s death was caused by a compression of the neck from a chokehold.
King was interviewed on CNN hours after the grand jury announced its decision. In a moment that can only be described as disgustingly crass, King claimed that the police officer was “just doing his job” and that Garner is dead because of his weight and his bad health, not from anything the cop did. King said, “If he had not had asthma, and a heart condition, and was so obese, he would not have died from this.” King even insinuated that Garner was lying when he repeatedly stated “I can’t breathe,” since if someone can talk, they can breathe.
Below is video of King on CNN, courtesy of Think Progress:
I mean, really, that is just jaw-droppingly cruel and insensitive. Sometimes, when you think you’ve seen the worst parts of human nature, someone comes along and shows you just how awful a person really can be. Before showing up on CNN to show the world just how terrible he is, King sent out a tweet right after the Staten Island grand jury came forward with its decision.
Thanks to SI grand jury for doing justice & not yielding to outside pressure. Decision must be respected. Compassion for the Garner family.
— Rep. Pete King (@RepPeteKing) December 3, 2014
Too bad Keith Olbermann is back on ESPN and no longer on MSNBC. The combination of King’s interview and tweet would definitely qualify him for Keith’s ‘Worst Person in the World.’
Justin Baragona is the Managing Editor at Politicus Sports as well as Senior Editor at PoliticusUSA. He was a political writer for 411Mania.com before joining PoliticusUSA. Politically, Justin considers himself a liberal but also a realist and pragmatist. Currently, Justin lives in St. Louis, MO and is married. Besides writing, he also runs his own business after spending a number of years in the corporate world. You can follow Justin on Twitter either with his personal handle (@justinbaragona) or the Sports site’s (@PoliticusSports).