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View Full Version : My experience going to Traffic Court and the sobering reality of living in the US.


Rocketta
Sep 7th, 2012, 04:12 PM
Imagine my surprise while sitting in traffic court, to discover that everyone who received a traffic ticket was either black or brown or thought to be brown (ie, the case for my hubby). When my hubby came home and said he got a ticket for running a red light, it never once crossed my mind that he was possibly profiled. Well not until I got into court and saw nothing but black and brown people with tickets and nothing but caucasions sitting up front as the officers.

Don't get me wrong I don't think white cops are the only ones that profile, I don't think that at all. I think profiling is the perfect example of institutional racism that is so interweaved in our society that anyone in those positions, white, black, or brown would probably have a lof of the same tickets given out.

Having said that, back to court... When going over what happened with the hubby, it was clear to me that the officer who pulled him over could not have possibly known if my hubby's light had changed totally red before he entered the intersection and having read the law, it was clear that is what had to happen for him to be guilty. So we formulated a defense and went to court to fight the ticket. When speaking with the judge the officer admitted to going back and reviewing the camera 'to make sure he ran a red light', the judge then asked him if he was able to see the hubby's light before he pulled him over, he said no and she immediately dimissed the case.

After hearing the testimony, seeing all the defendents in court of the officers (btw, there was one caucasion lady with a ticket for a dui, and one guy for not stopping at a stop sign out of I would say 50 defendents in that session) it is clear to me that my hubby was profiled. At the time he was taking three other refugees from Iraq who had just recently come into the country to a special Ramadan service because they didn't have a car and have been pretty isolated from their community. So I truly think the officer pulled him over on a very questionable reason (running a red light that he wasn't even sure of) because he thought he saw a car load of hispanics. This is my presumption of course that he figured although the initial stop was questionable that he would then be able to site other things like no driver's licence or no insurance, etc....

This of course would not be the first or last time my hubby has been or will be mistaken for hispanic, it happens every day... but my happiness at getting the case dismissed is completely sobered by the reality of the world we still live in. </rant>

Super Dave
Sep 7th, 2012, 04:16 PM
Well, I get plenty of tickets and I'm about as black as Maria Sharapova ;) ;)

miffedmax
Sep 7th, 2012, 04:47 PM
Me, too. But that doesn't invalidate Rocketta's point.

I don't know enough about her community and her particular traffic court to comment. In my city there are some small traffic courts handled by JPs where the people would represent local demographics (about 70% Hispanic in my area).

And I don't know the demographics in your area, either Dave.

I know the PD in my old hometown in the Dallas 'burbs racially profiled like crazy.

ys
Sep 7th, 2012, 04:52 PM
My guess, out of people who get tickets, a lot of people would just plead guilty,pay by mail/Internet and get done with it, without even going into courts. And that separation might be very much inline with economic realities, that is might fall into some economic profile separation.

edificio
Sep 7th, 2012, 05:05 PM
Interesting. I did not notice this where I contested a ticket once, but it was in the equivalent of a broom closet, so I thought not many bothered (cash cow for cities) or did not have the time to bother (not being to take off work). However, I do think that cops have biases.

Super Dave
Sep 7th, 2012, 05:05 PM
My guess, out of people who get tickets, a lot of people would just plead guilty,pay by mail/Internet and get done with it, without even going into courts. And that separation might be very much inline with economic realities, that is might fall into some economic profile separation.

That's what I do, and you can fight it/explain it through the mail and get your fine waived or lessened, which I've done.

And I know profiling goes on; I wasn't trying to invalidate Rocketta's point. It was just some self-deprecating humor (I've probably had close to 10 tickets in my life :[ But I also drive a ton, so my tickets per mile ratio is probably still not too bad :lol:)

Rocketta
Sep 7th, 2012, 05:09 PM
ys, most people who showed up in court did plead guilty... I don't know if showing up in court was to try to get the fines decreased, giving credence to your economic reasoning but with how tough economic times are I would think people doing that would include all races.

The county was outside of Richmond, VA, it was Henrico county which is predominately a caucasion county... although, Richmond, Va is probably predominately black. I'm not sure of the census numbers... but I'll look.

One thing I didn't mention, was the officer was located in traffic in a cross street and that he was so far from the light that it took him almost a mile to catch up to my hubby to pull him over.....

It just didn't feel all above board to me in terms of the people with tickets. Funny thing was the judge was a black female and the minute the officer admitted he went back to the camera to see if 'really' ran the light just made it very evident that the officer clearly had a question as to whether he ran the light or not so what was the overriding reason to actually give a ticket instead of a warning because he wasn't truly sure?

Rocketta
Sep 7th, 2012, 05:11 PM
That's what I do, and you can fight it/explain it through the mail and get your fine waived or lessened, which I've done.

And I know profiling goes on; I wasn't trying to invalidate Rocketta's point. It was just some self-deprecating humor (I've probably had close to 10 tickets in my life :[ But I also drive a ton, so my tickets per mile ratio is probably still not too bad :lol:)

Oh, it's ok I didn't think you were trying to invalidate anything I said, if you were then you would've received a Rocketta smackdown! :armed:

:p

Btw, you couldn't write in to explain your case, you could only plead guilty and pay the ticket through the mail in that county.

Rocketta
Sep 7th, 2012, 05:15 PM
Interesting. I did not notice this where I contested a ticket once, but it was in the equivalent of a broom closet, so I thought not many bothered (cash cow for cities) or did not have the time to bother (not being to take off work). However, I do think that cops have biases.

I've been to court in another city where it's like a clerk taking your summons.. he just asks are you guilty or not guilty, If you say guilty or ask for prayer from judgement.. then he would mark your speed under 9 miles above the speed limit. I don't know what happened there if you said non-guilty?

ys
Sep 7th, 2012, 06:14 PM
There is one other very interesting ( to me ) observation on the subject that I noticed in last several years, that could contribute to implicit profiling.. I'll describe it later today.. No time now..

ys
Sep 7th, 2012, 11:30 PM
Here is what I noticed. Traffic cops like it when you are afraid of them and dreading their tickets.

My first 7-8 years living in USA I was your regular middle class guy, first working on H visa, depending on the employer. Then greencard, but then economy was tough ( 2002-2004 ). So, I had that single attribute that defines the middle class - insecurity. Your life makes you be so much on the edge, that any problem can throw you off your comfort, financially first of all. In that period I was stopped by cops 6 or 7 times on 4 or 5 different states. Was ticketed every single time.
Then, finally I got more economical freedom. And it, of course, started to reflect on better finances, more comfortable life, more margin for error, more money to spend. Since then I was stopped three times. Not ticketed even once. The only ticket I got in these 6 years was a technical ticket because of minor collision in which I was partly at fault. Three times they just let me go.
What is the connection, would you ask?
Let me ask you. Who, do you think, would go working as a traffic cop? I think, two types of people. Those who can't get any other job. Probably a minority. Because in this job you are upsetting people for living. And mostly with no real reason. You bring them bad emotions, you ruin their mood, you often ruin their day. That's what you do. Who would like this kind of job? Folks with character on power-hungry and slightly sadistic side. I see no reason a normal person would like that job.
And, suppose they stop me, and it upsets me, as I am instantly thinking of $100 of fine and $200 per year of increased premium for insurance for 3 years. Ticket with a total cost of $700. I am afraid of it, I don't want to lose this money, I need them, I really want him to let me go, I am trying to be nice and perhaps more than just nice. Normally? They would never let you go in this situation. Because this is the situation this kind of folk enjoy. Stumping your authority over folks. whose eyes beg for clemency.
Now, imagine , that they stop me, and I don't give a fuck. Ticket? Whatever. Fine? Whatever. With you looking at him with this "whatever, just get done with it, so I can go take care of what is really, really important, comparing to all those fines and insurance premiums, something like that tennis match in a local league, that I am about to play" in your eyes. Stop. This is no longer fun. Punishing people who don't care is no fun for those folks. No joy. Now, for them, instead of enjoying your suffering, it is 10 minutes that they need to waste doing your ticket paperwork, getting no satisfaction in return. No, maybe they'd rather spend those 10 minutes catching someone who is afraid. And who'll feed their sick ego with their fear of inevitable. And then, perhaps, go to court, to try to beg and bargain for decreased fines or points.
So, don't be afraid. Whatever the outcome, there is no reason to be afraid.

kwilliams
Sep 7th, 2012, 11:31 PM
A Hispanic American friend of mine from Texas moved to Phoenix a few years ago and she said the mayor there (at least I think it was the mayor) had instigated a pretty radical and unjust policy that made Hispanics a target for police officers. She said that she and many of her friends were being pulled over a lot and all of this was to try to catch illegal immigrants.

Barrie_Dude
Sep 8th, 2012, 12:16 PM
Well, I get plenty of tickets and I'm about as black as Maria Sharapova ;) ;)
I am with you. I chose to pay my fine rather then go to court

pov
Sep 8th, 2012, 12:52 PM
I like this post. Mostly because it shows how assumptions are often made based on ideology. The OP went to traffic court and saw mostly "brown" and "black" people. So the assumption is that there is some targeting of "brown" and "black" people. Someone else would walk into that court and assume that "brown" and "black" people have no regard for traffic laws.

For me, the fact leads me to a simple "why?" If it was where I lived I'd check the demographics, I'd check back on other days to see if it was the same thing, I'd find out how many of those ticketed are bothering to go to court rather than just pay the fine. I'd probably even talk to the clerks and maybe a few cops to get their take on the situation.

It is far to easy to take a fact and frame it within the viewpoint of what we already think. Especially when there are others who think similarly.

JN
Sep 8th, 2012, 01:48 PM
^
:bs: You'd not even bat an eye, assuming it's anything but a race issue, and keep it moving.

Wigglytuff
Sep 8th, 2012, 02:04 PM
^
:bs: You'd not even bat an eye, assuming it's anything but a race issue, and keep it moving.

That guy is total.dick, he loves talking what he doesn't know and saying stupid shit.

----
ROCKETTA: I wish I could say I am shocked or surprised but I'm not. In NYC last year the cops stopped and frisked more black men than there ARE in the city. That means many are stopped twice as well as tourists are stopped. Surprise, surprise most stops happen in most black areas and (not high crime areas, mostly black areas) and less than 5% of stops result in anything serious. And most stops are for "suspicious looks and furtive movements"

moby
Sep 8th, 2012, 03:40 PM
When I had some technical fingerprinting issues coming to the US and had to go to Immigration at JFK to get it resolved, the same thing happened. There were families and babies too. About 30 people in all, none of them white (mostly brown). A white woman came in half hour into my wait and she was served immediately. I don't know what her issue was, but certainly mine was no more complicated than hers. I myself got out ahead of everyone else who came before me.

I guess for such purposes as getting through immigration, racial profiling has some merit, but it was still discomforting.

Another time, I was going through baggage clearance, where they "randomly" select people for extra baggage check. There were about a dozen people, maybe more, when I joined the line. The Indian man (and his wife) ahead of me remarked angrily (it can take a while to get through those checks and no one's in a good mood after a long flight): Do you see any white person in this line?

I did not.

miffedmax
Sep 8th, 2012, 05:01 PM
My old hometown had a wonderful charge called "Drunk in Car." Of course, it only applied to blacks and Hispanics. The beauty of it was, let's say Jose and Juan (because it wouldn't apply if it was Joe and John) get drunk. Realizing they're in no shape to drive home, they very responsibly call Maria to come pick them up. But as they drive through my town, they're breaking the "Drunk in Car" law. :weirdo:

Yes, the world's most stupid law was finally overturned by the courts. In the 1990s. And yes, one of the many factors cited when the law was overturned was that no white person had been arrested for "Drunk in Car" for decades.

*JR*
Sep 8th, 2012, 05:36 PM
http://espn.go.com/magazine/friend_20011121.html

Excerpt:

MOSCOW; SEPT. 30-OCT. 6 (2001)

By the time they hit Russia, Alexandra's traveling party was three -- herself, her mother and her regular European hitting partner, James Trotman of Great Britain. Actually, they had flown into Moscow a few days early, and the way it works in Russia is they needed a consulate's invitation into the country, plus a visa. But the invitation had been for a later date, and as they deplaned in Moscow, they feared a confrontation.

That said, Alexandra reminded her mother about Venus's admonition: Zip it. Samantha can be loud if she feels someone has been wronged, and Alexandra and others warned her this was not the time to be the "ugly American." The State Department had put a message out to all Americans traveling abroad to keep a low profile, but Samantha forgot about that as soon as they confronted customs at the dilapidated Moscow airport.

The female customs officer let Alexandra and Samantha slide through -- even though they were arriving early -- but, for some reason, this officer detained their British hitting partner.

"How dare you?" an agitated Samantha said. "Get your hands off him right now."

[Russian for, "What?"]

"Does he look like a criminal? Let's call Putin," Samantha said, "He's said he's a friend of Americans. Let's call him."

"You can call Mr. Putin," the officer said. "Come. Use my phone."

[The officer had no phone.] :devil:

"I will call him. And I'm sure the American Embassy will want to hear this, too."

By this time, Alexandra and her mother figured the officers would only let James through if they paid them off. But they'd already paid approximately $400 combined for their visas and so forth and didn't intend to be gouged.

"I'm not going to give you one more red cent," Samantha told a male officer.

"Well, actually, it's the American dollar I want," he said. :tape:

"I want your supervisor," she said.

"You've already asked for him," he said. "It's Mr. Putin. Let's call him." :help:

[He had no phone either.]

Eventually, they had no choice but to pay $200 more to free James. So this is how the Moscow trip started, and by the time the tournament began, Alexandra realized she was still the only American woman playing -- two weeks in a row. Serena Williams was supposed to have played in Leipzig, and Venus was supposed to compete in Moscow, but neither had shown up, and it was getting ugly in the locker room. Alexandra's CD player was stolen -- even though there were men in black suits serving as extra security -- and Alexandra said a Czech player named Denisa Chladkova kept giving her icy stares and mumbling, "Stupid American" at her.

"It was so immature," Alexandra said. "I was like, 'Why are you wasting all that energy on me?' Also, I was the only one in that city that I saw with brown skin. I mean, not only was I the only American, but being tall and brown skinned, it felt weird there. In Moscow and in Leipzig, my mom and my hitter were in the stands, but I felt like I was so alone on the court. Like everyone was different. Like we'd been invaded by aliens and taken to their country. On the court, that's how I felt."

Rocketta
Sep 8th, 2012, 07:18 PM
I like this post. Mostly because it shows how assumptions are often made based on ideology. The OP went to traffic court and saw mostly "brown" and "black" people. So the assumption is that there is some targeting of "brown" and "black" people. Someone else would walk into that court and assume that "brown" and "black" people have no regard for traffic laws.

For me, the fact leads me to a simple "why?" If it was where I lived I'd check the demographics, I'd check back on other days to see if it was the same thing, I'd find out how many of those ticketed are bothering to go to court rather than just pay the fine. I'd probably even talk to the clerks and maybe a few cops to get their take on the situation.

It is far to easy to take a fact and frame it within the viewpoint of what we already think. Especially when there are others who think similarly.

One, I already knew the demographics of that county, it's predominately caucasion.

Two, I already know the national statistics to arrests especially drug arrest and sentencing and they never correspond to racial percentages nor actual rates of crime.. It's a proven fact, that caucasions, especially the youth, use drugs as much probably more than black and brown youths (please don't make me look up the statistics again.... I did a long post about it on here many years ago) yet black and brown youths were more likely to be arrested and when sentenced received much longer sentences than their caucasion counterparts.

3. Having known all that I still before walking into the court thought he was pulled over just because the officer 'really' thought he ran the red light. However the cops own actions shows that he himself wasn't sure by going back 'AFTER' he wrote the ticket and looked at the tape to make sure he ran the red light. I couldn't hear what he said about what he saw but it wasn't convincing to the judge. Once she verified with the officer that he had no view of my husband's light she dismissed the case. The speed at which the judge dismissed the case let me know that the officer pulled him over on a wing and a prayer. So one would have to ask themselves, why would an officer who is three cars back at a light, who is not 100% sure a person actually ran the light would pursue the person for almost a mile before he caught up to them to pull them over and not give them a warning and tell them it was close but to actually give them a ticket?

4. There also the fact that my hubby is always mistaken for hispanic even by hispanics as they frequently come up to him and speak spanish. He even had one lady say to him, "It's a shame your mother didn't teach you spanish!" after he told her he didn't speak spanish.

5. Profiling, is a common and known event in the US what exactly would I need to research to know that this happens?:help:

So maybe with your knowledge and experiences you would need to do further research but that would just be time wasted for me.

Moveyourfeet
Sep 8th, 2012, 07:19 PM
^
:bs: You'd not even bat an eye, assuming it's anything but a race issue, and keep it moving.

POV likes to be the resident contrarian, but this time, I'm with him. Anecdotes cannot take the place of analyzed data of a large sample size. A healthy dose of skepticism is always a good thing, especially when one is emotionally connected to the subject.

That being said, I'm comfortable stating that bias is a big factor in a lot of police stops and arrests.

Rocketta
Sep 8th, 2012, 07:27 PM
A Hispanic American friend of mine from Texas moved to Phoenix a few years ago and she said the mayor there (at least I think it was the mayor) had instigated a pretty radical and unjust policy that made Hispanics a target for police officers. She said that she and many of her friends were being pulled over a lot and all of this was to try to catch illegal immigrants.

Arizona is quite notorious in it's pursuit of illegal immigrants. :o :o :o

Rocketta
Sep 8th, 2012, 07:32 PM
When I had some technical fingerprinting issues coming to the US and had to go to Immigration at JFK to get it resolved, the same thing happened. There were families and babies too. About 30 people in all, none of them white (mostly brown). A white woman came in half hour into my wait and she was served immediately. I don't know what her issue was, but certainly mine was no more complicated than hers. I myself got out ahead of everyone else who came before me.

I guess for such purposes as getting through immigration, racial profiling has some merit, but it was still discomforting.

Another time, I was going through baggage clearance, where they "randomly" select people for extra baggage check. There were about a dozen people, maybe more, when I joined the line. The Indian man (and his wife) ahead of me remarked angrily (it can take a while to get through those checks and no one's in a good mood after a long flight): Do you see any white person in this line?

I did not.

Hasn't the TSA admitted to a policy of profiling in at least regards to Arabs? I have no doubt that the policy would then somehow get expanded... not necessarily by the organization but by the people doing the work, whether consciously or unconsciously. :shrug:

Rocketta
Sep 8th, 2012, 07:36 PM
My old hometown had a wonderful charge called "Drunk in Car." Of course, it only applied to blacks and Hispanics. The beauty of it was, let's say Jose and Juan (because it wouldn't apply if it was Joe and John) get drunk. Realizing they're in no shape to drive home, they very responsibly call Maria to come pick them up. But as they drive through my town, they're breaking the "Drunk in Car" law. :weirdo:

Yes, the world's most stupid law was finally overturned by the courts. In the 1990s. And yes, one of the many factors cited when the law was overturned was that no white person had been arrested for "Drunk in Car" for decades.

Wow, they should've named that law "Drunk in Car while riding brown" :lol:

and

JR, I'm not sure what to make of your article because I'm not sure of it's meaning? :confused:

Rocketta
Sep 8th, 2012, 07:42 PM
Here is what I noticed. Traffic cops like it when you are afraid of them and dreading their tickets.

My first 7-8 years living in USA I was your regular middle class guy, first working on H visa, depending on the employer. Then greencard, but then economy was tough ( 2002-2004 ). So, I had that single attribute that defines the middle class - insecurity. Your life makes you be so much on the edge, that any problem can throw you off your comfort, financially first of all. In that period I was stopped by cops 6 or 7 times on 4 or 5 different states. Was ticketed every single time.
Then, finally I got more economical freedom. And it, of course, started to reflect on better finances, more comfortable life, more margin for error, more money to spend. Since then I was stopped three times. Not ticketed even once. The only ticket I got in these 6 years was a technical ticket because of minor collision in which I was partly at fault. Three times they just let me go.
What is the connection, would you ask?
Let me ask you. Who, do you think, would go working as a traffic cop? I think, two types of people. Those who can't get any other job. Probably a minority. Because in this job you are upsetting people for living. And mostly with no real reason. You bring them bad emotions, you ruin their mood, you often ruin their day. That's what you do. Who would like this kind of job? Folks with character on power-hungry and slightly sadistic side. I see no reason a normal person would like that job.
And, suppose they stop me, and it upsets me, as I am instantly thinking of $100 of fine and $200 per year of increased premium for insurance for 3 years. Ticket with a total cost of $700. I am afraid of it, I don't want to lose this money, I need them, I really want him to let me go, I am trying to be nice and perhaps more than just nice. Normally? They would never let you go in this situation. Because this is the situation this kind of folk enjoy. Stumping your authority over folks. whose eyes beg for clemency.
Now, imagine , that they stop me, and I don't give a fuck. Ticket? Whatever. Fine? Whatever. With you looking at him with this "whatever, just get done with it, so I can go take care of what is really, really important, comparing to all those fines and insurance premiums, something like that tennis match in a local league, that I am about to play" in your eyes. Stop. This is no longer fun. Punishing people who don't care is no fun for those folks. No joy. Now, for them, instead of enjoying your suffering, it is 10 minutes that they need to waste doing your ticket paperwork, getting no satisfaction in return. No, maybe they'd rather spend those 10 minutes catching someone who is afraid. And who'll feed their sick ego with their fear of inevitable. And then, perhaps, go to court, to try to beg and bargain for decreased fines or points.
So, don't be afraid. Whatever the outcome, there is no reason to be afraid.

You know that probably does work for you. I believe it but I think all black guys know if they give any kind of attitude to cops when pulled over usually results in them being pulled out of their car sometimes handcuffed while the police search their car for illegal substances or anything that they can hold them on.

I remember when my nephew went away to college we sat him down and reminded him if pulled over to super respectful even if you think you shouldn't have been pulled over.

JN
Sep 8th, 2012, 08:44 PM
POV likes to be the resident contrarian, but this time, I'm with him. Anecdotes cannot take the place of analyzed data of a large sample size. A healthy dose of skepticism is always a good thing, especially when one is emotionally connected to the subject.

That being said, I'm comfortable stating that bias is a big factor in a lot of police stops and arrests.

I'd already read the OP's full accounting, which she repeated above your post, so no, Pov is once again guilty of waxing poetic without taking into account the facts in front of his face.

*JR*
Sep 8th, 2012, 08:47 PM
JR, I'm not sure what to make of your article because I'm not sure of it's meaning? :confused:

I posted it mostly to tease ys about the rampant corruption in his native country. :tape: And 2C if it would spur ppl here to post about "the other side of the coin" on traffic tickets... those situations where cops are looking for bribes not to write them. That's probably more prevalent in developing countries, not to say there's not plenty of police corruption in the West, too.

Rocketta
Sep 8th, 2012, 09:47 PM
I posted it mostly to tease ys about the rampant corruption in his native country. :tape: And 2C if it would spur ppl here to post about "the other side of the coin" on traffic tickets... those situations where cops are looking for bribes not to write them. That's probably more prevalent in developing countries, not to say there's not plenty of police corruption in the West, too.

Ah, now I see, thanks for the explanation. :)

$uricate
Sep 11th, 2012, 10:35 AM
http://espn.go.com/magazine/friend_20011121.html

Excerpt:

MOSCOW; SEPT. 30-OCT. 6 (2001)

By the time they hit Russia, Alexandra's traveling party was three -- herself, her mother and her regular European hitting partner, James Trotman of Great Britain. Actually, they had flown into Moscow a few days early, and the way it works in Russia is they needed a consulate's invitation into the country, plus a visa. But the invitation had been for a later date, and as they deplaned in Moscow, they feared a confrontation.

That said, Alexandra reminded her mother about Venus's admonition: Zip it. Samantha can be loud if she feels someone has been wronged, and Alexandra and others warned her this was not the time to be the "ugly American." The State Department had put a message out to all Americans traveling abroad to keep a low profile, but Samantha forgot about that as soon as they confronted customs at the dilapidated Moscow airport.

The female customs officer let Alexandra and Samantha slide through -- even though they were arriving early -- but, for some reason, this officer detained their British hitting partner.

"How dare you?" an agitated Samantha said. "Get your hands off him right now."

[Russian for, "What?"]

"Does he look like a criminal? Let's call Putin," Samantha said, "He's said he's a friend of Americans. Let's call him."

"You can call Mr. Putin," the officer said. "Come. Use my phone."

[The officer had no phone.] :devil:

"I will call him. And I'm sure the American Embassy will want to hear this, too."

By this time, Alexandra and her mother figured the officers would only let James through if they paid them off. But they'd already paid approximately $400 combined for their visas and so forth and didn't intend to be gouged.

"I'm not going to give you one more red cent," Samantha told a male officer.

"Well, actually, it's the American dollar I want," he said. :tape:

"I want your supervisor," she said.

"You've already asked for him," he said. "It's Mr. Putin. Let's call him." :help:

[He had no phone either.]

Eventually, they had no choice but to pay $200 more to free James. So this is how the Moscow trip started, and by the time the tournament began, Alexandra realized she was still the only American woman playing -- two weeks in a row. Serena Williams was supposed to have played in Leipzig, and Venus was supposed to compete in Moscow, but neither had shown up, and it was getting ugly in the locker room. Alexandra's CD player was stolen -- even though there were men in black suits serving as extra security -- and Alexandra said a Czech player named Denisa Chladkova kept giving her icy stares and mumbling, "Stupid American" at her.

"It was so immature," Alexandra said. "I was like, 'Why are you wasting all that energy on me?' Also, I was the only one in that city that I saw with brown skin. I mean, not only was I the only American, but being tall and brown skinned, it felt weird there. In Moscow and in Leipzig, my mom and my hitter were in the stands, but I felt like I was so alone on the court. Like everyone was different. Like we'd been invaded by aliens and taken to their country. On the court, that's how I felt."

Alexandra's entire yearly earnings.

Those monsters :o



Stevenson is the epitome of those who play the race card for everything.