Letter: Racism may be just disagreement

I have a lot of respect for East Baton Rouge Parish Chief Public Defender Mike Mitchell, but I do not think he has any evidence to support his suggestion that more often than not in stand-your-ground cases around the country, a homicide is deemed justifiable when a white person kills a black person, but that when the races are reversed, a conviction typically results.

I was unable to find anything on the Internet with facts to support his opinion. Quite the opposite. In a well-researched article, “Blacks benefit from Florida ‘Stand Your Ground’ law at disproportionate rate,” Patrick Howley, appearing in the Daily Caller, July 16, shows that Mitchell is clearly wrong.

However, if you point out facts that differ from what people want to believe then you are a racist, whether or not you were the first white judge to hire a black law clerk or not.

A black judge in Baton Rouge gives a black defendant less than 10 years for negligent homicide. That is an appropriate sentence. A white judge is St. Francisville gives a white defendant three times the sentence and he is a racist. That appears patently unfair.

When we cry wolf too often, when the real wolf appears, people no longer believe you.

Bob Downing

retired judge

Baton Rouge