The Thoughts of SES Blog

Of Crochety Old Men, Rude Police, and Arrogant Authors

Posted in Uncategorized by ses31 on January 29, 2010

I seriously have to explain that title.

Yesterday I had gone to the dentist for a toothache that began around the same time as a fever on Sunday. The good news: no drilling needed. The bad news: I technically need a professionally fitted nightguard that costs around $400 which I can’t afford, but I went to CVS and got a bite wing (cost about $50) for temporary trial (and my mouth hurts this morning. Anyway, the dentist thinks I have been grinding my teeth at night because of an oncoming cold or sinus infection which must be causing my fever (which I still have this morning).

After I left the dentist, I went to Whole Foods to get a bag of spinach, chocolate milk, very vanilla soy milk, and I got an organic orange to snack on for the drive home. Then I made a pit stop by Staples on 280 to see about notebook paper which was supposedly on sale for $1 according to the website (yeah right).

Well, that’s when my day turned from bad to worse. I had gotten back in my car and had gotten a text from my cousin in response to a text I had sent her. So rather than text in motion, I sat there and replied back. Then I got another text from someone else and made a reply. Well, it was during this time that the car that would change my day appeared. It had come down the lane, turned around, illegally I might add, then just sat there. I was done texting for the time being and getting ready to back out, but noticed in my rearview mirror that someone else was about to back out, so I had to wait. Well the driver of that car must have decided he couldn’t wait on me any longer and decided to go ahead and park next to my car and then suddenly slam! He bumps my car with his car door! My whole car shakes! Well this ticks me off because the last time something like that happened, it resulted in about $500 worth of damage that we couldn’t get repaired to that vehicle I had at the time and even though my insurance company tracked the person down, we couldn’t do anything because they refused to respond. So this time I got a picture for identification of the model and the license tag for evidence.

I calmly explained to the man when he got back that he had bumped my car, but then he began to yell at me, so I walked away. I was starting to cry because why was I getting yelled at when I was the victim?

Then the police officers on horses rushed over but they surrounded me threatening and harassing me, claiming I was yelling at an old man. WHAT???!!!??? Wow!!!! They were two stores away and didn’t hear what actually happened. They just automatically assumed that just because he was older, that he was the innocent party. They yelled at me to shut up and refused to even listen to me.

Wow! Now I know why the Birmingham Police keeps coming under scrutiny for POLICE BRUTALITY. Only this time, it was brutality of an innocent white victim.

Well, I immediately e-mailed my local representative, Cam Ward, to tell him why I loved Alabaster after this incident, as well as Governor Riley, and an administrator for the Birmingham City Council because this kind of behavior on the part of city police officers anywhere is irreprehensible. Alabaster police officers do not act like that. Troy police officers do not act that (I used to live in Troy).

Police are called to protect and serve. Part of that is to find out what has happened by getting the information from both sides, not by making threats to someone who is already clearing upset from someone who has started yelling. I walked away. I did not yell. I walked away. He was the only one doing any yelling when they came over.

The worst of it, they let him go easy while they still harassed me and threatened me just because he was still old. The one officer was all, “Are you okay, sir?” And I heard the man say, “She must have a mental problem?”


I wanted to pick up my orange and fling it at someone. I was the victim. Not THAT man. If anyone at that scene had a mental problem, it was him for the way he instantly began to yell at me for just trying to calmly explain that he had hit my car and how I know he had hit my car.

Well, anyway, I’m glad that God must’ve been looking after me on account of the fact that based on their threats, things could’ve gone a lot differently, but they didn’t, and I’m here to tell about it. But I’m rightfully irate. As is my mother. I was emotionally and physically traumatized yesterday and for no reason. After much prayers, I am considering going down to my local police to have charges pressed against the man for what he did. I know the opposite of grace, but I think under the circumstances, grace can only go so far….

Arrogant authors. November 25, 2009, I posted a comment on the following website: My comment: I was utilizing this book for a historical research paper on Freedom of the Press during the Civil Rights Era and when I went to find the articles the author used, I could not find over half of them; the ones I did find had the wrong dates or the wrong page numbers and someone of them were not in existence! The authors don’t do a good job citing their sources at all.

Comment by Susan from Alabama — November 25, 2009 @ 12:07 pm

The response: Dear Susan from Alabama,

I just came upon your comment while looking for something. Naturally, your comment is disturbing to me because we believe our footnotes are impeccable, and to date have not heard these kinds of claims from anyone. The first edition hardback did have some page numbers wrong in the index—but not many and they were corrected. Every single article we cite exists, and I’m confident exists on the date we cited. Out of 1,000 footnotes, there may be a scattered error that I don’t know about, but to suggest you couldn’t find more than half the articles you sought is beyond belief. Email me at and I’ll gladly help you. We put 15 years into that book, the sourcing is correct, comprehensive and a source of great pride. So I’m not likely to let a random email from an anonymous person cast doubt on it. Thank you. Hank Klibanoff (from Alabama)

Comment by Hank Klibanoff from Atlanta, GA — January 29, 2010 @ 12:44 am

I sent a message this morning:
Look Mr. Klibanoff, my thoughts on the accuracy of your citations as posted November 25 at hold true. My mother was also trying to help me find some of those cited sources and it was much to both of our avail that what I stated was true. Sadly, your book was not the only one, but it was the worst one. I even mentioned this to my professor whose class I was writing a paper for which is why I had used the book, and he even agreed that may be a strong possibility, especially since the authors were not coming from a historical background first, but a journalistic background. I had to agree. That is why I was most aggrieved. But unfortunately, your response comes a little late for me because since I couldn’t find most of the sources I was looking for from your book, my paper suffered for it, and therefore, my grade may have suffered for it, thus my graduate career may have suffered for it and my health. Now if you would like to forward your message to my professor directly, perhaps I could have a miracle-a sort of a second chance because for whatever the reason, my mother and I were absolutely horrified the fact that we could not find the majority of the sources cited in your book for the reasons that I indicated. It angered me because one or two sources having an incorrect citation is one thing, but the majority?!? By the way, the sources we looked for at the time were all the sources pertaining to the following topics: Emmett Till, Rosa Parks, Little Rock-Central High, lunch counter sit-ins (particularly Montgomery, Alabama), James Meredith, Birmingham civil rights demonstrations, Sixteenth Street Baptist Church, and New York Times v. Sullivan. Not that I remember everything that was covered in your book as opposed to the topics I was focusing on, but my final paper topic ended up being The Press During the Civil Rights Era, 1955-1965. If you’d like to e-mail my professor directly about what your response, his e-mail is I’m sure he’d love. Heck, you can even forward this message to him if you want, which I’ve half a mind to do so myself were it not for the fact for my thoughts are so scattered right now! You might have put 15 years into the book, but that doesn’t mean you doublechecked your citations for accuracy because clearly if two people have discovered that there were inaccuracies, then well….

His reply: —
Hank Klibanoff
Phone: 404-376-2641

Well, that answers a lot! I think I might have put that guy in his place. It may be the first time this audacious journalism major has truly won an argument of principles!

I am not going to say anything else on that topic though, except NEVER get arrogant with a red-head because a red-head can be just as stubborn and bull-headed.

See, I have a stubborn dog, and when we both get stubborn, nothing gets done!

Anyway, to anyone reading this, please pray that the situation involving the crotchety old man gets worked out however it will.


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