New York Times Columnist John McWhorter wrote that he believes Jordan Neely, who died on the F train last week after he was strangled by another passenger, he “deserved restraint.”
Neely, who was homelessFormer Marine Daniel Penny, 24, suffocated him after acting erratic and yelling at passengers ‘no food, no drink, I’m fed up’. I don’t mind going to jail and getting a life sentence. I am ready to die.’
Other passengers helped hold him down until he went limp. He then he was taken to a hospital by paramedics where he was pronounced dead.
Neely, who was homeless, was suffocated by ex-Marine Daniel Penny.
McWhorter acknowledges that his opinion “may be unpopular” but that he is fed up with feeling “terrified” on the transit network, especially when accompanied by his two young daughters.
Her reserved opinion reflects how the incident has divided New Yorkers, with some including the Democratic congresswoman. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortezlabeling it as murder. Others have argued that restraint was necessary.
The conservative columnist and Columbia University linguist wrote that it was “worth noting” that Neely had a history of violence against women, racking up three arrests for assaulting women in the subway system.
McWhorter lamented that the subway has become overrun with the homeless and mentally ill, who he says need specialized help, but that it must be recognized that these “almost always male” riders are “more likely to directly confront women.” .
In the year to March, crime on subways was down 8 percent from the same period last year, yet New Yorkers have continued to express concerns about the lack of security on the network.
There were 10 murders on the subway last year, compared with around two a year in the five years before the pandemic.
McWhorter has also written a book entitled ‘Woke Racism: How a New Religion Has Betrayed Black America’.
In other recent columns, McWhorter has suggested that race isn’t always the central factor in news events that inflame racial tensions.
In April, he wrote that gun violence, not racism, was at the root of the shooting of 16-year-old Ralph Yarl after he was mistaken for a trespasser in Kansas City.
“The point is not that race doesn’t matter,” he wrote in The Times article, “the point is that we can exaggerate how much it does in assessing what ails America in a general sense.”
Rather, he argues, “the shocking prevalence of guns in this country and the ease with which people use them” was the driving factor behind the violence.
The columnist has criticized “the current awakening extremes, confusing acting with action.”
He has written in support of Gov. Ron DeSantis’s objections to a new AP African-American studies course and advocated for more nuanced thinking around discussions of race and police brutality.
McWhorter has also written a book titled ‘Woke Racism: How a New Religion Has Betrayed Black America’, in which he argues that the rise of so-called ‘anti-racism’ is actually illiberal neo-racism that is ‘hurting black communities’.