On this episode, Randi B. and I talk about too many topics to mention. Check it out on YouTube below.
On this episode, Randi B. and I talk about too many topics to mention. Check it out on YouTube below.
Here we go again. Here we fucking go again, man. Right on schedule, here come the authorities with their latest attempt to murder a Black homicide victim for the second time. First, they kill us with their bullets and then they kill us with their accusations. I guess it’s not enough to just destroy us physically. Naaaah, they also need to destroy our image and disgrace our memory. Well, all I know is, I’m fucking tired of the character assassination of our Black murder victims.
So, while I’ve already spoken about the unjustified shooting of Terence Crutcher, I now want to talk about the latest “developments” from the police. Now, I put “developments” in quotations because it’s a FACT the police have a habit of lying about case details. Don’t believe me? Just look up the police report about Crutcher’s death and compare that to what we all saw on the video. Their words say he was non-compliant while our eyes see a man with his hands up. If that’s not enough, how about the recently unearthed video of a St. Louis cop planting a gun on a man he just killed? This happened back in 2011, man. That’s five years of that police department lying about what happened to that victim. With that being said, I treat police reports like the Boy Who Cried Wolf. The only difference is, the boy in this situation gets to keep on lying with impunity.
In any case, the latest news from the police is that they found PCP in Crutcher’s car. From what I can gather, this tidbit is supposed to give credence to Officer Betty Shelby’s story that Crutcher was “on something” and disobeying orders. Man, you can miss me with ALL of that fuck shit, son! Let’s be really clear here, bro. The cops are only bringing up the idea of PCP as a way to justify the shooting of this unarmed man. We already know he was unarmed because the police chief said that on the FIRST DAMN DAY! Now, here’s the REAL problem with this tactic: WE ALL SAW THE FUCKING VIDEO, MAN! Regardless of whatever tall tale the cops try to spin about his demeanor or behavior, there are MULTIPLE camera angles showing him with his hands up. So, in the end, all of their fairy tales don’t matter. A man can’t be a threat if his hands are in the air. Period.
Time after time after time we have to deal with the denigration our people. In addition to the claims of PCP, I’ve seen articles about how Crutcher had a run-in with the law in 1996 and also had traffic violations. Is that enough of a reason to shoot an unarmed man? Once again, detractors try to distract us from the facts in an effort to dehumanize someone who can’t defend themselves. I’ve seen the same thing done to Alton Sterling, Eric Garner, Walter Scott and countless others. They dig in peoples’ pasts to try and sully their names. This way, naysayers can rationalize the blood on the ground. They attempted to do the same thing to Philando Castile with news of his marijuana smoking, but his school community wouldn’t allow it. They admirably came to his defense.
All in all, devaluing Black lives has been standard protocol in this nation since its inception. From slavery to Jim Crow to blackface, it has always been a common practice to negatively depict Black people. It makes the narrative of why they “had” to kill us that much easier to explain. With that being said, I guess the cops really are just doing their jobs. That is all.
Now, I’m fully aware I dropped the ball on a post for Thursday. Hey, cut me some slack, son. Life happens to everyone sometimes. In any case, I’m back to round out my week of Blackity-Black, super Black topics. To put a cap on my latest series of ramblings, let’s talk about a lot of people’s favorite topic: Black-on-Black crime. With all of the events currently going on in the country, a select few have tried to distract the masses by bringing this concept up. It’s time for me to jump into the bullshit.
Let us begin by bringing up everyone’s favorite, as in least favorite, mayor: Rudolph William Louis Giuliani. Now, as I’ve previously stated on this blog, I’m a New York City native, born and raised. Meaning, I was here before Rudy’s tenure as mayor, and I’m still here long after his shift was completed. For those who aren’t familiar with this man, to him, his greatest claim to fame has been “uniting the city” after the September 11th terrorist attacks. Side bar, I put that last phrase in quotations because I know there are a multitude of firefighters who would disagree with that sentiment. In any case, I’m here to call attention to an interview this dude gave recently where, in response to the Dallas police shootings, he alleged there’s a “99 percent chance” a Black person would be killed by another Black person, and not by the police.
For me, that statement is the pinnacle example of a narrative that is consistently brought up by people who refuse to acknowledge police misconduct. The most infuriating part of this ploy is the fact it only tells one side of the story. Now, yes, if you looked into the FBI‘s statistics for homicides in this country, you will see that roughly 90% of Black homicide victims were killed by Black people. What naysayers neglect to tell you is the fact 83% of White homicide victims were murdered by White people. With that being said, I want everyone who’s reading this to go back and take a look at the embedded picture in this post. Those fraudulent statistics were posted by Donald J. Trump, the Republican nominee for president, on his Twitter timeline. These methods are used to distract people from the reality of the situation and shift the blame to another entity. Since the percentages for both races are so high, why do detractors conveniently leave out the part about their White counterparts killing their own people too?
Look, coming from an inner city neighborhood, I’m well aware of the fact there are potential dangers and pitfalls. In any community, there will always be individuals who are damaging to the fabric of a group of people. I will also tell you this: if I decided to shoot and kill someone tonight, I guarantee I’m going to prison for my offense. THAT is what Black people are trying to highlight when talking about police injustice. When a member of our community is unjustly killed by anyone, INCLUDING someone with a badge, we simply want that person to be held accountable. Too many times we’ve seen officers not even receive as much as a slap on the wrist for ending a Black person’s life. Just recently, here in New York, officer Peter Liang only got five years of probation and community service for murdering Akai Gurley. You mean to tell me, I can get locked up for driving with a suspended license, but this officer can go home after taking someone’s life? It’s complete bullshit, man. For a man like Guiliani to ignore police misconduct, when two of the most egregious examples of crooked policing happened under his watch, is an absolute joke. Don’t believe me? Go ask the families of Abner Louima and Amadou Diallo. I’m pretty sure neither faction was/is particularly fond of his brand of “justice.”
In the end, the point here is, don’t use an underdeveloped argument to excuse the misdeeds of some officers out there. For the life of me, I still can’t understand why police apologists can’t just admit there are officers who step outside of their boundaries and simply work to rid the system of these individuals. Don’t tell me to “respect myself” in order for an officer to respect me. When it comes to folks like me, we already respect ourselves. Most of us are law abiding citizens who simply want to freely live our lives. How about the officers our tax dollars support abide by the same laws they’ve sworn to protect? That seems like the more reasonable option. Good day.
P.S. I’m completely done with Charles Barkley playing the Uncle Ruckus role. In response to the unnecessary shootings of Philando Castile and Alton Sterling, Chuck thought it was a good idea to say that some Black people are “crooks,” which is why the dead victims were profiled in this manner. This no-ring-having ass fool! Go look at Castile’s record, dick! Oh, wait, there isn’t one! How dare he justify the shootings of people who look like HIM by spewing rhetoric that doesn’t even describe all of the dead people he’s disgracing. What were Diallo’s crimes? What were Sean Bell‘s crimes? What were Tamir Rice‘s crimes? In addition, why are we bringing up anyone’s record if it’s unrelated to the situation that led to the person’s death? It’s needless character assassination and a tactic used to devalue the lives of people who can’t defend themselves. Honestly, I hate people like Chuck more than anyone else. Traitors have no business even associating with us. He just needs to keep his dumb ass opinions for Inside The NBA, so Shaquille O’Neal and Kenny Smith can continue to let him know how useless his point of view is. Ok, now I’m really done. Adios, kind people.
Honestly, I don’t even know where to begin when it comes to this topic. I have so many thoughts simultaneously floating around in my head, it’s hard to keep myself on track. However; I’ll start by saying this: stop shooting the cotdamn cops, man! With tensions at a remarkably high level between Black communities and our respective police departments, the recent murders of several officers in Dallas, Texas and Baton Rouge, Louisiana are making resolutions seemingly impossible.
By now, I’m sure everyone is familiar with the mayhem that occurred in Dallas back on July 7th. After a peaceful Black Lives Matter protest, where police were monitoring the event, Micah Johnson took it upon himself to kill five officers, injure another nine cops and wound two bystanders. According to Johnson, he was angry with both the police and the Black Lives Matter movement and wanted to “kill White people.” For him, this was a type of retribution for the numerous police shootings of Black males. In light of the recent deaths of Alton Sterling and Philando Castile, Johnson’s act of violence was looked at as direct revenge. Now, not even two weeks later, three officers were killed and another three were injured in Baton Rouge. As of the time I’m writing this, Gavin Long, an ex-Marine thought to be the lone shooter, was killed after the fatal attack he orchestrated.
Here’s the thing, I don’t think individuals like Johnson and Long realize, their actions are NOT helping our cause. There’s already a misguided narrative being perpetuated by cops, politicians and assholes on social media that officers are the real targets in this country. Despite the fact this notion isn’t backed by actual data, it’s all of the justification detractors need to ignore the now countless instances of police misconduct all over the United States. The reality is, when over 500 people have been killed by the police this year, the deaths of less than 70 officers, while obviously tragic, cannot be used as “evidence” of an imaginary war on police. In addition, this aforementioned “war” cannot and should not be used as rationalization for the various instances of cops wrongfully killing Black men.
Whether we’re talking about Amadou Diallo, Eric Garner, Tamir Rice, Walter Scott, Alton Sterling, Philando Castile, or any of the limitless names I could mention, all Black people want is for our murderers to be brought to justice. The only point we’ve tried to make is the fact a badge shouldn’t give someone the power to take another person’s life without any consequences. A badge shouldn’t give an overzealous authority figure the right to abuse his or her power and never face any retribution for his or her actions. As Black people, we simply want to be looked at as people and not some “threat” that needs to be neutralized. In every one of these scenarios, all an officer has to do is say “I feared for my life” or “I thought he had a gun” and the humanity of the victim goes out of the window. All proper procedure goes out of the window. The victim instantly becomes the villain because the dead can’t speak for themselves.
Now, while the anger is certainly palpable, anyone deciding to take the lives of random officers is doing a grave disservice to the aforementioned victims AND the officers themselves. As soon as the shooting in Dallas occurred, I no longer saw any news outlets provide significant coverage of the deaths of Sterling or Castile. They went from being a top story to just another blip on the radar. The lives of the cops instantly became more important than the lives of the Black men killed, and once again, naysayers used this as an opportunity to attack the Black community. They ignore our cries, and videos, of prejudice, they label the Black Lives Matter movement a hate group and they completely absolve any crooked officers of their wrongdoings. Instead of bringing light to our plight, these police killings further draw a line in the sand between both sides. Our ability to reach a mutual understanding with one another continues to suffer as a result. While some people like to use the “violence begets violence” argument, that doesn’t work when everyone becomes more set in their respective ideals.
Ultimately, if everything I’ve written here gets lost in translation, I just want to make one thing perfectly clear: I am NOT okay with the murders of these police officers. First, their respective families now have to deal with the unexpected and unnecessary loss of a loved one. Second, the misdeeds of other officers are unfairly being taken out on the wrong people. Lastly, these incidents overshadow the larger point being made about police misconduct. In addition, the Black victims always get lost in the shuffle. In the end, I truly hope things don’t continue to get worse before they get any better. However; I should probably know better than that. Good day.