My Sunday Night With The Police

So, originally, I was going to talk about Jay-Z‘s new album today. However; I just need to get this story off of my chest, man. Now, don’t worry, good people. I’ll be back on Wednesday to speak about the virtues of 4:44. In any case, for today, I’d like to talk about my recent run-in with the New York Police Department. Needless to say, the entire situation was uncalled for and unnecessary. All in all, I truly don’t understand why cops find so much joy in being complete assholes.

Now, the situation began while I was driving home. I happened to be a few blocks away from my apartment on Morris Avenue in the Bronx. Side note, for anyone who’s unfamiliar with this part of the world, although Morris is a two-way street, it only has one lane on each side. Anyway, I was driving behind this black car and the vehicle just stopped in the middle of the street. I honked my horn thinking the driver was either distracted or lost. The car didn’t move. After about five or ten seconds, the car slowly pulled off and then proceeded to run a red light.

When the light turned green again, I started moving, but ended up right back behind the same car. It stopped in the middle of the street again and I honked my horn a second time. From there, the car pulled off the road to the right. I assumed that the driver was lost and needed to get his/her baring. I decided to drive around the now parked car. As I passed the car, that’s when I realized it was the police. Honestly, I had no idea because the car didn’t look like the typical Dodge or Chevrolet that they usually use.

Moving on, once I drove pass them, that’s when they turned their sirens on and forced me to pull over. Next, four officers jumped out of the car with their hands on their guns. Two of them stood on the driver’s side of my car and the other two stood on the passenger side. The officer driving the car started to yell at me for “tailgating” him. I asked him how could I be tailgating if I drove around him when he wasn’t moving. Also, I reminded him that he stopped in the middle of the street on two separate occasions.

After this part of our exchange, the same cop asked me for my license and registration. As I motioned for my wallet, all four cops put their hands back on their guns. I assured them that I was just trying to get my license. Once I gave them what they asked for, they told me to get out of the car. While this happened, a teenage boy stopped on the sidewalk to see what was going on. The two officers on the passenger side approached him with their hands still on their guns. They asked him if he knew me and he said “no.” Next, they told him to “get the fuck out of [their] face.”

From there, the main cop asked me if my license was real and if I’ve been arrested before. I responded with a “yes” and a “no,” respectively. For whatever reason, he said he should still book me for “being a tough guy.” Instead, he said I was “lucky” because they were going to let me go. After I got back in my car, he threw my ID at me and told me to “watch [my] mouth next time.” In the end, since I was close my apartment, my entire block watched me get harassed by these dudes.

In the end, I truly don’t understand why cops feel the need to behave this way. Keep in mind, two of the officers were Hispanic and the other two were Black. Meaning, I can’t even really blame race for this shit. Ultimately, the police department is an intrinsic system that’s designed to operate based on bias. In this moment, I wasn’t a husband, father or college graduate with a corporate job. I was just a “tough guy” that they thought they could get one over on. All in all, these are the reasons why people don’t respect cops. Shit, I may be alive to tell this tale, but not everyone is so fortunate, man. By and by, fuck the police, son! LC out.

Vote For Braxton Winston!

Man, where do I start, son? I guess I’ll begin by saying that I’ve known Braxton Winston for a long time. First, he was one of my predecessors at New York‘s PREP 9 academic program. Next, during the summer of 2002, we both served as advisors for the aforementioned program. This was a way for us to give back to an organization that positively altered the trajectory of our lives. In any case, I’ve always seen Winston as a positive role model. With that being said, I want to take the time to support his campaign for Charlotte City Council. North Carolina can really benefit from a man of his caliber representing them.

Now, before I continue, let me talk about how we got here. So, it all began with the shooting death of Keith Lamont Scott. After the police needlessly killed another Black man, Winston decided to stand up and join the protests. In fact, he’s responsible for an iconic photo, which was used by various new outlets to depict the mood in Charlotte. From there, he frequently used Facebook Live to display the real climate in the city, regardless of the narrative presented by law enforcement and the media. This was his way to tell the unabridged truth without succumbing to rhetoric and partisanship.

Moving on, for his efforts, he’s been confronted by the authorities on multiple occasions and even arrested for protesting. Anyway, as we fast forward to today, all of these events have lit a fire under Winston. Now, he’s looking to secure a place on the City Council, in hopes of bringing new energy and new ideas to the community. All in all, his movement is inspiring and I can’t help but support the man.

In the end, I want everyone to visit www.votebraxton.com and contribute. His website details his platform and the motivation behind his decision to run. By and by, I believe a lot more of us should become involved in local politics. I’ll admit that I’ve tinkered with the idea for the longest, man. However; as we can see, Winston is already beating me to the punch. Good work, bro! LC out.

Police Never De-Escalate: The Story Of Charleena Lyles

*Sigh* I… *Sigh* Seriously, man? A pregnant woman? A 5’2″ mother of four who was carrying another child? The police really couldn’t find a way to de-escalate this situation? Honestly, what the fuck are they teaching cops in these academies, man? Like, I truly don’t understand why EVERY situation involving Black people ends with death. All in all, regardless of the story that the authorities will try to tell, Charleena Lyles should still be alive.

Now, before I continue, let me address the inevitable naysayers. I mean, regardless of the situation, there are always people who try to justify the actions of the police. So, yes, Lyles may have had mental issues. Yes, the police had a checkered history with her. Apparently, her apartment was flagged “hazard information” by the department. Anyway, yes, she may have been holding a knife when the cops entered her unit. In any case, with all of that being said, it doesn’t change the fact that she called them for help.

Look, the authorities went to Lyles’ apartment because SHE reached out to them. She contacted them about a potential burglary and was looking for some assistance. However; instead of treating her like a woman in need, the police automatically went there anticipating hostility. For example, the station sent two officers to her residence instead of one. As of now, the cops are claiming that they shot her because she was brandishing a knife. Apparently, according to their “training,” they don’t know any other methods of de-escalation.

My thing is, so what is she had a knife? Lest we forget, Lyles was reporting a burglary. Why wouldn’t a pregnant woman with four other children in the house arm herself for protection? In addition, even if the cops were scared, why couldn’t they use their tasers? I mean, why do officers even have them, fam? They never seem to use them in the appropriate situations. Listen, if they really thought this pregnant woman was a threat, they could’ve tased her and then figured out the best way to proceed. Instead, they treated her like a criminal in her own home and killed her in front of her kids.

Ultimately, I’m speechless, man. Like, this has to be one of the most egregious miscarriages of justice. In the end, no minority is safe from the wrath of the police department. By and by, it’s an incredibly hopeless feeling when we realize that literally ANYONE can be murdered. *Sigh* What the fuck are we supposed to do now, fam? I really don’t know what else to say. LC out.

When Will We Call A Hate Crime A Hate Crime?

Man, stories like this make me fucking furious, bruh! Like, we live in a time where we can’t just call shit what it is. Look, instead of attacking situations head on, people would much rather beat around the bush. All I know is, I’m not one of those people, man. The way I see it, the murder of Richard Collins III was a hate crime, fam. All in all, just one look at Sean Urbanski‘s life can tell us all we need to know about that coward. With that being said, the police and the FBI NEED to do the right thing!

Now, for those who are unaware, let me give a brief synopsis of this story. To begin, Collins was a US Army Second Lieutenant who was about to graduate from Bowie State University. In any case, while visiting some friends at the University of Maryland, Collins and company were approached by Urbanski. So, after making threatening comments to Collins and his crew, Urbanski pulled out a knife and stabbed Collins in the chest. Ultimately, Collins was pronounced dead at the hospital.

Moving on, upon further inspection of Urbanski’s daily life, we learn that he belongs to an “Alt-Reich Nation” group on Facebook. Apparently, this particular group specializes in hating on women, Hispanics, Jews and Black people. Now, with all of that being said, why are we confused about whether or not this murder was a hate crime? I mean, a clown who openly embraces racist rhetoric randomly killed an unsuspecting Black man. Listen, am I really supposed to believe this wasn’t racially motivated? Man, get the fuck outta here, son!

In the end, nothing else needs to be said here. Richard Collins III deserves supreme justice. His promising life was cut short because bigots are becoming more emboldened by the day. By and by, if the authorities want us to believe that they actually stand for something, then Urbanski needs to be thrown under the jail. Anything less than a hate crime charge will not suffice, son. *Sigh* I’m fucking tired of this shit, man. LC out.

No Justice For Terence Crutcher

*Sigh* I’m devastated right now, man. Like, I’m having a hard time even putting my thoughts into words, fam. I mean, I don’t know what’s worse; the fact that Betty Shelby got away with murdering Terence Crutcher or the fact that I’m not even shocked by the verdict. Bruh, the jury couldn’t even convict her of manslaughter? Manslaughter?! A man was shot after his car broke down and his killer couldn’t even get the minimum charge? Honestly, why would Black people EVER trust in the injustice system, son?

Now, I could write an entire dissertation here, but what’s the point, man? What’s the fucking point anymore? All I know is, the cycle never ends. My people die and America doesn’t give a shit. The worse part is, America doesn’t even pretend to give a shit either. Look, Shelby’s lawyer said she was “elated” that she got off. Shit, this woman took a human being’s life and she couldn’t give a single fuck, bruh. At this point, I’m freakishly calm because I don’t know how to properly channel my rage. All in all, I just want to say Rest In Peace to Terence Crutcher.

Ultimately, I have nothing else to say, man. Fuck this shit. LC out.

Good Riddance, Michael Slager!

Being real, I’m going to keep this post short today, man. Honestly, I don’t have much to say, son. I’m just happy that some level of justice has been achieved. Now, before I continue, I think it’s a damn shame that this Walter Scott/Michael Slager situation has come to this. I mean, Slager’s bitch ass should’ve been convicted during his trial. Listen, he shot an unarmed Black man while he was running away and planted a taser near his dead body. Look, man, it doesn’t get any worse than that, fam. With all of that being said, I will gladly accept Slager’s plea agreement. In any case, let’s just hope his sentencing is appropriate.

Now, for anyone who missed it, Slager, the officer who killed Walter Scott, took a plea deal in lieu of a new trial. Ultimately, he’s agreed to plead guilty to willfully using excessive force to deprive Scott of his civil rights. To put this into perspective, this charge carries the weight of a second-degree murder charge. So, Slager could end up with life in prison. Look, all I know is, that’s EXACTLY what he deserves, man. At this point, any type of lenient sentence would be a slap in the face of Scott’s memory and his family. All in all, Scott was murdered in cold blood and deserves to be avenged. Hopefully, this deal is a step in the right direction.

In the end, I’m still on the “fuck Michael Slager” bandwagon, son. If it wasn’t for his callous actions, Walter Scott would still be with his family. Listen, a traffic stop shouldn’t have ended with him losing his life. From this point forward, I just pray that Slager rots in the dirtiest depths of prison. LC out.

A Letter To Jordan Edwards

Dear Jordan Edwards,

*Sigh* It pains me to know that you’ll never get to live a full life. It pains me to know that you’ve become another victim of tyrannical policing. It pains me to know that your friends had to witness your demise. It pains me to know that another family has to mourn the loss of a loved one. At this point, I feel physically weak, man. I’m exhausted from watching innocent Black people lose their lives over nothing. I’m tired of our community being terrorized by a system that hates us. All I can say is, your life mattered, Jordan.

Listen, on the real, I can’t judge you for being a 15-year-old at a rowdy party. Hell, I had my first sip of alcohol during my sophomore of high school. Keep in mind, I was on a boarding school-funded trip to China when I got shit-faced on Georgi Vodka with some of my friends. With that being said, I could never criticize you for having a night out, man. Then again, when I read that you and your friends didn’t even drink at that party, I learned that you were even better than I was at your age.

All I know is, your story is yet another example of the horror that Black people constantly deal with. You left a party that was supposedly getting out of hand and you ended up dead. I mean, it’s fucking baffling, fam! Of COURSE, the police had to claim that you and your friends were driving in an “aggressive manner” to justify your death. As if any spin story could rationalize shooting an unarmed teenager in the head. Fuck, man, when is the bullshit going to stop?! My only hope is that you rest in peace while the cops collapse under the weight of their own lies.

In the end, I really don’t know what else to say, Jordan. Your death hurts. All of these deaths hurt. I… I’ve got nothing else, man. Just rest well, Jordan. Rest well.

Sincerely,

A man who’s running out of ways to honor victims like you