I try not to entangle myself too much with politics and general horrible ongoings of our world. I generally believe that people should be able to believe what they want, and do what they want as long as it doesn’t harm others or prevent others from believing in what they want. And I really try to keep business type stuff separated from personal beliefs…but this affects every person in this country at this point.
But with that is going on right now…it scares me. Truly and honestly. Our country is backing one of two presidential candidates…either a woman who doesn’t care about the lives of our servicemen or feel that laws apply to her (and what is most worrisome is that most back her because she is such a “good feminist”)…or they are backing a man that spews hatred, racism, and intolerance with every word he speaks. And what is even worse, all the people who don’t support either, but will vote for one because they are the “lesser of two evils.” This is why people need to research third party candidates and back them, get the word out. Get them into the debates, and you just might find yourself surprised with a third party president.
Police are senselessly and openly killing black men. Broad daylight, in front of their children, and with no justification. These aren’t meth addicts who are on a junky high, super strong, and waving guns around or shooting…they are every day men who didn’t expect to die that day. Yes, some of them are criminals…but can you honestly tell me that illegally selling CDs is death penalty worthy? Armed robbery isn’t even death penalty worthy…unless someone dies during the commission of said felony. And, the death penalty is imposed by an entirely new jury AFTER a jury has convicted said felon. So why are police killing these men?
I think it is two things…racism and fear. I think there are definitely cases where the police are racist, view all black men as aggressive thugs, and immediately take everything they do as a threat to life…so they respond as trained, by shooting. I think there are definitely cases that are point blank murder. And I think there are definitely cases where the cop wasn’t racist, was overwhelmed, reacted badly, made a terrible decision, and someone was killed…Maybe it is a constant buzz in the ear through the department that has them convinced they should be afraid of black men. Maybe they are brand new and don’t know how to respond because they aren’t properly trained, because let’s be honest, very little state / city funded training is worth a whole lot. Maybe they are brand new dads or husbands and have an overwhelming fear of not going home to their family.
But in the end, they are taking someone else’s right to go home away…maybe it is that black men tend to be more muscular, so police fear them more…maybe it is the fact that crazy white shooting spree serial killers tend to be overweight and in poor shape or scrawny and easily tackled…maybe it is blatant racism. I think each case has it’s own reasoning behind it.
But the fact of the matter is, it is terrifying to live in America right now, especially if you are dark skinned, whether it is Arab, black, or Hispanic, or if someone you love is…
My daughter said something to me this morning as I was dropping her off at daycare…there were two cop cars parked in front of the daycare, which is unusual. But she said, “Well, at least I know I will be safe today at kids club! The police are here!” And she cheerfully went inside to listen to whatever class the police were there to teach. She felt safe.
But what if my daughter was black? I don’t think she would feel the same. What if she had asked me, before going inside, “Do you think they are good cops or bad cops?” No child should have to try to make that distinction.
It broke my hear to realize how much I can never understand. My kids live in good neighborhoods, are white, are smart, are pretty, are average weight, are generally kind, and have a multitude of parents. And I am so thankful for that. It is something I have always taken for granted, which is exactly what privilege is…I take for granted how lucky my kids are, how lucky I am, that they were born white and into a decent financial situation.
Something has to change…and we have to help. Everyone. Blacks, whites, Arabs, Hispanics, Asians…everyone…we all have to help…we have to fight for each other…we have to care for each other. We have to stand up and tell the media, the news, our friends, our family, strangers that we interact with, that this is not okay. The voices of our black nation are being silenced…so everyone else must be their voices. We are Americans. Period. Skin color means nothing. We should be outraged at the senseless murders of our fellow Americans, both innocent black men and police officers. And we should be fighting for a better America.
This is from my Facebook…it’s fairly repetitive of what is above…
If you really want to help with the senseless execution of both black men and police officers, then stop being silent.
So many people completely ignore the racist comments, jokes, and nonsense on their FB, Twitter, Instagram, and in day to day conversations. No one wants to stir the pot and say, “Hey, you’re an idiot, knock it off.” No one wants to be ostracized.
How many police officers have shrugged off a colleague making an “off handed joke” about protesters deserving to die? How many police officers have chuckles nervously and walked away, or stay silent, when a colleague makes a generalization or racist comment?
It’s a solidarity thing, a brotherhood thing. It’s prevalent in all sorts of civil service jobs…the military, fire departments, police departments…you don’t rat on your brother and you don’t step in…and it’s crap.
Stand up. Tell people they are wrong. Get help when someone is making threats. Be vocal. The killing won’t stop until enough people stand up to those doing and supporting the killing. It is up to us, Joe Schmoe, to make this place better.