Here we are again becoming more dissident with the yet another release of police brutality in form of a presumably young Caucasian police officer being filmed punching a young woman in the face, after she intervenes in her relative being arrested for jaywalking. This story has divided many, especially in the African-American community some say it was the young ladies fault others cry outrage at the force that was used. Let’s explore the realities of police brutality and how it has affected inner city communities across the nation.
Police Brutality the Accepted Norm for African American Life:
The incident that took place in Seattle is not the first time we as a nation have seen officers take such force as to enrage many in a given community,However with the increasing rate of incarcerations of the African Americans in all stages of life from very young to the very old,shouldn’t we as a whole be questioning why this something the African American community has come to accept as just a part of life?
If we look back to history, we have seen and increasing amount of violence from so called “rogue ” police officers who take vows to protect the community in which we all live. So why is it that these “rogue” cops are not held accountable for their actions worse yet continue to work ending investigations?
For instance we were all outraged at the beating of Rodney King. Now some people surely judged this man who was on probation at the the time of the incident to be the cause of what he experienced by getting into trouble in the first place. Rodney ‘s perpetrators were originally acquitted of the beatings and later two were charged with violation of civil rights and the other two acquitted.
Sometimes, police brutality has also resulted in death for various members of the African American community. Such as the the killing of Sean Bell who was due to marry his childhood sweetheart a few years back. All of the police officers involved in that killing were acquitted of wrong doing.
The brutality inflicted on Amadou the African American Community does not stop there thought: It seems that every year since the Rodney King beating that there has been at least one highly publicized police brutality incident.
Amadou Diallo was the next victim of police brutality in 1999 after officers mistook him reaching for his wallet as him getting a gun. Diallo was murdered and as many as 41 bullets were fired (again all of the officers were acquitted of wrong doing) While the family was paid 3 million in a wrongful death suit. If the officers were acquitted why pay the family 3 million if there was not wrong doing?
Another incident took place at the turn of the century. Patrick Dorismond was killed when an undercover drug sting went horribly wrong. Dorismond was approached by undercover cop Anthony Vasquez who asked Dorismond reportedly for Crack Cocaine. Sources say a scuffle ensued and Dorismond was fatally wounded. this officer was acquitted and again the family was awarded blood money to the tune of $2.25 million: See a pattern here? Mose do.
The most outrageous of the highly publicized police brutaility killings is that of Cincinnati resident Timothy Thomas who at the time had traffic violations. He was also 19 years of age and barely legal. When pursued by police Thomas led them on a high speed chase. Stephan Roach shot and killed Thomas. Roach was also acquitted . It is not known if Thomas’ family sued for wrongful death. unfortunately this young man and many others, All African Americans and all young and perhaps disenfranchised were hunted down in such a way as to be killed.
The loss of life is never justifiable, regardless of color but it is alarming that across the nation that the African American community is either incarcerated or dead at the hands of a rogue system that refuses to be accountable. Even so in stating that are we as a community not just as wrong at subscribing to the “do exactly what they tell you and you won’t get hurt” Is the African American community reduced to the symbolism and actions as what was once perceived as being a house Negro or a field Negro.
However even more alarming is that police brutality is being passed to African American children who we re abdicating to be raised by Systems and such as Juvenile detention centers in which many go in but few ever really come out. Such is the case of youth Martin Lee Anderson who was punched, kicked and then tortured with ammonia capsules that were shoved into his nose while his mouth was covered. he died one day later on January 6th 2006. Even more sicking is that every single officer or trooper and the one nurse who watched it all happen were acquitted of manslaughter a year later. Why? because the tactics used were widely accepted to be used on juveniles. No Civil rights violations or suits were filed either but the family was awarded $7.4 million in a wrongful death suit. The question is what good does this money do , when it should have had to been paid in the first life. No amount of money can erase the lose of life or the emotional,mental or physical scars that are cause by injustices that are cloaked as “Protecting Society”
When will the African American community wake up from its empathetic state and take a stand of not only accountability from those who violate our basic and necessary freedoms but also those of our community.
Maybe it is time to go back to the basics and stand up and use our brains to assert our stance on ABUSE of any kind,anywhere, and anytime.