Police Brutality against people of color, especially Black people is out of control in this country. I am sick of Black people being murdered left and right, while the world sits idly by. Police brutality, the killing of Black people, it’s not taken seriously. It’s not seen as a national problem because it’s usually the Black communities that bear the brunt of the police brutality and the unjust killings. In 2010, 5, 986 counts of police misconduct occurred. But, wait I don’t want to make ALL cops out to be pigs. There are many many cops who do their job well, they’re fair, they serve and protect the community and I’m grateful to these police officer who do their job. Grateful! But, we can’t overlook the bias in the criminal justice system and we can’t ignore the fact that police brutality is aimed disproportionately at Black people. In fact, it’s not just cops, it’ just the devaluation of Black lives overall that’s the problem.
So let’s be very clear, it’s not the cops that are the problem, it’s the system of institutionalized racism that’s the problem. The police brutality, that’s just a side effect of a larger institutionalized problem. It’s the system that has not only allowed crimes against Black lives to go un-prosecuted, but has taught people that Black lives are not to be valued. This country was built off of the backs of Black labor. Blacks were first BROUGHT AGAINST OUR WILL to this country to work and serve the mantle of white supremacy. Our bodies have never been of value, unless they’re being used to build up the wealth of white supremacy. Today, we have more Blacks in prison for non-violent, drug-related offenses, than there were slaves in the 1860s. Blacks receive longer sentences than whites for committing the same crimes and Blacks are more likely to experience police brutality. Racial profiling is ubiquitous, Blacks still have to worry about being pulled over and accosted by police for driving while Black. Even my own brothers have been pulled over for no reason. I was babysitting some little girls one time and one of the girls is so terrified of the police that she has to be carried into the house anytime she sees an officer in uniform because she starts shaking and having anxiety attacks. At the age of five, she’s already internalized this fear and lack of trust for the police because of this institutionalized system that devalues Blackness.
Black lives are not valued. Black lives are not valued when it’s blacks killing other blacks, black lives are not valued when it’s whites killing Blacks. Black lives are not valued. Here we have a story of Trayvon Martin being killed for no reason by a white man and the white man has yet to be arrested?! We had a case of Troy Davis being accused of killing a white police officer, despite the fact that there was no physical evidence linking him to the murder, and he gets put to death? What about the police officers who killed Ramarley Graham, What about Rekia Boyd? What about the countless Blacks who are murdered for no reason, yet their killers never get prosecuted? Black lives are not valued. There are even Black people who KNOW Black lives aren’t as valued and intentionally target other Blacks for crimes because they know, in this racist system, they’ll be more likely to get away with a crime against a Black than a white…sad.
There are serial killers who you never hear about because they are going around killing Blacks. They are killing Black women, they are killing young Black men. These are serial killers that we never hear about because again their victims are primarily Black and Black lives are not valued. When there is a serial killer killing whites, we hear all about him and there’s widespread support to catch the serial killer because he’s killing other whites, can’t say the same for the serial killer targeting Black lives.
From the days of slave patrols and lynching, to the days of lethal injection and police brutality… Black lives have not been valued.
Black people need to wake up! Marcus Garvey had the right idea, Blacks need to start caring for other Blacks because NO ONE is going to care for us if we don’t care for ourselves.