Anyone who either knows me or has read any of my blog pieces know how I lean when it comes to police brutality. For one thing, I’m always preaching a component of self-improvement in the black community saying that for substantive change in law enforcement, we must also turn a critical eye on ourselves. It’s a question of forestalling bad behavior with our own good behavior.
The other thing I propagandize is that blacks may appear to be the “chosen” targets at present but that doesn’t prevent law enforcement from, shall we call it branching out to other harder demographics. I always quip that this traveling cop show of death is coming to a town near you real soon. I hate it when I’m right but I got to tell you, the show touched down in South Carolina recently.
Consider 19-year-old Zachary Hammond, resident of Seneca, South Carolina out on a first date with a particular girl. She had a small amount of weed in her possession and knowing this, the cops wanted to sting her. According to police, when confronted Hammond tried to flee and in what is a continually, overplayed refrain from the ranks of law enforcement, the police officer, in fear of losing his life by being run over, shot Hammond twice, dead. Zachary Hammond was white.
It’s cool people are challenging this shooting as much as others challenge those done to inner city blacks receiving similar death sentences. And they are right in their belief that the mainstream media doesn’t necessarily want to portray such events and give them a broad reporting scope.
In some instances, the media wouldn’t even be reporting black deaths if it weren’t for social media “prompting” them to do so. Many times it’s only after such events have gone viral that the mainstream media takes hold and puts their two cents in.
Unfortunately, such tragic occurrences in the black community are more readily accepted by some of a soul-less American public. After all, many see blacks only as thugs or criminals and when we get shot for a bogus license plate or a small amount of marijuana then obviously, we’ve gotten what we deserve. You know how it’s said: if you can’t do the time then don’t do the crime.
What those enlightened souls fail to realize is that the “crimes” in question are ones that can land on any of our doorsteps and unless we all get together to ensure a viable way that police will handle them-a way that ensures the survival of the unjudged and unarmed citizen-then many more of us will have the same dubious distinction that’s befallen so many in the past six years.
Meanwhile, police are being uncooperative, refusing to release the name of the officer or the dash-cam footage. In Seneca, there doesn’t seem to be much horror at what went down; or not as much as needed. Maybe when white deaths at the hands of the police become glaring perpetual headlines, such killings will garner the undivided attention of America and not be rationalized off as the inevitable collateral damage of crime fighting.
Moving forward, this learned behavior garnered from experiences in the black community is insinuating itself into law enforcement doctrine and becoming acceptable police tactics. I’m just saying that if we aren’t careful, we’ll look up and find these deadly strategies have become an itinerant circuit.
It’ll make its way to suburbia; it’ll find you in rural America. Nowhere will be safe; after all, the show must go on.