8 July, 2016 § 1 Comment
There are people who say all cops are scum, and I think those people are misguided. But it’s their responsibility to police themselves just as they police us, and the more we see cops getting temporary suspensions and paid leaves instead of jail time and indictments after committing murder, the more disheartened we (and especially the black community) become.
Last night’s violence was bred from violence. Does that justify it? Abso-fucking-lutely not. Had last night’s killers targeted and murdered the same cops who murdered Alton Sterling and Philando Castile in days prior, their actions still would not have been justified.
Violent problems do not require violent solutions.
I don’t call all cops murderers, but there’s a huge problem with the institution as a whole when murderous cops aren’t held accountable for their actions in the same way as, say, a black person with a broken taillight would be.
Nobody is contesting that all lives matter. The BLM movement is one born in response to institutionalized violence and racism and injustice; it’s by no means an unworthy cause and it’s not a violent one, nor is it one to ignore or slap aside with disparaging statements like “no, ALL lives matter.” BLM are not saying all lives don’t matter, or that theirs matter more. They’re reminding us that they matter in the first place. Shrugging them off isn’t helpful. They’re hurting, and we need to acknowledge that.
Who do I blame for last night’s violence? The shooters, first and foremost. Senseless violence and murder is never appropriate. I blame people who, by saying “all lives matter” in response to a genuine and heartfelt movement, really seem to be saying “black lives don’t matter.” This is the fuel that has been feeding the flames that erupted last night for so many years. Thirdly I blame police departments that hire and train people who would abuse their power — who would use their power in cruel manners, who demand respect they have yet to earn and neglect to offer in return, and who would kill people who may not have been innocent of all wrongdoing, but who deserve due process just the same as the rest of us. I blame these particular police officers especially, who are then granted the due process they refused to grant in the first place and who are absolved of their crimes at an alarming rate.
I don’t blame the BLM movement for the slaying of five Dallas officers last night any more than I blame those five officers or the others who were shot for the slaying of Alton Sterling and Philando Castile.
I still don’t feel like my words have helped express my feelings truly. I’m hurting. Families are hurting. My city is hurting. The country is hurting. We’re broken.