Monday night when I left my house every street outside my complex in Newark, NJ had a police car on it and there were about three to five officers standing nearby. I rolled up to one cruiser, which was blocking two thirds of the road, with my window down. I heard my voice shake briefly as I asked, “can I pass?” The officer looked at me and my vehicle and said, “sure.”
As I pulled away, I couldn’t help but think how I could’ve been deemed a threat, dragged out of my car, assaulted or killed. I felt lucky but idea that I was and others were not made me sad.
Later that night, my longtime friend told me that his son and a friend were protesting peacefully outside of the White House when officers shoved them. They fell to the ground and were cut by glass. They ran away bloody. It wasn’t until I turned on the TV that I realized this was a result of President Trump’s photo op outside of a church holding a Bible.
I instantly thought of a Malcolm X quote, “I have more respect for a man who lets me know where he stands, even if he’s wrong, than the one who comes up like an angel and is nothing but a devil.”
As I placed my head in the pillow, I was struck by some things I want to see change after this uprising:
— eliminate Qualified immunity for police officers. This law shields them from being sued unless their actions violated “clearly established” federal law or constitutional rights.
— require body cameras are engaged at every crime scene. If serious bodily injury occurs when the camera is off, officers can immediately be suspended without pay.
— change The War Powers Resolution, to require the president to alert congress before using the military in the U.S. there should also only be a one week period before congressional review.
—- require police psychological exams include questions about race, religion and ethnicity… and includes sensitivity training and conflict mediation courses.
— protest going forward should not involve looting or unnecessary violence because it’s shifts focus from the message to the madness.
#GeorgeFloyd #Racerelations #DemandJustice #AfricanAmerican #riots #racism #BlackLivesMatter