It is no secret that racism is still alive in America, but even while being black (in America), I’ve come to question every rallying cry of injustice as truly being an act stemming from hatred or feelings of superiority. Fear, perhaps? Maybe…
In two consecutive days, our nation was rocked once more when two black men were shot by (non-black) police officers. I was more blown away by the circumstances surrounding both incidents. In the case of Alton Sterling, Baton Rouge, Louisiana, how does a situation escalate to the point where the person being harassed (the actual victim) ends up dead? In the case of Philando Castile, St. Paul, Minnesota, how does abiding by the law and following instructions still get you killed?
Both defenseless, posing no immediate threat, shot point blank.
There’s no doubt in my mind both situations could have been resolved without another precious life lost. I believe that both men suffered a wrongful death due to the color of their skin, but I also feel that there’s more beneath labeling every offense against the black man as racist that’s ignoring another unfortunate reality.
Terrorist attacks, mass shootings committed by our own and carried out across campuses and theaters, cops killing unarmed men, another child lost to a gang-related drive-by shooting. These stories have headlined our news for the past several years and have something in common.
That something is profiling.
If you’re looking for a terrorist, today it is a Muslim. If you’re looking for a rapist or serial killer, a male. Mass shooter? Caucasian male. Violent gang-related shooting? Black or Hispanic male.
Profiling is intended to help law enforcement narrow down a list of suspects, among other things. However, maybe we as a public have taken it too far.
People of all ethnicities are being generalized and labeled. They are being treated based on what such labels have to say about the color of their skin, which has nothing to do with personality, character, or intelligence. Good people are being condemned by the adverse actions of their culture. And good, innocent people are dying as a result and in the aftermath.
I do not feel every time a black man suffers a wrongful death the answer is the cop is racist. I do feel that because of a person’s race or religion, in today’s society, there are stereotypes that depict how they are treated. Unfortunately, these same stereotypes that often result in the mistreatment of black men could mean a potential situation escalates quickly.
Racism stems from a feeling of being better than; hate. It is ugly. In at least the incident of Castile, I’m confident in saying that officer overreacted out of fear. Probably a fear that stems from the widely perceived notion that black men glamorize violence and are more aggressive and tend to resist authority, or just ensure trouble. None of which is apparent in this case.
Maybe the issue isn’t just racism. Maybe there’s racial profiling too.
More violence isn’t the answer. The actions of a few cannot keep defining and overshadowing the good that’s still out there, or we will be divided and destroyed from within, without the real enemy ever lifting another finger. Take the time to educate yourself. Don’t just run with what anyone else says.
Form your own opinions.
What’s the real issue? Do you feel that racism or profiling plays more of a role in what we see today in our society? Take our poll to see what others think.
S/O: On 17 July rappers Snoop Dogg and The Game lead a peace rally in Los Angeles, that called on men a part of rival gangs and all races to come together, calling for peace outside of a graduation ceremony for the LAPD. 100% peaceful. Way to lead by example! Much respect.
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