Tuesday, November 25, 2014

This is the conundrum about the "Ferguson Verdict" for me

by Dick Mac

(1) You can't very well prosecute a cop for doing his job

(2) Cops work for employers that allow and promote the harassment, imprisonment, and murder of young black men.

An exaggeration?  I don't think so.

One only needs to look at or read the "news" to know that deadly force is used disproportionately against black men than white men, and that minor infractions are dealt with more harshly for black men than white men.

The problem is systemic, the problem is societal.  We place less value on the lives of young black men than other young men.  Black men are arrested for infractions for which a white men would never be arrested, probably never even stopped and questioned.

The police cannot change as long as our social policies and mores allow and/or promote this.  We all allow this.  Every single one of us is responsible for this.  And if you think you "support the cops," you are doing them and yourself no favor by pretending that this is not a real problem.


In the big picture, we all "support the cops."  Even the people who are systematically harassed by the police will tell you they know that police have to exist and generally do a good job.  There are very few sociopaths who will tell you they are opposed to policing, to police forces.

The difference is, some people who "stand by the cops"  know that the criminal justice and law enforcement system is rigged against young black men and some of us who "stand by the cops" think that is a fallacy.

It is not a fallacy.

We live in an economy where one of the the biggest growth industries is incarceration:  imprisonment for profit.  The increase in prison population to fuel this growth industry is disproportionately young men of color.  This is real.  The numbers prove it.  Black men are imprisoned for minor infractions at a far greater rate than white men.

It's very very sad that Michael Brown is dead.  It's even sadder that his death will be in vain because another unarmed black young man will be shot for no infraction or a minor infraction any moment now. It may have just happened as you read this and we both know it.

You can't prosecute a cop for doing his job, but you can demand his employer change its policies and tactics.  Who is that employer?  That employer is you!

Unless you are willing to change and do something about it, nothing will change.

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