(Editor’s note: This is an opinion column from a Citified insider.)
According to a report conducted by the Washington Post, police have shot dead 884 people so far this year. On average, police kill more than two and a half people a day in America. That pace is up significantly over the 2014 total.
Last week, we finally learned the circumstances surrounding the fatal shooting of Chicagoan Laquan McDonald. Just 17 years old, McDonald was shot in 2014, but it wasn’t until recently, after a Freedom of Information Request filed by The Guardian was granted, that a video of the shooting was released, and the gruesome details were made clear.
Watching the video, I felt horror and then an all too familiar overwhelming wave of sadness. As a black man in America raising black sons and knowing they are seven times more likely than whites to die by police gunfire what do I tell them this time? What are the rules for not being engaged by the police? Don’t look them in the eye? Don’t pick up a toy gun in Wal-Mart? Don’t be a veteran with a history of mental illness? What exactly do you have to do to not appear to be a threat as black man in America? Read more »