The verdict is in: Derek Chauvin, the former police officer who the world observed killing George Floyd, was convicted on all three counts levied at him. Because of this, it is certain that he will spend significant time behind bars. This is a relief to many, but on the same day, before that verdict got cold, just several miles away from the location of the trial taking place in Minnesota, there was another murder of a Black man by a cop. Twenty-year-old Daunte Wright was killed by a veteran female police officer who allegedly mistook her service revolver for a taser.
Also, during the same time frame, 13-year-old Adam Toledo was shot and killed by a police officer in Chicago.
It didn’t stop there, in Columbus, Ohio, 16-year-old Ma’Khia Bryant was shot four times by a policeman who intervened in what was a brouhaha between the teen and some older girls.
In another situation in Virginia, a young African American man, Isaiah Brown, called the police because of an altercation with his brother. As he [Brown] walked down the street with his cell phone, a sheriff’s deputy shot him, allegedly confusing the cell phone for a gun. At press time, he is in critical condition.
Gunplay is happening all over America. Seven-year-old Jaslyn Adams was shot multiple times while she was in a McDonald’s drive-thru with her father. According to observers, the attack did not appear to be random. The scuttlebutt is that it was gang related.
Along with these violent acts, there were more than 53 mass shootings in the United States during the months of March and April.
There is a common denominator in all of this; hatred and/or disrespect of people against other people. Of course, we lament the fact that police are continuing to maltreat Black people.
For example, the 16-year-old who was shot four times by the police would still be alive had she not been Black. And this is true of many Black people killed by the police. Unfortunately, this is not the end of the story. If all of the white policemen disappeared overnight, that would not be the end of our problems!
Black people tend to be as divided among themselves as we are from bigoted white people. And the current flap has Asians Americans caught up in a cycle of hatred-induced violence as well.
The coronavirus is another source of division. Because of recalcitrance and distrust among a large number of Americans related to the virus vaccine, herd immunity seems a remote dream, based on the number of people who refuse to get vaccinated.
Of course, we know that the Johnson and Johnson debacle has a lot to do with this, but there were resistors even before that issue surfaced.
The bigger problem is that there is a lack of respect for others. This is not a surprise if you think about the cues that we get from popular culture. Many of the rap stars initially started out with rap battles. And then you have the “Housewives of …” programs that relish in the idea of planned chaos resulting in disrespect among Black women. In essence, Black people have made a business out of disrespecting one another.
The lyrics connected with gangsta’ rap have taken that to a whole new level. It is routine for rappers to use the “N” word and to level threats of murder and mayhem against each other.
Basically, violence and hatred are everywhere. All over the world people are divided into little groups and are at war. People are forced to leave their homes in an attempt to escape human-induced hardships.
It is wishful thinking to believe that we will ever be able to progress and prosper as a race of Black people or as a human race if we don’t understand the laws of cooperation. It just won’t happen. We have been told since the beginning of time that love is the answer. We give lip service to this notion, but then turn around and disregard this idea.
It is important to understand that our success does not lie in retaliation; an eye for an eye is not the answer. Revolution is not the answer. With revolution we merely go around in circles and end up back at the same place.
If we want to make any progress, we must think seriously about EVOLUTION, about evolving to a higher level of understanding and better behavior. There is no room for hate if we plan to attain a better quality of life. That is the law. Our enemies need to understand this as well, but we should not use them as role models; they obviously don’t know any better. A Luta Continua.