Why Do Police Officers Keep Shooting Innocent Black Men For Assuming They Have Guns?

(Photo: Flickr)

A week or so ago, a friend of mine told me of the story of Stephon Clark, the 22 year old man who was shot by police in his own grandmother’s backyard because they assumed he was pointing a gun at them, when he was only using a cellphone. They fired 20 shots at this man. 20! Hearing my friend tell me this story broke my heart and made me sick.

An innocent man brutally murdered over absolutely nothing. Him being so young makes it worst. This story makes me think of many other stories I’ve heard of black men being shot by police because they assume they have guns, but they really have nothing. You would think after one case, they would be more careful to avoid incidents like this, but instead, this stuff continues to happen. Why?

Why do we always hear these stories about black men being shot by police over nothing? Why are police always assuming a black man has a gun? Something tells me it’s fear. I’m thinking this type of stuff dates way back in time when white people first encountered black people. I think a lot of white police officers are sorely afraid of black men. I don’t know why. It goes back centuries. Why else have black men been portrayed as threatening and menacing for many years in white media, especially if they’re big in size and height?

Because of this fear, they react in a way they feel that they are protecting themselves and killing the black man before they kill them. These actions are just weird and fear is the only thing that makes sense to me for why these things keep happening.

One thing that I’ve noticed, too, is that usually when we hear these types of stories, dark skinned men are the victims. What is it with white police officers and dark skinned black men? If it’s not fear, what else can it be? I’m really trying to understand.

We can keep making these excuses that we usually make when we hear these stories–the excuses about how it’s “not about race”, “they shouldn’t have ran”, “they should’ve did this or that”, or we can finally open our eyes and see that these stories are ALWAYS about race and something is very wrong with these white police officers.

We’ve heard the stories about many white men shooting up dozens of people in schools and public facilities and still being escorted safely, without even a taze, into custody. But unarmed black men who haven’t committed a single murder get shot dozens of times or get beaten severely or to death when they encounter police. A lot of times, these white people get off and don’t serve any prison time because they’re declared to be “mentally ill” and even have GoFundMe’s set up where they get a lot of money after they were just caught murdering someone.

If an unarmed black man gets killed by police, his past is dug up to try to find dirt on him to justify his murder. A white man can kill nine people in a killing spree and his past is dug up to show he was a “good kid”. He was just “bullied as a child” and had a “horrible childhood”.

If that doesn’t say it’s about race, I don’t know what does.

Why Black People Don’t Like The “All Lives Matter” Response

(Photo: Flickr)
The Black Lives Matter movement was started in 2012, after the murder of Trayvon Martin. His murderer, George Zimmerman, was acquitted of the crime and was able to walk free. Martin was an unarmed 17 year old. It is believed that because Martin was a teen and unarmed that the situation could’ve been handled much differently. Killing an unarmed teenager was deemed as excessive force, especially since Zimmerman wasn’t even an officer. He was just a neighborhood watch captain.

Years after that, many other murders of black people by police that were deemed as unjust were caught on camera, including Mike Brown, Alton Sterling, Tamir Rice, Philando Castile, Sandra Bland, and Korryn Gaines, to name a few.

Black Lives Matter was started because it seems like this society doesn’t seem to care about the lives of black people and treat us very unfairly in the justice system compared to other groups of people, especially white people. Not very long after it was started, it got spun into a huge negative and caused a lot of controversy. The response to it was, “All lives matter”.

Black people are upset at this because it is taking away from the plight we are fighting for. Black Lives Matter does not mean that only black people’s lives matter or black people’s lives matter more than other people’s lives. Apparently, that’s what people think Black Lives Matter is, which is why they are responding like this. People also think Black Lives Matter means “anti-police”. That’s not what it means, either. What it means is black people’s lives matter, TOO; our lives are just as important as other people’s lives and we should be treated like it.

Hearing other black people, especially high profile black people, such as celebrities and politicians, saying “All lives matter” is even worst than a white or any other nonblack person saying it because other black people should be the main ones to know why Black Lives Matter was started and what its purpose is. It’s a little more understandable hearing it from nonblacks than other blacks. Hearing other black people say, “All lives matter” is majorly disappointing.

Saying “All lives matter” as a response to Black Lives Matter is pointless and just looks like a deflection. And why is it that “All lives matter” is a response to Black Lives Matter, but Blue Lives Matter was started to fight for the plight of law enforcement? If “All lives matter”, why do we need Blue Lives Matter? How come no one is telling them that “all lives matter”?

The fact that Blue Lives Matter was created to shed light on the injustices done against law enforcement shows that everyone knows why the Black Lives Matter movement was started. They know what we’re speaking out against. People just don’t want to address it and feel uncomfortable at the thought of addressing it. Everyone else is just trying to, not only deflect and sweep our issues under the rug, but also piggyback off of our movement and plights for our people.

When we’re trying to fight for justice and equality for our people, other groups of people playing off of and latching onto our movements makes our plight look like it’s not important or that other groups of people’s plights should be addressed and handled before ours.

When Black Lives Matter was created, it wasn’t to cause a divide and create hate. It was just to ask for justice and equality. That’s all we want.