For the first time, probably ever, the news of an unarmed African-American dying at the hands of a police officer has left me speechless.
Sure, police officers have a difficult job and we salute the many good officers who place their lives in danger to protect the public on a daily basis.
But if a job becomes so stressful, tiring and difficult that you cannot even recognize your own apartment and shoot the rightful tenant, then police work might not fit your capabilities and a new line of work should be found ASAP.
A Dallas police officer named Amber Guyger killed Botham Jean, 36, inside his own home when the officer mistook Jean’s apartment for her own.
The officer allegedly believed someone was burglarizing her home.
Some reports say that Jean heard someone unsuccessfully trying to open his apartment door.
When the tenant opened the door, the officer shot and killed him thinking he was an intruder.
Supposedly, the officer punched the wrong floor on the elevator and tried to enter the wrong apartment.
The various floors of the apartment complex, reportedly, all look alike.
Guyger has been charged with manslaughter for Jean’s death.
Jean’s mother Allison Jean wants to know if race played a factor in Guyger’s actions.
“I didn’t know she was White until now,” Allison Jean said. “If it was a White man would it have been different? Would she have acted differently?”
Many media critics blasted the mainstream press and Allison Jean for mentioning race when reporting on the story.
Even Fox News received criticism from their fans for mentioning race in their online article.
However, Allison Jean’s questions about race are legitimate because this is the most compelling story involving an unarmed African-American man dying at the hands of police officers.
Why did Guyger pull the trigger so fast?
Did she ask any questions?
Did she really think her life was in danger?
Why wasn’t Guyger arrested sooner?
What happened to all of the critics of Black Lives Matter who say that if African-Americans complied with officers they would not be met with deadly force?
What happened to all of the critics of Black Lives Matter who say that the victim must have been committing a crime or doing something he should not have been doing?
The late Jean was in his house minding his business, trying to figure out who was trying to gain entry to his home, which he pays rent for.
Race is significant in this story because if an African-American man is not safe in his own home because of overzealous police officers, then when and where is he safe?
No one called the cops from Jean’s residence.
Jean did not have an arrest warrant.
Therefore, Jean and Guyger should not have had any interaction.
Guyger instigated an unnecessary death.
But I guess because she is an officer, there’s an excuse.
After all, Blue Lives Matter, but Black lives inside of their home and committing no crime, do not matter.
Thankfully, most of the comments I have seen on the Internet, from White to Black to conservative to liberal, have expressed horror at this deadly mistake made by Guyger.
The reason why Jean and the press brought up race is because it seems only one race finds itself the victims of out-of-line police officers.
And when African-Americans are murdered for no reason, the offending police officer is often seen as a hero because of the profession they chose to pursue.
For some people, they cannot fathom a cop killing someone if there is not a valid reason.
Even when a cop kills an unarmed African-American, the powers that be immediately spin the story to paint the cop in a positive light and the victim in a negative light.
That is one of the reasons that race is so important in this story.
Guyger reportedly said that the apartment door had a crack in it and she walked in and saw a silhouette and began making orders.
When Jean did not comply with her orders inside his apartment without a warrant, she shot and killed him.
Then reports came out that Jean had marijuana in his apartment, which has nothing to do with his death.
Jean worked in corporate America and volunteered as a worship leader at his church, but an effort by police officers to smear his reputation was still made.
“An off-duty cop goes into the wrong apartment and shoots the man who lives there dead, and so, we’ve come to expect, local law enforcement is doing what it can to cast aspersions at the innocent victim—to suggest he was ‘no angel’—and therefore apparently deserved to be shot dead in his home. And much of the media plays along, amplifying law enforcement’s propaganda,” said David Menschel, a criminal defense attorney and activist from Oregon.
Maybe the death of Jean will wake people up to the reality of being an African-American.
You cannot drive while Black.
You cannot have Second Amendment rights while Black.
You cannot eat while Black.
You cannot sleep while Black.
Let’s just call a spade a spade.
To some people, we cannot even live while Black, that is why we have to die for no reason and see people constantly getting away with it.
Many people bring up the excuse that African-Americans kill African-Americans more than people outside of the race, so where’s that outrage?
The same outrage does not exist for Black-on-Black crime because African-Americans do not pay their tax dollars for civilians to protect and serve them.
Just like every other group, African-Americans pay their tax dollars so that police officers can protect their lives and property, not take their lives.
“Ray-Ray” and “Knuck-Knuck” who hang out at the barbershop are not getting paid to keep me safe from criminals, but cops are.
Unfortunately, African-Americans need people to keep them safe from criminals and sometimes, even cops.
Furthermore, all races get killed by people within their own race more than they do people outside of their race because people usually kill people they have beef with.
People usually have beef with people they interact with on a regular basis.
And unfortunately in America, people still often self-segregate and hang out with people who look like them.
That is why White-on-White crime and Hispanic-on-Hispanic crime is very comparable to Black-on-Black crime.
Additionally, crime is usually more prevalent in poorer communities.
And Black and brown people are still less wealthy than their White counterparts.
But that reality will probably leave critics of Black Lives Matter speechless too as they try to find another excuse for a cop killing an unarmed African-American man.