Log in

No account? Create an account
Oscar Grant, A Victim Of American Fear. - Piano wire. [entries|archive|friends|userinfo]
The richest girl in town.

[ website | www.laurenwheeler.com ]
[ userinfo | livejournal userinfo ]
[ archive | journal archive ]

Oscar Grant, A Victim Of American Fear. [Friday, Jul. 9th, 2010|01:43 pm]
The richest girl in town.

Even decades after the civil-rights era, a cop shooting an unarmed black man is barely a crime -- a 2007 ColorLines investigation of police shootings in New York City found that in 12 instances when the victim was unarmed, only one officer was found criminally liable. There hasn't been a murder conviction on a police shooting in Oakland since 1983.  As Kai Wright wrote in the aftermath of the Sean Bell verdict, "American law has been sanctioning the killing of black people to mollify white fear for centuries. ... We scare the shit out of America. And that fear excuses just about any reaction it spawns." Mehserle is profoundly unlucky to be punished at all.

Times change, but the radioactive fear of black people, black men in particular, has proved to have a longer half-life than any science could have discerned. This is not a fear white people possess of black people -- it is a fear all Americans possess. It makes white cops kill black cops, it makes black cops kill black men, and it whispers in the ears of white and nonwhite jurors alike that fear of an unarmed black man lying face down in the ground is not "unreasonable." All of which is to say, while it infects all of us, a few of us bear the brunt of the suffering it causes.


[User Picture]From: bronicablue
2010-07-10 01:30 am (UTC)
I've heard a lot of debate about the verdict, a lot of good information on both sides, but I will NOT be swayed in my belief that he got off way to damn easy. Here's why: even if he really thought his gun was a tazer, why in the hell did he need to taze a face-down man already being restrained by other cops?

I'd LOVE for someone to give me a "reasonable" answer for that one.
(Reply) (Thread)