Wednesday, August 1, 2007

Leadership and Justice for All!

Police brutality is wrong. As a black man I believe any officer of the law that puts his hands on another person without being in danger should be fired, punished and have to pay restitution. There is no identification I can wear to let them know that I am not a threat. That's why they need to treat us all with respect and dignity as long as we don't do anything to put them in danger. There is a difference between being racist and treating people different. We make the problem personal when it is bigger than that. The way the criminal justice system is set up in America requires criminals. There is so much money involved. If there were not enough criminals to fill all the prisons then some would have to be created. That’s how profiling people gets started. Who better to profile than the angry black man?

Do I believe all police are racist? No

Do I think they are quicker to get rough with a brother if he makes any kind of move? Yes.

The reason why we can't get this kind of systematic problem resolved is because our leaders attack individual people and incidents instead of the process itself. We also pick and choose the victims to defend. Some of the most powerful ministers and bishops in the New Orleans area have been going toe to toe with Sheriff Harry Lee over the beating of 16 year old Troy Lawrence. This brother was not a criminal by any stretch. I don't think it was a good idea to move your arms in front of you while handcuffed, but I don't think he should have been beaten badly either. When I saw the press conference of the ministers, I kept thinking to myself, who was this kid and who did he know to make even Paul Morton show up and take on Harry Lee? This morning I found out he is one of the ministers' sons. The question I have for the people is this. How many brothers do you think get harassed and disrespected on a daily basis and no one says anything? Once MR. Lawrence gets some justice, are all these "community leaders" going to go back into whatever hole they have been in while all this other madness is going on? If this is how it works we need to find some of the choir directors or a few deacons and send them to Josephine St. Then when something happens to one of them we can get that same energy to curbing this black on black violence. Pastor Raphael could use the help.

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