Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Saints, Second Lines, and Denial: The Danziger 7 Indictment

There is no reason to be happy about the officers in the Danziger 7 case going to jail or possibly getting the death penalty for the shooting of those innocent people. If they are found guilty it will be a good day for justice but a sad day for the city. I’m glad this will be over soon thanks to Jim Letten and the federal authorities. Outside of the families of the officers accused and some of their hard core friends on the force we can all agree on that the officers involved on the bridge deserve to be punished. That part is pretty cut and dry. The part that keeps me up at night is the question of how much do my life and the safety of my people really mean in this city. We try our best not to talk about these things because it makes people uncomfortable. There are a lot of things we choose to ignore in order to keep from feeling stupid about living here. I know I am guilty of doing it to. If we really embraced all the way we have been treated like second class citizens we would have to start a revolution or move and never come back.

It took nearly five years to bring these charges. During that time we had a police chief that never read the report. Our mayor screamed about “Chocolate City” but he never really seemed that interested in what happened on the bridge. There was a district attorney that was so incompetent that the case wouldn’t have ever been tried if the federal government didn’t get involved and it was helped along by a judge that was damn near one of the accused officer’s family. Then there was that whole scene the first time the officers turned themselves in when all their fellow officers and supporters were giving them a hero’s welcome. Now we have to let bygones be bygones and move on even though no one is going to apologize for that spectacle. Then there’s the local news media and their investigative teams all getting together with the “community activists” who can were going crazy behind where Mayor Nagin took his wife to dinner but no one seem to be as concerned with the death of innocent people by people sworn to protect them. Reading about the Danziger 7 is a reality check that we have a long way to go. I guess I’ll take a deep breath and go back into denial mode. It’s almost football season and it’s easier when the Saints are playing because everything is magical. I need about two more months of telling myself the people that live where I do and look like I do have the same value as everyone else and it will be all good.


K. said...

When the protectors murder the protected, it's hard to imagine a justice that will make anyone feel safer.

bayoucreole said...

My biggest fear is not that my son will be harassed by the thugs of the's that he will be harassed by the thugs with badges.
The one thing that will drive me out of the city.