White supremacy thrives in the darkness. It thrives in a sealed chamber where only those who think they can get away with something act in a way that is below human.
Until a video gets leaked.
Police brutality thrives in the darkness. It keeps thriving because cities pay settlements to “make it go away.”
Until a video gets leaked.
Let’s be clear: Ahmaud Arbery’s killers would be free today if a video showing his horrific death had not been released. Why … WHY… did we need that video? WHY do we tolerate systems that would have let those racist killers go free minus a video showing the murder of a black man to the world?
Esau McCaulley writes of another incident in The New York Times. This one of police brutality in Chicago. An event that no one knew about, but one the city wasn’t even willing to settle to make it go away. So now, the black woman who was assaulted in her own home and made to sit naked in front of police while they searched her home has to bring it more public, with video, to show the injustice.
Yet again, we have to embarrass the victim of color just to prove a point.
We won’t believe the testimony. We won’t believe the account when told by a person of color. We will work hard to sweep it away… until a video is produced. A video embarrassing the victim or objectifying the victim.
The system isn’t broken, friends. The system is built to protect the powerful… and we need to call it out. The system wasn’t “broken” when it was going to cut three killers loose after they gave their pathetic statements concerning their murder of Ahmaud Arbery. The system wasn’t “broken” when the city of Chicago rejected any settlement offer whatsoever over the wrongful invasion of a black woman’s home.
No. The system kicked into gear to protect its own and leave victims without justice.
Why do we keep insisting on embarrassing victims of color to “prove” they have been wronged when we so readily take the word of white perpetrators that nothing really happened?
We built it that way.
The words of the Constitution begin with “WE THE PEOPLE”… and it’s time that WE THE PEOPLE started acting liking it again.
McCaulley finishes his column powerfully. We need to heed these words:
In the parable of the Last Judgment, Jesus tells his disciples about who will and will not be condemned. The main criterion was how his followers treated the vulnerable: the imprisoned, the hungry and the downtrodden. Jesus says that the people who are blessed will be those to whom he can say, when “I was naked, you clothed me.” Incredulous, his followers ask him, “When did we see you a stranger and welcome you, or naked and clothe you?” Jesus replies that what you did to the least of these, you did to me.
The city of Chicago is not the kingdom of God, but God and the world are watching. The city has an opportunity that it has waited too long to act on. The path to change should not have required releasing a video that brought with it a fresh wave of grief. But the city can still clothe Ms. Young. It can, after over two and a half years of struggle, restore her dignity.