There is a prevailing notion in this country that when an unarmed black person is shot by the police, there must have been a valid reason. In the spirit of fairness, it doesn't even have to be at the hands of the police. Black victims are routinely put on trial in the media with an unspoken but clear suggestion that they deserved what they got. Here is a rundown of some of the reasons unarmed black people deserved to die.
That toy gun looked real
The hoodie made him look suspicious
He sold marijuana
He smoked marijuana at some point in his life
Marijuana made him crazy
There are pictures of him making "gang signs"
She shoplifted from Wal-Mart
He wore a grill sometimes
He was committing a petty crime
She was intoxicated
He was jaywalking
He was playing loud music
He kinda looked like that other guy
He was a graffiti artist
He accidentally startled a cop
His wallet looked like a gun
She was bipolar and schizophrenic
He had a juvenile record
He touched his waist area
She was double parked and her cell phone looked like a gun
No one is suggesting that black Americans are saints who never commit crimes or do things that call for police action. But I have to say, it sure is funny how many actions become a death sentence when a black person is the one doing them.
Image by Jim Cooke