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White Woman Calls Cops On Black Man Just Looking for Cool Birds

Illustration for article titled i/iWhite Woman Calls Cops On Black Man Just Looking for Cool Birds
Screenshot: Twitter

On Monday, a new video surfaced online of a white woman calling the police on a black man for existing in a manner she did not enjoy. Christian Cooper, a black man who enjoys the simple pleasure of bird watching, came across a woman in Central Park with an unleashed dog in an area where leashes were required, according to New York Times. Cooper politely asked the woman to put a leash on her dog, possibly believing that he was speaking to a level-headed adult. Instead, the woman began to berate Cooper and approach him in a menacing fashion, while threatening to call the police.

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The white woman, who was identified on Twitter by a former dogwalker as Amy Cooper, called the police and in an Oscar-worthy performance, told the operator that an “African American man” was threatening her and her dog. As is clear in the video, Christian Cooper (no relation to Amy) remained calm and allowed Amy Cooper to lie to the authorities in peace. Once she put a leash on her over-excited dog, Christian said “thank you” and carried on with his day—hopefully seeing all the birds his heart desired.

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The backlash on Twitter was instant. According to a tweet from her employer, Franklin Templeton, Amy Cooper has been placed on administrative leave while they “investigate” the situation. The New York Times reports that by Monday night, Amy Cooper had surrendered her dog to the Abandoned Angels Cocker Spaniel Rescue, after being criticized online for choking the dog for a full minute before attaching his leash. But this story would not be complete without an insincere apology from the white woman who adamantly claims she is not a racist.

“I sincerely and humbly apologize to everyone, especially to that man [and] his family,” Amy Cooper told NBC. “It was unacceptable and I humbly and fully apologize to everyone who’s seen that video, everyone that’s been offended…everyone who thinks of me in a lower light and I understand why they do.” She then added her two cents on police-community relations, which not a soul asked for. “When I think about the police, I’m such a blessed person. I’ve come to realize especially today that I think of [the police] as a protection agency, and unfortunately, this has caused me to realize that there are so many people in this country that don’t have that luxury.” Another luxury that many people don’t have? The ability to simply go outside and not be bothered by racists.

Update 2:54 pm ET: According to a tweet posted by Franklin Templeton on Tuesday afternoon, Amy Cooper has been fired, “effective immediately.”

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DISCUSSION

This incident perfectly encapsulates why I was never comfortable with the idea of #BelieveWomen and always got into heated debates in the comments regarding the notion that “women don’t lie about these things.” From the Scottsboro Boys to Rosewood, FL to Black Wallstreet in Tulsa, OK to Emmitt Till, White American women have a long history of falsely accusing black men and anyone with a cursory knowledge of black history should’ve had alarm bells go off in their heads when a new generation of privileged white women argued that their word should be considered law 100% of the time.

I’d also be remiss if I didn’t point out that this article has been posted after Jezl has spent the past couple of weeks defending a privileged white woman with a history of lying to everyone she encounters under the pretense of #BelieveWomen (but really in an effort to avenge Bernie Sanders) without a hint of how these things contradict each other.

Between Tara Reade and this story, the past month has really exposed what a privileged folly that whole slogan is.