Welcome To 21st Century America

Take a look at this picture …


Touching, isn’t it?  Well, before you get all teary-eyed, you should know what really happened.  The boy was not wandering around Philadelphia during the protests — protests of the shooting death of Walter Wallace Jr. by Philadelphia police.  This young boy was, in fact, riding in a car driven by his mother, Rickia Young, when she was confronted by Philadelphia police officers. Her ‘crime’?  She was trying to make a U-turn to get away from the area where the violence between protestors and police was occurring.

According to CBS News …

A video of the incident appears to show the boy and his mother being pulled from their vehicle and being separated. The clip then appears to show the woman being assaulted by officers.

Attorneys Riley H. Ross III and Thomas O. Fitzpatrick, who are representing Young in a civil case, both called out the union. Ross tweeted the photo is “a lie.”

“The only thing that could make what they did out there on that night any more reprehensible than what it already was, was how they followed it up by attempting to use it as some type of propaganda and spin it in through some type of positive thing for the police department,” Fitzpatrick told CBS News.

A short clip taken from a nearby building showed officers swarming an SUV and hitting it with weapons. The video shows officers dragging the driver, who Fitzpatrick identified as Young, out of the vehicle and beating her. The boy is also seen carried out of the vehicle.

Young was detained, released without charges, and reunited with her son that same night. According to Fitzpatrick, both Young and her son suffered physical injuries from the attack, though he said the “emotional trauma of it all” would be “a much longer process.”

The Philadelphia Police Department told CBS News in a statement that the incident is currently being investigated by the Internal Affairs Unit.  Don’t hold your breath for justice …

You may remember reading about Tamir Rice, the 12-year-old Black boy who was shot and killed by Cleveland police on a playground in 2014.

tamir-riceOn November 22, 2014, Cleveland police officer Timothy Loehmann shot Rice within two seconds of arriving at a park where Rice was playing with a toy gun. When Tamir’s 14-year-old sister rushed to her brother’s side, Loehmann and his partner, Frank Garmback tackled her to the ground, handcuffed her and put her in their cruiser. Tamir Rice died the next day. Neither officer was indicted or fired over the killing.

Loehmann, who had only been with the department for 8 months at the time of the murder, in his previous job as a police officer in the Cleveland suburb of Independence, had been deemed an emotionally unstable recruit and unfit for duty.  He resigned in 2012, knowing that his termination was imminent.  Garmback had been credibly accused of using excessive force against a local woman earlier in 2014 when he “placed her in a chokehold, tackled her to the ground, twisted her wrist and began hitting her body.”  The woman’s crime?  She had called police to report a car blocking her driveway.  Neither of these officers were fit to be law enforcement officers.  And yet, neither one has paid a price for killing a child.

Now, six years later, we find out via a whistleblower that last year the Justice Department led by William Barr quietly rejected career prosecutors’ bid to use a grand jury to investigate the murder.

Although, technically, the civil rights investigation remains open, the decision to forgo a grand jury to compel witness testimony or take other investigative steps essentially puts paid to the case, and with the statute of limitations on one of the charges prosecutors considered most seriously set to run out later this year, there is little, if any, hope that the officers, Timothy Loehmann and Frank Garmback, who murdered young Tamir, will ever be punished.

Justice is a funny thing in this country.  The two above situations are not anomalies, not stand-alone events … they are everyday occurrences here.  If you are white, middle-income or better yet, wealthy, you probably won’t be killed by police … you probably won’t even ever be thrown to the ground or placed in a chokehold by police.  If you happen to be Black, or poor … all bets are off.  If you are white and are seen by police driving a brand-new Cadillac, nothing will happen, but if you are Black and are spotted by police driving a brand-new Cadillac, you will be pulled over, and the first question will be, “Where’d you get the car, boy?”

Justice depends on the colour of your skin and it depends on how much money you have.  Plain and simple.  There is a line in the pledge of allegiance that school children are forced to recite that says, “With liberty and justice for all”.  It’s a lie.

23 thoughts on “Welcome To 21st Century America

  1. Pingback: Thanks, Jill, for pointing out this lie: Welcome To 21st Century America — Filosofa’s Word | ShiraDest: The 4 Freedoms for ALL via Language & Adult Education, Writing, and PublicDomainInfrastructure

  2. Jill, thanks for sharing. In the world that is Trump, it is all about perception, more so than reality. Politicians have used this ploy since power to govern was invented. But, too a person whose greatest skill is sales schtick, he has been able to take advantage of controlling perception. He is still trying to run as an insurgent, but he has the job. He is the one who has thrown gasoline on racial fires, he is the one who has mishandled COVID-19, he is the one who has made our allies feel like customers…And, what his fans do not realize, but the clues are all there, he does not give a damn about them.

    Quite simply, taking Trump at his word is a fool’s errand. Keith

    Liked by 2 people

    • Absolutely true — but the real problem is that some 40% or more in this country seem to LIKE what he does and the hate rhetoric he spews. Yes, it’s a fool’s errand to believe a word he says, so we have a nation in which nearly half the people are fools, and they are destroying lives on a daily basis with their support of this madman.

      Liked by 2 people

      • Jill, what that 40% does not realize, he is throwing scraps their way, to go on taking care of the big dogs. The tax law change, stripping environmental regs, packing the courts with limited liability judges, etc. Keith

        Liked by 2 people

  3. wow – I can’t believe the gall it took to post such a photo if the underlying facts don’t support such statements by the police. I’ll be following this story to see what comes out of it…

    Liked by 2 people

  4. Why are police officers taught to shoot at a person’s chest when shooting becomes necessary? Because it is harder to miss your target! The result is usually death.
    With all the gun practice cops appear to get, they should have no trouble aiming at a should or knee. There is never a need for deadly force!
    But it seems deadly force is necessary, because these effing cops are too scared to get close enough to a possible perpetrator because he or she might spit at them or something. Defund the police, yes, but close the police academies first!
    Stop training cops to be violent, and take away their guns. Teach them to have respect for every citizen they come in contact with. It does not take a dozen swarming and violent cops to arrest a person trying to get her son away from a violent situation.
    But Trump seems to love watching cops kill people of colour. If Americans do not do right by their citizens, it should cease to exist. Some call it Law and Order. I call it mob of cop rule.

    Liked by 2 people

    • I don’t know when they started being taught to aim for the solar plexus … back in the day, I recall that they were taught NOT to shoot to kill, but rather to aim to disable. Seems to me that they grab those guns first thing, when often just talking would solve the problem.

      I don’t think closing the police academies is the answer, but changing the curriculum and how it’s taught seems absolutely essential. Then, better psychological screening, and certainly more accountability is requisite. The fact that there is zero accountability at present encourages officers to act on their baser instincts, knowing there will be no punishment — as long as their victim was either a minority or a poor person.

      First step is to clean house — get rid of Trump and his band of nasty men — and then begin to re-build.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. I’m not gooing to make any predictions for the Democrats if they get in but I’ll risk it for the Republicans. Donald Trump made a statement the other day that the colour of one’s skin doesn’t matter, he’s there for everyone. Clearly he’s not or incidents like these would happen less and he’s be in your face telling you it has to stop. He’d also have ensured that the police officers concerned were put on trial or at the least be given an official reprimand. .It happens too often for it not to be done on purpose by police knowing they have the backing of a bigoted President and that they will not lose a days pay nor a night’s sleep. This is State Sponsored Murder that you generally only get in Dictatorships.

    Liked by 2 people

    • You’re spot on. In fact, he forced federal agencies to cease the ‘sensitivity training’ that was to have promoted better understanding to end racism in law enforcement. He called it “un-American”. So, I guess that tells us that he considers overt racism to be part of the ‘American’ culture and that it should stay that way. Grrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr. We are moving backward at lightning speed, it would seem, and there is nothing that leads me to believe the next four years would be any different if he is re-elected. Therefore, he must NOT be re-elected!

      Liked by 2 people

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