New shootings ask the same old questions


Jardine, Cheralyn

The picture of police in front of a protesting crowd has become all too familiar in the two years since the riots in Ferguson, MO. The shooting death of Michael Brown sparked protests. Those then turned into the national Black Lives Matter movement.

Joshua Patterson, Opinion Chief

It seems like every other week there is a new shooting. A new story of police shooting an unarmed person of color. Another frantic justification by members of the public and media to try and brand whoever was shot as a “thug” or “criminal”.

It is a distressing sign that this is becoming a normal part of the news week. It is even more distressing that we cannot see that this is a problem.

No matter where you stand on the issue of black lives matter, or blue lives matter, it seems relatively clear that there is a problem. This is not up for debate.

It seems that the rules for shooting on duty is simply “If you fear for your life, shoot” instead of having a reason to fear for your life. We have developed a cultural insensitivity that seems to justify and rationalize the actions of our police force on our citizens.

The day after these shootings is the same every time. People go on social media and ask others to pray for peace and for the family of the victim. The problem is that praying for change is not the same as actually making change.

It has been over two years since the shooting death of Michael Brown sparked a national conversation of racial biasing in policing. Normally over two years you would see progress on such a divisive issue. Instead, we are stuck in a stalemate.

We as citizens have a civic duty, to ourselves and others, to stand up for equality and freedom, the very things that make America different and special. However we live in a society where African-Americans are two and a half times more likely to be shot and killed by Police than white Americans.

It is frightening and sad that many of our own country cannot grasp the problem with this. The argument of “if you do not want to be shot, do not break the law” does not work. It has been shown multiple times that even though many of these people are not robbing banks or committing murder, they still end up dead.

Police are suppose to protect and serve the citizens. Instead it is the citizens protecting police from the consequences of their own actions.