We have seen in the last week two major grand jury decision that involved the deaths of two unarmed black men and white cops. Like most people, I have my opinions.
Honestly, I am not going to write about Ferguson. It has been highly publicized and people are probably sick of hearing about it. However, the other case involved Eric Garner and the NYCPD. This case was less publicized and not as sensationalized.
Probably because the mainstream media could spin Ferguson as much as they did and Eric Garner’s case wasn’t as “rating getting” as the head line “Unarmed Black Teenager Gunned Down By Cop” or “Hands Up, Don’t Shoot”.
I will say this, my opinion of Ferguson is cut and dry. Brown made very poor decision that led to his death. Brown chose to rob a store. Brown chose to not follow the polices’ orders. And Brown chose to attack a cop. Office Wilson used legal force to protect his life.
Police officers should have that right.
I respect law enforcement. I affirm a police officer’s right to protect themselves with whatever level of force that is necessary to protect that officer’s life. I believe all individuals have this right but in this situation, especially police officers. I have the utmost respect for police officers. I know many fine law enforcement officials that put their lives on the line so they can serve and protect. Their loved ones are great people. I wouldn’t want any of those people to suffer at the hands of a criminal because they didn’t have the right to defend their lives.
With that said, unfortunately police officers can use “excessive force”. I do not think the majority of police officers do this. But it does happen. I do not think that was the case in Ferguson. As I stated Officer Wilson had a right to protect himself.
However, I have reviewed the available evidence for the Garner case and I disagree with the grand jury’s decision. I do not think the grand jury allowed race to play a factor in their decision. I believe they worked hard to come to the conclusion they did arrive at. It is very possible they had in possession some evidence that we have not seen. Not all of the evidence has been released.
Yet, after watching the video of the incident, researching the available evidence, and listening to smarter folks than myself, I cannot help but think that the grand jury got it wrong. I respect the decision and believe it should stand but I do disagree with it. I also do not believe that race played a part in the initial attempted arrest of Eric Garner.
It is my opinion that excessive force was used and that at the bare minimal an indictment of manslaughter could have been given. In the video you can hear Garner affirm that he could not breathe. It was obvious that Garner resisted arrest but not to the level that would warrant excessive force (i.e, Death). Furthermore, its clear none of the officers lives were in danger.
Though, I believe there are bigger issues in play. Yes a man lost his life to what could be excessive force from police officers but what he was being arrested for was ridiculous. In New York it is illegal to sell single cigarettes.
Let me state, just because a law is stupid doesn’t mean you can break it. We should be following the laws and the police were right to arrest Eric Garner. It is illegal to buy a single cigarette and not illegal to buy a single can of beer. Its just dumb.
This law is a representation of a bigger problem. Big Government.
NYC, and state, is a good example of what liberally minded big government can do to a population. People who affirm a nanny state wanted to make it more difficult for people to engage in not so healthy hobbies therefore a higher tax was added to cigarettes. Literally ten dollars in taxes were added. Its divided between the city and the state. Due to the higher taxes people start selling the cigarettes singularly. This cuts into the government’s money and therefore a law is passed that mandates individual cigarettes cannot be sold.
A stupid law is passed by a bloated government and enforced by police officers that mostly likely disagree with the law but must enforce because its their job.
A part of me wants to blame the people who enacted this stupid law but I do think that excessive force played a part here. Even if Eric was Breaking the law he should have not been killed on the streets
This sums up my attempt at making sense of the chaos that is our world.