Behavior or Intent?


Let me help clarify...the intent of the officer can be debated, the behavior cannot .... so the question is why the behavior?



The earliest iterations of Policing in America came out of Fugitive Slave Act of 1850, this gave rise to Slave Catchers & “Bounty Hunters” who would make up reasons to be suspicious of Free Black People  (see 12 years a Slave) so they could take them back or sell them to plantation owners to collect a reward. After Emancipation  in 1877 Black Codes and Pig Laws came into being, essentially criminalizing being Black so that they could be arrested based on a little known clause in the 13th Amendment that legalized slavery as punishment for “criminals” and enslave or re-enslave them as part of state run prison labor (Peonage), where the prisoners were often leased back to plantations replacing the slaves who were emancipated. This labor force was also used to build many of the municipal and factory buildings in southern cities through the turn of the century (Slavery by Another Name)

Fast forward the War on Drugs launched by Richard Nixon (you thought it was Ronald Reagan, didn’t you?) which was a get tough on crime initiative that
was not about crime at all, but about winning the votes of the Southern Democrats who were pissed off because of Civil Rights legislation.  That War on Drugs resurrected the legacy of Pig Laws into what later became Stop & Frisk and the continuation of making up reasons to be suspicious of Black People (men in particular) so they could arrest them for the Private Prison System (See Michelle Alexander - New Jim Crow). 

It is the culture (Mindsets, Biases, Assumptions and Training) of the police, rooted in the legacy of slavery catalyzed by the Fugitive Slave Act of 1850 that led to the #policingbehaviors that has proven fatal to Black People, not just now because you can see the videos on Facebook, it has been fatal for tens of thousands of Black People for over 150 years…want to do something to stop this?   We have to kill this tree at its roots...  

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