In less than a year, nine black people have been unjustifiably killed by white police officers in the United States. A situation exhibiting racism is still strong in this nation, which is beautiful and admirable in many ways, but where a right-wing minority among some whites consider themselves the masters of the country and have become heartless and dehumanizing.
July 17, 2014: Eric Garner, 43, father of six children, died of asphyxiation during a violent arrest in New York after a white police officer had suspected him of selling cigarettes on the street illegally. In an amateur video, he is seen being pushed to the ground, saying, “I can’t breathe.” The decision of a jury, which was primarily white, was to exonerate the police from blame. Aug. 9: In Ferguson, Missouri, where the majority of the population is black, Michael Brown, 18, was killed by a white police officer, Darren Wilson. He was not armed. In late November, the police officer was exonerated of charges by the Department of Justice.
Aug. 11: Ford Ezell, 25, unarmed and suffering from mental problems, was shot in Los Angeles, California by two white policemen while walking down the street. According to the authorities, he tried to take the weapon of one of the policemen. Nov. 20: Akai Gurley, a father, 28, was shot dead in the dark stairwell of a building in Brooklyn, New York, while in the custody of a white police officer. Police ruled it to be “an accident.” Nov. 22: Tamir Rice, 12, was playing with a toy gun in a park when he was killed by a white police officer in Cleveland, Ohio. “The officer could not tell if the weapon was real or not,” explained the chief of police.* In Ohio, something similar happened in August, when police responding to an emergency call shot John Crawford, who was holding a toy gun in the supermarket in which it was sold.
March 6, 2015: Tony Terrell Robinson, 19, died in Madison, Wisconsin at the hands of a white police officer, without any explanation. The event took place on the eve of the 50th anniversary of the famous Selma civil rights march for black rights in Alabama. March 9: In Georgia, a white police officer shot dead Anthony Hill, 27, an unarmed man suffering from mental problems. According to police, he would have attacked one of the officers. April 4: A white police officer gunned down Walter Scott, 50, an unarmed man. The police fired several shots into his back while he was fleeing from an altercation. April 12: In Baltimore, Maryland, Freddie Gray, 25, was handcuffed and uploaded into a van without injury by six white policemen. On leaving, his neck was broken. He died.
None of them would have died if they had been white. Following these cases that have come to the public’s attention, there are other deaths that remain hidden and thousands of abuses of all kinds that have not ended in death. While the majority of white Americans are good people, there are those who hate the “descendants of slaves” and immigrants. This unhealthy phobia extends to Arabs and Muslims, all of whom are seen as terrorists. Obviously there is a lot of ignorance, but there is also evil. The legacy of the Ku Klux Klan lives on, as well as a “chauvinism” (which is not patriotism) in right-wing groups like the “tea party” who long for the United States to return to “their origins” of the WASP nation: “White, Anglo-Saxon and Protestant,” the masters of the United States and the world.
*Editor’s note: The original quotation, while accurately translated, could not be verified.