Vigilantism is NOT Okay

In my blog, I try to keep things to my passion and areas of interest, but every now and then something comes across my path that I just need to get off my chest and this is one of these times.

It is hard not to hear what’s been going on in the world – namely in the United States around people of color. First it was Ahmaud Arbery who was gunned down by a couple of white supremacists and most recently was the death of George Floyd who died at the hands of police who inappropriately knelt on his neck causing asphyxiation (which is my assumption as he was saying “I can’t breathe” so it’s a logical conclusion) and subsequent death. I know there’s more. I know blacks are scared as they definitely seem to be getting targeted. Look at what happened to Christian Cooper after he politely asked a woman to leash her dog in a leash required park – she called the cops and LIED to them. And these are just a few of countless others who I know have suffered that hasn’t made mainstream news and the others that have happened over the days and years and decades. I can’t even begin to understand the persecution African Americans have had to deal with purely based on the color of their skin because I have white privilege.

However, yesterday a photo came across my social media that I do not agree with. The photo was a protest outside the house of the police officer who killed Floyd George. According to the photo, the ex-Officer had tried to get food delivered 3 times but after the driver learned who the delivery was for, the driver decided not to deliver the groceries.

I get it. People are pissed – and they have EVERY right to be! I’M pissed! This officer – and the 3 others who did nothing to stop the officer who actually killed George – need to be punished. They were immediately suspended and eventually fired – which is a good first step – but they do need to be put in police custody and put on trial. However, you don’t know what that food is being withheld from. He might be married or have a young child or his wife is pregnant. Do you really want to starve an innocent child? A child should not be punished for the sins of the father. You don’t know the situation inside the house and you could be harming someone who doesn’t deserve your anger.

Yes, family members of the deceased are suffering, so why shouldn’t the family members of the murderer also suffer?

Because it’s not right. Just as George dying isn’t right.

And to make matters worse, I saw this morning that there’s been riots overnight in Minneapolis. THIS IS NOT OKAY!!! One person got shot and killed because of the riots because he was looting and the shop owner protected his property. You can NOT make a positive change by negative actions. You can have a positive protest without breaking the law. Setting buildings on fire, rioting and looting is just going to bring more violence.

Please, PLEASE think about your actions before engaging in protest. Behaving like that is almost welcoming brutality in order to cease the violence. Stop giving law enforcement a reason to be aggressive. Violence ONLY begets violence!

It is absolutely abhorrent what has been transpiring in the United States. Police Officers NEED to start doing the job they’re expected to do – upholding the law and protecting citizens – not their own agenda. Police departments need to start taking a closer look at their personnel to root out discrimination. White privilege needs to STOP now. We are all the same. Remove the outermost layer and we’re all the same. Every person DESERVES respect – period! If you do something stupid, the punishment should be the same no matter the color of the skin.

Because, you know what? That 20 year old (white) idiot who grabbed the (black) reporter and yelled some VERY inappropriate comments should be charged! Instead, I read more than once the whole “boys will be boys” and “he was just being stupid. He didn’t mean it”, and “stop taking it so seriously” (um, can we say rape culture?!). You KNOW that if it was the other way around – if it was a white reporter and a black man had done it, the black man would have been lynched! THIS IS NOT OKAY!

This is 2020 not the 1950’s Racism has no place in the world. There’s far more important things we need to worry about and we need to work together. We need to stop letting our differences divide us. We need to stop letting race, skin color, or religion dictate the success of the HUMAN RACE! Because, ultimately, we are all the same race and we need to start acting better towards our neighbors. We need to show compassion and empathy towards others. We need to stop being selfish.

Why can’t we all just get along?

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