“It’s not about the stem. It’s about the root and the fruit.”
~~~Poetry Emotion By Jay
Last week on Real World News Radio, I along with my partners Reggie Kearney (Editor-In-Chief & Publisher of Maryland Daily Examiner) and Chara Ann Tappin discussed, “The Deadly Force: When Murder Becomes an Epidemic” with special guest Cheryl Ford Dorsey. Ms Dorsey, who served for twenty-years with the LAPD and retired as a Sergeant, appeared as a guest to offer insight into the mentality of police officers and suggest ways in which blacks and the nation, as a whole might combat this epidemic of murders of unarmed black men by police officers.
Toni Breedlove, CEO of Hot Topics Talk Radio Network and producer of Real World News Radio commented on the show that she holds her breath, afraid that each time her son leaves his home he might encounter some gung-ho trigger-happy police officer. Unfortunately, there are scores of mothers and fathers too, that are holding their collective breaths for the very same reason. However, the truth is, even the fathers have reason to worry for their own safety because in present day America, no black man is safe…not one.
Anyway, let’s take a few minutes and discuss the title of this article, “Baltimore: What it Really Tells Us.” Here are some interesting facts about Baltimore as reported in the April 28th edition of the Baltimore Sun (Mark Puente & Doug Donovan). Puente and Donovan wrote, “The city of Baltimore has paid roughly $6.3 million since 2011 to settle police-misconduct claims, according to a Baltimore Sun review of city and court records.” The Sun’s investigation also revealed that, “the city spent $5.7 million in 102 court judgments and settlements for alleged police misconduct since 2011; since then, there has been an additional $587,250 in payouts.”
Additionally, “the investigation showed that city residents — including a pregnant woman and an 87-year-old grandmother — received battered faces, broken bones and other injuries during questionable arrests.”
I mention these statistics because despite the rioting and the looting, which as usual appear to warrant more coverage than what triggered (pardon the pun) these events, statistics such as these do not represent outlier dynamics. No, to the contrary… What Baltimore tells us is this - “You can get away with something only for so long but sooner or later it catches up with you.” The aforementioned stats clearly say that Baltimore police have engaged in decades of abuse of authority, power and process, not unlike many Law Enforcement Agencies throughout the United States, the judicial system (courts) included.
Here’s another stat for you - “Through a Maryland Public Information Act request, The Sun requested details on lawsuits filed in 2013 and 2014. The city provided records for 156 cases.” That’s right folks, your eyes do not deceive you. The city provided 156 cases, which indicates there exists many, many more that the city did not provide. When we consider the breadth of irresponsible and reprehensible conduct of Baltimore City Police, we now are forced to reconsider the argument that what we are witnessing is the result of a ‘few bad apples’ and that the ‘majority of police officers are decent.’
BS is what I say to both of these imaginary and unconscionable defenses. I must admit that I too mouthed those words unaware that I, as others, was parroting the very lines engrained into our psyche by Law Enforcement. They (Law Enforcement) want us to espouse this ‘stinkin’ thinkin’. They want us to believe this crap because we then act as defenders of the very policy we say we abhor.
Check this out, if you owned an apple orchard and this one particular tree consistently produced bad apples, what would you do? Perhaps you would think that you were doing something wrong, and tolerate the few bad apples. However, what if the problem never corrected itself but instead begin to manifest throughout the orchard? Would you not then begin to consider the root? The more prudent course of action would be to consider that you do not see - the root or in the case of Law Enforcement, the system itself.
Furthermore, where it concerns this notion that the majority of police officers are decent that’s another pile of rubbish. Yeah, I said it. Sure, there are many decent police officers, but they are not in the majority. Allow me to explain. Well, it’s quite simple really, because where I come from majority rules. You see, a majority of decent police officers would not tolerate a few bad apples that misrepresent the tree/system. A majority of decent police officers would not attempt to cover up the misguided, racist, and hate-filled ideologies of rogue police officers. No, that is not what a majority of decent police officers would do, the thin blue line be damned. This is what Baltimore tells us. You now have my permission to exhale.
Referenced: Brutality lawsuits continue in Baltimore, site of Freddie ...
Written by Jay Arrington
Featured Writer for the Maryland Daily Examiner
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