While 100,000 lives lost to the COVID-19 Pandemic is reason enough for our nation to feel grievous, angry, and sad, unfortunately, it’s not the only reason we now feel this swirling combination of emotions. The continuous cycle of vicious violence and murder of unarmed African-Americans and racism is a major point of contention that continues to divide our nation. Despite the severity of this ongoing problem, the world doesn’t take notice and the wheels of justice don’t begin to turn until there’s a major outcry and irrefutable proof circulating on all news cycles and social media platforms.
Coupled with sheltering in place, the emotions and psyche of the African-American community are rubbed raw and teetering on the brink of boiling over. The statistics for unarmed black men and women being killed opposed to white men and women are disproportionately staggering. Since 2015, blacks are 2.5-2.8 times more likely to die at the hands of the police. What’s even more maddening is, that’s 36% of African-Americans who only account for 13% of the entire United States population. What’s even sadder is that even with visible proof via video, most of these murders are committed with impunity. Even when officers are tried and convicted, the degree of the charge and the sentences are far less than public opinion feels they should be.
Stringent reform legislation needs to be immediately enacted and signed into law in hopes of deterring these wrongful deaths at the hands of all rogue officers. Mind you, I’m not anti-police, because they fill a necessary need and the majority of them are above board. In truth, I respect law enforcement at all levels. But sadly and madly, since the pandemic, we’ve witnessed what happened to Ahmaud Arbery, Breonna Taylor and George Floyd; may God bless them and their families. Going forward, our purpose should be to NOT lose any more African-Americans to senseless violence, but if and when it happens again, the officers committing these murders MUST be held accountable and prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law.