A portion of the population wants to see (and deserves) much needed action in halting police brutality. Police want to protect citizens and citizens are grateful for those protections. But when we see clear gaps in the bond between our law enforcement officers and the people they’ve sworn to protect WE HAVE TO rally around change.
It’s uncomfortable that those that seek change have been relegated to protesting on their knees at a time when they should want to stand proud. It’s unfortunate that the tears shed by the families of brutalized citizens can’t be seen in these players’ eyes. Let’s not ignore the fact that for every kneeled knee there are “several” American families without their sons and daughters by the hands of police brutality.
Police have a dangerous job. They are often underpaid and not rewarded enough for their continued bravery. Which is why when their honor is compromised by a few officers’ mistakes or a few officers’ biases we have to work swiftly to maintain their honor. Working swiftly means immediate suspensions, fast-tracked investigations conducted by objective bodies and more community oversight into internal affairs. This way the rest of the force can continue with its sworn duties unburdened by a skeptical community in mourning and bolstered by a community partnership.
If you acknowledge the sacrifice of any American troop, then you would also weep when what they’ve fought to defend is in vain. How do systematic injustices against Americans honor our troop sacrifices? How are we honoring the flag outside of game day by turning a blind eye to failed policies.
One freedom that our military continues to fight for –
overseas – is the right to protest injustices and oppression abroad. Surely this is a right we can exercise at home.
Social media and 24-hour news cycles and decades of experience with protests are all worthless in America if it means we still can’t hear each other when we’re clearing crying out for action. Merely “inching” towards a more perfect union when we have all these tools at our disposal is unacceptable.
Yes it’s ugly. Protests are ugly. And we all want the protests to stop – including the players. So which should stop first…? Police brutality or the kneeling?