Two Distant Strangers

Today a cop was charged with manslaughter for killing a black man in broad daylight in front of a crowd. It may be the closest thing to justice we will see as accountability has been far in between.

Recently, I watched a Netflix movie titled Two Distant Strangers about a guy who wakes up at his friend’s house and tries to make it home to his dog but the only problem is that every time he steps out of the apartment building the same officer kills him. This happens about a hundred times over and over again. He even changes some of the events like, not smoking a cigarette or not accidentally bumping into a man, and everything he does ends up the same way. It’s a time loop.

America in a sense has become a time loop because as the Chauvin Verdict came in we heard the news of 15-year-old Makhia Bryant being shot four times and killed in Columbus at the hands of a cop who felt threatened. How many times do we go through the same time loop without any preventable actions? Bryant allegedly had a knife in her hand. Four shots feels excessive for a teenage girl. I didn’t bother watching the camera footage as the neighborhood saw it. Why did this officer get to be the judge, jury, and executor because he felt threatened?

There are grocery lists of things that black people have tried to do to avoid being shot at the hands of an officer and it still ended the same way. When will the hashtags end? I find it funny that some officers can apprehend mass shooters but can’t de-escalate tense situations without making it worse. These officers are making it hard for the good officers who do well at community policing and do all that they can to make sure everyone involved wakes up the next morning.

The time loop… America’s Justice System is stuck on a spin cycle and muddled with the blood of so many black boys and girls who didn’t deserve their lives to be taken. Until it stops the civil unrest will not. People will continue to protest in the streets amid a pandemic begging to just breathe. Being Black in America is going through this heartbreak again and again and still being asked to show up at work like nothing is wrong.

The Chauvin Verdict is a step in the right direction but it doesn’t speak for the decades of injustice and the broken systems. How many more mothers have to bury their children because of a traffic stop, walking while black, or having a toy gun? Hopefully none!

“They are lucky that what Black people are looking for is equality and not revenge.”

Kimberly Jones

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