Last we checked in with the MBTA Transit Police Department, they were telling a humble, concerned citizen there had been no shady dealings in the Mr. Spaghetti dog-naming debacle. Now, the department’s response to Gawker’s public-records request directly contradicts the reassurance they’d previously given. What are they trying to hide?
There is little left to write. But the names are important to remember. Amadou Diallo and Sean Bell and Rekia Boyd and Akai Gurley and Michael Brown and Angelia Mangum and Tamir Rice, 12 and forever imprisoned in the innocence of youth. The afternoon of November 22, 2014 forever on repeat. And now Walter Scott.
Growing up in a predominantly white, middle-class neighborhood in Seattle I remember my mother warning my older brother not to be caught running after dark, and, if ever stopped by police, to do whatever they asked—no more and no less. Speak as little as possible, she'd say. Every suggestion was a weak attempt to minimize a danger that would exist regardless. My brother would always be a black male.
There isn't enough ink to express our pain. Day after day, month after month, year after year, the pain of being black in America, and across the globe, is apparent. Yesterday I read the headlines and tweets that told me NYPD Officer Daniel Pantaleo, the cop that killed Eric Garner, would not be indicted. Daniel Pantaleo—say his name until it cannot be forgotten, until he's held responsible. A week and three days before that I heard news out of Ferguson, Missouri that Darren Wilson would not be indicted. That same day, hours before, I watched my beautiful daughter be born into this world. Being black is like that: valley, peak, valley.
At a September townhall meeting in Harlem, Carl Dix, a longtime Uptown fixture and mouthpiece, stood before the microphone in the auditorium of the Schomburg Center and called for mass rebellion. "It's going to take a revolution," he said, "nothing less, to end this and the horrors of the system once and for all."
Yesterday, the Ferguson, Mo. police department announced that it would not release the name of the officer who shot and killed unarmed 18-year-old Michael Brown on Saturday. "The value of releasing the name is far outweighed by the risk of harm to the officer and his family," said Thomas Jackson, chief of the Ferguson police department.
The psychologist who convinced a Texas judge that 16-year-old Ethan Couch was too rich to know right from wrong says he shouldn't have used the word "affluenza," but insists his defense of the teen was otherwise sound.
Alarming footage surfaced this week on YouTube showing rapper Christopher "Xstrav" Beatty being placed under arrest, seemingly for being unwilling to hand his can of AriZona Iced Tea to an undercover cop.