Why the Black Lives Matter Movement is Important

I have been a victim of crime and people that I know including my brother-in-law, nephew and a friend, who was a police officer, were all killed by criminals. Everyone hates crime and believe criminals should be punished including me. To some degree, people can be on the lookout and protect themselves from criminals.

When a police officer commits a crime against me, my options are limited. If I fight back, I will be beaten or killed and the officer will most likely suffer no consequences, even if a video exists. No one is supposed to be above the law, but it's foolish to believe that. Police officers get away with crimes that would send ordinary people to jail for years. The Black Lives Matter Movement has been purposefully misrepresented by white media and politicians to portray it as some sort of racist ideology.

Below is a video of Madison, Wisconsin police punching, kicking and tasing a defenseless 18 year old girl (woman) which is the latest example of why the Black Lives Matter Movement is important and why black people shouldn't be deceived into thinking just because black criminals are committing crimes, that somehow makes it unimportant that police treat black people horribly on a regular basis in this country. 

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Had this simply been a common criminal, people would have certainly come to this girl's aid. However, because it was the police people felt powerless to do anything but to document and video what was going on. Had anyone shooting video gotten involved they would have most likely received even worse treatment and possibly killed. They wouldn't have been able to argue police brutality, self-defense or the protection of others because they would have been charged with "interfering with official police business".

Allegedly, this woman had a knife earlier, even if that was true, there is no excuse for what is shown on the video. This woman was obviously no danger to the two larger police officers manhandling her. This woman was basically tortured.

These type of incidents have to stop. I am sickened each time I see one of these videos and sickened, even more, when I hear that the officers involved were not arrested, charged or convicted of any crime. Imagine how many of these incidents are never captured on video, which is why police body cameras are needed.

Obviously, there are many innocent victims of crime and some of those innocent victims are killed. However, many of the killings happen because the victim was engaged in illegal or illicit activity and some are retaliation or revenge killings. Criminals, when caught, get arrested, charged with crimes, go a trial and to jail if convicted.

If my life is put in danger by a criminal, I have the option and right to defend myself including deadly force if necessary. But what about when the criminal is a police officer? You have not rights! Even when police officers abuse helpless black teenagers in bikinis at a pool party, there still is no justice. This needs to change now!

Byron Mischauex, the grandfather of Jirah Campbell, a teenager who was fatally shot in Pine Lawn, spoke with KMOV about the violence and Black Lives Matter. I agree with Mr. Mischauex that we as a community must fix our problems, but at the same time, we must realize that our issues are symptoms of much broader issues. However, that realization is of little comfort to the family of Jirah Campbell and all the other families that have experienced the death of a loved one from violence. Until we understand those racist institutions including policing, courts, banks, and even government plays a part of the black community's plight nationally, black people as a whole will continue to suffer. 

When a person is unfairly targeted by police the way Mr. Mischauex described, they can be thrust into a domino effect of misfortune. Innocent people get arrested, which often result in losing their job, losing a car, home, or other possessions. To add insult to injury, that arrest record makes it harder to find another job.  

Fortunately, Mr. Mischauex was a business owner and had the resources to get through. Many others are not as fortunate. Factor in decades of criminalizing drugs and other behaviors and predatory court practices it's easy to understand why black communities all across the country have suffered. Many people in the black community become distraught and black teens often feel hopeless and result to crime because the feel they have nothing to loss. Those currently with decent jobs don't  seem to understand that the next economic downturn could cause them to become targets and face similar issues. 

Record any incident of police misconduct that you see. If the police mistreat you in any way, report the officers involved so those offending police officers will accumulate complaints that are representative of their abuse.