We all knew that there was something rotten in the city of Ferguson, as there is in the majority of police departments across the US–especially the ones where the proportion of white police officers far out number the proportion of white residents in the population.
As details pouring in from the six-month federal civil rights investigation of the Ferguson, Missouri police force, reveal numerous Constitutional violations, we realize there is a lot yet to be done to balance out those numbers.
The investigation found the Ferguson police department guilty of practicing discriminatory policing against African Americans. The Ferguson cops also used racist comments to describe African Americans, including President Obama.
The federal civil rights investigation of Ferguson police racism concluded that Blacks were, in fact, disproportionately targeted by police and the justice system.
Blacks are 67 of the Ferguson population, but:
-85 percent of vehicle stops
-93 percent of arrests
-96 percent of arrests in traffic stops solely for an outstanding warrant
-95 percent of jaywalking charges
-94 percent of failure-to-comply charges
-92 percent of all disturbing-the-peace charges
-92 percent cases with warrants
-95 percent jailed more than two days
-2x more likely to be searched as whites, but less likely than whites to have drugs or weapons
-68 percent less likely to have cases dismissed by Ferguson municipal judges
Emails exchanged between Ferguson police and local government employees also revealed racist comments.
One person said that President Obama will not be president for long because “what Black man holds a steady job for four years.”
Another said that a Black woman in New Orleans was admitted to a hospital to end her pregnancy and then got a check two weeks later from “Crime Stoppers.” (Suggesting that a Black person having an abortion was a good way to stop crime.)
These racist comments from Ferguson police officers are unacceptable.
How can we trust racist police officers to protect our communities? How can we trust anyone who thinks that Black men do not deserve to have stable jobs? How can we trust anyone who thinks Black people are innately criminals and that the solution to ending crime is murdering Black babies?
Anyone has the right to be racist, if he so chooses. But there is a difference between a racist white person who is a civilian and a racist white cop who wields a gun and holds power over powerless Black civilians.
We need to stop giving racist white people power.
Cops get paid with our tax dollars. We need to make sure that our tax dollars are no longer going into the pockets of racists.
We deserve better.
We now have evidence to confirm our suspicions that there are too many racist white cops patrolling the streets of Black communities. Not just in Ferguson, but all across the US.
For too many cops, racism is just business as usual. And they will continue to harm innocent Black people so long as they are allowed to have power over our communities.
We have to get racist cops out of our communities. Our lives depend on it.
Is your community, like Ferguson, also patrolled by racist white cops?
These cops bring their racist attitudes to their interactions with Black people. They shoot first and shoot to kill. Then then hide behind white juries to get off from being indicted and sent to prison.
They are violent murderers, and they should not be in our communities, around us or near our children.
How long can we continue to have racist white cops patrolling our communities? How many other young Black men and women will be murdered for absolutely no law enforcement reason by racist white cops before we see a change in our police forces?
I don’t know about you, but I long for the day when I can shake hands with the cop on the street. Or by him a donut and tell him: “You’re doing a great job.”
I long for the day I will know the cops personally. And not because they stop and frisk me twice a week, but because they share the same pew with me at church. Or because their children attend the same school as my children. Or because they live a few houses down the road or in the same apartment complex.
Why can’t Black people have cops from their own neighborhoods? Why can’t Black people have Black cops?
Why do white people constantly want to drive into Black communities to be our surveillance? Why do white people insist upon driving into Black communities to take good jobs that should belong to Black men?
Please spread the word. I am tired of the racism. Black people are tired of the racism.
We are tired of the shootings. We want to police our own communities.
We have high unemployment and it’s because white people are taking our jobs. There are 67 percent Black people in Ferguson. There should be 67 percent Black people on the Ferguson police force.
It’s that simple.
How many Black people are in your community? How many are on the police force?
If we are outnumbered on the police force, call your police station. Call your local government. Write to your representatives.
We need the Ferguson police racism and police terrorism across the US to stop.
We need those numbers to change. It is the only way to make sure our children, our brothers, our sisters, our nieces, our nephews, come home safe tonight and every night.
Have you shared a cup of coffee with your local police officers? Then what are you waiting for?
We’ve gotta make sure we see our image reflected on the police force.
The cops need to be our friends too.