In the wake of the relatively light sentence given to the BART cop who murdered Oscar Grant many people are speaking out and predictably opinions are all over the place. You can probably tell how I feel about it just by re-reading the previous sentence.
The important things to remember in this case and in all cases like this are :
- If you think that racism is dead in this country because we have a African American President then you're fooling yourself. And if you think that the aforementioned racism that many police officers are infected with vanished when Obama become President then you're also sadly mistaken.
- The police are not out there to make sure all people get justice, or even to 'serve' and 'protect.' The police are there to enforce the law. And most every law was written by, and for rich white people.
- There is a separate and unequal criminal justice system in this country. If you are rich and white you face an entirely different system than you do if you're black or Hispanic. Even if you're a working class or poor white person you have a better chance of getting treated better by the cops when under arrest. If you have dark skin then police everywhere will give you a harder time than they do white people.
Police brutality exists. Racism among the police exists. And the verdict in the Oscar Grant case proves yet again that police officers who murder in the line of duty are held to a different judicial standard than others who commit murder.