The Talk some families have to have. The Talk everyone needs to have. By the age of 15, most black teens and their families have to have “the talk” about driving in America.
I remember my mom sitting me and my siblings down when I was 13 after another shooting. We were told that one mistake while being pulled over could cost us our lives. Police brutality in America is something that has been around for a long time. Black families all across America have had to deal with the loss of a family member by the hand of an officer. This is a matter that most African Americans take personally, but the rest of America can put behind them. However, everyone should understand the pain and anger that comes when another black person is killed by a police officer. Police officers should have to go to school longer because 6 months is not enough time. These men and women are in charge of enforcing the law and I don’t think 6 months is enough time to teach and evaluate the officers.
African American parents don’t have a choice but to warn their children about the risk that comes with growing up Black. If you’re not taught about the risk, you’re walking around blind to the bad things that could happen, just because of the color of your skin.
“Any black person who is aware of the news, who knows history, has to be anxious around the police,” said Paul Butler, a professor at Georgetown in an April 19th NPR interview.
An extraordinary amount of power, and we know that they selectively use this power against black and brown people. Living in America as an African American is not ideal, we fear the men and women that are supposed to protect us.
Every time I’m in the car and a police officer pulls up behind us I instantly get nervous and my whole body tenses up. When you get in a car everyone is prone to making at least one mistake, but for African Americans that one mistake could be fatal. Every time my brother gets pulled over, he calls me just to be sure someone knows what’s going on. Every time I get so scared because you never know what’s going to happen. There are always good cops, but every cop can not be trusted to do their job and treat everyone fairly. Some police officers that have the most power and use it to be racist and biased. The power the police have over any and everyone is dangerous. Officers abusing their power is why there is the term police brutality.
White privilege is a very controversial subject, but when it comes to something like this you have to admit, privilege shows. African Americans have to deal with things white people don’t have to worry about. African Americans have to walk out the house everyday worried something will happen. Being a black person sometimes feels like walking around with a target on your back. Feeling like that is something white people will never truly understand. When talking to white students, I’ve realized some parents have started the conversation about police brutality and how it can happen to anyone.
Black families see the same tragic events done again and again, and not enough being done about it. Being targeted because of skin color is not acceptable, and African Americans and other people of color have not been heard.
At some point, we have to acknowledge what is happening and make changes. African American parents have to deal with the fact that they are sending their children into a world with people that only see them for the color of their skin.
It’s important for people to understand that it’s not the actions of African Americans – it’s the police officers who only see color and act on it.