Battle Lines

I am sure most of the nation has heard/read about Officers Wenjian Liu and Rafael Ramos of NYPD who were murdered over the weekend. And while I sincerely wish that I can say that I am surprised that this has happened, I am not. As word of the officers’ deaths hit the news Facebook and Twitter went berserk as the immediate bastions of gut reaction opinions flew. What I am surprised at is how quickly battle lines have emerged because of this.

While few argue that the killing of the NYPD officers was wrong, posts/comments/private messages along the lines of “I guess you’re happy now” that popped up over the weekend gives a definite sense that some who are against the protests in Ferguson and NYC seemed to think those who protest and/or support the protestors are somehow engaged in Schadenfreude over this weekend’s killings. Are you fucking kidding me? I was so aghast that anyone would ever think such a thing  of any protestor, let alone me personally. I unfriended them without even bothering to engage in debate.  From what I’ve since gathered from the handful of mutual acquaintances among us it’s just as well, but as the kids say “I can’t…”

This is not an either or situation. The support of #BlackLivesMatter does not negate support of #NYPDLivesMatter.

  1. The deaths of Michael Brown, Eric Garner et al, at the hands of their respective local police is a tragedy.
  2. The assignations of Officers Liu and Ramos at the hands of Ismaaiyl Brinsley is also a tragedy.

In a previous posted I asked “Or Does It Explode?” The fuse, already lit in the aftermath of the Ferguson and New York City grand jury decisions, has the general vibe between police and minorities at a high level of tense. Both sides were walking on proverbial eggshells. Things have yet returned to anything near normal levels of tense – whatever the hell that is; the killings of Officers Liu and Ramos this past weekend have not helped at all.

Just as at our cores we know that it is #NotAllPolice are out to get us, we hope they equally know #NotAllBlacks are out to assassinate them.  The LAST thing we need is for a black man to be accidentally taken out while jogging on the street or while walking a dog because he got too close to a police car because the officers inside perhaps felt threatened.

I am praying and praying hard that the actions of Ismaaiyl Brinsley have furthered that ignition along the fuse.


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