Sunday, April 15, 2012

Another unarmed young Black man has been killed

This time, at the hands of two police officers in Pasadena, California. They were misinformed by a 911 caller that the suspects they were looking for in a robbery had been armed, so when they saw 19 year old Kendrec McDade move his hand towards his waist, they fatally shot him. Kendrec had been unarmed. And now the cops are trying to say it's the 911 caller's fault that Kendrec is dead, rather than, you know, their fault since they pulled the trigger.

And this is what I have to say about that:

No. Just no. I'ma need these officers to cease and desist in every argument they're making.

It's quite simple, really. I recognize that they were misinformed. I recognize that when a police officer's life is potentially in danger, he or she has to make very fast decisions based on whatever information has been presented to him or her as fact in the situation. I recognize that there may not always be time and/or opportunity to double-check one's facts before getting into a potentially life-threatening situation.

What completely and thoroughly invalidates their argument in my eyes, however, is that while this caller is without a doubt responsible for making the officers believe that their lives could be in danger, he is in no way responsible for the officers' decision to fatally shoot this teenage boy. There's this thing that people can do when they have guns and believe their lives are in danger. It's called shooting their assailant in the leg or the shoulder or the butt or some other place that is not going to end his/her life. THAT should be #1 protocol to follow in an ambiguous situation where an officer's life should be threatened, and when that is not followed, I don't want to see any cop trying to place the blame anywhere else but on him/herself.

Related question: is there any legitimate reason tasers haven't all but replaced handguns for police officers? Shouldn't disarming suspects/preventing them from being able to hurt people always be the goal, rather than killing them? #Imconfused  

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