More Black Police Officers Won’t Save D.C.

The late police officer Christopher Dorner (his story will be told below)

Don’t get me wrong, black police officers can and definitely do make a difference and save lives. I’ve witnessed it. Unfortunately, their are limitations on how much police officers with good intentions can help fight the system. This has nothing to do with black police officers, but everything to do with how the system is set up. Take Christopher Dorner as an example. The racism from other officers in his department (LAPD),drove him crazy. It affected him so much that he went on a shooting spree targeting officers in his department. He wrote a whole manifesto about all of the racism there.

The department has not changed since the Rampart and Rodney King days. It has gotten worse. The consent decree should never have been lifted. The only thing that has evolved from the consent decree is those officers involved in the Rampart scandal and Rodney King incidents have since promoted to supervisor, commanders, and command staff, and executive positions.

I’m not saying it was the right way to handle things but..as the Bible says, in the book of Ecclesiastes,“Surely oppression maketh a wise man mad; and a gift destroyeth the heart”(7:7)

In 2019, Black communities need to be policing themselves. One of the biggest reasons for the gun violence in DC, is the fact that DC has one of the highest black unemployment rates in America. Unemployment is the precursor to poverty, which breeds crime.

Unfortunately black people through out America are being systematically locked out of jobs. A study done by Northwestern University, Harvard University, and the Institute of Research in Norway confirmed this. The study contained 42,708 applicants with equal qualifications, credentials, and resumes. The results were that despite equal qualifications, white people were 36% more likely than blacks to receive call backs from jobs.

I used to work for a non profit whose mission was to uplift people out of poverty. The non profit provided furniture, clothes, household items, and other services to families in poverty in D.C. It was no secret about the job discrimination that occurred there. Even white staff there got together and compiled a report which included complaints about the racism. If black people from low-income neighborhoods are being denied jobs, by a job whose mission was to uplift people out of those same low income neighborhoods, then what hope do they have? If black people who go to college and get degrees are being systematically denied jobs, then what hope do many of the disenfranchised black people in low income neighborhoods have?

There must be a systematic effort to employ disenfranchised black people in D.C. and it can be easily done.

Black males from low-income neighborhoods should be given a livable wage to protect their own communities. Recently, DC Police were ordered to do a black history training program.

I think that is an amazing idea, but the goal should be for the black community to police our own communities. Therefore money spent on that type of racial training would be better spent on unemployed black men in low-income communities rather than police officers. It has been done before in D.C. In the late 80’s the Nation of Islam helped protect the community during the violent crack epidemic.

Local crime went down. Drug-related killings stopped. Though the District of Columbia police chief criticized the Muslim patrol as vigilantism at first, the support of some District council members brought cooperation. Residents breathed easier. Children again played outdoors. Senior citizens walked in peace.”- Chicago Tribune

Before the Muslims appeared, parents kept their children indoors for fear they would be either hooked or shot. People could not sleep at night for the shooting…today there is not a drug dealer in sight, and there is no gunfire” -New York Times

It’s been proven that this is the solution to the crime in our communities. The only thing that should be done differently is that the community policing should be put in the hands of those that need jobs the most. A team of black professors, preachers, and even the Nation of Islam could easily run a training program(hopefully paid), in which disenfranchised black males learn about their history, social justice, and how to police their own communities. After the training program they should be given a livable wage to protect their communities. By livable wage, I mean a salary similar to that of a police officer’s, which will allow them to provide for them and their families. If black men living in poverty have access to these jobs, they wouldn’t have to rob or sell drugs.

It has also been documented that the Ku Klux Klan has infiltrated law enforcement in America.This means that a terrorist organization that gained its rise to power by killing black people, are now patrolling black communities with guns. This is even more of a reason as to why black people need to police their own communities.

Even black children in DC have been victims of police brutality.

If black communities all over America were able to successfully launch community policing program in the 60’s (Black Panther Party) and 80’s and 90’s (Nation of Islam), why can’t it be accomplished in 2019?

A 3-year-old boy was shot and wounded April 30 when someone opened fire on a crowded block. Ten-year-old Makiyah Wilson was shot and killed July 16 after masked men started shooting as she headed to an ice cream truck. And just this month, on Oct. 8, a 14-year-old boy was shot and wounded after leaving a sports practice.” — NBC News

(Stats above are from October 2018, I don’t have the stats in terms of if any children were shot the rest of 2018/how many)

In conclusion a grant for this community patrol program could easily provide a livable wage for black men to patrol and protect their own communities in America. Would the government provide a grant for this? Just recently a Black congressman in Virginia named Bobby Scott proposed a bill that would give out grants to black organizations to celebrate the 400 year anniversary of us being in America. He was able to get it approved.

(Sec. 5) The commission may provide: (1) grants to communities and nonprofit organizations for the development of programs; (2) grants to research and scholarly organizations to research, publish, or distribute information relating to the arrival of Africans in the United States; and (3) technical assistance to states, localities, and nonprofit organizations to further the commemoration.”

This could create jobs for the men in the community, thus decreasing poverty,crime, gun violence, and mass incarceration. It would also provide more unity within our community. Hopefully the fact that Donald Trump signed this bill, can hold Democrats accountable to either put up or shut up, and make sure this gets carried out. We need it because 534 people in DC were shot in 2018, including innocent children.