Friday, April 25, 2008

that's right. acquittal!

exactly 17 months to the day that sean bell was killed on the eve of his wedding day at his bachelor party, a judge hands down a verdict of not guilty on all counts for all three of the policemen involved in his brutal murder. they thought that he had a gun. they heard someone say, i'm gonna go get my gun. and that was enough. it was a 50 bullet barrage (50 bullets!) and -- surprise! -- a gun was never recovered on the scene. what's really surprising is that they didn't kill all of them.

the bottom line is, another innocent black man dies and no one is punished.

i understand that the police involved have supposedly proven that they didn't intend to kill mr. bell, but people go to jail every day for the rest of their lives for way less than this. we've all watched enough CSI and Cold Case Files (my personal favorite) to know that intent isn't enough to justify murder in the real world even if "i didn't mean to kill him" is all you have to stand on. there should be some sort of retribution in store for you if you take someone's life -- even if it is an accident, and especially if you're a cop.

white men rob, steal, murder. why don't we see more of this stuff happening to them? why are black men constantly in the crosshairs of some cop's gun in this city? why don't white men get shot at 41 times?

of course, now would be a wonderful moment for alicia keys (or any other hip-hop/r&b megastar) to write a powerful protest song about this, a la CSNY/neil young's "ohio" -- you know: something to get us thinking, something to unify us and start that pesky revolution she keeps going on about. after all, her latest media misstep says that's her intent, right?

where is public enemy when you really need them?

2 comments: said...

This is a difficult one. Okay, even if they didn't "mean" to kill him. I still wonder if they would have shot so easily if he was white?

queenesther said...

with the dearth of white men getting shot at 50 times by the NYPD -- or 41 times (as they did to amadou diallo) -- how can you possibly wonder something like that?

one officer fired 31 times. that means he had to empty his gun, stop and reload. he had plenty of time to think about what he was doing. they all did.