For me, the meaning of life is life. I place such a high value on living that all of it (the good, the bad and the ugly) is a privilege. I would do just about anything to stay alive.
As a young woman, my immense respect for life extended to the unborn, as was demonstrated when I became unintentionally pregnant at the age of twenty-four. My parents put enormous pressure on me to have an abortion but I refused and my daughter Jemesii was born nine months later.
I abhor capital punishment and am a fervent pacifist; believing that neither war nor violence is ever justifiable. However, even given my strong beliefs if I needed to kill another person in order to protect someone I love, I wouldn’t hesitate (a personal amendment to never justifiable).
So what does this have to do with anything?
The events of the past week. Two more young black men slain by police officers and now five officers killed in supposed retaliation. Tragic all the way around.
Much hurt, lots of questions and more anger to come. However, if history is any indication, one thing is certain. The killing of the five officers is undeniably homicide–an ‘atrocity’ according to the New York Times. I don’t disagree. Had the sniper not already been killed by a police robot, he would almost certainly face capital punishment. But the police officers who shot the two black men? It is unlikely they will face any charges whatsoever.
A badge should not be a license to kill. Anyone who has watched either of the videos should be shocked and appalled; this too is an atrocity.
I don’t condone the killing of the officers in Dallas and my heart goes out to their families. Knowing that they were targeted, police officers across the country are probably feeling pretty vulnerable right now.
However, there’s the rub. That’s exactly how young black men have been feeling for, well, as long as they have been in America. Vulnerable, disrespected, disregarded and certainly not protected. Profiled. Targeted. It sucks. The situation needs to change stat and frankly, this time love is not the answer.