As the protest began to die down, a group marched to police headquarters, chanting: “No justice, no peace.” York Daily Record
This past week has had me filled with emotions: I am angry, sad, hurting. The list goes on.
Watching that video of George Floyd suffer at the hands of Minneapolis officers for no reason really hit home for me. Hearing him plead to the officers that he couldn’t breathe and cry out for his mother was difficult to watch.
That could have been me — or my brother, my father or any other family member or friends.
When I look at videos of black people being victimized by police brutality, I ask myself, “Will it ever end?”
I wake up every day and thank God that he gave me life on this earth. But as a black man, I am constantly reminded that I am seen as a threat in some people’s eyes based on my skin color. As much as some people don’t want to believe it, it’s the truth.
Do I want to be reminded of that? Of course not. But it’s the sad reality of the world we live in today.
This kind of behavior started way before I was born, and those who think that racism is not relevant today are sadly mistaken.
I have walked into a store wearing a hoodie and instantly noticed people staring at me, from the moment I enter until the moment I leave. I think nothing of it because I know I am not doing anything wrong; I am just living my life.
But what’s going through the minds of the people staring at me? There has to be a reason why I gained their attention. I know that if I’m staring at someone, there’s a reason for it.
Then I ask myself, what was going through the minds of those officers pinning Floyd to the ground? Was all that necessary? Couldn’t they have sat him up? So many questions run through my mind.
But Floyd isn’t the first. There have been countless other incidents involving police authority and people of color. People have lost their lives and have been seriously injured for no reason at all.
Every time I leave my apartment, I ask the Lord for protection.
As a journalist, I go out and look for stories to report on in the community. Let’s say I’m driving to cover something, or I’m leaving from covering something, and an officer pulls me over for whatever reason.
Protesters continued to speak out against police brutality and racism at the El Paso County Courthouse joining nationwide protests following the death of George Floyd. Wochit
At that moment, my heart would stop briefly. As a black man being pulled over, I honestly don’t know how this interaction could go. One thing I do know is that I will control what I can control and cooperate and do what the officer says.
Unfortunately, for some people who do cooperate and follow orders from police officers, it doesn’t always end peacefully. Video showed Floyd not resisting and cooperating with the officers; where did that lead?
I’ll be honest: Some of this stuff is hard to wrap my head around. This week, I watched a reporter get arrested on live television for the first time in my life.
Watching CNN reporter Omar Jimenez and his camera crew being put in handcuffs for doing their job was completely mind-blowing.
Once again, I put myself in Jimenez’s shoes and think, “Wow, that could have been me — or anyone else, for that matter.”
Every day, journalists take risks when they go out and cover the news. Right now, we are risking our lives by going out to these protests and riots to make sure viewers know what’s going on.
On social media, I have seen many people I know in the industry seriously injured from doing their job as journalists, and it’s sad to see.
Not only am I a black man, but I am also a journalist. I understand that people may have a preconceived notion about me because of my skin color or where I am from. But I won’t let that stop me from succeeding in this world, no matter how hard it may be.
One thing that I constantly tell myself is that there’s hope. Seeing people from different races and backgrounds come together during a time like this is a reminder that we as a human race have made progress.
But there is still work to be done.
Kevin Moore is the Sports Life Reporter for the York Daily Record where he dives into a beat finding stories that have a deeper meaning than sports itself. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org, 717-309-4814, or on Twitter at @kevmoore93.
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