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Letters to the editor for May 1, 2021
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Letters to the editor for May 1, 2021

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The April 27 letter "Reforming our Reactions" strikes me as all wrong. I get that the writer believes that the simple failure of Blacks to respect and obey police is what gets them killed. This completely confuses the issue.

Firstly, most Black people I've met give their teens "the talk" about how to react when officers pull them over. Implying they don't is just cruel. Still, it's hard to be calm when there's a gun in your face as with Philando Castile in 2016.

Secondly, how do we justify summary execution for being angry or evading arrest? That seems a combination of 1850s plantation thinking and modern victim blaming. Walter Scott was shot eight times in the back in 2015; Andrew Brown more recently shot in the back and head; many in between affirm this problem. Note also the recently released International Commission of Inquiry report concluded these behaviors constitute crimes against humanity.

Thirdly, "disrespect" was certainly why uniformed 2nd Lt. Caron Nazario was pulled over ultimately for being a Black guy in a nice new SUV. Clearly, certain people expect total submission from these people and getting violent when they don't get it. His uniform made it worse. A reserve officer I know said his people were puzzling over this incident for a couple of months. They believe he acted correctly and worried how to avoid the next incident.

Finally, this problem is absolutely about both our inconsistent expectations of police, serve and protect versus control and contain, and the two centuries of systemic racism in our culture. I know Tucker Carlson and Laurah Ingraham vociferously disagree. They already have, as does Cal Thomas, and politicization here is also problematic.

KENNETH NAUGLE

Forest

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