Saturday, September 24, 2016

"Do I Matter?" "Am I Human?" — Questions Some of Us Force Others of Us to Ask, Over and Over, As Clock Ticks to Presidential Elections

Top headline, Huffington Post U.S., 9 A.M., 24 Sept. 2016 — 44 days before presidential election

The reaction of the Charlotte-Mecklenburg officers to a man dying at their feet was strikingly familiar. The ubiquity of cellphone, dashcam and surveillance video has transformed the way the public understands police violence. But as scene after scene unfolds on shaky screens and in grainy contours, another element of the violence is beginning to come into focus: the pattern of officers seeming to show no concern for the person they have shot, often fatally. 
The nonchalance around the injured and the dying is stunning in its own way. Set aside the question of whether any particular shooting was justified, either legally or morally. Perhaps it was. Perhaps the officer had no other choice. Even in such a situation, though, the officer has just exercised the most terrifying of powers ― the use of lethal force against another human being. And yet no care seems to be taken of that human being.

Posted by teacher Rebecca Lee on Facebook, 20 September

Abby Zimet writes about the painful struggle of a group of black schoolchildren in Tulsa to come to terms with the shootint of Terence Crutcher:

In a moving Facebook post, [Rebecca] Lee [a writing teacher at KIPP College Prep School in Tulsa] describes a hushed school full of hurting kids where "the tragedy lives and breathes among them." Trying to make sense of senselessness, they weep, shut down, pass tissues, pat each other's backs, share their plaintive hopes - "I wish white people could give us a chance" - speak their fears and ask their questions: "Do I matter? Am I to be feared? Should I live in fear? Am I human?"

Syrian refugee child Alan Kurdi drowned near Bodrum, Turkey, Sept. 2015

Pace Donald Trump, Jr., human beings are not Skittles. A little immigrant boy lying drowned on a beach is not a colorful piece of candy. America, when will we stop placing some members of the human community and of our national community — whose lives do not matter in the same way other lives matter — in this unacceptable position of wondering whether their humanity counts, too?

It's 44 days until the presidential elections.

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