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There is a reason for everything that we do. The actions that we commit are either voluntary or involuntary. But believe it or not there is a psychological reason for everything that we do. This philosophy has a very wide spectrum ranging from why you have certain personality traits to why people are racist, or prejudice against others. Touching on the subject of racism, there are so many branches of this. No one is born a racist, just like no one is born funny. Racism is taught either from the way you were raised, the way you see things day to day and so many others ways as well. There are many ways for one to see a race as inferior during their life. This can cause people to be hateful towards other races, be prejudice, and in general treat others races as if they are not equal. The problem is these people that are racist, prejudice or bias against other races are all around can be your teacher, your professor, your next door neighbor, or even worse a police officer. An abundance of racist people do not even believe that they are racist. This is when issues as in the black lives matters movement comes into play because there has been thousands of cases of African American men and women being brutally beat by police officers yet these officers claim that they are not racist and the substantial amount of force that was used against this person of color in fact “had nothing to do with their color”. These officers that are sworn in to protect us are harming us. But what is the psychological reason behind this.
Statistics show that last year in 2015 that twice as many unarmed African American people were shot and kill by police officers compared to unarmed Caucasian people. “An analysis of public records, local news reports and Guardian reporting found that 32% of black people killed by police in 2015 were unarmed, as were 25% of Hispanic and Latino people, compared with 15% of white people killed.” (Swaine,1). One should dully note, that excessive police force used on any race isn’t just or okay. But if you are an African American male or female, you are far more likely to be harm or even more likely killed. As stated earlier, there is a psychological reason behind everything.
In many police brutality cases, the police officer at question always saw that they were fearing for their life. But when was the cause of that. In Trayvon Martin’s case George Zimmerman thought he was a criminal in the wrong neighborhood solely based on his appearance and his race. And somehow his “brain altered” the image of skittles and an Arizona ice tea as a gun. George Zimmerman was “a scared man” who took the life of an innocent young man. He was scared because Trayvon Martin was African American and the effect of his fear is a young man buried six feet under instead of living his life. Why do they fear us? Why does my skin scare them? And he was not even a police officer, so imagine a man of the law shooting an innocent twelve year old boy because he has a bb gun. Not only is that but their reasoning for killing this child was because he look much older. Because he looked like a threat. Which in so many eyes of the law is a great “justification” because there has been countless cases of the murderers, excuse me officers having desk duty for a couple months and not being convicted as they should’ve been.
One would argue, that this is not just. It is a complete let down of justice system. So many countless lives were taken because of fear. There is a psychological fundamental as to why we are seen the way we are. Which ranges from the way African Americans are portrayed in movies, television shows, racism, and just history in general. We are perceived as the underdog, as thugs, as less than human. When a Caucasian person commits a crime they get headlines such as “Virginia tech track star gets convicted of murder and rape” meanwhile when an African American male is brutally murdered the headlines say things such as “nineteen year old thug shot and killed”, associated with a picture of his mug shot or an unflattering image. As an African American female, I feel that we have been let down by our justice system, matter a fact we are getting murdered by our justice system constantly.
As most people say in the black lives matter protest, we must stay woke. Meaning we must know what is happening to us daily. We must know that we aren’t safe because of the men and women that were sworn in to keep us safe. We must always stay informed and go to protests and support our fellow brother and sister. Knowledge is power. Yes, as I stated there are psychological reason for everything that is done, but that still does not justify what is being done to African Americans daily and what has been happening to African Americans all throughout history. Having knowledge is something that they can’t take away from you and it is important to have a wide abundance of knowledge. We know that they are afraid or basically killing us because they can so we have to play smarter not harder and try to avoid these deathly situations that can change our lives and the lives of others in a blink of an eye. Also the image of African Americans must be changed because that will eventually change the way that we as African Americans are perceived in America.
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