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The death of 29-year-old black man Tyre Nichols allegedly at the hands of five Memphis police officers caught on camera ruthlessly beating and kicking him after a traffic stop was met with universal condemnation from seemingly all sides of the political landscape and - dare I say it - mostly peaceful protests in major U.S. cities nationwide.
Though few seem to want to point it out, the unity this time around stems from two key facts: 1.) All five officers now charged with second-degree murder in the case is also black, and, 2.) The brutality of the excessive force used by police in this situation was impossible to deny, even if it could be argued that Nichols should have been more cooperative (though honestly, whose fight-or-flight wouldn’t kick in after getting tased and pepper-sprayed like that?).
In other words, George Floyd this was not. Unlike Floyd, the drug-addled criminal who once pointed a gun at a pregnant woman’s stomach and was deathly high on fentanyl at the time of his arrest, Nichols, by all accounts, seemed like a genuinely good person and an upstanding citizen. Nobody deserves to die at the hands of the police, but Nichols deserved it least of anyone.
The fact that the officers charged were also black shouldn’t be a factor in a sane society, but it sadly is one because of the powder keg the BLM movement has created. Had those officers been white, Memphis would be in flames right now and the nationwide riots of 2020 would seem like the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade compared to what urban America would be enduring.
Still, you’d think everyone commentating on this tragic event would look for other opportunities to race-bait and instead use this tragedy to point out the urgent need for better police hiring, more effective training, and an overall culture that doesn’t treat ordinary citizens like subjects to be obeyed. But no, leftists all over social media continued to try to blame what happened on what they clearly think is the ultimate source of everything bad that ever happens: ‘muh white supremacy.’
“Anyone who says the killing of Tyre Nichols can’t be about racism because the cops were also Black doesn’t understand how white supremacy or anti-Blackness work,” wrote professional race hustler and self-identified “antiracism educator” Tim Wise, proving yet again that these leftist grifters will turn any situation into a pretzel to make white people the bad guys. It’s utter nonsense that anyone with half a brain can see through, but sadly far too many people have lost their brains in this age of mindless wokism.
Challenged by his statement, Wise later in his replies added: “Of course there are individuals. But no individual operates in an institution-free vacuum. We don’t exist on an island, devoid of cultural/social stimuli. Somewhere these men learned to treat people this way, but not, apparently white people, of course.”
The problem with Wise’s analysis, of course, is that there have been plenty of white people killed by police. Significantly more white people are killed by police every year than black people, even though black males commit a majority of violent crimes in America. For example, take a gander at the facts behind the 2016 police murder of Daniel Shaver and the police officer who got off scot-free. Or Tony Timka, whose killing mirrored George Floyd’s in almost every aspect except for the fact that the video wasn’t released for three years, and the officers involved were never charged or even fired.
There were no national protests for either of those men or for the many other white people who have been killed by law enforcement, and any reaction that did happen paled in comparison to the inevitable outcry from the left when even the most justifiable police killings occur (see Rayshard Brooks). Instead, the assumption among the majority of white people in white communities where support for police is high is that those arrested must have done something to cause what happened to them.
Now, for the record, I happen to disagree with that assumption. Police shouldn’t be allowed to run roughshod over anybody, no matter their skin color or socioeconomic status. And while I would certainly counsel anyone about getting arrested for any reason to cooperate with the cops and not cause an already bad situation to get worse, I also support prosecuting officers who engage in excessive force and especially wanton violence.
If leftists were as passionate about exposing and correcting police brutality and corruption as they are about pretend race-baiting and stoking anti-white sentiments, perhaps some reforms of significance could occur. Until then, we can expect more of the same.