by John Hawkins | July 23, 2002 6:50 am
Jumping Into The Tiger Pit: I have a different view of the Rodney King & Donovan Jackson beating cases than many people do. First off, I don’t think these beatings are racial incidents at all. Just because there’s a white officer and a black “victim” involved, doesn’t mean it’s a racial issue. The reason these are assumed to be racial incidents has more to do with hypersensitivity to race and racial profiteers like Jesse Jackson, Al Sharpton, etc., who make a living off of playing up racial conflict than the actual facts of either case.
Second of all, while I do believe cops should be prosecuted if they use excessive force, I can’t say that I feel any more sorry for King or Jackson than for someone who rubbed themselves down with meat and jumped into a tiger pit. Let me give you a little more detail about what I mean.
Back in my early twenties, I had a predilection for driving fast and paying scant attention to traffic signs so I ended up being pulled over quite a few times. Now when the cop came up to my car, I had both hands on the top of steering wheel so they wouldn’t have to worry about me reaching for a weapon. I also was extremely polite, didn’t make any sudden moves, and didn’t run my mouth to the cops.
See I understand that if you spit in someone’s face, grab their gonads, or they think they’re in danger, you shouldn’t be surprised when you get your teeth kicked in. Just because someone puts on a badge doesn’t mean they leave their humanity behind. Again, if they break the rules they’re given to operate under as police officers, they should be punished in a court of law. But getting beaten down by the police because you resisted arrest means you’re a complete idiot who paid the price for your own stupidity, not some modern day version of Rosa Parks.
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