The tragic and indefensible murders of five Dallas police officers focused attention on racist police departments and officers whose existence is undeniable. But also undeniable is the fact that the majority of departments and officers are not racists. Most are dedicated to public service and respect their communities, often risking their own lives to protect and serve.
While police violence must be repudiated, it is erroneous to focus solely on this terrible situation. The underlying issue, as it’s been for hundreds of years, is white supremacy and institutionalized racism. I would suggest that ignoring this fact while slandering, vilifying and lying about Black Lives Matter by white politicians, pundits and various media outlets is telling.
The issue is also the blindness of so many whites to their own privilege and to the realities of black life in America. Whites have built our society on the backs of people of color and we continue to resist tearing down this corrupt and brutal edifice. We have yet to welcome black America to a new reality of equality, dignity and prosperity. We do longer have the luxury of delay. As MLK once said “…[W]e are confronted with the fierce urgency of now…”
Tim Teater, Boise
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