The murders in Baton Rouge raise the question: Do black lives matter if they are police officers?
Do black lives matter? is usually asked as if police officers are only white.
According to the Daily Beast,
Two weeks before he was killed on the job, Baton Rouge police officer Montrell Jackson wrote on Facebook what it was like to be black and a cop.
Jackson, 32, was killed along with police officer Matthew Gerald and sheriff’s deputy Brad Garafola on Sunday morning in Baton Rouge by Gavin Long of Kansas City, Missouri. Long, who was wearing body armor and carrying a rifle, wounded three others before he was killed by police. The murders completed a circle of violence involving police across the country that began when two white Baton Rouge police officers shot and killed Alton Sterling, a black man selling CDs in a parking lot, on July 5.
Two days later, black militant Micah Johnson shot and killed five white police officers in apparent revenge for Sterling’s death and that of Philado Castile, who was also killed by police.
That was the week Jackson was reflecting on when he took to Facebook.
Jackson was obviously black as are many officers. I have yet to see any evidence that black police officers are less likely than others to use lethal force in the line of duty.
If you believe that there needs to be reform in the way the police operate, not only must you hate the cop murders which will make any such reform more difficult, but you must also hate the invoking of the race issue. It is obviously a red herring. If there is a problem with how police are or are not accountable, it won’t be solved by entangling it in racism smears.
Obviously, Jackson was victimized twice. The second act of victimization was his murder. The first act of victimization was the previous murder of fellow officers with the insane justifications for those murders. That environment made it harder for Jackson to operate as an honorable officer. His Facebook post is a testament to his character in that he refused to give way to hating.
Now it has become even more difficult for police of every race to do their jobs.