“I’ll take this one on the chin. I apologize to each and every person in this room ... I can’t overlook this.” What was this Detroit-area police chief apologizing for?
Using pictures of Black men in backwards caps and hoodies as shooting practice targets - and exposing a group of Boy Scouts on a field trip to their practice targets.
The targets have since been removed, but the impact has lasted all the same. Using Black people for target practice isn't new - a Florida department came under fire for doing the same exact thing in 2015. It’s unfortunate, but it makes sense - officers are trained to shoot until they kill the threat. And we are the threat.
But it isn’t just cops.
Anti-Blackness itself is generationally taught. “When those children were exposed to those images ... it was the potential detrimental effects on how they view Black men and Black people that was indescribable,” said one attendee’s attorney.
Here’s the bottom line.
When weapon-wielding police afraid of Black people train this way, it directly relates to our deaths. We can’t force them to see us as humans. The entire police system has to go.