It’s going to require a change in a lot of things, Judy. It’s going to require a change in law, certainly, but a change in attitudes among the American people as a whole and among police.
You know, when I leave my home, when I leave my apartment, I know that, when I am no longer at home, I’m viewed with some level of suspicion, even as a threat, simply because I’m Black, and certainly because I’m a Black male. And that is something that I have to deal with.
And I have said often and I will keep saying it, there’s no such thing as a routine traffic stop when you’re African American, and particularly when you’re an African American man.
And I think attitudes need to change, particularly among police, because, more often than not, we are viewed as threats. We saw that in the video of Army Lieutenant Nazario in Virginia that happened in December, but came to light last week. We saw that in the video of the initial encounter with George Floyd.
When they tapped on the window of George Floyd’s SUV with a flashlight, he turns around, and what does he see? A gun in his face.
With Daunte Wright in Brooklyn Center, Minnesota, the police officer said “i will Tase you,” “Taser, Taser, Taser.”
Instead, she had a gun in her hand and shot him.
Now, as you said, Judy, these are all different circumstances, but the overall mood is the same. Black people feel under threat. They feel under siege. And until the rest of America changes its attitude, and until law enforcement somehow changes the way it views the people they are sworn to serve and protect, nothing is going to change.