I got into a debate at work. Frank was telling me about some story in California where a black (it matters for the debate) kid broke into a car, stole a backpack and a laptop. The owner called 911 and said he saw it and the kid had a gun. The cops tracked down the kid, cornered him an alley, and ended up shooting the kid. The cop claimed he went for his waistband.
Frank was arguing that it was the typical white cop shooting a black kid. His reasoning was that he has never seen anyone cornered with a gun pointed at them, go for their waistband. Even in movies, they never go for anything. If you had a gun pointing towards you the last thing you do is sudden movements. So he was claiming common sense would have kept him from doing this. Therefore the cop was guilty of murdering him and using unnecessary force. Now I haven’t researched the story or anything, because as I was talking to him, I had no research so I was just going by what he told me of the story. He also said the guy that called 911 admitted to lying about seeing a gun and no weapon was found on the kid after the shooting.
I told him I understand what he’s saying. Common sense would prevent you from going for anything. Common sense would tell me first thing you do is get your hands away from your body, up or to the side. And I can also see a cop shooting him just because he’s black. Sad to say, it wouldn’t be the first time. Racism is still around whether we want to admit it or not. But I can also see the kid going for his waist. Frank looked shocked that I said that. I kept saying, I’m sorry, but people are stupid. A lot of people don’t have common sense. I’m not saying the cop didn’t do it for the wrong reason. I’m saying you can’t discount the fact that people are idiots. For all we know, he had drugs in his waistband he wanted to throw out, or his pants were falling down (which seems like the style nowadays), maybe he was going to grab his pecker and do the pee pee dance, there is no way of knowing. Sure you can blame the cop, but there is no reason you can’t blame the kid either.
I can’t imagine being a cop in that situation. You’ve been told he has a gun so you have to do what you can to protect yourself. Maybe the kid went for his waistband for whatever reason. What choice does the cop have now? You can be angry and cry racist cop all you want, but there is no way to know what happened with the information given to me. Had it not been reported that he had a gun, it would look totally different. The cop would have been a little slower with the trigger if he hadn’t been told there was already a weapon. You have to look at both sides.
Frank doesn’t typically go to the racism thing first, he’s not that type. And usually he has a point. But I couldn’t agree with him on this one.