By DUVALIER J. MALONE
Duvalier Malone Enterprises
The police murder of Breonna Taylor has once again laid bare the stark bias that exists in America’s justice system. This young Black woman was killed in her own home by invading police officers, who claimed they had a warrant to breach her apartment door and riddle shots into her body. Those same officers were recently cleared by a grand jury in Taylor’s murder.
The one officer, Brett Hankison, that is facing 3 counts of wanton endangerment is not facing that charge because of Taylor’s murder. No, it’s because some of the bullets from his gun that missed Taylor’s body went through the wall and lodged into a neighboring apartment. That person (the neighbor) wasn’t struck, but the officer is still facing charges for putting the neighbor in danger.
Now how twisted is that? An innocent young Black woman gets shot six times by police officers, and they face no charges for her murder. But a bullet has the potential to strike a neighbor (whose race we do not know), and so the officer is charged for that?
This is nothing but a blatant slap in the face to Black people across the country, and an admission by the justice system of America that their brand of justice is Black and White. Meaning, there is one set of rules for Black people and another set of rules for White people.
And what about the fact that this is the same struggle that Black people have been dealing with for decades, even centuries?
Did you know that the acquittal for Taylor’s murderers happened on the 65th anniversary of the acquittal of Emmett Till’s murderers?
Sixty-five years later, and we still get no more justice than we got in the 1950’s. This is what Black Americans deal with.
How insane is that?
Kentucky Attorney General Daniel Cameron should have recused himself from this case. The moment he accepted the invitation to speak at the Republican National Convention in August was the moment that he had a conflict of interest in Taylor’s case.
The Republican narrative regarding police brutality by and large is that “there is no police issue in this country” and “Black Lives Matter is a terrorist organization”.
These have been included among the Republican talking points for years now. For Cameron to speak at the RNC, he would have had to adopt those party talking points as his own. And that was painfully obvious during his press conference to announce that his office would not be seeking charges against the police officers who murdered poor Taylor.
They will probably now tell us that “Daniel Cameron is Black” as if that somehow absolves him of the responsibility of seeking justice for Taylor. My one answer to that is: Every group of people has traitors among them, those who seek personal enrichment rather than justice for their people.
Black people deserve better. Black women deserve better. Taylor deserves better.
It took 194 days for Cameron and his cohorts to come up with a story that they thought gave them enough plausibility and cover to return a non-indictment for Taylor’s murder, and they think that our only choice is to accept it.
I believe this is a severe miscalculation on their part. Changing the details of the case in an effort to protect the police who murdered Taylor has only opened the proverbial can of worms, because now there is more attention on this case than ever before. And it seems that every day, we are getting more and more information that disproves the police narrative and further proves Taylor’s innocence.
Pressure is now being applied to the Kentucky AG, and to the police officers who are responsible for Taylor’s death. I say, don’t let up. Keep the pressure on.
This is the only way we will get change. We must keep the national spotlight shining on Kentucky and on the grave injustice that has taken place there. We have to continue to do what our leaders have encouraged us to do for decades, which is: use the power of our vote to force change.
A historic election is happening on Nov. 3. Let’s vote like we have never voted before, to send a message to those who would perpetuate injustice on Black Americans. Let’s show them through our vote that we won’t lie down and take it.
The world is watching.
Duvalier Malone is the CEO of Duvalier Malone Enterprises, a global consulting firm. He is also a motivational speaker, community activist and the author of Those Who Give A Damn: A Manual for Making a Difference.