Poor Obama. He had to walk a thin line between supporting the police and supporting the protestors who believe that police departments should get rid of their bad actors, and that they should do a better job of training all of the officers who are now on the force. He invoked the names of Alton Sterling and Philando Castile, as well as the names of the officers who tragically lost their lives during the march.
I was thinking about president Obama's speech--- and some of the things he said about having an open dialogue with each other--- when I saw the story of the police in Minnesota walking out on the WNBA team because the players wore shirts supporting both the officers and the protestors. I gotta tell you, this is not how we have a dialogue with each other and share our differences so that we can find common ground.
The police officers in Minnesota are doing the exact opposite of what we should be doing as country, and what our leader asked us to do today. Instead of engaging, they are going to their corners. Taking their balls and going home if you will. Dialogue only works when there are two sides communicating, or when they are at least trying to communicate with each other.
I give the young ladies of the Lynx all the credit in the world for being socially conscious and trying to raise awareness with this issue.
"Members of the reigning WNBA champions wore the black-and-white shirts during warm-ups before a game Saturday against the Dallas Wings.
"Change starts with us. Justice & accountability," the front of the shirts said. On the back, the T-shirts showed the names of Alton Sterling and Philando Castile, two African-American men killed by police last week. It also displayed the Dallas Police Department emblem and the phrase, "Black Lives Matter."
If the police in Minnesota are offended by what I read is on that shirt, then president Obama's job is going to be much tougher than he could ever have imagined.
Finally, did y'all hear about the dishwasher at Yale University who got fired for smashing a racist themed stained-glass window?
Check this out:
"A black Yale University dishwasher has resigned after he said he smashed a “racist, very degrading” stained-glass window at the school that depicted slaves picking cotton.
Corey Menafee, 38, told the New Haven Independent that he used a broomstick last month to break the windowpane in a residential dining hall, amid a nationwide debate over racist symbols on college campuses.
“It’s 2016; I shouldn’t have to come to work and see things like that,” Menafee told the newspaper, adding: “I just said, ‘That thing’s coming down today. I’m tired of it.’ I put myself in a position to do it, and did it.”
Menafee was set to appear in court Tuesday for a misdemeanor charge of reckless endangerment and a felony charge of criminal mischief, according to the Independent." [Source]
You white folks reading this are like: [In my best white person voice] What the hell was he thinking? Why would he go off like that on a silly window? It's just a window.
To white folks it's just a window, but to black folks.... sometimes you just get tired of being tired.
Look, I am not saying that it's right what the brother did. (As an officer of the court I cannot condone someone allegedly breaking the law.) But as a black man living in America, I can certainly understand why he did it.
*Pic from nytimes.com