Friday, November 15, 2013

Renisha Marie McBride, 19 - Another Innocent American Executed for Having Dark Skin?

Victim Renisha McBride
 Has the increasing level racial polarization in this nation so negatively warped the perception of all people of color that it's become essentially OK to simply shoot and kill an unarmed, innocent American person simply because their skin is dark and your afraid of them?

Consider the tragic case of 19-year old Renisha Marie McBride of Detroit, a recent (2012) graduate of Southfield High School. In the early morning hours of November 2nd Ms McBride, allegedly intoxicated at the time, crashed her vehicle into a parked car in the mostly-white Dearborn Heights suburbs just outside the city of Detroit.

Witnesses say she wandered around the neighborhood in a haze before apparently trying to seek help at the home of 54 year old Theodore Wafer, while the facts of what happend aren't clear, Wafer pulled out a shotgun and shot McBride in the face at point blank range killing her instantly.

Was he standing his ground? Did he think she was trying to break into his house? What was going on in his mind? It was the middle of the night after all. I'm not the only person asking those questions, because it's starting to look like a terrifying pattern; innocent black person shot and killed, no charges filed, no one arrested until the story comes under the glare of the media.

That seemed to be the case in Florida with the Trayon Martin case, after all his shooter George Zimmerman wasn't even arrested or charged with a crime the night of Martin's murder and as the entire world knows he walked out of court a free man.

Last month it was Jonathan Ferrell, a 24-year old former Florida A&M student-athlete who crashed his car in Charlotte, North Carolina then went to the home of a woman and knocked on the door for help - she opened the door saw he was black, slammed the door and called 911 in a panicked 17-minute call in which she fretted for her life.

When the members of the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police arrived on the scene Ferrell, thinking they were responding to the scene of his accident, ran towards them. They responded by tasering him before 27 year-old Officer Randall Kerrick shot Ferrell ten times killing him.

According to the New York Times Wafer is to be arraigned on 2nd degree murder charges today but who's to say what the result of a trial will be once he lawyers up? The wheels of justice in this nation don't seem to place much value on the life of innocent people of color these days.

I'm going down to Philadelphia for the weekend to have dinner with friends Saturday night then go to the Eagles-Redksins game at the Linc on Sunday (believe me, if MY car breaks down, I'm breaking out my AAA card and calling a tow truck....) but I'll be interested to see the reaction of the mainstream media to this case over the next couple of days because you know what?

The sad truth is that if an intoxicated 19 year-old white girl crashed her car then showed up on my front door step in the middle of the night and I (a 6' 7" African-American man) shot her in the face and killed her, not only would I have been arrested immediately; I'd never walk out of prison again.

What's going on in the mindset of some people in this country? The Pledge of Allegiance I used to repeat each day in elementary school ended with "One nation under God...." but where justice for innocent victims of color is concerned, we seem to be two very disctinct nations; both seperate and unequal.

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