By Dr. T
The death of Freddie Gray remains a mystery for many of us to this day. The 25-year-old Black male was riding his bicycle in his Baltimore, viagra Maryland neighborhood on April 19 of 2015 when he encountered some Baltimore City Police Officers. For reasons that are currently being disputed in a court of law, symptoms Freddie Gray found himself being violently thrown to the ground, handcuffed and arrested. Although he was screaming out in pain, he was dragged to the back of a police van, and thrown onto the floor of the vehicle without any safety precautions taken, and completely unrestrained by even a seatbelt. One week later, this healthy, vibrant young man was dead from the effects of a severed spinal cord, which it should be noted, he did not have before he was detained and arrested by the police. There were a series of cellphone and other videotapes documenting the events as they occurred, in real time, posted widely to social media immediately following the arrest. When Freddie Gray died a week later, after spending most of his final days on life support as a result of his injuries, the Baltimore City community erupted in protests and calls for JUSTICE. Shortly following the uprising and demonstrations in Baltimore, the State’s Attorney Marilyn Mosby issued multiple charges against the six police officers involved in the circumstances surrounding the death of Freddie Gray.
The six officers were arrested and charged with everything from false arrest, misconduct, gross negligence and second degree assault, to gross negligent manslaughter, criminal manslaughter and second degree “depraved heart” murder. The charges were broad and sweeping and spoke to the commitment of the State Attorney’s office to bring to justice those responsible for the killing of Freddie Gray. However, to date, 3 of the 6 police officers have come to trial with no convictions. The first officer’s trial ended in a mistrial, and the other two were outright acquitted and are currently back at work with full rights and privileges as if nothing happened. With the results thus far, the community has begun to lose hope that anyone will be held accountable for the killing of Freddie Gray and his murder will, as is the case for most black and brown victims of death at the hands of police officers, be determined by either a court of law or by “internal investigation” to be completely justified with no accountability or consequences forthcoming. And, we are once again left with no justice and no peace.
Someone is responsible for the killing of Freddie Gray. He was living his life. He was healthy, young and had not threatened or confronted these law enforcement officers in any way other than by looking in their direction and then attempting to ride his bicycle away from them. Once again our trust in the “rule of law” and the justice system that promises “equal protection under the law” has failed us. Our hopes have been dashed once more and what we are, ultimately, left with is that ever-increasing bitter taste of injustice. America is in denial. We do not have the country that we like to say we have. In fact, we are far from having a justice system that serves us ALL equal consideration. There are those who are STILL in denial that Black people live in America under a different system than whites do. Black people do not experience the America that white people believe we do. The Emancipation Proclamation did not make us FREE, and it certainly did not make us equal under the law. Either white denial has come to represent an absolute oblivion and lack of intellectual curiosity to learn the truth and engage in the process of CHANGE/REFORM, or the intentional complicity in and collusion with keeping the institutional and systemic racism that infects our nation in place is because it serves the personal agenda of white people and white privilege best. WAKE UP AMERICA!