The biggest question many people have concerning the recent police shooting of an unarmed Australian woman in Minneapolis is this; What happened? Unfortunately, the death of Justine Damond will always be shrouded in mystery “because the two officers who encountered Damond did not turn on their body cameras as they arrived at the scene, preventing any video from capturing what happened.” This is a shame and a terrible reality for all involved. But this incident must also question a fact that many in America have tried to avoid.
Were the #BlackLivesMatter protest right?
While you may not agree with all their tactics (I sure don’t), the over lining message is that police often result to violence responses unnecessarily or too quickly. The death of Damond proves that this issue is not just an African American issue (although statistically it is more likely to happen to black people), but an American issue. And if that was the point all along, then doesn’t that mean the protests were for the greater good in the end?
In addition to the death of Damond and the purpose of the #BlackLivesMatter protest, I am very confused as to the response of both the #AllLivesMatter and #BlueLivesMatter movements which both have been oddly silent in this manner. Why aren’t either movement’s backing either the victim or the police officer? Why aren’t there multiple debates on Fox News and CNN discuss the history of police violence and the complex past of Justine Damond that drove her to this somewhat justified situation? Those have been the narratives of past victims, why is this so different?
Whether you agree with how they did it, the #BlackLivesMatter movement did an excellent job of raising awareness to changes that need to be made in the police departments nationwide. Unfortunately, people have been so focused on fighting the movement that they have failed to listen and seek compromises to positively institute change for less aggressive police responses. Now because of the confrontation, another innocent life was lost. How much longer will we as a nation continue before we sit down and actively search for ways to solve this problem.
And if you are a #AllLivesMatter supporter who has promoted the movement in other issues, but did not in the Justine Damond murder, you are a part of the problem in America.