Wesley Lowery writing at The Atlantic:
The power that is American policing has conceded nothing. Black men and women are still dying across the country as police unions continue to codify policies designed solely to shield their officers from accountability—such as rules ensuring that officers who kill can’t even be interviewed by investigators about it until their victims have been dead for days.
In the days since one of their own killed George Floyd, many American police officers have shamelessly brutalized the protesters whose chief demand is that the police stop brutalizing people.
James Baldwin, Down At the Cross: Letter from a Region in My Mind:
A child cannot, thank Heaven, know how vast and how merciless is the nature of power, with what unbelievable cruelty people treat each other.
The universe, which is not merely the stars and the moon and the planets, flowers, grass, and trees, but other people, has evolved no terms for your existence, has made no room for you, and if love will not swing wide the gates, no other power will or can. And if one despairs—as who has not?—of human love, God’s love alone is left. But God—and I felt this even then, so long ago, on that tremendous floor, unwillingly—is white. And if His love was so great, and if He loved all His children, why were we, the blacks, cast down so far? Why?
Something very sinister happens to the people of a country when they begin to distrust their own reactions as deeply as they do here, and become as joyless as they have become. It is this individual uncertainty on the part of white American men and women, this inability to renew themselves at the fountain of their own lives, that makes the discussion, let alone elucidation, of any conundrum—that is, any reality—so supremely difficult. The person who distrusts himself has no touchstone for reality—for this touchstone can be only oneself. Such a person interposes between himself and reality nothing less than a labyrinth of attitudes. And these attitudes, furthermore, though the person is usually unaware of it (is unaware of so much!), are historical and public attitudes. They do not relate to the present any more than they relate to the person. Therefore, whatever white people do not know about Negroes reveals, precisely and inexorably, what they do not know about themselves.
I cannot risk assuming that the humanity of these people is more real to them than their uniforms.
The brutality with which Negroes are treated in this country simply cannot be overstated, however unwilling white men may be to hear it.