A response to the “Why don’t you protest for [Insert name here]” attempt to derail civil rights progress


I’ve seen some variation of the image shown below posted by some friends. Please allow me to explain why this is utter garbage.

The reason why we protest police brutality and racism is because the police (who are sworn to serve and protect, and who are paid with our tax dollars) get away with murder and lesser forms of brutality on a daily basis. The law as written prevents the police from being held accountable, and leaves us vulnerable to abuse by the government. The goal of the protests is so seek a change in that legal and political situation such that the police stop engaging in that brutality and racism.

As a simple example, the police who killed Breonna Taylor as she slept in her own bed have not been charged as I write this article months later. Similarly, the cop who invaded Botham Jean’s home and murdered him was initially free to walk away from the scene of the murder without charges. Those situations and many more warrant protests.

There is absolutely no reason to protest in regard to the murder of Cannon Hinnant, as the person responsible was swiftly apprehended and charged with murder. The full weight of the police force and the legal system was brought to bear against that man, and he will surely spend the rest of his life in prison. Since there is no miscarriage of justice, there is nothing to protest.  Since the person who committed the crime is not protected by a law that only the government can change, there is no need to assemble and demand a change in the law.

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Finally, the attempt to somehow conflate a black person randomly killing a white child with the racism that is systematic in policing is disingenuous and intentionally race-baiting in many cases. Although I don’t think that was the specific intent of everyone who shared such a meme, I know it was for some of them. Note: I commented on the posts of two friends who shared a meme like this, saying substantially what I said above. One of them deleted the entire post. The other deleted just my comment.