Compliance with the police outweighs the outcome of non-compliance

Photo by Markus Winkler on Unsplash

Recently, Ibram X Kendi, Director of Boston University Center for Antiracist Research, wrote an essay in The Atlantic called — Compliance Will Not Save Me. Kendi’s essay was about the fatal police shooting of 13-year-old Adam Toledo in Chicago on March 29, 2021.

Kendi stated: Chicago Police Officer Eric E. Stillman responded to reports of gunshots. Stillman chased a boy down an alley. The officer yelled at Toledo, “Hands. Show me your hands. Drop it. Drop it.” Stillman’s body camera shows Toledo apparently complying. He appears to drop something. He stops…


Peace — No Justice?

Photo by Jon Tyson on Unsplash

What is justice?

This question dates back to ancient Athens. Socrates posed the question to his contemporaries. Each person gave an example of justice, but Socrates pointed out the flaws in their logic. The debaters in the Socratic dialogues failed to reach a consensus regarding the definition of justice.

Last year, an incident was captured on video that almost every American viewed as unjust.

While making an arrest, Derek Chauvin, a white Minneapolis police officer, knelt on George Floyd’s neck, a handcuffed black man, for over nine minutes, which resulted in Floyd’s death.

City officials in Minneapolis immediately fired Chauvin…


In the court of public opinion, where American policing is on trial, there is no jury — only judges.

Photo by Brett Jordan on Unsplash

During the trial of Derek Chauvin, the white Minneapolis police officer charged with murdering a black man named George Floyd, another police shooting took place right outside of Minneapolis in Brooklyn Center, Minnesota.

This time a white female officer shot and killed a 20-year-old black man who attempted to flee the scene after he was pulled over. The problem was the officer pulled her firearm, but thought she drew her taser.

She thought wrong.

Since her wrong thought resulted in the…


What if Chauvin is convicted of Manslaughter? The first thing protesters will shout is: Manslaughter is not enough!

Photo by Florian Olivo on Unsplash

Right now, the Derek Chauvin trial is still in progress.

Chauvin is the white Minneapolis police officer that was captured on video with his “knee on the neck” of a handcuffed black man — George Floyd — for over nine minutes. Floyd died while pinned to the ground and his death was the catalyst for the 2020 multi-state riots.

The state of Minnesota charged Chauvin with second-degree unintentional murder, third-degree murder, and second-degree manslaughter. According to Minnesota’s sentencing guidelines, the maximum recommendation…


A generalized reaction toward — The Police — can be counterproductive

Photo by R.D. Smith on Unsplash

During high-profile cases involving white police officers and black men, in which the former caused the death of the latter, anger at the individual officer normally leads to condemnation of — The Police. Even though there are roughly 18,000 police departments across the United States, all with different management, personnel, and procedures, high profile cases create a generalized reaction toward — The Police — that can be counterproductive.

In 2020, a black man, George Floyd, was killed by a white police officer in Minneapolis, Minnesota. Riots broke out across the country, and the protesters shouted “defund the police”. As the…


The pandemic, inequities, and zip codes

Photo by Jerry Wang on Unsplash

I went to a high school that was 98 percent black. I had black classmates that were in a predominately black gifted program. Naturally, the gifted students were a tiny percentage out of the entire student body. However, no black parent, local black politician, or black community spokesperson complained about the disparity between the average black students and the gifted black students.

No one said, since the majority of the school’s black students maintained a C-average it was unfair that C-average students had no representation in the gifted program. No one suggested eliminating the…


The philosophical underpinnings that created America’s contemporary race debate

Photo by Tingey Injury Law Firm on Unsplash

The book, The Great Debate, chronicled the philosophical dispute between Thomas Paine and Edmund Burke and how their clash of ideas created the modern political left and right. After reading the book, I wondered what are the philosophical underpinnings that created America’s contemporary race debate.

Recently, there was great anticipation for a debate between two black intellectuals, Coleman Hughes, a fellow at the Manhattan Institute for Policy Research, and Dr. Ibram X. Kendi, the director of the Center for Antiracist Research at Boston University. Hughes made a name for himself as an opinion writer and testifying against reparations for slavery…


Problem solving that doesn’t solve the problem

Photo by Antoine Dautry on Unsplash

In 2019 the Brookings Institute published a report called: The Rise of Black-Majority Cities. It pointed out in 1970 there were 470 black-majority cities and by 2010 there were 1,148.

In 2015, the US News & World Report revealed, nationally “only 18 percent of African-American fourth-graders were proficient in reading and only 19 percent scored as proficient in math … The eighth-grade numbers were even worse, with only 16 percent of African-American students proficient in reading and 13 percent in math … By comparison the national average for proficiency among all students in…


Photo by Woubishet Z. Taffese on Unsplash

When Barack Obama ran for president, he was a first term senator with no baggage, and his opponents created a controversy through his church pastor.

Obama’s pastor preached Black Liberation Theology. The majority of Americans didn’t care. They never heard of it. But Obama’s opponents said it was an offshoot of Liberation Theology, which originated in Latin America with priests who blended the New Testament with concepts of Karl Marx. Since Obama’s pastor preached a black version of this doctrine people wondered if Obama was as radical as his pastor.

Obama could have explained there was an academic form of…


History that glorifies the past is vital but it shouldn’t dominate the discourse

Photo by AussieActive on Unsplash

There’s an African proverb that goes: Until lions have their historians, tales of the hunt shall always glorify the hunter. The proverb implies history is written by the victors, but it also gives the “lion historian” a specific task — to glorify the lion. “Glorifiers of the past” are the first type of historians that emerge from the oppressed.

In 1879 Martin R. Delany published: The Origin of Races and Color. The back cover of a modern copy explains: Delany wrote in opposition to an oppressive intellectualism that used Darwin’s thesis ‘survival of the fittest’ to support demented theories of…

Jpharoahdoss

J. Pharoah Doss is a columnist for the New Pittsburgh Courier.

Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store