Why did black traffic deaths explode immediately after George Floyd’s death? My theory is that the Establishment made clear to the police that they were to stop black bad drivers less and so blacks started driving badly more. Two years later, here’s one of the voices of the Establishment, the editorial board of the Washington Post (J. Bezos, Proprietor), making clear that no lessons have been learned.
The Washington Post editorial board editorializes:
By the Editorial Board
July 6, 2022 at 5:04 p.m. EDT
Two years ago, the country reacted in disbelief and horror to the killing of George Floyd by a Minneapolis police officer. …
Those same questions are now being asked again after the death of another Black man who police shot more than 60 times after what was supposed to be a routine traffic stop.
Jayland Walker, 25, was killed by police in Akron, Ohio, on June 27 in an incident that sparked days of protests, prompting authorities to impose a curfew and cancel Independence Day celebrations. Police said they had tried to pull Mr. Walker over for unspecified equipment and traffic violations at 12:30 a.m. when he fled and a chase ensued.
By the way this was the second night in a row Walker had led police on a car chase. The night before he’d gotten away when he crossed a city line and the pursuing police declined to follow him further.
His family and friends say he was a decent guy — a former high school wrestler working as a deliveryman who stayed out of trouble with the law — and they speculate that his sudden descent into criminality had something to do with his girlfriend being killed in a hit-and-run car crash the month before. Apparently, he left behind on the passenger seat of his car when he ran for it a pistol, a clip, and a wedding ring.
That all sounds rather like suicide-by-cop. (E.g., shooting once in the general direction of the pursuit is enough to set the cops on edge, with minimal risk that you’ll actually hit one of them.)
Lots of white guys die by suicide-by-cop each year across this great country of ours, but very rarely does the Washington Post editorialize about it.
By the way, suicide-by-cop is an obnoxious way to go. Most cops don’t want to ever kill anybody, even when they want to be killed, so please don’t saddle some random policeman with your demise.
Another theory I’ve seen is that Walker was the Akron Dollar Store Ski Mask Robber.
About 40 seconds after the chase started, police said, a gunshot was fired from Mr. Walker’s car. After several minutes, according to police, Mr. Walker, who had no criminal record, got out of his car and ran away. Police said they deployed Tasers but couldn’t subdue him.
Tasers never work in notorious police shootings (e.g., Rayshard Brooks at the Atlanta Wendy’s and Jacob Blake in Kenosha), although presumably they sometimes work in cases we never hear about because nobody got shot with a real gun.
Seconds later, after police say Mr. Walker stopped and turned toward the officers, they opened fire. …
Mr. Walker was unarmed when he was shot. Police said they found a handgun in the car, but it’s not clear whether it was loaded. …
There are many unanswered questions that will determine whether these officers should be criminally prosecuted. Foremost: Was a gun discharged during the chase that gives credence to officers’ claims they feared for their lives?
Maybe the Editorial Board of the Washington Post should have waited until there’s strong evidence that the videotape of what appears to Walker firing out of the window of his car is actually instead explained by sunspots or whatever?
While the delay in the release of information has been troubling,
What delay? I posted body cam and security cam footage on July 3.
it is important not to prejudge the outcome of this case. There must be a thorough investigation and a full airing of the findings. Aside from the specific issue of possible criminal culpability, there should be some renewed soul searching by law enforcement authorities — both in Akron and across the nation — about practices that have resulted in unarmed Black suspects being killed by police more often than Whites.
Maybe there should be some first-time-ever soul searching by the Establishment about why so many incremental people have died by gunshot and car crash since they declared the “racial reckoning” and gave the impression that submitting to arrest was optional for blacks?
We hoped that after Floyd’s death, departments would reassess the use of deadly force, improve training and question the wisdom of tactics like giving chase to drivers with broken headlights.
After all, if the LAPD had just let O.J. escape to Mexico in 1994, they could have saved everybody a whole lot of time and trouble.
That this young man is dead after being stopped for a traffic violation is not only a needless tragedy, but it is just plain wrong.