Meghan F. Washington

Police Brutality

You are tired of hearing their protests, but you don’t understand their reasons. You ask them to voice their grief with respect while their brother’s bodies are lying on the cold ground. You call their actions anything but justified. Stop the police brutality.

Dear Mr./Madam President of the United States,

Police brutality and racial bias in police stops is a big issue in the United States today. I tie police brutality and racial bias together because often times a person of color is stopped, frisked, questioned, and asked the question “can you please step out of your vehicle?” just because the color of their skin has ‘suspicious’ written all over it. I bring this up because blacks are more than twice as likely to be searched as white drivers.For example, “African Americans are more than twice as likely to be searched during vehicle stops…but are found in possession of contraband 26% less often than white drivers.”(vanity fair) This shows that vehicle stops are definitely racially biased. Did you know that 82-85% of blacks are arrested when they are stopped? This is a problem because innocent people are being stopped and harassed by police officers just because they seem suspicious. Can you see why this is a problem? Well, I sure can. There have been too many cases where innocent people have been harassed and even in the worst cases, their lives have been taken. I believe we can fix this problem by correct training and not being biased in the justice system.

When blacks are stopped they are often times treated with NO respect. For example, we have the Eric Garner case. Eric Garner was being harassed by 2 police officers in Staten Island, New York. Note, one of the police officers had harassed him before. He refused to be frisked and simply told them to leave him alone. In the video you can see that several officers start to swarm Mr. Garner and one of the officers begins to put Mr. Garner in a chokehold (a tactic that is banned in the NYPD) “I can’t breathe! I can’t breathe! I can’t breathe!”(Garner) These were the last words of Mr. Eric Garner. He was a husband, father, and an unarmed black man just wanting to be left alone. His death became the voice of the #blacklivesmatter movement.

It saddens me to see another unarmed black man killed, another wife left widowed, and another child left fatherless. Please help and input laws that protect people of color from the police brutality or simply just give police officers correct training. I propose that you make a law that it protects the oppressed from the oppressor. This would be a very important step for helping police brutality come to an end.  

“All lives will matter when BLACK LIVES MATTER”

-Meghan F.

West Seattle High School

3rd Period LA9H

Hopkins Honors Intro to Literature & Composition

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