Many protests in Ferguson, Mo., and all over New York City are the reactions to the lack of indictments in cases of police brutality against black men.
The first was the August death of Michael Brown, 18, who was shot six times by officer Darren Wilson. Many felt there was enough evidence to indict the officer based on the excessive force used. When word got out that Darren Wilson would not be indicted Ferguson residents took to the streets in outrage. The protests ultimately led to looting and fires.
Just two weeks later, Eric Garner, 43, died after being tackled by a group of police officers, which was caught on tape. Officer Daniel Pantaleo hooked his arm around Garner’s neck while the Staten Island man repeatedly yelled out, “I can’t breathe.” While many argue it isn’t a race issue, there have been many cases of police using excessive force when dealing with people of color and protesters have been out in the streets shining a light on the lack of action taken against officers and hope for a change in law that makes sure lives aren’t senselessly lost.
“I have nothing against the police.I come from a home with domestic violence and whenever we needed them show up they would with no problem. They do their job. I feel like everything going on with the protest is one sided. While there are some cases where police abuse their power, but Its not a reflection of how all police officers act.”
Kwesi Charles 24, Communications Technology
“I don’t feel safe around officers. To some extent they do do their job but they make quick assumption at times that don’t allow them to do their job properly. I had a bad experience when i was sitting in a parked car outside my wifes house and a police van drove up to me and asked if i had any liquor in the car. It was racial profiling”
Zoya Hyman. 22, Psychology
“I don’t feel safe around police officers but i’m not afraid either. When i’m around cops i wonder whether its a good or bad cop. If i ever got into an altercation and would need their help i’m not sure if they would be of much help, and i think the fact that i question whether they would help me or not says a lot. I have a brother and i worry about him, because of everything that has happened lately.”