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TOPIC: Black 14-Year-Old With Puppy, Choked By Police

Black 14-Year-Old With Puppy, Choked By Police 02 Jun 2013 17:20 #3311

  • robert.h
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Two days ago, a 14 year-old African American boy named Tremaine McMillian, was choked by police for giving them "dehumanizing stares" and clenching his fists. He had his puppy with him at the time, but I find it slightly disturbing that this seemed to be a point of focus in the media. The need to point out that he was feeding a puppy when the cops attacked him is a clear attempt to humanize this boy, to establish that he is a kid, because it's quite obvious that there is a lack of empathy directed towards black people in this society. I wonder if had there been no puppy, would people have been as sympathetic? Would this have even been news at all? I doubt it.
In the same way this puppy is supposed to humanize this black boy, the skittles and iced tea Trayvon Martin was holding when he got shot provided fuel for a narrative representing him as a kid-like, because neither of those boys' humanity stands on its own without those items in place. Without those "humanizing" elements, blacks are by default less than human in society's eyes.
And why did the police officers attack him in the first place? Because they considered him a threat. What constitutes a threat? Apparently a 14 year old black boy with his puppy giving police officers a funny look. Who but a black person could manage to make police officers feel threatened with a stare and clenched fists? That boy posed no threat other than the color of his skin, apparently. Racism is awfully predictable.

(for reference: here and here)
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