Banner saying Black Lives Matter

There are many people in America who question our legal justice system. There have been protest marches in cities across the nation in regards to, what has been perceived as, police injustices that continue to plague the African American community.

What is justice? The dictionary defines justice as “just behavior or treatment” and “a concern for justice, peace and genuine respect for people.” Justice is to be carried out legally by a judge or magistrate, “in particular a judge of the supreme court of a country or state.”

People who carry out justice need to be fair-minded, honest, impartial and be able to objectively be fair to all. The sense of Americans not feeling safe in regards to our legal justice system stems from the continued lack of a sense of justice that some of our lawmakers, policemen and judges have demonstrated.

America and the world saw a black man lying on his back with his hands up, pleading for his life to what he hoped was a “fair-minded, honest and impartial” policeman. A policeman who shot him anyway. Later this same policeman said he wasn’t “aiming” at the black man that he shot. Instead he was “aiming” at the autistic man that he thought was holding a gun on the black man. The autistic man was holding a toy. So what this means is that this incident, either way, regardless of which man the policeman shot, warrants the question “and justice for all?” Where was the justice for the black man who was shot? If the policeman had shot the autistic man, a disabled man, holding a toy, would the outcry of injustice be heard more clearly? Either way, the policeman did not appear to be making his judgment call based on objective facts.

What can Americans do to ensure that the legal administration that monitors and holds accountable the actions of our policemen do the job that we pay taxes for them to perform? We can use our voting power to place people in office who have the same sense of justice and fairness that we display, the sense of justice and fairness that is needed to ensure that the American people are safe and feel secure when they come in contact with the police, so they will feel safe and secure that they won’t be shot when there is no apparent danger of violence being displayed and when they are complying with the law officer’s orders.

This year in our nation, and also here in Columbus, we have seen police shootings that have resulted in black men being killed. We have seen policemen being shot and killed. The black man and his family are afraid to have a policeman pull them over in their car because it may result in death for the black man. The policemen are fearful that when they pull over the black man it will be their last stop. Black children are afraid of policeman, black and white, because they have witnessed their fathers and male role models being shot and killed as they sit in the back seat of their fathers’ car during a traffic stop or as they watch it repeatedly on their cell phones and social media sites.

The plight of the unarmed black men being killed by police officers is lost in the cry of “all lives matter” by people who haven’t lost any lives from the hands of a police officer or even know of anyone who personally lost someone at the hands of a police officer because they only “work” with black people. They don’t socialize or have friends that are black people.

For people of color in America the same question arises every year, every day and sometimes every minute. That question is and remains “and justice for all?”  As a black woman, I don’t think so.















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