Clear as White and Black

A young black man was on his daily commute one morning recently, when a Miami patrolman pulled him over. Coming to the window, the (white) policeman took his keys away. He informed the motorist that his seatbelt hadn’t been fastened. “This is how you guys get killed out here”, Officer Friendly helpfully pointed out. The story doesn’t include whether the driver left a brown stain on his seat. But it shows how mightily scared he was. In a classic case of driving while black, he had every suspicion to suppose his drive to work would be taking a detour to eternity. Funny how traffic stops for minor violations have resulted in some 600 deaths in the past 5 years – with black victims disproportionately represented.

“We got a guy walking around with a gun that he could hurt a lot of people with, but he’s not breaking the law,” an Oklahoma sheriff remarked. A scruffy young white male had been reported meandering around a strip mall, armed with a loaded AR-15 and a revolver. He walked into an AT&T store, scaring employees and customers, who dialed 911 while running for their lives. The courthouse had already locked its doors when he tried to get in. Local police advised concerned citizens that its perfectly legal in Oklahoma to scare the shit out of normal people. In most places, it is legal provided the gun-nut doesn’t start shooting. He did have a set of brass knuckles and .50 caliber pistol. (Doesn’t everyone?) and those are illegal so he was arrested for that. “Terrified people called 911 again and again on the scary looking dude carrying a small arsenal, but it was all legal until cops found the brass knuckles and the .50 caliber handgun.”

Before you answer the following, think it over carefully:

Would the result be the same if their races were reversed?

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