Last week’s tragedies, involving the deaths of police officers and/or civilians around the country, have really hit me. I used to live in Dallas. While my time in Big D was short, a piece of my heart still remains. I even have a Texas State flag in my home that brings back found memories every time I look at it.
My heart goes out to the families of the fallen Dallas police officers. I also feel for all my fellow African-Americans who have been unjustly profiled or stopped by law enforcement officials around the country over the years. Fortunately, I’ve only been stopped a few times in the past. Even then, I was very aware of my surroundings and made every effort to make sure my actions were never misconstrued as threatening. Of course my friends accuse me of driving slower than old person, which probably explains why I rarely, if ever, get pulled over. However, those few times my heart rate did increase because of my perceived uncertainty about those instances.
I echo the sentiments of leaders who have called for bridging the gap between the ‘Thin Blue Line’ and the citizens they are sworn to protect. We cannot bury our heads in the sand and pretend there are no problems in our society. One of the many constants in our diverse country is that cultural differences will always be an issue. We must come together and begin communicating with greater frequency and clarity.
About the author: When Walter is not writing for the “Change Clothes. Change Lives Blog,” he can be found studying in pursuit of an MBA, flying around Tampa’s airspace in a small Cessna, or dancing Argentine Tango at a local Milonga.
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