In the wake of a Staten Island grand jury’s decision not to indict an NYPD cop in the death of Eric Garner, our endless — and seemingly worthless — “national conversation” about race in America is once again front-and-center. Never mind that it was already front-and-center given that just last week another grand jury let another police officer walk away scot-free after shooting and killing a black man. It’s understandable that there’s a special brand of confusion and outrage this time around given that Garner’s death was caught on video. The feeling, rightly, is that if you can’t even try a police officer whose actions appeared to have killed someone in front of the entire country, when exactly can you?
There are of course going to be some out there — particularly those at an outlet that rhymes with Box Lose — who try desperately to say that race has nothing to do with any of this. To combat that and to dispel the notion that blacks and whites are treated equally by the police as a rule, the hashtag #CrimingWhileWhite has popped up on Twitter as a place where white people can tell their stories of getting breaks from cops — and the system in general — which can be compared to the experience that black people often encounter in the same situations. It’s strong, fascinating stuff.
Remember as you read these that Eric Garner was going to be arrested because he was allegedly selling a couple of cigarettes. That’s what ultimately led to him being killed.
In high school I got in a 3 car wreck that might have been my fault. The cop told me it was the "illegal alien's" fault. #CrimingWhileWhite
— Elizabeth🦒 (@oceana_roll) December 3, 2014
The #CrimingWhileWhite hashtag is a must read for people still foolish enough to believe Blacks and whites are treated the same by cops.
— Imani Gandy (@AngryBlackLady) December 4, 2014
Got pulled over for a brake light out. Underage and drinking and blew over the limit. Cop let me walk to my friend's apt. #CrimingWhileWhite
— Matthew Skalak (@skalakattack) December 3, 2014
I shoplifted when I was 14 and they let me go because my parents came down and we "looked like a nice family." #crimingwhilewhite
— Joel Watson (@hijinksensue) December 4, 2014
— David Floyd (@david_floyd87) December 4, 2014
— Slate (@Slate) December 4, 2014
Chez Pazienza was the beating heart of The Daily Banter, sadly passing away on February 25, 2017. His voice remains ever present at the Banter, and his influence as powerful as ever.