• Raya

Subtle enactments don't chip away at the greater need for justice

ac·count·a·bil·i·ty - /əˌkoun(t)əˈbilədē/ - noun - the fact or condition of being accountable

The lack of accountability on behalf of the criminal justice system has essentially enabled harmful and life taking actions to be carried out by bad cops on countless innocent African Americans.

Accountability is simple. Accountability is a small request that will lead to more positive outcomes than negative. Accountability is owning up to wrong doings and serving justice for the black lives lost not only at the hands of the police but also citizens who take it upon themselves to act like vigilantes. Accountability is fairly investigating cases, not twisting facts, and not making a monster out of the victims in these situations.

Let's hold everyone involved in cases where innocent black lives are lost held accountable. Let's hold fellow police officers who don't intervene, police chiefs, district attorneys, judges, and any other official who suppresses the need for justice accountable. We have to remember the police officers might physically do the killing on their own but they are backed by an entire system. Are police chiefs recognizing and acknowledging complaints against officers and holding them accountable? Once a case enters the court room the pressure and accountability shifts to the attorney in the case. Are attorneys fighting as hard as they can in court?

Why is it so hard to hold criminal justice officials accountable for injustices? Why instead of receiving the one thing we want the most we receive small deflections that are meant to sway or stall us from fighting for justice.

How is painting 'Black Lives Matter' on streets actually getting us justice for our slain brothers and sisters? Don't get me wrong, it is beautiful to look at, but let's be realistic the allowance of the streets to be painted are facades meant to make us believe change is occurring. Think about neighborhoods that have MLK street, what characteristics plague the communities surrounding the street?

How is creating 'The Justice for Breonna Taylor Act' going to bring justice to her family? In theory it is meant to prevent similar situations from occurring in the future, but without actually holding officer's accountable what good does it serve to have this act? The simple fact that the officers responsible for her death have not been arrested and charged, shows that this act is an attempt to silence those using their voices to demand justice. It is so mind blowing that we live in a world where someone can lose their life the way Breonna Taylor did and instead of arresting and punishing the officers responsible, we instead create an act in her honor. We want justice and for the act to be enforced and not just exist.

The whole world watched the life slowly leave the body of George Floyd as he spoke the infamous words 'I can't breath.' The House of Representatives passed the 'George Floyd Justice in Policing Act of 2020.' The act itself calls for some much needed changes in terms of interactions between police officers and citizens, but again will this act truly prevent more lives being lost as a result of a knee on a neck?

When will we stop hearing the words 'I can't breath' as we watch videos showing an African American individual losing their life?

Accountability isn't canceling tv shows, despite the fact that an African American man's life was lost on one of those tv shows. It's not passing bills and acts with no intent to actually enforce them. It's definitely not clearing officers of all wrong doing and only punishing them by firing them. Accountability is not finding any small gesture to appeal to people just to make it seem like change is occurring. It is not enough to simply acknowledge that wrong doing is occurring; bad cops need to be held responsible for their actions.

Accountability is justice.

Accountability is not only acknowledging that officers are wrong in these situations, but it is looking into motives and understanding why they committed these acts, and actually arresting,charging, finding them guilty, and sentencing them.

Hold criminal justice officials accountable to do their jobs without bias and let's challenge them to not deflect or shy away in doing the right thing in ensuring justice is served for the families of the victims.


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