Thoughts on race and police in Lyon, France — Summer 2017

When we saw all the cops, he said:

“They don’t shoot to kill here, like they do in America.”

 

France surely wasn’t without flaws, but it was different. The black and white racial scripts and dynamics didn’t seem to exist the same way they do in America. There wasn’t so much of a cultural barrier between blacks and whites in France. There wasn’t a culture of fear, tension, discrimination; as if they hadn’t been taught to stereotype black people the way we do in America. Trying to explain to non-American friends why cops in America shot a man 7 times in front of his fiancee and child was nearly impossible.

 

I want an America that has better-trained police.

I want an America that doesn’t pass down stereotypes and racism from generation to generation like it’s a prized family possession.

I want an America that doesn’t shoot to kill.

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