On Thursday, July 19th, a Multicultural Town Hall focusing on Mental Health options for minorities and youth was held in South Sacramento. Many people from the community came to the event to speak out about mental health.
Recently in San Diego at the International Association of Chiefs of police, chief of police Terrence Cunningham “issued a formal apology to the nation’s minority population”, according to an article in The Washington Post titled “U.S. police chiefs group apologizes for ‘historical mistreatment’ of minorities.” As you may be aware of, police actions of brutalities against minorities have gotten plenty of attention lately all across the media. Too often you hear about a story in which an African-American individual is found to be either beaten, or worse killed, by an officer of the law. These actions by the very people who are meant to serve and protect us have created a level of fear among community members of course, especially those of color.
Even locally here in Sacramento, police have had their own share of unnecessary violence towards men of color, first with the killing of a black man back in July who was shot 14 times and whose family is now demanding murder charges against the officers, and most recently a man who received excessive force from police officers at a light rail station just a few days ago. Both of these stories about these incidents can be found here and here.
What’s important now is how police officers will fix their own erratic behavior, and what will local citizens do about their own police services. A formal apology may have been given by Officer Cunningham at the convention but this still does not excuse the violence that has taken place and the fear that comes with it. Local Sacramento community member Alex Ajayi, who is a minority and has family in Sacramento, says “I feel likes it made us more paranoid of police. Makes us trust them a little less“. Mr. Ajayi goes on to say that “we should respond by knowing how to deal with police. We should not give the police any reason to be attacked seeing as they are basically a ticking time bomb. We gotta let the people know that we want reform in the police community.”
Do you agree with the idea that we should take action in wanting reform from our police officers? How do you, whether you’re a minority or not, feel about this situation and the string of violence stemming from police using excessive force?