Imagine you’re vibing in your car, mentally working on aligning your chakras when a white woman comes and tries to throw a whole bucket of ice water on that mess by calling the cops on you.
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That’s exactly what happened to Ezekiel Phillips, who believes that if he wasn’t black, the woman would have never claimed that she felt threatened by his presence.
Phillips told Fox 11 that he had just dropped someone off on Ramillo Avenue in Long Beach, Calif., and decided to take a 30-minute break before going to his yoga class around the corner. As he was listening to his Bikram yoga CD, the woman confronted him by walking up to his car.
“You’re not supposed to be here. This is a good neighborhood,” Phillips claimed the woman told him.
Phillips was taken aback, but like a true yogi, he attempted to disengage.
“At that moment I’m like, ‘Wait, hold up. Have a good day, ma’am. Namaste.’ And I rolled my window up,” he told the news station.
However, things quickly escalated as the woman started taking pictures and filming Phillips.
“She took her phone out; started taking pictures, filming doing whatever she was doing ... So I got out the car, I started filming her as soon as I start filming her [she started screaming], ‘What are you doing?’ Leave me alone! I’m feeling threatened. Help! Help!’ It was one of those,” Phillips explained.
In audio from 911, the woman can be heard frantically speaking to the operator who attempted to figure out what the situation was.
“I noticed him two houses up from my parents’ house and I’m like, you know and he’s waving to me. I don’t know who he is,” the woman told the operator. “I go ‘Why are you sitting in your car in our neighborhood? And he goes ‘I’m resting’ and ‘I’m like you weren’t two blocks back.’”
As the woman walks toward a neighbor’s house, Phillips followed her. It was at that point the woman could be heard screaming, “I can’t get away from him! Get away from me!”
At one point, the woman claimed that Phillips had attacked someone, a statement that is not even remotely true based on the 911 call.
“Ma’am. When you say he attacked other persons, what did he do to them?” the operator is heard saying in an attempt to clarify.
“He’s trying to give his business card to this other guy that [is] proof that he didn’t do anything to me,” the woman responded.
Oh no! The horror! The scary black man is leaving his business cards everywhere.
Phillips said he had wanted to leave at one point, but said that may have made him look guilty so he stayed until officers arrived. The Long Beach Police Department did not file an incident report and acknowledged no crime was committed.
Still, the police department said that the woman did the right thing by calling them, encouraging others to say something if they see something.
Phillips, at least in his case, couldn’t fully agree with that sentiment.
“It’s no longer cool to allow your discomfort to say that my discomfort is more valuable than the potential fact that [for] this call, your life can be taken,” he said.