Writing at the Huffington Post, Leigh Owens argues that violence and harassment by the NYPD should make victims and potential victims consider removing themselves from the city altogether.
There is a large population of American citizens who call New York City their home, yet are living behind enemy lines. Despite being, in many cases contributing members of society, students and simply normal everyday people, these mostly black and brown men are stopped, searched, harassed, berated and in some cases beaten everyday by the NYPD, the most notorious police department in the United States…
In a city like New York, where millions and millions of dollars are pumped into the city daily, where celebrities often walk the streets freely and where optimistic immigrants from all over the world have historically flocked to, seeking a better life, how can New Yorkers remain silent and apathetic, when such tragic injustices are taking place in front of their eyes. Why haven't one of the dozens of successful New York rappers, who themselves are often victims of illegal or unwarranted searches, stepped up to initiated some sort of action to pressure the city into changing this law? If every victim of the Stop and Frisk law stopped spending their money in New York city for a week, the city itself would quickly feel a little thorn in it's side. If every victim and every supporter who believes this law is wrong joined in, the city of New York would almost undoubtedly reassess these discriminatory practices.
If you lived in a place where you were subject to unwarranted violence and harassment, a place where you were treated as less than human and had your life, as well as your freedom threatened on a regular basis, you might be living in some third world dictatorship. You might also be living in Harlem. In either case it would behoove you to consider removing yourself from that environment.
Read Leigh Owens' entire piece at the Huffington Post.
The Root aims to foster and advance conversations about issues relevant to the black Diaspora by presenting a variety of opinions from all perspectives, whether or not those opinions are shared by our editorial staff.