Black people killed by police, jim crow, lynching, National, News, Police brutality, police killings, Race, racism -

Have More Black People Been Killed by Police Than Were Lynched During Jim Crow?

Black people killed by police, jim crow, lynching, National, News, Police brutality, police killings, Race, racism -

Have More Black People Been Killed by Police Than Were Lynched During Jim Crow?

Police killings pick up where lynching left off
(AP Photo/St. Louis Post-Dispatch, J.B. Forbes)

A startling headline published Sunday put modern-day racism in perspective when one article suggested that more Black people have been killed by police than were lynched during the days of Jim Crow.

The claim made on is difficult to dismiss but can’t be labeled as a fact just yet.

What is apparent, however, is that the claim is not as improbable as one would like to think.

Data gathered by the FBI recently revealed that a Black person is killed by white police officers approximately every 28 hours – that’s almost once every day.

Even more troubling is the fact that the statistics do not cover every police killing of an African-American simply because it would be impossible to do – the same way it is impossible to have an accurate account of how many Blacks were lynched during Jim Crow.

According to an article published by The Guardian, many police agencies also fail to report such killings unless they see the killing as being “justifiable.”

This number of killings also excludes cases like Trayvon Martin, the 17-year-old who was shot and killed by neighborhood watchman George Zimmerman.

While the exact numbers may forever remain a mystery, the similarities between police brutality and lynchings during Jim Crow are still striking and gut-wrenchingly horrifying.

As the San Francisco Bay View explains, “The haunting symmetry is not just in the number of dead Black bodies in the American streets but also in the stereotypes and images that perpetuate prevailing assumptions of Black inferiority.”

The only difference is that Blacks have traded in titles of being property and savages to being labeled as thugs and gangsters in the mainstream media.

history of racism in America
Source: The Guardian

Parallels have also been formed between the way a lynched body was left out in the public to send a message to other African-Americans and the way 18-year-old Michael Brown’s body laid uncovered in the streets of Ferguson, Missouri, for hours.

The modern-day killings of Blacks by police also serve as proof that many white Americans are still disconnected from the lives of African-Americans.

According to a recent Pew study, 80 percent of Blacks who were polled felt that the Aug. 9 killing of Brown “raised important issues about race,” The Guardian reports.

Less than 40 percent of whites who were polled felt the same way.

The killings of many Black men by mostly white law enforcement agencies display issues with the portrayal of stereotypes, displays of power on behalf of authorities and the disconnect between many whites and minorities.

The days of Jim Crow serve as evidence of the same things.

The parallels between the two serve as a reminder that America has grown to become a country capable of many things – but it appears it has not yet found a way to overcome the plague of racism.


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