Reverend Arthur Prioleau protests the killing of Walter Scott, North
Charleston City Hall.
Killing of Walter
Scott and the U.S. 'Human Rights Crisis' (La Jornada,
common denominator in all of these cases, aside from the defenseless condition
of the victims, is a manifestly racist and classist application of the use of
force and the propensity of U.S. authorities to protect the perpetrators of murder.
Presumably, had there been no video showing the moment Walter Scott was shot, a similar impunity would have prevailed as it was, for
instance, with the murder of Michael Brown. … The human rights crisis on the territory
of the United States undermines any of Washington's remaining moral authority or
Hundreds of demonstrators protested on April 8 in the city
of North Charleston, North Carolina, for the murder of African-American citizen
Walter Scott, 50, who was shot last Saturday by a White police officer while
trying to flee after being stopped due to an apparent traffic violation.
The spread of a video showing officer Michael Slager shooting Scott in the back magnified the general
feeling of discontent, particularly as it highlights the contrast between that
evidence and a report filed by the officer with his superiors after the
incident. According to the officer, the victim had tried to take his stun gun,
so he was forced to shoot in defense of his life. The public release of the
video also prompted a shift in the investigation to the extent that the mayor
of North Charleston announced that Slager faces
murder charges and could be sentenced to life in prison or even the death penalty.
apparently damning screen grab of
former officer Michael Slager shooting Walter Scott.
It should be noted, however, that police brutality and the undeniably
racist basis of Walter Scott's murder are not isolated features. On the
contrary, racism is part and parcel of the way security functions of public entities
in our neighboring country have become distorted, a point that finds expression
in the many cases in which civilians, most often Black or Latino, are violently
killed by police officers.
Some of the most prominent cases of police violence have
been the February 2012 murder of teenager Trayvon Martin, 17, by a neighborhood watchman who
considered Martyn suspicious; on April 30, 2014, officer Christopher Manney shot an unarmed Dontre
Hamilton, 31; and In July of that year, Eric Garner, 43,
was strangled by White police officer Daniel Pantaleo.
A month later, officer Darren Wilson murdered citizen youth
Michael Brown, 18, in Ferguson, Missouri, where a few days later, Antonio
Martin, 18, was killed - also by police elements.
Later, in September, police shot 22-year-old African-American
Darrien Hunt. On November 22, Tamir
Rice, 12, was shot by police in Cleveland, to obtain the toy gun she was playing
with in a city park. Last March, the Black adolescent Tony Robinson,
19, was shot by an officer in Madison, Wisconsin.
To these must be added the murders
of MexicansCanepa Ernesto Javier Diaz, Antonio Zambrano and Ruben Garcia Montes Villalpando
killed respectively in Santa Ana, California, Pasco, Washington and Euless,
Texas, all at the hands of police.
The common denominator in all of these cases, aside from the
defenseless condition of the victims, is a manifestly racist and classist application
of the use of force and the propensity of U.S. authorities to protect the
perpetrators of murder. Presumably, had there been no video showing the moment Walter
Scott was shot, a similar impunity would have
prevailed as it was, for instance, with the murder of Michael Brown.
Posted By Worldmeets.US
Grand Jury Eruption in America has Little to do with Race (La Stampa, Italy)
Such a combination of police barbarism, racism and impunity
should lead to a repudiation from international human
rights organizations similar to those expressed by broad sectors of our
neighboring country's population.
Finally, the situation described starkly highlights the difference
between the discourse and actions of a regime that presents itself as a global
leader in protecting human rights and individual dignity, a position from which
it takes upon itself the right to harass governments of other nations, as has recently
occurred with Venezuela.
Episodes like those in Ferguson and North Charleston illustrate
the fact that the human rights crisis on the territory of the United States
undermines any of Washington's remaining moral authority or humanitarian