If you’re wondering why protests are erupting all over this country due to racism, look no further than right here.
Two horrendous people have been caught on camera during a live news broadcast in NYC Wednesday night mocking the chokehold that killed Eric Garner and the “Hands up, don’t shoot!” mantra that has arisen after the murder of Michael Brown in Ferguson, Missouri.
The “ugly (white) American” shows his face here, and is it any surprise it’s a man in a fine business suit instigating the horrendous attempt at dismissive humor in Rockefeller Center? The sheer indifference by so many people displayed publicly shows just how bad race relations truly remain in the United States. No matter what one thinks of the details of each case, not even professional adults seem to be able to compose themselves to act respectfully for the loss of life.
This is no joke.
In the video, the man and woman actually stop what they’re doing mid-step like a couple of juveniles to stand behind WPIX reporter Allisen Kaden and jokingly re-enact the choke hold that killed Eric Garner, complete with large smiles across their faces as the woman pretending to be choked by the man puts her hands up in the air in the now iconic “Hands up, don’t shoot!” gesture.
How vile can you get?
People like this just exacerbate the situation, yet they don’t care. And why? Because they are so assured of their privilege. They live with the security that such circumstances will never be their own, and that the ripples that span outward from such tragedies will never touch them. They are indifferent, in short, because they view black people as something “other” than themselves, perhaps even less than human. In their eyes, folks like Eric Garner and Michael Brown are disposable, reduced to the identity of faceless “thugs” part of a low-class mob.
But they are wrong.
Of course they are wrong, and vile people. Getting to the point where even people like these two lowlifes can grow up and recognize the value of all people is the dot on the horizon we are aiming for in this country, but it is still such a long way off.
Let us hope their faces are recognized and that great shame comes their way. Perhaps if they lose their jobs for being reprehensible examples of humanity they will learn enough to become human beings again.