White kids are brought in alive
Black kids get hit with like five
Get scared, you panic, you’re goin’ down
The disadvantages of the brown
How in the hell the parents gon’ bury their own kids
Not the other way around?
Nas—“Cop Shot The Kid”
Every morning I wake up, I turn on the news to stay current on what’s going on in this crazy world of ours. Besides the circus that’s going on in D.C., I hit my favorite news channel with expectations of hearing about the latest shooting of an unarmed black man at the hands (guns, in this case) of police officers. Well, over the past few weeks, no unarmed black men were shot (at least, none that we have heard about just yet.) However, there were two murders (yes, murders) of Black men at the hands of the Blue Klux Klan. In both instances, the young Kings were, from eyewitness accounts, putting their lives at risk to possibly save the lives of their fellow citizens. Sadly, instead of being held as heroes for their acts of bravery, they were rewarded with a hail of bullets from guns of the very people sworn to protect and serve.
On November 22, 2018 – Thanksgiving – in a mall in Hoover, Alabama, there was a shooting that ripped through the very fabric of America … again.
Emantic Bradford Jr. was out with a couple of his cousins during the beginning of the Black Friday shopping frenzy. While at the mall, an altercation took place. (It isn’t clear if Bradford had anything to do with the altercation, but witnesses and family members are denying he had any involvement in the incident.) Gunshots erupted at the scene, and being a registered firearm carrier, as well as an Honorably discharged veteran, Bradford instinctively pulled his firearm and began trying to usher people away from the scene towards safety. According to eyewitness accounts, Bradford never brandished his gun. Witnesses say it was at his side as he and others ran away from the gunfire.
Police arrived on the scene as the crowd dispersed and ran for cover. One of the officers (who “happen to be” White) drew his gun and shot into the crowded mall, hitting Emantic Bradford in the back as he ran away from the area. Three shots later, Bradford lay dead, shot down in a case of what was later determined as mistaken identity.
The Saga Continues…
Emantic Bradford was a veteran whom was attempting to do the right thing. His weapon was legally registered, yet he was still shot down because he was presumed guilty by an officer who decided to play judge and jury over his life without collecting any facts. To be clear, as we stated in the Winter Issue of Respected Roots magazine, police have a daunting job that often requires them to make life or death decisions in the blink of an eye. We get it. However, far to often they are continuing to make the wrong decisions repeatedly when it comes to Black men. We’ve seen them manage to bring White mass shooters and serial killers into custody without firing one shot. So why can’t they manage to do the same for non-White suspects? This is the question burning through America right now as we mourn yet another life snuffed out in what has become the norm, unfortunately.
We’ll stay tuned to this story and hopefully justice can be received for Emantic and his family. Peace.