Shortly after the 2016 presidential election, Saturday Night Live did a skit featuring Dave Chappelle, Chris Rock, and a few white actors at an election night party. The white attendees kept a positive attitude throughout the night confident Hillary Clinton would win while Chappelle and Rock were sure Donald Trump would come out on top. When the realization hit the white attendees, one of them said, “I think America might be racist.”
America is racist. I was one of those white election night party goers shocked to discover just how racist America is, and I’m a cynical person with a career in a negative art form. But Donald Trump was counting on America’s racism. So was Russia. They made the right bet. America is racist.
Amy Cooper knows America is racist. In fact, she was counting on it. Amy was walking her dog in Central Park (in case you’re a Republican, that’s in New York City). She was walking her dog without a leash. She came across Chris Cooper (no relation to Amy) who was in the park bird watching. They disagreed over her walking her dog unleashed. She suddenly erupted and said she was calling the cops on an “African-American” who is ‘threatening my life.’ Amy Cooper is white. Chris Cooper is black. The dog is kinda yellowish. But it was all caught on film and it went viral. Amy Cooper was counting on America being racist. She was counting on the cops being racist and taking her side in a dispute where her life was not in danger and when she was the one breaking the law. For Amy Cooper, it wasn’t a bad bet initially because America is racist. Cops can be racist. In America, it can be extremely dangerous for a black man to go bird watching.
But for Amy Cooper, it didn’t work out because it was recorded and it went viral. The company she works for…or worked for…fired her because they don’t want to be associated with any racist dog ladies. Quite frankly, the dog should quit being her dog because she was choking it while calling the cops.
What would have happened in that situation if Amy Cooper’s racist bullshit wasn’t captured on tape? She was betting on the NYPD being racist and taking her side. In 2014, the NYPD choked to death Eric Garner, a black man selling loose cigarettes (that’s selling smokes individually instead of the entire pack). There was a tape of that too that went viral. In it, Eric Garner is heard saying, “I can’t breathe” at least 11 times.
George Floyd, a black man, is heard saying “I can’t breathe” multiple times while a Minneapolis policeman has him pinned to the ground with his knee on Floyd’s neck. The cop was emotionless, unmoving, all the while with his hands in his pocket. Other cops stood and watched. Bystanders were pleading with the cops to let Floyd up, who was handcuffed while the cop was kneeling on his neck and choking him to death. The cop left his knee on George Floyd’s neck for several minutes. He didn’t flinch at all while George Floyd pleaded for his life.
George Floyed was heard saying, “I can’t breathe.” Then he cried for his “mama.” Then he died. Four Minneapolis cops killed George Floyd on suspicion of forgery. They said he was resisting arrest but from the bystander’s camera and security footage from one of the businesses, that can’t be seen. The city’s police department issued a public statement describing the event without mentioning the knee to George Floyd’s neck.
I was eating dinner last night when I first saw the footage. I couldn’t finish. I was sickened and heartbroken. I’ve seen a lot of these tapes and they’ve all made me angry but this might be the first one that made me tear up. I can’t imagine what his family is going through after seeing that tape. I can’t imagine what every black American is going through in this racist country.
The four policemen have been fired. But they have yet to be arrested. After being caught on tape murdering a black man, how come these officers have not been arrested yet?
Because America is racist.
But, all and any help is greatly appreciated and it helps keep me going. Think of me like a street performing busking out tunes on a corner (I won’t play “Wonderwall.” I promise). If you like the tune, or in this case, toon, throw a buck into the tip jar. It’ll help me play another song, draw another toon, write another blog, make another video, and post another snarky post on social media. It’ll help keep me alive. You can also order a signed print for $40. And if you don’t like the PayPal option, you can snail mail it to my P.O. Box.
Watch me draw.