Chavis Carter Could’ve Been My Brother, Friend, Classmate…

There’s something about the Chavis Carter case that really tugs at my heart strings.I can’t quite put my finger on it. There’s the obvious reason why it would bother me, which is that he was a young black man that did not display any signs of violence, yet somehow died while in police custody. I feel like it’s deeper than that. For some reason this case feels so personal to me. It could be that I have a brother, a young black man who is only one year younger than Chavis. It could be that Chavis and I are only a few months apart in age. What it all comes down to is that Chavis was one of my peers. He could’ve been a classmate. He could’ve been a friend. The black panther in me wants to spaz out and make it a racial thing. The level-headed me wants to say why would the police want to kill him no real reason? The logical me says that there is absolutely no way a man who was handcuffed behind his back found a way to retrieve a hidden gun and shoot himself in the temple. The logic in me says that it is a little suspect that the cops searched a man twice, were able to recover a dime bag of weed yet, they didn’t find the loaded gun that was somehow hidden on his person. My common sense says that it is a little strange for a left-handed person to shoot themselves in the right temple.  My street knowledge tells me that getting caught by the police with a dime bag of marijuana is not enough to make a person not want to live anymore. A few days in jail, an outpatient rehab program probably would have been the extent of his punishment. It isn’t likely that a suicidal person is going to phone their girlfriend and say “I’ll call you when I get to jail”. While I am sure there is some information that has not been released to the public for investigative purposes, all of the  information that has been released says that Chavis Carter was killed, and not by his own hands.

Watching the footage of Chavis’s mom literally broke my heart. What bothers me even more was what he has the potential to be. Sure he had a few legal issues such as a prior drug offense, but that didn’t make him a low-life. Plenty of people mess up a bit in their youth, but they eventually get it together and that goes for any race. Honestly, Chavis Carter had every reason to live. None of this seems fair. In the wake of the Trayvon Martin case, we are all a little sensitive, but there’s something about the senseless killing of young black men in America that feels like genocide to me. Maybe I’m being narrow-minded or letting my emotions dictate my stance on this, but in my eyes, those officers are already guilty. Race may or may not have been their motive, but nothing in me believes they had nothing to do with his death.


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