Thursday, November 27, 2014

CNN: "Black and Blue", part of "Black in America" series, with Soledad O'Brien, shows racial profiling by police in Brooklyn (with Eric Garner case on Staten Island)


As part of its “Black in America” series, CNN has offered a report by Soledad O’Brien “Black & Blue” about the relations between the New York City police department and the African American community, particularly in the Bedford Stuyvesant area of Brooklyn. There is some focus on the 79th Precinct.  And frankly there is racial profiling going on.
   
This report was first aired before the "no bill" result from the Fergusion grand jury.

  
Soledad O’Brien describes the show on her “unofficial” blog here .

It’s quite remarkable how some in the community resent the behavior of police.  The documentary starts as a black man shouts “I can’t breathe”, which will become a chant later, as police hold him.  The man later lies.  He had been selling untaxed cigarettes. 

The man who dies is Eric Garner.  Since CNN first aired the film, the policeman who took him down Daniel Pantelio, was reviewed by a grand jury which did not indict him Crowds have protested peacefully, although getting arrested for blocking traffic with "die-ins" all over New York City. As of this juncture, it is hard to understand why there was no indictment (Wiki story). 
    
“BedStuy” is a rapidly gentrifying area (maybe like NE Washington now).  Young professionals are buying or renting old brownstones and moving in as real estate development continues.  The poor people are pushed out as rent controls expire.  Is this part of the problem?  But back in the 1970s, when I lived in Manhattan, the area was considered "poor". 
   
Blacks represent 23% of NYC’s population but just 16% of the NYPD (New York Post article .NYPD created some controversy in the 1990s under mayor Rudy Giuliani with its “broken windows” police policy. 
  
Some sources may spell the episode title out as "Black and Blue".   



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