I’ve now lived in New York City for more than 25 years having immigrated from the UK. I am distraught that subjugation is perpetrated by racists veiled in blue uniforms. It has to stop.
Growing up in London in the 70s it felt like we were well on our way to a better world, even though we were on the other side of the Atlantic we were educated about the origins of most African-Americans, about the slave trade, about racial subjugation for vast profit. We understood this was wrong and that people of all colors should be treated with respect and judged on their character.
Maybe we listened for a moment and then we turned away. Maybe every generation finds itself saying we turned our backs.
The pandemic has raised everybody’s tensions, reduced the opportunity to communicate meaningfully, and exacerbated and brought to the surface pre-existing tensions and prejudices. In this volatile environment, there doesn’t seem to be any leadership other than that which further stokes the flames of violence and fear. Even at the City level, the response has been underwhelming, backing the police unions that represent and defend the thugs in their midst.
We must repeal New York State Section 50-A (right of privacy) so that police, firefighters, and correctional officers can be held accountable as everybody else is held accountable. It must not provide a license to commit crimes against people, nor should it serve as a shield behind which power can be used irresponsibly or disrespectfully. We need to ensure that this accountability extends to everyone.
As a minority business owner, as a father of a black teenage son, and just as a human being, I stand with those seeking justice and protection.
Founder, Think Design.