The ‘good guy with a gun’ had better be white

People who are against any form of gun control are fond of putting out the argument that when a gunman opens fire on random people, as is sadly all too common in the US, by the time police arrive it is too late and that in such situations an armed citizenry is better able to take on the shooter. The slogan ‘to stop a bad guy with a gun, you need a good guy with a gun’ is trotted out. Donald trump is a big fan of this doctrine and after every shooting, school, synagogue, church, whatever, he calls for more armed people to be present.

But recent incidents suggest that they need to change that slogan to ‘to stop a bad guy with a gun, you need a good white guy with a gun’. In two cases, police who arrived on a scene killed two men who were not the gunmen.. One was Jemel Roberson, an armed security guard in suburban Chicago, who had brought the gunman under control before he was shot by police who arrived later.

Witnesses said security had asked several drunk men to leave the bar, and at least one person returned and opened fire, CNN affiliate WGN reported. A bartender was among those victims, according to the lawsuit.

After that shooting, Roberson “had somebody on the ground … with his knee in back, with his gun in his back like, ‘Don’t move,’ ” Adam Harris, a witness, told WGN.

The officer responding to the scene then fired at Roberson, the TV station reported, citing witnesses.

“We all yelled. ‘He’s a security. He’s a security,’ and without … giving any thought, they shot him,” Harris told the station. “The vest said security as well … and they shot him in the side.”

In the other case in Birmingham, Alabma, Emantic Bradford Jr., who was licensed to carry a firearm, was shot and killed by police in a mall after a shooting incident there, even though he too was not the gunman.

Bradford’s parents appeared on CNN, saying police still had not spoken to them. They want to see body camera video and they have hired the civil rights attorney Ben Crump to help them.

“We don’t trust the police department because they’ve already lied to them,” Crump said. “They released his picture all over the world saying he was the shooter and the police officer was a hero.”

Crump said several witnesses said the officer shot Bradford “within milliseconds”, without saying a word to him.

“It doesn’t matter if you’re a good guy with a gun, if you’re black the police shoot and kill you and ask questions later,” Crump said.

Where are the gun nuts and the NRA after such shootings? Why aren’t these stalwart defenders of the Second Amendment marching in the streets protesting the killing of people who were merely exercising that right? What don’t these killings arouse anger in them?

There must be some reason …


  1. johnson catman says

    Could it be . . . SATAN?!
    Of course, I am not serious. It was proven back in the 1960s by the Black Panthers that people of color are not allowed to openly carry weapons or expect support from the NRA.

  2. jrkrideau says

    I am always surprised we do not have a lot of young Black males at the border asking for political asylum .

  3. says

    The cops’ story is still fluid, apparently. The fact that videos of the incident are popping up may have something to do with it. “He was shooting” -> “he pointed a gun at a cop” -> “he had a gun out” -> “he had a gun” next up: “he was scary and probably smoked dope a few times in the military”

  4. anat says

    And recently in Washington a black social worker who was supervising a visit between a non-custodial mother and her son in a frozen yogurt place was asked to ‘move along’ because sitting there, watching the people he was supervising, and not ordering anything made him suspicious enough to have the police called on him. What do these incidents do to young black people considering their future careers? Obviously being a security guard looks like not a great choice. But perhaps so does anything that requires one to do stuff in public. And then no wonder race influences income and other life outcomes.

  5. microraptor says

    Marcus @3: Don’t forget that he might have once been accused of shoplifting (whether or not he actually did) when he was 12. He was definitely “no angel.”

  6. says

    anat @4

    It gets worse — the comments on the news pages on facebook are chock full of white people saying shit like, “He wasn’t a customer”, and “but he was being creepy”, and other things basically blaming him for being there doing his goddamn JOB.

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