I came across a facebook post by a woman named Molly Suzanna who, for the first time, is sharing her story of police brutality from when she was 19 years old.
It is important for these stories to be shared, and by as many people as possible. I admire her bravery in doing so, and I hope others follow suit.
Her detailed description of what she felt and how she reacted is a very important lesson in empathy. So many people see videos of policemen brutalizing citizens and say “well why were they struggling?” or “why did they talk back?” or a million other lame excuses. Her story drives home a truth that I hope some of these people will feel, that sometimes people are upset, agitated, angry or frustrated for their own reasons. Sometimes, when you feel your body being attacked and hurt, you react on instinct to make it stop. Most people, in emotionally charged situations that turn violent, are not able to think rationally and coolly and predict precisely what actions to take to appease their brutalizer, no matter how obvious it might seem in hindsight. Deescalation in a skill, and one that is supposed to be taught to the fucking police officers. What kind of a world do we live in where it is upon the average citizen’s shoulders to calm down and deescalate a confrontation with the police? When did it become acceptable for the cops to act like overemotional toddlers with guns and authority?
It is chilling to think how close she came to dying over an unsigned traffic ticket. Then, you realize, that many other people in a similar situation have died for something so silly that instantly got out of hand, and are not around now to tell their story.
For those of you who do not have facebook, screenshots of the full story are below the fold.