I wasn't going to comment on the Sandra Bland incident because I know what I will say will get a lot of people pissed off and, really, I am tired of arguing over incidents that really have nothing to do with race in spite of the fact everyone is all up in arms about racism being the instigator of whatever happened.
Take the death of Freddie Gray. A local drug dealer gets arrested for like the twenty-first time (and this means he has probably been stopped twice as many times and not been arrested), resists arrests, and ends up with a freak accident taking his life. The six officers didn't do anything unusual, they were just bringing in a lawbreaker who always causes the police trouble when he gets caught dealing poison to kids in the community and now the six police officers have had their lives ruined and may end up serving time for doing their job. Baltimore broke out in riots over #blacklivesmatter when this lowlife drug dealer didn't give a damn about black lives and the officers who were required to arrest him weren't doing anything terrible to black citizens because half of them are black citizens themselves. A whole lot of foolishness with the country coming out - black and white - to make a local thug a hero. Makes me sick.
Okay, so now we have Sandra Bland. Here is a woman who has had a number of run-ins with cops and a bunch of issues with driving. She clearly has some mental issues and was all hyped up about #blacklivesmatter and was fixing for a fight if an opportunity come up.
And it did. The Texas cop saw her blow a stop sign and u-turned to follow her. He then saw her change lanes without a signal, so he pulled her over. Now, let me tell you why he did that and why he didn't bother to mention the failure to stop at a stop sign. He wasn't really trying to ticket her; he was attempting to determine if there was something going on with the person driving the vehicle. I doubt he even had a clue the driver was black or a female; he just saw a driver acting questionably and he pulled over the vehicle. Then he went up to the car and saw it was a female and he was pleasant and she wasn't. He went back to his squad car and ran her...whether he saw there were issues with her, I don't know. He went back and she continued to act unpleasantly. He began to wonder if there was something else going on, so he was extending his interaction with her so he could see if there was was any illegal activity going on that he should pay attention to; alcohol, drugs, etc.
Sandra Bland continued acting suspiciously and so he asked to her step out of the car and she refused to comply and then got more and more defiant. Yes, the cop became irate...do you know how frustrating it is to be a cop and have to deal with mouthy criminals, people spitting on you, trying to bite you...and, sometimes, trying to kill you.....it is nerve-racking. Could the police officer have done a better job handling Sandra Bland? Sure...I guess it wasn't his best day, but Sandra Bland instigated the incident and it was her fault she ended up in jail.
Now, we have a woman who can't seem to get bail. Family and friends aren't rushing to her aid. Is this because they have had issues with her behavior before and were fed up and ignoring her calls? Have they had to deal with her erratic and belligerent outbursts in the past? Yes, after her death, we hear how perfect a woman she was but it is not at all unusual for a family to only want to speak well of a loved one who is gone.
Then we have Sandra Bland's suicide . Yes, suicide (or an accident while staging a suicide in a bid for attention) . No question that she herself put her neck in the noose. The woman had attempted suicide in the past and she appears to have been a cutter which indicates she has some serious emotional issues. Her fellow jail-mate says she was distraught and crying and freaking out. The autopsy report comes back with no indications of any sign of trauma that would indicate homicide. The videos show no one entering her cell to kill her. No one had a good reason to do Sandra Bland in. One slightly obnoxious black woman is hardly a motive for murder. If you think the police and jailers haven't run into many like her, you live in a fantasy world. And if you think that mug shot of her is after she died, you need to stop trying to make her death into a homicide.
The type of hanging Sandra Bland did is very easy to accomplish. That she would suddenly just say "the hell with it" is not uncommon with depressed and emotionally unstable people. They can seem perfectly happy and positive and then kill themselves thirty minutes later. It is not rare for families of suicide victims to refuse to believe their loved ones would kill themselves and claim they were murdered. In this respect, Sandra Bland's family was no different.
#Blacklivesmatter, yes, they do but so do white lives, police lives, all of our lives. I have no problem with a fight for justice where there is injustice but I am sick of the flames of racism being fanned where no racism has occurred. Freddie Gray and Sandra Bland were not killed by racist cops. But Sandra Bland may have been killed by the firestorm of anger and protests which caused her to lose perspective on a simple traffic stop. Perhaps if she hadn't been up in arms about police doing in black citizens, she may have realized she committed a traffic offense and was stopped just like we all get stopped when we break the law. Only difference is, most of know we just have to sit there quietly, hope for a warning, and if we end up with a ticket, go to court and deal with it or just pay up.
#Blacklivesmatter and since they do, let's continue to analyze and fight for what makes #Blacklivesbetter....and let's stop the stupidity.
Criminal Profiler Pat Brown
July 28, 2015