American Police : NPR

I highly recommend this podcast to every person in America. Recent news events opened old wounds of an incident where a colleague here at Sacramento State University called police on me, an African American, during a routine Student Investment Fund meeting with 30+ students. Police were called on me for simply being present and not subjecting myself to this colleague’s control. I later found out the cop-calling was part of an orchestrated plan condoned in advance by our immediate supervisor.  In the context of policing in America, as made obvious in recent events (which are repeats of past events), such a plan could have had lethal consequences.

This NPR podcast illuminates how policing in America has its roots in controlling black people. It then took an interesting look at contrasting and comparing policing in the South vs. the North. Again, the underlying theme is control with some nuances on who was being controlled and who did the controlling in the North.

I grew up in the Chicago area. I remember my father telling me of drinking from different water fountains, of being surrounded by white kids on his way home from school to fight every day, of the scars on his arm from when his home was set on fire in the winter, of how local government blocked the repairs on the roof during the brutal cold Chicago winter and how snow hit him in the face while trying to sleep. I could go on and on with his stories, and some of my own. The point is, his mother left the South for a better life in the North. This podcast puts perspective on how such a move was not a slam dunk. Actually, there’s a book titled “In Search of the Promised Land” related to the search for a land where you were treated simply as a fellow human being.

The podcast is an hour long, but has a very powerful start and ending. I hope as many of you out there as possible find the time to listen to the podcast from start to finish.

Yes, it is uncomfortable. #LeanIn

I’ll be back with more finance posts next time.

-Dr. Moore


Related articles:

  • [1] NPR May 26, 2020 – White Woman Who Called Police On Black Bird-Watcher In Central Park Has Been FiredHTML.
    • Her employer, financial firm Franklin Templeton, acted swiftly.  From the NPR article: “Her now former employer, Franklin Templeton, said in a statement posted to Twitter she had been fired, less than a day after announcing she was placed on administrative leave.”
    • In contrast, Sacramento State has yet to publicly acknowledge the wrongs of my “colleague” calling the cops on me – and here we are nearly two years later.
    • To my knowledge there has not even been a reprimand of my cop-calling “colleague” or immediate “supervisor” that condoned this racially charged plan.
    • Update: Woman who accused Central Park birdwatcher of threatening her faces charges, DA says: HTML.
  • [2] Another incident, another professor, another college on Sacramento State’s campus…
    • The State Hornet May 8, 2020 – Sac State professor apologizes for video featuring racial slurs, petition circulates for his removalHTML
    • The State Hornet May 17, 2020 – VIRTUAL TOWN HALL PREVIEW: Students prepare to voice their opinions about viral professor videoHTML.
    • The State Hornet May 19, 2020 – BSU president presses Sac State to fire professor seen arguing with neighborsHTML.
  • [3] NY Daily News, April 20, 2018 – Starbucks manager called the cops on black men two minutes after they arrived for business meeting: HTML.
    • “The men, both 23, said they feared for their lives during the arrest. They were not charged with a crime.”
    • “The fallout also drew an apology from Philadelphia Police Commissioner Richard Ross, who initially backed the arresting officers and said they’d done `nothing wrong.’  `I failed miserably,’ Ross said during a press conference. `I exacerbated the situation with my messaging; it’s as simple as that.’”
  • [4] CNBC, April 16, 2018 – Starbucks manager who called police on two black men has left the company: HTML.
    • “A company spokeswoman told CNBC that `she is no longer at that store.’”
    • “Starbucks’ CEO Kevin Johnson told ABC News on Monday that it was `completely inappropriate’ for Starbucks employees to call police.”
  • [5] The Guardian, June 15, 2020 – CEO caught on video confronting neighbor over Black Lives Matter message: HTML.
    • Lisa Alexander, who serves as CEO of the LaFace Skincare line, thought the person of color finishing a chalk stencil of a Black Lives Matter message, was trespassing and defacing property.
    • James Juanillo, who is Filipino, actually lived at the house.  However, Alexander, on camera “lies and says she knows that I don’t live in my own house, because she knows the person who lives here.”
    • “Juanillo said a police officer pulled up several minutes after the encounter and drove away after recognizing Juanillo as a longtime resident. He later told KGO-TV he believes the couple accused him of defacing private property because they didn’t think he belonged in the wealthy Pacific Heights neighborhood.”
  • [6] Mother Jones, June 15, 2020 – I’m a Black Female Scientist. On My First Day of Work, a Colleague Threatened to Call the Cops on Me: HTML.
    • I’m getting tired of adding examples to this list.  It seems to be never ending.
    • “When I made the #BlackintheIvory post, people said, “Oh, well, you’re probably young.” Yes, but there’s a difference between a misunderstanding and threatening to call the police. You don’t threaten to call the cops on somebody that you think is too young to be somewhere, unless they’re at a bar. I was checking my mail. I had a suit on. There was nothing violent going on, there was no reason to call law enforcement. “
    • “And so the suspicious woman said, “Oh, well, why didn’t you say anything? You just don’t look like you could work here.” And she walked away. There was no apology. It was so uncomfortable. And I don’t know if the worst part about it was the secretary was just like, “All right. That’s solved. And now go about your day.””
  • [7] Sacramento Bee, June 17, 2020 – Proposed California law would make it a hate crime to call 911 because of a person’s race: HTML.
  • The University has publicly acknowledged the bird-watching incident in New York [1] and described the other incident near Sacramento State’s campus [2] as “racially charged” and “abhorrent”: HTML.  Yet no public condemnation from University Administration for the “abhorrent” and “racially-charged” cop-calling perpetrators, an incident that occurred on campus in front of 30+ students, despite my pleas for nearly two years.
  • The Starbucks CEO quickly and publicly acknowledged it was “completely inappropriate” to call the police [4].  When will the leadership of Sacramento State University do the same?


2 thoughts on “American Police : NPR

  1. Wow, that is terrible you recently experienced that professor. I appreciate you sharing and giving us this podcast to review. Being aware, educating ourselves, and changing our behavior to the new information we find is just the start!

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