Breonna Taylor and Misplaced Accountability
Let’s get real for a moment and talk about a frustrating, uncomfortable truth.
The law enforcement officers that killed Breonna Taylor will never be charged with murder.
You read that right. It’s not gonna happen, and it’s the fault of We The People.
Yes, you read that right too.
You see, most people do not seem to understand the law, or how laws are created. When a horrible tragedy like Breonna Taylor’s happens, society demands swift justice, and immediately points a finger at who is perceived to be the most likely suspects; in this case, law enforcement officers.
For many valid, and not so valid reasons, police officers are easy to blame for violence against citizens. However in the case of Breonna Taylor, and countless others, our anger and demands for justice are misplaced. While there are certainly justifiable reasons we can, and should hold law enforcement officers accountable, more often than not, we want to hold them accountable for laws and policy created by legislators at the local and state levels.
Frustrating as it may be, the “I’m just doing my job” is an uncomfortable truth. Whether this this statement is true or not, or whether police act or don’t, we need to acknowledge as a reality that there is nothing the officers in the Breonna Taylor case did that would warrant murder, or even negligent homicide charges that everyone demands to see.
If we TRULY want to see justice for Breonna, and countless others like her, we must acknowledge that we as a society have partial responsibility for her death.
While this statement will outrage many who read this, before you get angry, think about the logic here.
We elect the people who create the laws police are expected to enforce. Because we have become apathetic and lazy, we have been complicit in allowing such policy to repeatedly create tragic scenarios like Breonna’s; and when horrible events happen, we immediately point the finger at law enforcement—-allowing elected representatives to fade into the background and remain silent, when they should ultimately be the individuals responsible for creating poor policy to begin with.
In the case of Breonna Taylor, administrative errors, poor preparation, and the use of a no-knock warrant created a situation with an incredible risk of death...and the warning signs became reality. If executing a standard warrant, where law enforcement actually worked with a judge to prove the need, was conducted, she may likely be here today.
Do you truly want to see reform?
Do you really want to see accountability?
Do you honestly want justice?
Then we must look past law enforcement, and start speaking out against those creating the problem to begin with; with our voices, and our VOTE. If we are to see the change we demand, we must BE the change we expect and take a hard look at ourselves, and accept the uncomfortable truth that reform and justice starts with each and every one of us: We The People.
When just laws are in place written by elected representatives that WE hold accountable, those who break them should be held accountable...be it a police officer or average citizen. That is true accountability. When those we elect do not follow though with administering justice properly, WE must then hold these representatives of the people accountable.
When we own our responsibility as American citizens, rather than finger pointing or championing a cause created by the media, only then can reform and justice be attained. This is the foundation of civic duty and a key tenant of a well-balanced society.