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Monday, July 17, 2017

Australian White Woman Shot Dead By Police On The Day Before Philando Castile's Birthday


Last month the Minneapolis officer who killed a cooperative, unarmed Philando Castile while on facebook video was acquitted of manslaughter charges. The officer essentially admitted he killed Castile due to racial profiling. He basically said he was scared because Philando's nose looked the same as the guy they were looking for. 
Yesterday, marchers honored Castile's 34th birthday by speaking out about racial profiling. They asked that police officers be held accountable when they use deadly force.  
It's rather ironic that now we're hearing that police officers in or near Minneapolis killed someone else the night before the march.  

TODAY, there are reports that there has been another questionable police shooting in Minneapolis, which took place the night before Castile's birthday on Saturday night. 

"An Australian woman described as a spiritual healer was shot dead by police in Minneapolis Saturday after she reportedly called 911 herself — leaving angry friends and family searching for answers in a city that has just been at the center of another high-profile police shooting. 
The killing of Justine Ruszczyk, who used the last name Damond, prompted hundreds of mourners to protest at the site of the shooting Sunday, demanding their questions be answered, according to NBC-affiliate KARE"

Apparently Ruszczyk heard something outside that sounded like a sexual assault. The police wound up shooting her dead instead of an assailant. There's very little information about how and why this happened. But this shooting is rising in the news because like Philando Castile, she unarmed.

This time there was no facebook video and

1) Body Cameras were off 
2) There's no dash cam video 
3) Police haven't explained how this happened yet.

 And this all occurred despite Ruszczyk being white.

One article called I read was titled "Bride-To-Be Shot By Police"  --which communicates that she has higher social value IF she was about to married to a white male.This, in addition to her being Australian, should make this story rise into the high profile zone.

As I've said before, police nationwide are watching every single acquittal of every single police officer that kills a black or brown person and gets away with it. Police are not being held accountable for shooting first and thinking later and claiming "I was scared." Therefore it was a matter of time before police officers start adding white people to their pattern of protecting themselves first and the public later.

Ruszczyk is not the first white person to be shot dead by police for no reason and she's not going to be the last -- not by a long shot. But how many years will it take for white people to be mowed down by police before they're paying attention? 

It occurs to me that is took decades of black people going to jail for drugs before white folks noticed white people dying of drug overdoses. Now the republicans are trying to put legislation in their healthcare debacle --designed  to lose 22 million people their health insurance-- that's going to address the mostly white "opiod crisis."   (Notice there was never a "crack crisis" addressed by proposed legislation as if drug addiction is an illness. Black folks were thrown in jail.)
So now I'm wondering if white people being mowed down by police is going to matter as much as it should -- especially in the age of Trump, with white supremacy rising and becoming more overt. 
In any case, thanks to Black Lives Matter police shootings and the fact that no national agency was tracking police shootings has become commonly known on a nationwide basis. Thanks to Black Lives Matter police murders become national news instead of just local news. 

It's going to be interesting to see if police get away with saying things that mean "I was scared" or "She didn't obey me instantly." Regardless of the race of the officers, the only thing that should be able to save these officer(s) is if this white woman was silly enough to go outside with a weapon to help whoever she heard outside. And I think we'd have heard about that first if that was the case.

I'm waiting to hear how this plays out.