In another universe the answer to this question would be they were committing crimes, but if you have seen any of the viral videos that are circulating. You would know that entitled white people seem to be wasting valuable police time by making reports over black people doing everyday things such as enjoying a barbecue on Sunday.
In one of the more frightening stories, an elderly white woman called the police on three black woman who were moving their luggage into an AirBnB they had booked. He reason for calling the police:
“I see these strange people coming and going back and forth, you know, with luggage”
“Because they had luggage in their hand and they weren’t really looking at me. You know, they just kind of avoided me, or they didn’t wave … And I know the couple that own the house, and I didn’t recognize them.”
Yes, she felt because black people didn’t wave and smile at her, they must be doing wrong. We are in 2018, yet it seems as if black people have to put on our best fake smiles just incase a white person finds us too aggressive. I am certain some white people would probably like a “thank you massa” thrown in there for good measure.
This phenomenon is not new, white people have been using the police as a weapon against black people ever since slavery was abolished, indeed, the system is built to favour white people. “Police Violence and Citizen Crime Reporting in the Black Community,” a study to be published in October’s American Sociological Review has found black people are less likely to call the police immediately following, and for more than a year after the highly publicized assault or death of a black person at the hands of police.
The police also have to take blame in these situations, if a caller makes it clear that race is a huge factor in why they are making the call, fines should be issued. Lets take this example from Yale, a student who was doing an all-nighter fell asleep in a common room and woke up to an aggressive white woman yelling at her.
“At 01:45 [local time], I hear someone come into the room. Then the lights come on. I hear someone say ‘you’re not supposed to be here’.
“The force with which she was saying it was very loud. She was yelling.
“She said she could see me clearly from the doorway. I’m just waking up, thinking ‘what is happening’?
“She said ‘I’m a resident here, you’re not supposed to be sleeping here, you’re not supposed to be here, I’m calling the police’.”
The student recorded her interaction with the police which has since been viewed over a million times. In the video the police proceed to take the side of the white woman and ask to see the student’s ID even though she opened the door to her apartment to show she lived in the building, never mind her laptop which was open with her half written essay still on it. Some of you are probably wondering why them asking for ID is wrong. First of all, like the woman who called them they were insinuating that the women does not go to Yale because of the colour of her skin. Secondly, in Hiibel v. Sixth Judicial District Court of Nevada, the Supreme Court upheld state laws requiring citizens to reveal their identity when officers have reasonable suspicion to believe criminal activity may be taking place (emphasis on ‘criminal activity’).
A reoccurring theme with these calls to the police is that when they police do finally arrive, the callers go from being the aggressor to the victim. In the video below this woman calls the police on a family having a BBQ in a park even though she has been annoying the family for two hours, once the police arrive the tears tart flowing. White privilege allows you to shift the conversation about you and your feelings and away from the original goal of the conversation. In this case the white woman was racially motivated to call the police but when the surrounding public called her out on it she began to feel attacked. I wonder how she would’ve responded had the public backed her up.
he lesson of the day is if you are white and you see black people doing mundane everyday things, don’t call the police just go home and hurl racial abuse from the comfort of your bed.
Sincerely, every black person.