Yesterday I was smiling
Everything seemed alright
But today sun’s not shining
Seen you in a different light
I don’t want you now
How can I love you now
Just keep away from me
’cause you’re killing me
Stop killing me
All the things I never asked for
All the things I thought were mine
Thought that I could see forever
Thought that things would work out fine – “Stop Killing Me” by The Primatives
The lyrics to the song “Stop Killing Me” by The Primatives has a deeper meaning and speaks volumes when looking through the eyes of a young 2017 Black man.
The song easily describes and lays out the current foul relationships and lack of trust for police officers.
This is a time when you really can’t tell a good cop from a bad cop and because of that:
Black Youth are dying at alarming rates.
It is a fact that Black people are much more likely to be killed by police than their white peers
Based on nationwide data collected by the Guardian, African-Americans are more than twice as likely as their white counterparts to be killed by police when accounting for population.
In 2016, police killed black Americans at a rate of 6.66 per 1 million people, compared to 2.9 per 1 million for white Americans.
“Yesterday I was smiling”
In the first part of Black young voices spin on this song is a description of the first impressions and good relationship our Black elementary students have and see in police before things go bad.
Police come to school, participate in youth activities and encourage kids not to be involved in crime and drugs. The message is sent that they are there to protect and serve… “Everything seemed alright”.
“Sun’s not shining and see you in different light”
Then, changes happen as Black youth grow older and learn of the inequality and inequities they witness as single parent mothers struggle often living in squalid conditions and scraping by on nickels and pennies.
That leads to a new perception, as the shiny appearance of the badge turns dull and mattered as young Blacks see first hand that those “street cops” are not like the men and women who visited the schools.
They are meaner, don’t care to listen much, intimidate and don’t mind calling people bad names, chasing people around the neighborhood and even shooting them out in the open where all can see.
“How Can I Love You Now, just keep Away from Me”.
The reality of brutality and death is all too real when police get involved and teens and young adults witness the horror of police shootings followed by the lying unrepentant heart of the trigger happy cops who believe that one of their greatest privileges is the have the power to hunt and kill young Black men for sport and trophy.
“Stop Killing Me”
Death by Police is the final straw in “all the things I never asked for”.
American police departments and justice systems don’t seem too interested in helping get bad officers off the streets and grand juries continue to be mum on bringing officers who kill young Black men to justice.
All the hopes, dreams, goals and all the wonderful and positive contributions that a Black child could make to our society, community and neighborhood goes up in smoke in a matter of seconds because of the evil selfish “god-complex” of a racist, terrorist police officer who decides the easy way out is to pull his gun, pull the trigger and take a young person’s life.
All the things I never asked for…All the things I thought were mine…Thought that I could see forever
Thought that things would work out fine…But.
Lost to Eternity over One Bad Cop.
As the smoke clears, another Black youth is dead and now has become a statistic.
“I had a life to live and something positive to offer… Instead, My lifeless body is on a slab in the morgue.”
While another mother prepares for a funeral and a family grieves what might have been…
A Doctor, Artist, Lawyer, Scientist, Pastor, Sports figure, Teacher, a Father…Grandfather.. Great-Grandfather.
When I first met my first policeman is school, I thought, “things would work out fine”, but now as my cold body and spirit are prepared and laid to rest, with tears and sadness there is nothing I can do.
All I can think about and the only words I leave behind is please, “Stop Killing Me”.
In Remembrance of Jordan Edwards