With Summer 2017 not even half way over, there comes yet another victim of the ongoing war between police and our lives.
20 year old Giovonn Joseph-McDade, a resident of Kent, Washington and a student at Green River College was murdered by county police on June 24th, after being stopped for a suspected traffic violation. Initially pulled over under the assumption of switched/cancelled plates, the encounter turned into a chase as Joseph-McDade- having not stolen the car as they suspected- proceeded to flee the scene. This action, of course, "prompted" quick action from the officers involved, which- of course- resulted in police somehow feeling threatened, which- of course- immediately invalidates the black life before them.
Regardless of the details, the ending is all too familiar. This is a tired tired story that is somehow justified ceaselessly within the court of law. And my question is why? Why, when a young black man is driving away, do they shoot? Why, when a young black woman speaks her mind, do they shoot? Why, when a young black man is running away, unarmed, do they shoot? Why do they always shoot?
Being one of the 119 black people already eliminated by police this year, and one of the 3 people of color victimized in king county within the past 2 WEEKS, Giovonn Joseph-McDade has become a martyr unintentionally- initiated by a system who won't even say his name; this case has been one particularly hushed in the media and news outlets for reason unexpressed.
Regardless of the various justifications that are bound to erupt- regarding his record, drug history, etc.- they are all distractions from a structure at work- as the oppressors puppets rally to continue the cycle of tyranny and protest. In their eyes, the more we fight back, the more "radical" and "threatening" we are. But in reality, the more we say their names, the more we remind ourselves of the truth.
So say his name: Giovonn Joseph-McDade
By Cree B. McClellan, AFROPUNK contributor