By Stacey Doud, EDITOR’S CORNER
I attended a “Solidarity Press Conference” on June 7 that was sponsored by the NAACP in Grand Prairie (GPNAACP). Not only was it an assignment, but I am also an active volunteer for GPNAACP.
“Why?” you may ask. I’m a white girl AND a law enforcement supporter in the middle of all this (i.e. riots, rallies and the Black Lives Matter campaign). I got involved with the NAACP after hearing the president of the Grand Prairie chapter, Angela Luckey, speak last year about her family history. It moved me. Plus, I am an advocate for social change.
Yes, I support peace officers…up to a point. What was done to George Floyd was just heinous. I’m glad to know those officers have been fired and will appear before a Grand Jury soon. I doubt any of them will be “no billed,” meaning no charges or punishments would come down on these four ex-officers. Historically, most of the police officers that appear before a Grand Jury get no billed, but if that happens in this case, we can expect more violence. I pray that the Grand Jury does its job and puts these ex-officers (and murderers) away for the rest of their lives.
The rally went on without a hitch. They had local and state speakers. Some were white and Asian, and I was really impressed with the turnout by people of all races. There was no violence, but there were some powerful presenters.
One speaker who affected me the most was Alex Crane, the brother of Tavis Crane, who was killed by Arlington Police in 2017 after he allegedly ran over an officer.
“When my brother was murdered, we didn’t get to hear about it until we saw it on the news,” Crane said. “Through the news, they villainized my brother and brought up things that he had done in his past. That happened in 2017. It’s only been three years and I’ve been struggling to deal with it and see both sides of the spectrum. I have my grandmother, my mother and my brother’s son here, so that’s four generations of my family that’s been hearing from my community the same thing, which is, “Vote.”
“I understand the power of voting, but I continue to hear the same thing with not a lot of change happening. My people only make up 13% of this country, and I have to make sure that the other 60% understands why it’s okay for me to live my life, for them to go and vote, for me to have the God-given right that they also have. Why should I have to wait for the 60% to understand and hear my cry that I matter too? That’s all we hear: Vote, vote, vote!
“Thirteen percent is going to change 60%? How are we going to get that changed by just going to the booth? My grandmother heard it. My mother heard it. I’m hearing it, and now an 8-year-old [Tavis Crane’s son] is hearing the same thing: ‘Vote. We’re gonna get there. Just go out there in November. Expect to see the change that hasn’t happened in four generations.’ That’s the definition of insanity: To do the same exact thing and expect change,” Crane said
Grand Prairie Police Chief Daniel Scesney was supposed to speak, but it was the first anniversary of the death of their Officer A.J. Castaneda, and they were doing community service in his honor. He sent an email to Luckey and she read it out loud.
Not many police officers were there because of the anniversary, but a few came and went.
[A quick aside: no one looked upon these folks and said they were angels in life. George Floyd had quite the rap sheet in Houston and Minneapolis. He’s no hero, but NO ONE should be treated the way he was.]
I hope that if any other rallies are scheduled that they will be as peaceful as this one.
In Memory Of:
George Floyd, Christian Taylor, Breonna Taylor, O’Shae Terry, Amaud Arbery, Atatiana Jefferson, Sandra Bland, Paul Castaway, Melissa Venture, Eric Garner, Michael Brown, Treyvon Martin, Tamir Rice, Freddie Gray, Philando Castile, Alton Sterling, Botham Jean, Jordan Edwards, Tavis Crane, Carlos High, Sr., Tony Timpa Santos Rodriguez, Joseph Hutchinson, Darius Tarver, Jonathan Ferrell, Renisha McBride, Stephon Clark, Jordan Edwards, Jordan Davis, Sean Bell, Jordan Hatcher, Joe Calloway, Sr., Dewayne Bowman, Dajerria Becton, Aiyana Stanley Jones, Nicholas Chavez, Claudia Gomez-Gonzalez and all of the others that have been killed by police brutality
To watch a video from GP Chief Scesney, click HERE.