Walk and Chew Gum at the Same Time

Following an incident where a Faulkner County deputy shot a small dog for “aggressive” behavior, I saw several posts on social media contrasting the collective outrage toward the deputy with the silence and skepticism that follows when unarmed Black men, women, boys, and girls are shot and killed by police.

It’s possible to be upset about animal cruelty and our nation’s disregard for Black lives at the same time.

It’s possible to support individual law enforcement officers and police departments while also recognizing that the militant and racist practices of policing as an institution affect the poor and people of color disproportionately.

The bottom line is that law enforcement officers need to be held accountable for their actions just as other citizens are. The knee-jerk use of lethal force based solely on the subjective judgment of fearing for one’s life is a problem with policing in the United States. And Black men are the ones most likely to suffer harm from it.

As unfortunate as it may be, a near-fatal incident involving a chihuahua may help shed light for some on the reckless behavior of trigger-happy cops.