More than 87% of an iceberg is submerged and out of sight. That doesn’t mean it isn’t there.
This video has circulated on social media. Many have seen it. I saw it a few days ago. Notwithstanding the tragic outcome in Minneapolis, this video is as disturbing as the George Floyd video if not more so.
Amy Cooper is young, white, well-educated, and middle-class. She lives in New York City, the most diverse city in the United States. One week ago she was walking her dog in a wooded area in Central Park called the Ramble. It was the same day as George Floyd’s death.
Christian Cooper, a Black man, was in the Ramble bird watching. He is a board member of the New York City Audubon Society, although that is irrelevant to the issue. The Ramble has a posted rule requiring that dogs be leashed. Cooper told Amy her dog needed to be on a leash.
This is what followed.
It is outrageous. Cooper, of course, asserts she is no racist and has nothing against Black people. I bet she believes that. Assume Amy is not a racist. That makes the situation worse. She is admitting to using racism (she assumes racist cops will believe her and arrest the Black man) as a weapon to assert her power as a white person. Racism is just one more arrow in her quiver, and she is willing to use it without second thoughts.
Author/Activist Baratunde Thurston’s video op-ed, below, summarizes many of my thoughts very well. Please listen to it. The video is only four minutes.
George Floyd’s death illustrates one of the more visible forms of racism. The Amy Cooper video represents the submerged portion of the racist iceberg that causes more damage than the portion that is visible.
Systemic racism must be rooted out of police departments. That won’t happen until systemic racism is rooted from American society. That requires honest effort from everyone.
I was struggling today to come up with a post today. It finally dawned on me to share what I was thinking about.
Had you heard of this incident? What are your thoughts?