But perhaps you've noticed, too, the relative social media silence surrounding Crutcher and Scott's deaths. Maybe they've been drowned out by the latest blows in this hate-filled presidential campaign; or maybe the very conscious uncoupling of Brangelina has just trumped all else. But when Alton Sterling
and Philando Castile
were killed, my entire feed was filled with gruesome imagery — each man's death playing out in a horrifying loop before my eyes. But this time seems different.
Some, myself included, have decided to refrain from posting any videos. Mostly because it's jarring, it's awful, and it's unnecessary to see Black people dying again and again. It can even cause PTSD
. If statistics and statements from sobbing children, parents, and widows cannot convince you that we have a problem in this country, what can? Why do you need to see the violence to believe it exists, and in fact, pervades our society?
But for others, I suspect the silence on social media comes from a different, more troubling place: hopelessness. I know it all too well. I feel it every time I see stories like these.
First comes the anger. Because it keeps happening. How many times do we need to lay out comprehensive plans
for reform in police departments? How many times do we need to discuss that the police officers' reactions show racial bias?
How many times do we have to show the disproportionate number of people of color being killed by police
each year? Apparently, again and again and again.