FIRESTARTER HOTSHEET: The Value Of Botham Jean

Trigger warning: Police shootings

Amber Guyger was found guilty of the murder of 26-year-old Botham Jean in a Dallas courtroom on Tuesday, October 1, 2019. I, like my staff, where holding our breath hoping the jury would get this one right!

This young man was at his house, minding his business, and a police officer broke in his house, shooting him. And killing him.

Unless you are Black, you cannot understand how palpable that fear is. How terrifying it is to be pulled over, even for something minor, and think–with certainity–that you may not make it home.

This woman committed a felony (Breaking and Entering), and shot and killed someone. You can miss me and all of collective Blackness saying that she was still keyed up and stressed from the night shift she had just completed! Amber was aware enough to schedule a sexual liasion with another married officer through text; she should have been able to remember where she lived in order to get prepared to get her back broken.

With that said, I am glad that she is going to jail, do you hear me? GLAD. I am the mother of Black children, the daughter of Black parents and granddaughter of slaves and sharecroppers! What you will not do is come in my house to harm me, mine, or anything else and lie about why you have invaded my space!

The Urban Prophet Clifford “TI” Harris says it like this:

“If the con is good, I ain’t supposed to see it.”

The law enforcement community in Dallas had all but convicted Botham Jean of his own murder. This community went out of its way to smear him, villify him, and portray Botham Jean as the angry, vicious, unrepentant Black buck all the cable cycles tell the universe Black men are.

They are dangerous.”

They are violent.”

They have to be controlled.”

I had to shoot him!”

“Didn’t you see him? I feared for my life.

For her defense to entertain the Castle Doctrine (also knows as the Stand Your Ground Law), is the epitome of what it means to be White in this country! How are you going to come in someone’s house, kill them, and then when the world finds out the house wasn’t yours? Let me answer as the immortal Richard “Dick” Gregory would: “What kind of fool is you?”

When I heard this verdict, I was in class. I almost cried. I almost broke down, and all the men that are in my bloodline, too, wept. This one time, the verdict was right.

Botham Jean was seen.

The tears of his mother were heard.

And Judge Tammy Kemp was not hear for any shenanigans from any party: prosecution or defense.

If I seem to be a cynic, perhaps I am. In seeing Amber Guyger cry on the stand? It reminded me of a post Luvvie Ajai wrote in May 2018 years regarding the weaponizing of White women’s tears.

The woman, former police officer sworn to serve and protect, went into a man’s house–killed him!–and she is on the stand, crying, saying how sorry she is. She is crying big, Amazon rainforest sized tears about how scared she was. It is the same rehearsed sympathy seen centuries before when the lives of Black people are at stake and the mercy of non-White people!

As of this posting, the jury is deliberating her fate. The defense has asked the judge to include a Sudden Passion Defense. Under this murder conviction, she could face 5-99 years. If Sudden Passion is considered, she could face 2-20 years.

I, personally, personally do not want to hear a verdict less than the amount of years he lived! This young man was not even 30! Botham Jean did everything respectability politics dictated! According to the Good Negro Code, he should not have been murdered–let alone murdered in his own house!–by the police!

The fact that this woman wants sympathy when she did something that was completely preventable.

Botham Jean had a whole life in front of him. People whom loved him, people he loved, and carried the hopes of his mother. He deserved long life, future determined by his passions, and to experience God’s best for his life!

If a man’s home is his castle, then why is this King dead?

We are watching it all unfold, Torches. Trust.

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