White people all over the nation are going viral for calling cops on Black folks for no reason at all. You remember when two Black men were arrested for waiting on a business meeting in Starbucks. You all know BBQ Becky, a Stanford University-educated woman, who called police when she spotted Black folks barbecuing in an Oakland park. And, more recently, a White woman in Brooklyn called the cops after a 9-year-old’s book bag brushed up against her. The woman claimed he grabbed her butt, but surveillance footage showed no such thing ever happened.
It seems every other day there’s a new story and we naturally-pigmented folks just want to know how to protect ourselves. Maybe it starts with 9-1-1 arresting people for wasting their time. Or, at the very least, speaking out against it.
Take these recent announcements directed at weed haters from Toronto police, for example. In a series of tweets, Canadian po po stated “Cannabis is no longer illegal on October 17, 2018. Consumption will be allowed anywhere cigarette smoking is allowed except in a motor vehicle. Do not call police for this.” First of all, that’s lit. But, second of all, we need American cops to have that kind of energy in regard to a more important issue—White people harassing Black folks.
Toronto police made it plain as day in a short-lived rant full of sarcasm. Getting ready for the influx of irrational calls, they tweeted:
“Asking for directions because you’re lost is not a 9-1-1 call…Reporting an adult smoking a joint isn’t either.”
“Asking police to call your friend because you’re out of minutes is not a 9-1-1 call…Calling about your neighbor’s pot plants isn’t either.”
And finally, “Asking what to do with your frozen meat during a power outage is not a 9-1-1 call…Smelling weed from your neighbor’s home isn’t either.”
Now, some of you may think all of that was unnecessary but they know tons of tattletaling folks have their 9-1-1 fingers poised and ready to dial. In kind, we could use a few announcements from U.S. police departments that address Black harassment—since our police claim they aren’t out to get Black people, we’d love to see a bigger show of support. Because being Black is also not a crime.
ICYMI, Jesse Hamilton, a New York Democratic state senator currently running for re-election has actually proposed a new hate crime bill (because unfortunately, we all know it’s going to take more than a few tweets to see a change). In his words: “These 911 calls are more than frivolous. These 911 calls amount to more than just a waste of police time and resources. These 911 calls are acts of intimidation.” “Living while black is not a crime,” Mr Hamilton told the Brooklyn Daily Eagle. “But making a false report, especially motivated by hate, should be.”