Watch his interview clip, it provides a better context to the situation.
Preface: One of the challenges of talking about race online is that it is very easy to miss the target. It’s easy to preach to the choir and not win any converts when talking about issues that evoke emotion. For me, it’s difficult to remove myself emotionally and to be objective all the time. Plus, my writing lends it self to being sensational and relying on generalizations. Hopefully you can see at least 1 of my three points, if not let me know where I’m wrong. I’m open to critique.
The Story: University of New Mexico football player, Deshon Marman was kicked off a plane and ultimately arrested yesterday because of his sagging pants. Marman had been trying to fly back to school after attending the funeral of a close friend. He was charged with suspicion of trespassing, battery.
After watching this video about the arrest of Deshon Marman and his apology I had a few thoughts.
Number one- I am proud of Deshon for keeping his cool and having an even tempered response. He is not waging a media campaign on race, he just wants to get back to his normal life. He took responsibility but also helped expose the airline for their inappropriate behavior.
Number two-I could be wrong but I feel like dress code issues always apply to Black people. On my 23rd b-day I couldn’t get into a club cause of my ‘baggy pants’ but several White dudes walked in wearing flip flops.
Number three* It’s paradoxical to me that when it comes to crime & punishment Black boys are often treated like men. They are never given a pass for their youth as other groups are. However, in terms of crime and punishment, Black men are not given the respect that a man deserves but rather they are often talked down to like they are boys. Perhaps, this is typical of all criminal interactions, but the history of Blacks and Browns with the legal system tells us otherwise.
I’ve had countless experiences like this where I have been talked down to or treated unfairly or threatened that someone would call the cops on me. Me? Smiley face Elliott? I was raised to be well mannered, respectful, and to look presentable, so it always caught me off guard when people would treat me like a street thug.