"I Am" David


root - Posted on 31 December 1969

by Mission Resistors

It was a great day. I was thinking about school, work and buying a car. I also had a job interview that day. It was a sunny day. I was feeling like a young man with my future in my grasp. I thought to myself: “All I have to do is get a job and continue my community college courses.” Alongside San Leandro Blvd, the the sun was shining over the industrial buildings on me.

“Excuse me,” a polite sounding voice said. It was an Alameda County Sherrif. All of a sudden, his voice became irate. He said: “Come here mutherfucker, I’m talking to you.” He contiuned saying, “Im looking for a latino suspect with braids and a red t-shirt.” I looked at him, he was a little guy. “Im looking for a guy with a red t-shirt and some braids.”

“No, I just came out a interview, I can give you the information to the company, it’s down the street.”

And then he said,”did you throw away your red t-shirt?”

I was confused when he asked me if I threw away a red t-shirt. I had a fade and I was dressed in a button up t-shirt, slacks and dress shoes. I clearly was not the person he was looking for. He hand cuffed me. I could see big bags under his eyes a face like he had been drinking coffee all night for a month. “What what do you claim mutherfucker? Are you a sureno, a norteno or a border brother?”

“Excuse me,” I said. “I don’t gang bang.”

He pulled out a piece of paper and started listing charges he could charge me with. I felt like I was not a human being; I felt similar to a dog. My dreams and aspirations faded. After being slammed and jammed up while in hand cuffs, another sherrif approached.

I thought maybe this will all end now. Maybe this other sherrif will tell the other one to calm down. Instead I got the same treatment. I felt a pain inside, but I knew there is an almighty God. I prayed to him inside to not let me break down, to help me through this.

This is what you see going on today. This is only one out of many times I have been harassed, beat up and thrown in jail for no reason. You see this going on today, there are many unheard stories. One of the more severe cases is the one of Oscar Grant. If you go to the County Jails around California, you can find people with broken arms, broken legs, and other unnecessary situations caused by police. At the same time people can’t do anything because this is the system and it is the officer’s word against yours. While this is not true in all cases, discrimination of race is something that goes on a lot everywhere today, police brutality because of racism is just one example.

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