Tyler Perry Tweets A Poignant Message That Everybody Should Hear
On Thursday night, the worst attack on law enforcement since 9/11 took place in the midst of a peaceful protest in Dallas. Throughout Friday, protesters and public figures, from President Obama to Tyler Perry, spoke out to condemn the shooters, sending the message that killing another individual in any circumstance is unacceptable. The ambush-style attack in Dallas that left at least five police officers dead and seven wounded was perpetrated by as many as four alleged suspects, including recently identified 25-year-old, Micah Johnson.
According NBC News, the now-deceased shooter, who spoke to police negotiators for hours before he was killed by a police bomb, "wanted to kill white people, especially white officers." He was apparently influenced by the recent shootings of black men by police elsewhere in the United States. The Black Lives Matter march in Dallas had been protesting in the name of Alton Sterling and Philandro Castile, the two black men shot by police earlier this week.
In his press conference on Friday morning, Dallas Police Chief David Brown relayed the level of pain experienced by the law enforcement community. He said poignantly, “We’re hurting. Our profession is hurting. Dallas officers are hurting. We are heartbroken.” He went on to declare, “This must stop — this divisiveness between our police and our citizens,” highlighting a theme that has been mirrored by many others in today’s outcry. Nothing sums it up better than Tyler Perry’s tweet.
Even born from a place of pain, it is not more violence that is called for in the face of systemic violence and racism. Instead, Tyler Perry, Police Chief David Brown, and President Obama alike have been advocating for empathy.
Journalist Jacquielynn Floyd of The Dallas Morning News made a similar point Friday morning, writing, "This is terrorism. This is what terrorists do. It isn't a war — not black against blue, or us against them. When a reported two gunmen opened fire Thursday night on police officers, on our police officers, they attacked us all."
If there is anything thing that cannot be allowed to happen in reaction to the horrific shooting on Thursday, it is justification of racism, or hateful counterattacks. The deplorable killing of police officers in Dallas was not at all characteristic of the peaceful protest being performed by those activists marching in the name of Alton Sterling and Philando Castile. This point is made clear by Black Lives Matter activists, who took to Twitter to express their position.
Protesters and police during the march were actively showing solidarity for one another, taking pictures together, and productively working towards change. The bullets from the shooters were not only an assault on police, but were truly a threat to the safety of all Americans — all those working to create a peaceful future.
Dallas Police Chief David Brown requests support during his press conference, with words that cannot be repeated too often:
We don’t feel much support most days. Let’s not make today most days. Please, we need your support, to be able to protect you from men like these, who carried out this tragic, tragic event.
No matter who you support on the ballot or in the streets, now is a time to support an end to violence.