By Jared Harris
The death of George Floyd, allegedly the result of a cop’s aggressive action, appears to be propelling our nation into another conversation about race, policing and the very fabric of America.
Floyd, a black man, died after having his neck knelt on earlier by a white police officer. Although the connection between the officers and Floyd’s death has not yet been proven, video of the incident has sparked protests across multiple states.
As of Thursday afternoon, articles about Floyd and the protests following his death dominate the front pages of CNN, MSNBC, The New York Times and The Washington Post.
Despite the apparent concern over police brutality and its effects on communities, each of these establishment media heavyweights has so far failed to cover a viral video out of Mississippi seemingly showing an extremely aggressive cop.
The underreported video shows a Jackson police officer, identified as Myron Smith by the Jackson Free Press, with his hands around an apparent suspect’s throat. The footage was first seen on Friday.
The cop and the apparent suspect seen in the clip are both black.
With the young man pinned against the car, Smith yells at him while bystanders urge the officer to relent. Like Floyd, this man also complains that he cannot breathe while being restrained.
Disregarding the complaints, the officer continues his actions.
While this suspect did not die, like Floyd did, the disparity in the media’s coverage of the attack, especially when it’s a narrative that is dominating the news cycle, is shocking.
WARNING: The following video contains graphic language that some viewers will find offensive.
So far, it appears that only local media and a few national outlets are covering the video.
The video is more relevant now than ever and could help the nation have a real conversation about the direction of policing in our country.
As the new clip proves, police violence is not simply a white-on-black problem.
Many (including at least one lawmaker) have increased racial tensions in the aftermath of the George Floyd video by pointing the finger at the involved white officers.
While no account of police brutality is welcome news, this video could present an uncomfortable truth for those looking to further divide the nation using race.
Author: Jared Harris