Once again, Black folks are sounding the alarm on Stand Your Ground laws, which are essentially legal protections for those who use excessive or deadly force against African-Americans. Why, you ask?
Well, Utah’s House approved a bill Monday by a 58-11 vote that further allows for folks to get away with taking Black lives in the name of self-defense, Good 4 Utah reported. On top of that, a case involving a White neighborhood watchman who fatally shot a Black man in North Carolina has folks’ racist spidey senses tingling.
Chad Copley, 40, began his trial on Monday for killing Kouren-Rodney Thomas, 20, after having fired shots from his home garage in Raleigh, North Carolina on August 7, 2016, WNCN reported. This case is reminisce of Trayvon Martin, with Justin Bamberg, attorney for the Thomas family, having said that Copley is “George Zimmerman 2.0.”
Bamberg, a high-profile civil rights attorney who represented the families of Alton Sterling and Walter Scott, said justice may prevail in this case. “There are similarities, but I have a feeling there will be a different outcome,” he said following the deadly shooting.
Copley claimed that he was being targeted by gang members at his home and acted in self-defense by killing Thomas. He told 911 that he was shooting at “hoodlums,” a term that hints at the terrible myth of Black criminality.
“We got a bunch of hoodlums out here racing,” Copley said on a 911 call just before the shooting. “I am locked and loaded and I am going outside to secure my neighborhood. You need to send PD as quickly as possible. I am going to secure my neighborhood. I am on the neighborhood watch. I am going to have my neighbors with me.”
North Carolina’s Stand Your Ground law allows someone “the right to use deadly force to defend his or her home, vehicle or workplace” if there’s “a reasonable fear of imminent death or serious bodily harm.” Racially motivated fears cannot be included in this definition, and those fears must be done away with indefinitely. How many Trayvon Martins will the nation have to see before Stand Your Ground laws are not used as tools to justify racist killings?