Police Violence and the Discourse of (White) Fear

Media Diversified

by Margarita Aragon

Last month, police in Cleveland shot a 12-year-old boy as he played in a park. Perhaps, you have seen the CCTV footage. In the silent stilted images, Tamir Rice wanders aimlessly, pointing a BB gun in various directions, before sitting by himself on a bench. A police car speeds into view and the boy stands up, before falling to the ground, our view of him then blocked by the police car.


After shooting Tamir within two seconds (literally) of arriving on the scene, the police then tackled and handcuffed his 14-year-old sister as she came running, having been told by other children that the police had shot her brother. When their mother arrived a few minutes later, again summoned by children who witnessed the shooting, she was threatened with arrest if she did not ‘calm down.’ In the seven minutes of grainy footage released by the city…

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