My Walking While Black Experience Today


Good evening folks. Today, I had an experience with a police officer that was just odd. First of all, I am alright and I was not detained or anything like that. It’s just that this occurred today, and I need to talk about it.

I was walking up Amsterdam Avenue, heading to the local eaterie to get a tuna salad. Normal pace, just minding my business. I hit the corner, waiting for the light to change. I just felt a presence of someone behind me, and when I turned around, a police officer was there. Because I have been in similar situations like this before,  I didn’t panic. I just looked at him, and turned back around waiting for the light to change.

I had no idea how long he was following me. However,  another individual who was walking in the same direction noticed the cop shadowing me. We spoke about it afterwards, and both noted how odd it was. After going into the shop, and getting my food, I decided to walk down Convent Avenue back to campus. I didn’t feel comfortable walking the same route I came. Why risk it?

I have thought about this incident the whole rest of the day. Maybe the cop realized when I turned around,  he was tailing the wrong person. I don’t know. I am just glad that I didn’t get a text message and pull my phone out of my pocket while he was following me. He might have thought that I was reaching for something,  and that wouldn’t have ended well.

I’m sharing this happenstance not to say “woe is me” or any of that. I am sharing to show how random these encounters are with police. It’s random, and pervasive at the same time. It can happen damn near anywhere, with no type of warning. This is why I do what I do with my platform.

Even a fairly mundane thing like a trip to the local eatery to get lunch can leave room for you to be targeted. Maybe I will just bring my lunch tomorrow instead…

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.