A handful of people would argue that America as a nation has moved beyond racism. On the other hand, millions would lambast such sentiments immediately. The Civil Rights Act of 1964 is a half-century old, and America’s views on race have improved. Racism is still alive and well, though, with covert racism taking center stage today.
In fact, America’s entire law enforcement system is being called into question nowadays. Many analysts claim the system targets African-Americans more than any other minority. High-profile cases of white officers shooting African-American men continue to arise each month. Of course, law enforcement officials continue to claim they treat everyone fairly, and that race doesn’t affect their departmental policies and decisions.
Without a doubt, most police officers carry out their duties sans racism or abuse of power. Every bad officer is surrounded by dozens of committed officers full of integrity. It’s no surprise that the worst incidents are highlighted by rights groups and the media. Likewise, nobody should feel surprise that officers are coming to the defense of each other. Officers, somewhat justifiably, feel like they’re being targeted by non-officers.
As mentioned previously, covert racism is the name of the game today, whether police departments intend as much. Cases of overt racism do hit the spotlight from time to time, though. A recent photo of a Philadelphia police officer is quite alarming for many reasons. The photo shows a bicycle-toting officer with two large tattoos on his arms. Unfortunately, both tattoos seem to depict some rather racist imagery.
The officer’s left arm is adorned with an eagle and the word “Fatherland”. This particular eagle’s head is tilted toward the right. For quite some time, an eagle with its head shifted right has come with racist undertones. “Fatherland” speaks for itself and is a bit hard to defend as anything other than racist to some degree.
On his right arm, the officer’s ink depicts an American flag with an assault rifle in the middle. Perhaps those tattoos speak more to American spirit and a commitment to the Second Amendment. Then again, it’s more likely that the tattoos are related to the imagery on the other arm. If one takes each image into consideration as connected, then a depiction of a racist police officer seems more plausible.
Tattoos often fall under the territory of freedom of speech, and there’s nothing wrong with that. More and more people continue to showcase ink on their bodies. In this case, tattoos don’t guarantee that a Philadelphia police officer is racist. Quite a bit of evidence is available in the image alone, though. Either way, this inked officer shouldn’t be a representative of the Philadelphia Police Department.
Whether he’s 100% a racist or 0% a racist, the image doesn’t paint a good picture.