December 10, 2023

The death of Breonna Taylor sticks out to me.

Here is this black woman, doing everything right. Doing everything America demands black people to do in order to live an OK life, and she was killed by America and her supremacy, anyway. That bothers me.

That shit makes me mad.

It makes me mad that black women, even in martyrdom, have been put on the back burner. When Breonna Taylor was killed in Louisville, Kentucky, three months ago, it was tragic, but it didn’t spark the flames of rage. Maybe it was because there was the lack of video, or maybe because she was a black woman, or maybe it was both, but her martyrdom deserves better.

It deserves more.

On June 11th, The Louisville, Ky., Metro Council voted unanimously ban no-knock warrants. The legislation was titled Breonna’s Law, in honor of a woman who was MURDERED during a raid on her home.

The legislation passed on Thursday also requires police to wear body cameras when serving warrants and to turn on the cameras five minutes before beginning the operation.

Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer vowed he would sign the ban into law as soon as it hits his desk, saying “risk to residents and officers with this kind of search outweigh any benefit.”

Breonna Taylor’s death, since the global protests began, has been given the attention it deserves. Black organizations like ours did due diligence beforehand, attempting to bring much needed awareness to a victim of police brutality.

But even so, her death didn’t become a rallying cry until more police brutality was exposed to the world. And now, along with the names George Floyd and Ahmaud Arbery, crowds all over the country have chanted her name.

But that ain’t enough..

See, unlike the murders of George Floyd and Ahmaud Arbery, Breonna Taylor’s killers have not been charged with murder. The police officers who killed Breonna Taylor have not been charged with murder. They have not been charged with murder even though the facts are HIGHLY disputed as to why she was killed, that night.

According to the New York Times:

The police also assert that, despite having a no-knock warrant, they knocked several times and identified themselves as police officers with a warrant before entering the apartment. The police said that the officers then “forced entry into the exterior door and were immediately met with gunfire.” The officer who was wounded, and two others, then returned fire, the police said. The three officers have been placed on administrative reassignment.

Yes, hotly. Ms. Taylor’s relatives and their lawyers say that the police never identified themselves before entering — despite their claims. They also say that Mr. Walker was licensed to carry a gun. The Louisville police say that they only fired inside Ms. Taylor’s home after they were first fired upon by Kenneth Walker, Ms. Taylor’s boyfriend, who was in bed with her. They said that Mr. Walker wounded one of the officers, who was hit in a leg but was expected to make a full recovery. Mr. Walker was subsequently charged with attempted murder of a police officer, though the charge was dismissed last month.

“Here’s What You Need to Know About Breonna Taylor’s Death”

So yes, Justice for Breonna is great. “Breonna’s Law” is amazing. And it should be applauded. Many people did a lot of important work to get paramount laws enacted in her name.

But we want more than justice in the form of legislation. Breonna Taylor’s killers deserve their freedoms taken away from them. Just like they took Breonna Taylor’s life away from her.

They killed her. So, fuck settling.

Because she deserves more.

Leslie McLemore writes about a lot of different shit for Black With No Chaser. He is also the Takeaway Kang and is the father of two beautiful girls, one of which gets on every nerve he has. The other one is sweet. So, you know, balance. 

Follow him on Facebook and Twitter.

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