I was 22, first person in my family to go to college. I was living the dream, cushy law firm job in the big city, apartment with a view and a doorman. Traveling for work and for pleasure. All the things I was supposed to aspire to growing up black and poor were at my fingertips. I wasn’t thinking about Ferguson or Eric Garner. I had escaped. If they’re done as they were told they’d still be alive besides I had all the time in the world to fix this. I would make partner, establish myself, run for office. I could show everyone that if you studied hard and dressed properly you could be black and successful.
I’d rented a car to drive to a formal affair on a client’s property that was outside the city. I was trying to impress the client and I could write it off so I went with expensive but not ostentatious or I chose the Mercedes instead of the Jaguar or at least that was my 22 year old justification. If I got this client to sign a new contract I could lease one of these instead of renting it for the weekend.
I was on my way back to my building, luxuriating in the ride when I noticed the flashing lights in my mirrors. I hadn’t been speeding or ran amy lights so I moved to the slow lane to let the police car go by. The police car stayed behind me and as I braked at the next set of traffic lights I heard the officer demand that I pull over. I stopped, still puzzling over the nature of my infraction. The office approached the car and put my window down.
“Can I help you officer?”
“Do you know why I stopped you?”
“Can’t say that I do”
“OK. License and registration!”
“Sure let my grab…”
“HE’S GOT A GUN!”
My final thought as I sat at that redlight trying to catch my breath as fluid filled my lungs was what picture are they going to dig up to justify this?
damn! nice work. walk good.