by Ian Verdun
Police violence and its disproportionate affects on the black community have made many headlines in recent years. Like many Americans, I have watched with a heavy heart as I watch video after video of blatant injustice and harassment. Watched the bodies pile up with little to no punishment for the perpetrators, and witnessed the endless parade of names, identities, lives, reduced to hashtags and headlines. But never has one hit so close to home.
(find details below of Christian Taylor’s death)
I never met Christian, but I have the distinct pleasure of knowing his brother, whom I met just a few short months ago through his girlfriend, my cousin. Regardless of what went down, this kid did not deserve such an end, he didn’t deserve to be a statistic, just another black body left to the whims of a system that refuses to attribute value to his life. A light snuffed out, potential undiscovered.
We as a society should feel shame, shame that we allow such violence to continue, shame that we mire our discussions in which race’s deaths are given more screen time in a runaway news cycle.
At some point we need to move beyond the limp, memorialization of hashtags and fruitless political debate. People are dying, at an alarming rate, and one day you will wake up and that name, that hashtag will be someone you know and love. These black faces are all of our faces, these deaths are on all of our hands, this blood pools at the edge of all of our feet.
To @jay2ee and @_calidreamer you are both in my heart and thoughts. There isn’t much I can do to make this pain end, but what I can say is, I stand with you.
#wakeup #christiantaylor #justiceforchristian #stoptheviolence #standup #ChristianTaylor #iamchristiantaylor #hegotsneaks #dietoyoung #dietosoon
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About Ian Verdun
Ian Verdun is an actor on the rise with a BFA from the California Institute of the Arts, training from the British American Drama Academy, and a drive that will take him far in the entertainment industry.
A Los Angeles native, he has landed guest star spots on ABC’s Last Resort, General Hospital and Grey’s Anatomy, and is in pre-production with his series “Life’s A Drag”.
He Did Not Want To Die Too Young!
Christian Taylor, an unarmed black 19 year old honor student and football player at Angelo State University, was shot by a white police offer at a car dealership in Arlington, Texas on August 7, 2015. His death comes on the eve of the anniversary of the Micheal Brown shooting in Ferguson, Missouri on August 9, 2014, which ignited the Black Lives Matter Movement. The white officer, a 49 year old rookie, has been found to have exercised poor judgement and has been fired from the police department. Taylor’s death has been ruled a homicide by the coroners office and the shooting is under investigation.
Family and friends are baffled as to what lead CJ, as his family called him, to have such erratic behavior that lead him to vandalize cars at the car dealership and drive his SUV through the dealership showroom window moments before he was shot four times and died at the scene. His father says he did not have any history of mental illness. Taylor’s death is another statistic in the growing list of black lives taken by white officers exercising deadly use of force.