Say Their Names // Strange Mercy

We have a problem with public safety in this country. Too many unarmed black people are getting shot and harassed by police officers.  Too many are profiled as criminals, treated like animals and denied basic human rights. This stems from systematic racism that spills over into and from all industries. The purpose of the public safety sector and those that are employeed by it is to protect and serve all people. Not just white people, not just rich people, not just people who are polite, and courteous and listen to your every command...everyone. Every American. Every single last one.  As a police officer, your job is to make us feel safe and to act fairly, to listen, understand and deescalate dangerous situations. Your job is NOT to make us fear you, your job is not to intimidate us, your job is not to beat us into submission. It is not easy, it is not for the weak-hearted. If you can't commit to treating the people you interact with daily like the humans they are, give up your badge and get out.

If you are curious about the numbers, I suggest you take a look at The Counted.

I dedicate this song to every unarmed black person who has been betrayed by the police officers who were supposed to protect them. Say their names.

If I ever meet the dirty policeman who roughed you up...no I, I don’t know what.
— Strange Mercy, St. Vincent

Dontre Hamilton

Eric Garner

John Crawford III

Michael Brown Jr.

Ezell Ford

Dante Parker

Tanisha Anderson

Akai Gurley

Tamir Rice

Rumain Brisbon

Jerame Reid

Tony Robinson

Phillip White

Eric Harris

Walter Scott

Freddie Gray

Sam DuBose

Kajieme Powell

Tyree Woodson

Victor White III

Yvette Smith

McKenzie Cochran

Jordan Baker

Sandra Bland

 

Oh, little one, I know you've been tired for a long, long time

And oh little one I ain't been around for a little while;

But when you see me, wave

 

Oh, little one, your Hemingway jawline looks just like his

Our father in exile

For God only knows how many years

But when you see him, wave

Through double pane

I'll be with you lost boys

Sneaking out where the shivers won't find you

 

Oh, little one, I'd tell you good news that I don't believe

If it would help you sleep

Strange mercy

 

If I ever meet the dirty policeman who roughed you up

No I, I don't know what

If I ever meet the dirty policeman who roughed you up

No I, I don't know what

 

I'll be with you, lost boys

Sneaking out where the shivers won't find you