CNN host W. Kamau Bell told SiriusXM host Dean Obeidallah that the continual incidences of police violence make him wonder “Is this country worth fighting for?”
On Friday’s edition of The Dean Obeidallah Show, the host talked with Bell about police incidents that have continued to crop up even as Derek Chauvin was being found guilty for the murder of George Floyd.
Bell, who hosts United Shades of America on CNN, expressed compassion for the families of Black people killed by police, and frustration at the persistence of the problem:
Obeidallah: How is your human reaction seeing yet again, it’s like weekly lately, we’ve been seeing this?
Bell: I mean I’m definitely not numb to it, I think it’s really become like, I don’t know how to explain it in a way that sounds respectful, but it is really like — Because first of all, you mourn for the person, you mourn for that family’s loss, and every time you see some family member have to become a spokesperson for their dead family member, I have pain for these people. Two days ago you were living your life, whatever your life was, now you have to in some ways professionalize your mourning in order to get the message out.
And you have to sort of deal with it the crush of the media, we’re not the crush of media if the media doesn’t hear about these stories right away like in the case of Elijah McClain. He was killed in Aurora Colorado. You have to professionalize your mourning in order to get to some semblance of justice. And so I certainly am not numb to it, but it really does feel like the thing that is hardest for me is, it feels like, and me and Pastor Michael McBride, who’s in the episode, it feels like I don’t know, what are we fighting for in this country as black folks? Are we, is this country worth fighting for?
And I think especially through Covid and through Trump, and Trump’s response to Covid, and through the fact that Covid has made the lives of Black, Latinx, indigenous, brown folks worse, and made it so that we — whatever hole that our communities were in, the whole is deeper now, we’ve lost a ton of people, we’ve lost a ton of people through Covid — that you go “Is this all worth fighting for?”
And that’s the place where I’m at now is like, in a very really profound way to go “Yeah I don’t know how much more that I can personally do, and I don’t actually know that you see somebody,” and that’s why, I use Barack Obama in the episode, but when you see the Democratic leadership, like Joe Biden said it too, like “We’re definitely not defunding the police.”
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