Late Wednesday the McKinney City Council voted 6-0 Wednesday evening to approve a resolution “expressing disapproval” of actions by council member La’Shadion Shemwell related to a May 8 traffic stop in which he accused a white police officer of committing racial profiling in stopping him over an alleged speeding violation.
After being stopped driving 20 mph over the speed limit and refusing to sign the citations, Shemwell was arrested. In what has become a right of passage for some, he quickly went to social media and accused McKinney Officer K. Wilkerson of pulling him over for “being black with dreadlocks.”
Despite reviewing the body camera footage, he still said that the traffic stop was motivated by race. After the public turned on him, he agreed to a censure and he will not resign from his position.
Shemwell’s actions follow dozens of other citizens, celebrities and officials that come into contact with law enforcement, claim racism and find out later there is video of the interaction.
Let me be clear. Shemwell would have never permitted censorship or stopped talking about how he was victimized because of his race if video did not exist. He would have used the incident for a platform, for a cause and he would not have cared if it ruined the reputation of a good, honest police officer.
How do I know this?
Because after 25 years of police work, I have seen this more than I care to imagine. It’s happened to my friends, it’s happened to me and it will continue to happen because to some, racial division and hatred is their goal in life.
Body cameras are dangerous for these liars because for the first time they are being exposed and frankly, I don’t think it’s going to stop anytime soon. The racial dividers, like Shemwell, are accustomed to making outrageous claims and getting a lot of press and attention. Becoming a victim of a police officer that is oppressing you has become big business and despite video, they just can’t help themselves.
Look at Shemwell…..Despite video evidence, it’s still because of his race. Driving 20 mph over the speed limit had nothing to do with it. The fact that seeing inside of cars driving down the highway to so call “profile” is literally impossible doesn’t matter. The fact that the officer was professional and polite doesn’t matter.
None of it seems to matter to those that hate but it does matter.
The source of racial division in this country is not from law enforcement. It’s from liars like Shemwell and they are being exposed each and every day because of technology that was demanded by other liars……Let that sink in.
So what does law enforcement do going from here?
First, stop apologizing for a problem that isn’t yours. Law enforcement has jumped at every demand by every imaginable group.
More community policing – you got it.
Change policy and training – why not.
Spend millions on body cameras – sure.
Take implicit bias training – sounds fine to us.
And while none of that is a bad thing and law enforcement should embrace each and every one of those reforms, the demands are never going to stop until we, as a profession, stand up for the good men and women like McKinney Police Officer Wilkerson and expose those that seek to divide our communities. It may seem harsh, but division is exactly what these liars intend to do and they also do irreparable damage to those that are truly victims.
How do I know that. Have you seen Shemwell, Michael Bennett, NAACP President Moultrie, Shaun King, Hilton-Williams, and dozens of others apologize for claiming racism, racial profiling and police brutality?
Shemwell accepted a censure but stuck to his “race” nonsense. Bennett was traded and I assume will pay his fines for kneeling next year if he doesn’t end up in a Texas Prison for assaulting a disabled, elderly woman. Moultrie removed his social media post and disappeared from view and Shaun King? That dude is confused about a lot of things and we can’t help him.
Most don’t understand that apologizing to law enforcement and admitting that racism in that situation did not occur would create a lot of problems. First, the worldview of those that hate and divide would come into a stark reality. Consider that if your worldview was that police were racist, brutal bigots and they actually weren’t? Well, that is a problem if you are a coward and refuse to come off of your ideas of hatred.
I have seen this more than I can tell you. 100 witnesses in Ferguson, no policy violated and President Obama’s DOJ clearing the officer still can’t get anyone to admit that they lied about “Hands Up Don’t Shoot.” Why? Because entire movements dedicated to claiming the institutional racist behavior of law enforcement were formed from Ferguson. Demand after demand came after Ferguson.
And it was all a lie.
So when I tell you that the racial division between law enforcement and the minority community is a lie fabricated by liars, you don’t have to look far. Following a recent Gallup Study showing the respect of law enforcement at an all-time high, another study showed over a 70% approval rating from residents living in predominantly minority communities. Now does that mean we rest on our laurels? Absolutely not! The very definition of a profession is that we continue to work hard to improve each and every day and community relations must be a top priority.
Can you imagine how high the respect and trust level would be if the liars stopped lying? If the media actually reported news? If law enforcement leaders actually led?
My message to law enforcement is to keep doing what you are doing. You are doing amazing and commendable work in the face of liars and hatred. Continue your professionalism, your hard work and your dedication to your communities and continue to record all of it.
My message to Shaun King, Michael Bennett and the rest of the liars…….You may want to call for a boycott of the major Body Camera companies because their technology is ruining your bloated lies and your victim status.
Travis Yates is a writer and editor at Law Officer. An ILEETA Trainer of the Year, his Seminars in Risk Management & Officer Safety have been taught across the United States & Canada. Major Yates is a current Doctoral Student in Strategic Leadership and is a graduate of the FBI National Academy. He is the Director of Training for Law Officer (www.lawofficer.com) and the Founder of the Courageous Leadership Institute (www.courageousleader.org), providing leadership consulting and training to law enforcement around the world.