— Michael Skolnik (@MichaelSkolnik) August 11, 2014
By now you’ve heard about the shooting of Mike Brown in Ferguson, Missouri, everyone has, but another shooting occurred just last week that is at least equally disturbing in the gun friendly state of Ohio.
22-year-old John Crawford III was at Wal-Mart and apparently removed a BB/Pellet gun from its original packaging. When he was seen walking around with it the police were called. Upon arrival, police state that Crawford refused to comply with the directions and he was shot, dead. According to a friend he was reportedly on the phone with during the incident, the scenario unfolded a bit differently.
He said he was at the video games playing videos and he went over there by the toy section where the toy guns were. And the next thing I know, he said ‘It’s not real,’ and the police start shooting and they said ‘Get on the ground,’ but he was already on the ground because they had shot him,” she said.
The picture below is of the combo BB/Pellet gun Crawford was carrying at the time he was shot. There’s currently no reporting on why he removed it from the package and simply openly carried it around while doing other things at the store but what is interesting is that Ohio is an open carry state meaning that had Crawford would have been well within his rights to carry an actual gun into Wal-Mart as long as the store did not protest him doing so.
In fact, just that scenario has played out in Wal-Mart’s all across the country. Sometimes Wal-Mart calls the cops and sometimes they don’t care at all. But what seems to almost never happen is the cops show up guns drawn. Thanks to YouTube we have tons of video proving it. In the third video down officers do have weapons at the ready but not pointed at the person open carrying…and just look at how much conversation takes place.
There are dozens of these videos but they all have one thing in common. The people open carrying in their open carry state are White people and they’re largely given the absolute benefit of the doubt all across the country. Now a man is dead for doing, at least from what these police would have understood of the situation, exactly the same thing as hundreds of others across the nation.