Yesha Callahan

What Do You Call A Black Cop In Plain Clothes?

Patrick Andrade for The New York Times

…….another potentially dead n*gger.

A few months back I wrote about a talk I had with my son in regards to police brutality and how he should always respect authority, i.e, police officers.  Once again because of the shooting death of Omar J. Edwards,  I’ve had to explain the concept of police brutality to a 10 year old. This time, I didn’t sugarcoat it so much.

You see, before when he asked about police brutality, I explained to him that not all cops are evil, corrupt, murdering bastards, but this time around, I told him that if he’s older and happen to be in the presence of an ‘officer’ of the law, to remind himself that ALL cops, whether they’re black or white, have the potential to be evil, corrupt, murdering bastards. Yes, that’s a bit harsh, but how else do I explain to a 10 year old the reasoning behind a plain clothes police officer being shot to death by another officer?

I doubt Omar J. Edwards, 25 , could conceive that his life would be taken by one of his ‘own’ blocks from the precinct.  Over the past 2 years, there have been two other cases of plain clothes officers being shot & killed by their own.  Christopher Ridley, 23, was shot & killed by officers in Westchester County and he tried to restrain a homeless man who was assaulting another person. Also, Eric Hernandez, 24, was shot in front of a White Castle while he was responding to a 911 call about a fight. I wonder if these officers who lost their lives in the line of duty, at the hands of  ‘coworkers’, grew up wanting to be police officers and if their parents ever explained to them the concept of police brutality, as I’ve had to explain to my son numerous times these past couple of months.

I’m truly tired of having to make up excuses on why/how cops kill, or why some find it necessary to shoot-to-kill, or better yet, why most of the cops who are doing the killing happen to be white.  My son came to the conclusion the other night that he’d never choose to become a cop when he grows up, because he doesn’t want to have to worry about someone killing him because he’s a cop or someone killing him because they don’t know he’s a cop, it’s truly sad to hear a 10 year old rationalize a potential career choice, because his life may literally depend on it.


  1. June 3, 2009 - Reply

    A n*gger? Just sayin'.

    • June 3, 2009 - Reply


      Ok, you're my friend and all..but I'm going to need a minimum of 10 words as a comment from you :\\
      I'm sure you're familiar with the term, being from Kentucky and all……..

  2. June 4, 2009 - Reply

    Ain't this a damn shame….I'm sure this guy understood that his job was dangerous, but by one of his "own"? Will these cops be arrested for murder?

    • June 4, 2009 - Reply


      As of right now, they're still investigating it, but how many times have any cop been put on trial for murder? Not to many 🙁

  3. June 4, 2009 - Reply

    Being the wife of a black cop, I have a certain sensitivity to this issue. All I can do is pray that God protects my husband daily. Whether he is on or off duty.

    • June 4, 2009 - Reply


      Wow, is he a NJ or NYC cop? How does he feel about the incident?

  4. June 4, 2009 - Reply

    Sad that this is still an issue, but glad that you actually speak to your son about these things. Sheltering kids isn't the answer, imo. They need to know what's going on in the world, learn about it gradually instead of being tucked away from real life, then it hits them like a brick wall in adolescence or adulthood. I see a lot of parents try to use the sheltering approach. And that saddens me more than anything.

    • June 4, 2009 - Reply


      I was all for trying to shelter my son from certain things, but over the past two years, he's become well aware of what's going on in society, and he's not afraid to ask questions about them either, so I have to give him honest answers.

  5. June 4, 2009 - Reply

    *Thanks to @ThePBG of for the "link within" widget referral!

  6. June 4, 2009 - Reply

    *Thanks to @ThePBG of for the "link within" widget referral!

  7. June 6, 2009 - Reply

    Well, you did a good thing putting it to your son the way you did. Ultimately I think it sends the clear message, that whether you're a cop or not, the common denominator is that he's Black.

  8. June 9, 2009 - Reply

    It's a damn shame, ain't it? A DAMN shame.

  9. June 10, 2009 - Reply

    My hubby is a cop as well, yup we're black, and I too have a sensitivity to the issue. I pray for him daily and sometimes don't sleep well at night–he works the graveyard shift. He's wary about telling people what he does for a living because he's worried about retalition…not just directed at him, but at me and the rest of our family as well.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: