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Until the video of this man's murder went viral, his killer walked free.

Walter Scott didn't deserve to die like that. Here's hoping he gets justice.Trigger warning for an image of police brutality.

Until the video of this man's murder went viral, his killer walked free.

On April 4, 2015, North Charleston, South Carolina, man Walter Scott was gunned down by Michael T. Slager, a local police officer.

Slager pulled over Scott, a 50-year-old father of four, for a broken tail light. It's not entirely clear what happened between the time he was pulled over and when he was shot, but a witness caught Scott's final moments on film.

Slager is seen firing eight shots at Scott from more than 15 feet away.


According to Slager, Scott tried to take his Taser.

But the video shows that after Slager shot Scott, he planted something next to his body — likely the Taser.

After a video of Scott's killing spread online, Slager was arrested and charged with murder.

During press conferences on Tuesday and Wednesday, North Charleston Mayor Keith Summey announced that Slager was to be fired and charged with murder.

Summey also announced that he has ordered an additional 150 body cameras, ensuring that every officer on the street will have their own camera.

In his latest video, social commentator Jay Smooth pointed to the sad truth: If this video didn't surface, Slager would have gotten away with it.

Over and over, we watch as police officers handcuff dying men instead of saving them. First there was Eric Garner, and now there's Walter Scott.


“When the worst-case scenario hits of an officer abusing their power, that's precisely when it's most likely we will have to take that officer's word for what happened unless one of us just happens to be there recording."
— Jay Smooth

Mike Brown, Eric Garner, John Crawford, Ezell Ford, and now Walter Scott were all unarmed black men killed by white police officers.

They're not alone, either. Unfortunately, since this isn't a statistic tracked by police, we don't know for sure just how many more cases like theirs are out there.


In its reporting, the New York Times highlighted how underrepresented black people are on North Charleston's police force.

Despite white people making up just over half of the city's population, they make up a whopping 80% of the police force.

"North Charleston is South Carolina's third-largest city, with a population of about 100,000. African-Americans make up about 47 percent of residents, and whites account for about 37 percent. The Police Department is about 80 percent white, according to data collected by the Justice Department in 2007, the most recent period available."
— New York Times

The people of North Charleston should look to Ferguson, Missouri — the site of protests in the wake of Mike Brown's death — for the way forward.

Despite the population of Ferguson being about two-thirds black, there has never been more than two black members on the city council.

But after Tuesday's elections, there are now three black representatives on the council, up from one. For the first time in history, there is not a white majority on the council.

The new council plans to hire a new city manager, who will then hire a new police chief. This can create real change in a community torn apart by a racial divide between police and citizens.

Voter turnout was way up, to 29%. Last year, it was just 12%.

Around the country, it's important that we question the system and work to elect people who will change the status quo.

But until then...

For more information about the Walter Scott shooting, check out Now This' YouTube playlist:

Courtesy of FIELDTRIP
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The COVID-19 pandemic has disproportionately affected diverse communities due largely in part to social factors such as inadequate access to housing, income, dietary options, education and employment — all of which have been shown to affect people's physical health.

Recognizing that inequity, Harlem-based chef JJ Johnson sought out to help his community maximize its health during the pandemic — one grain at a time.

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Lack of education and access to those healthy food options is a primary driver of why 31% of adults in Harlem are struggling with obesity — the highest rate of any neighborhood in New York City and 7% higher than the average adult obesity rate across the five boroughs.

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The COVID-19 pandemic has disproportionately affected diverse communities due largely in part to social factors such as inadequate access to housing, income, dietary options, education and employment — all of which have been shown to affect people's physical health.

Recognizing that inequity, Harlem-based chef JJ Johnson sought out to help his community maximize its health during the pandemic — one grain at a time.

Johnson manages FIELDTRIP, a health-focused restaurant that strives to bring people together through the celebration of rice, a grain found in cuisines of countless cultures.

"It was very important for me to show the world that places like Harlem want access to more health-conscious foods," Johnson said. "The people who live in Harlem should have the option to eat fresh, locally farmed and delicious food that other communities have access to."

Lack of education and access to those healthy food options is a primary driver of why 31% of adults in Harlem are struggling with obesity — the highest rate of any neighborhood in New York City and 7% higher than the average adult obesity rate across the five boroughs.

Obesity increases risk for heart disease or diabetes, which in turn leaves Harlem's residents — who are 76% Black or LatinX — at heightened risk for complications with COVID-19.

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Sometimes a politician says or does something so brazenly gross that you have to do a double take to make sure it really happened. Take, for instance, this tweet from Lauren Witzke, a GOP candidate for the U.S. Senate from Delaware. Witzke defeated the party's endorsed candidate to win the primary, has been photographed in a QAnon t-shirt, supports the conspiracy theory that 9/11 was a U.S. government inside operation, and has called herself a flat earther.

So that's neat.

Witzke has also proposed a 10-year total halt on immigration to the U.S., which is absurd on its face, but makes sense when you see what she believes about immigrants. In a tweet this week, Witzke wrote, "Most third-world migrants can not assimilate into civil societies. Prove me wrong."

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