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The Color Of My Skin Is Why I Look "Suspicious"

"You look suspicious" 

(My Facebook post from Tuesday)

I wasn't even going to post about this because I was told that I'm part of the problem ... and that people like me who post these stories/messages on social media are only making it worse...

Last Sunday, I was playing basketball in a public park in Clark, New Jersey with a black male. A vehicle pulls into the parking lot by the park and I see a white man is driving ... he circles around, looks at us a couple of times and pulls off.

Some minutes later, a cop car comes into the lot. The cop rolls his window down and asks if everything is okay because he received a phone call that we look "suspicious."

Like, really? WE look "suspicious?" A black male and a black female in sports clothes, playing basketball in a park ... WE look "suspicious"?

The cop asked where we lived and if we walked to the park. The male with me responded to the cop and said we live nearby but we drove and parked right down the street. He told the cop that we don't go to the park in our own town because the courts are usually crowded with too many people.

So, the cop soon realized we weren't "suspicious" (I guess like the caller made us) and he left.

I was type pissed about this afterwards especially with everything that is happening in the world right now, the fatal shootings of African American men by police officers in Louisiana and Minnesota.  

I said, "that's that shit that I'm talking about!" But, I was told nothing happened so let it go.
So, I put on this mask, acted cool and kept playing basketball and I tried to just forget about it.

Well, I can't just let it go because a couple days later, it still bothers me.

This isn't the first time I've been told by a cop that I look "suspicious" ... A cop once thought my ex and I were selling weed ... we were just sitting in the car talking in front of where my ex lived ... that cop said he was just checking because supposedly there was drug trafficking on that street ...

I remember when my dad told me he got stopped by police once in his town, right down the street from his house, where he has lived for years, where he pays his taxes just like everyone else .... all because he conveniently "fit the description" of someone the cops were supposedly looking for.

Sure, he fit the description of being black. Like, I fit the description of looking "suspicious," right? Smh.

It's just sad that in today's society that because the color of my skin I have to feel like I have a certain target on me. Just being black automatically makes me look "suspicious."

What if I told a cop in return that THEY are the ones who look suspicious? Yup, them ... with their badge, uniform and gun. How do I know they won't shoot me? They're more "suspicious" than me. 

But, no...  I can't say that, right?

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