• Victor Figueroa

The Murder of Ahmaud Arbery

Updated: Oct 4, 2020


In the last couple of weeks, another story has come to light. One in which a black man who was jogging was murdered by two white vigilantes. From what details have come out of the case, two white men saw Ahmaud Arbery running in their neighborhood and stopped to look at a new house that was under construction**. The two men grabbed their guns and chased after Arbery with the assistance of another friend. They eventually cut him off after he tried to run from them and during the confrontation they shot and killed him. This happened back in February, and the justice system attempted to sweep it under the rug.

Luckily, someone saw the video that was taken by a friend of the McMichaels and posted the video online. Now, because of the media outrage, Gregory and Travis McMichael were charged for the murder of Arbery. Since more details have been coming out, the McMichaels claimed that there was a string of robberies in the neighborhood to justify their actions. But a recent post from Shaun King shows that it is a lie and that there had not been a recent string of robberies*.

After the video was released by a local radio show host, the murder of Ahmaud Arbery is being called a modern-day lynching - because that is exactly what it is. What makes it worse is that nothing was being done because the DA decided she did not want to press charges even though she had a conflict of interest**. The police that came to the scene wanted to press charges but were stopped by her.

What makes the video even harder to watch, is that the facts of the story remind a lot of people of the killing of Trayvon Martin. If you remember, Trayvon Martin was followed by a neighborhood watchman that thought Trayvon had committed a crime and decided to follow and confront him. Thankfully, this time one of the murderers recorded the incident and it was only after we all watched it that we got charges placed.

As a black person, watching the video was hard since I am tired of seeing black men killed for doing daily things. As a black man, I know that not only am I not safe outside, but I am not safe inside my own home either. What is worse and even more enraging, is that there is now a Facebook group trying to defend the McMichaels, saying that they were doing a citizen arrest and that Arbery should have complied with their orders. Because in America, a black man must comply with the orders of any white man.

But I always ask myself, what should we do moving forward? I am tired of seeing black men killed in the streets and no justice being done. I am a black man living in America, and I do not want to be a hashtag. Even if we get justice, Ahmaud Arbery is dead because of two racists that saw a black man running through a neighborhood. It will not be a victory, because no matter what, it will happen again. As a result, I have to ask myself: will I be next?

*https://www.nytimes.com/article/ahmaud-arbery-shooting-georgia.html

**https://www.thecut.com/article/ahmaud-arbery-shooting-georgia-explainer.html#:~:text=What%20We%20Know%20About%20the%20Killing%20of%20Ahmaud%20Arbery,-By%20Bridget%20Read&text=In%20February%2C%20Ahmaud%20Arbery%2C%20an,men%20in%20a%20pickup%20truck.


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