Officer Jay Stalien Facebook Post on Black Lives Matter-Authorship Confirmed!
Summary of eRumor:
A black police officer Jay Stalien wrote about the Black Lives Matter movement in a Facebook post that has gone viral.
Jay Stalien is a police officer in Palm Beach County, Florida, and posted about why he opposed the Black Lives Matter movement on July 9th.
In the post, which had been viewed more than 130,000 times within a week of being posted, Jay Stalien argues that black lives only matter when white police officers or white people take them:
All of my realizations came to this conclusion. Black Lives do not matter to most black people. Only the lives that make the national news matter to them. Only the lives that are taken at the hands of cops or white people, matter. The other thousands of lives lost, the other black souls that I along with every cop, have seen taken at the hands of other blacks, do not matter. Their deaths are unnoticed, accepted as the “norm”, and swept underneath the rug by the very people who claim and post “black lives matter”. I realized that this country is full of ignorance, where an educated individual will watch the ratings-driven news media, and watch a couple YouTube video clips, and then come to the conclusion that they have all the knowledge they need to have in order to know what it feels like to have a bullet proof vest as part of your office equipment, “Stay Alive” as part of your daily to do list, and having insurance for your health insurance because of the high rate of death in your profession….
Stalien continued that he watched black people kill black people in the neighborhood where he grew up over nothing, and he voiced frustration that black communities often refuse to help police bring killers of black men to justice:
“I watched and lived through the crime that took place in the hood. My own black people killing others over nothing. Crack heads and heroin addicts lined the lobby of my building as I shuffled around them to make my way to our 1 bedroom apartment with 6 of us living inside. I wanted to help my community and stop watching the blood of African Americans spilled on the street at the hands of a fellow black man.”
They called me ‘Uncle Tom’, and ‘wanna be white boy’, and I couldn’t understand why … Women attacking me, wishing for my death, wishing for the death of my family. I was so confused, so torn, I couldn’t understand why my own black people would turn against me, when every time they called …I was there. Every time someone died….I was there. Every time they were going through one of the worst moments in their lives…I was there. So why was I the enemy?
The post has generated a lot of debate, and it generated support from many people who commented that they also supported the Black Lives Matter movement. And, while most of the post is Stalien’s personal opinion, he does include two specific claims that can be fact checked:
Cities with Higher Populations of Black People Will Always Have Higher Arrest Rates for Black People-Disputed!
It’s true that cities like Baltimore (which Stalien specifically cited) where more black people live than white (63 percent to 31 percent), it would make sense for there to be higher arrest rates for black people.
But how much higher the arrest rate for black people should be in a city like Baltimore is debatable. In 2010, black people accounted for 90 percent of the city’s jail population despite accounting for just 63 percent of the overall population, the Justice Policy Institute reports.
And police targeting or racial profile aren’t the only reasons, either. High school graduation rates, poverty levels and high unemployment all contribute to black people being incarcerated at higher numbers in large cities like Baltimore, the NAACP reports.
Finally, disparities between the number of black and white people arrested persists around the country, not just in cities with majority black populations. A USA Today review found that at least 70 police departments from Connecticut to California arrested black people at rates 10 times higher than white people.
So, black people seeing higher arrest rates than white people is a complicated issue without clearcut answers. That’s why we’re calling this one “disputed.”
Blacks Aren’t Killed More by Police than Whites-Truth! & Misleading!
From 2004 to 2013, 289 white people were killed by police compared to 243 black people. That means whites accounted for 53 percent of police shootings compared to 44 percent for blacks, according to FBI stats.
That can be misleading, however, considering that blacks account for a disproportionate amount of police shooting deaths based on population size. After all, black account for 13.3 percent of the overall population, but 44 percent of police fatalities. Overall, the Chicago Tribune reports, black people are 2.5 times more likely to die at the hands of police than white people.
Given that white people killed more frequently by cops, but black people are killed in higher proportion to their population size, we’re calling that claim true and misleading.