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Video of police suffocating Daniel Prude is horrifying, but Americans need to watch it

By Rex Huppke, Tribune Content Agency on

It’s a good question. How many videos like this have to come out before Americans — all Americans — stand up and say: Enough. This is not fair. This is not justice, in any sense. And this must stop.

For that to happen, I believe, people must bear witness.

If you can watch the protests happening across the country and shake your head at the anger and chaos, or at the destruction that has sometimes bubbled up from communities enraged, you better be able to watch the raw, painful events that have prompted civil unrest.

You need to feel the visceral pain of watching the life snuffed out of a naked man in need of help and compassion, and figure out if what you’re seeing from the people we count on to protect us seems right. Or fair. Or just.

Because it’s easy to denounce the outcry if you’re evading the moments that chip away at the souls of those who bear witness. It’s easy, and it’s cowardly.

 

Nobody should look away from videos of these horrible events. Because everybody needs to understand the ghastly weight of these tragedies, no matter how uncomfortable.

We owe it to the dead, and the living. We must bear witness.

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Rex Huppke is a columnist for the Chicago Tribune and a noted hypocrisy enthusiast. You can email him at rhuppke@tribune.com or follow him on Twitter at @RexHuppke.)

 

 

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