Black doctor makes poignant video about how he’s treated when he’s not wearing scrubs: 'This speaks volumes'
Great Britain's Dr. Emeka Okorocha, a black man, is praised for his heroism as an A&E doctor, but says that he is often racially profiled in civilian clothes when he is on the street.
"Everyone seems to love me in my scrubs and everyone claps for the [National Health Service], but if I'm a 6 '6" black in a wealthy neighborhood, they'll be scared, "Okorocha told the Daily Mail.
Given the protests that have broken out worldwide in response to the recent murders of Ahmaud Arbery, George Floyd and Breonna Taylor, and the numerous blacks who have lost their lives due to police brutality, Okorocha opted for a TikTok highlighting the treatment he called black doctor or as a black civilian.
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“I was in a group conversation with doctors and most of us are black. We talked about it and everyone talked about how [they] celebrate you in peels, they celebrate [you] but when they see you in a hoodie they fear you, ”said Okorocha.
In his TikTok, which has more than 222,000 likes, Okorocha calls out the racists who "celebrate" and "hate" him at work when he is on the street in everyday clothes.
"If you celebrate me in my scrubs, don't hate me in my hoodie," Okorocha says in the video.
People really agreed with Okorocha's message and applauded him for speaking out.
"That speaks volumes. I hope it reaches millions, ”said one person.
"Yes. Black lives count. You should be able to wear a damn hoodie without making people feel any particular way," added another user.
Okorocha told the Daily Mail that he was racially profiled several times by the bulls, especially in wealthier areas.
"I had incidents," he said. "I was driving [my] car in a beautiful area where my parents live and [I] was stopped because I was driving too slowly. When [the policeman] saw my ID and saw that he said: Doctor 'his tone changed immediately. "
"The police stopped me five or six times," he continued. “And nothing was ever out of order. I was stopped only on suspicion. I was told I look like someone reported in the area. When I'm in my car, the police don't know how tall or tall I am, but they do. I stop because I've adjusted a description. "
The adverse prejudices that Okorocha explains are certainly not uncommon. This is a racial profile, which the ACLU defines as "discriminatory practice by law enforcement officers to target people on suspicion of crime based on race, ethnicity, religion or national origin".
A prime example of racial profiles is the murder of Trayvon Martin. In February 2012, 17-year-old Martin was shot by Martin while wearing what his attacker George Zimmerman described 911 operators as a "dark hoodie".
After Martin's murder, the simple hoodie became a symbol of the fight against systemic racism. Civilians and celebrities took to the streets in the iconic streetwear classic to express their anger and frustration.
"I have had experiences walking down the street in New York and as an African American in a hoodie I can tell you that this is considered incredibly suspicious," said Daniel Maree, who organized the Million Hoodie March in 2012, Washington Post said at the time. “Some people keep their wallets a little tighter. When I heard that Trayvon was wearing a hoodie, I thought, "I've felt it before."
Before Trayvon Martin died, the hoodie had mostly been associated with criminals and thugs. Although athletes and fashionable women were seen as the staple of the wardrobe at the beginning of the 20th century, it was associated with hip-hop and streetwear culture in the 1990s.
A hoodie has "inherent properties of mystery and fear," sociology professor Darnell Hunt told the Washington Post. And although the garment always had these inherent properties, it was only associated with crime and suspicious activity "when young black men wore it".
Hoodie or not, BIPOC suspects are much more abused by police officers. According to a 2016 Harvard University study, black and Hispanic suspects are more than 50 percent more likely to be subjected to violence during police interactions than white suspects.
In light of this data, study author and economics professor Roland G. Fryer Jr. concluded that "in non-fatal violence, there are racial differences - sometimes quite large - in the use of force by the police, even after considering a large number of Controls that take into account important contextual and behavioral factors at the time of police-civil interaction. "
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