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  • ROBERT McCLAIN

Humanity 101



are we to believe

that humanity 101

does not govern the core

values of policing

and public engagement

are we also to believe

that “protect and serve”

is simply a swappable squad car decal

a trendy catchphrase for public consumption

involving optional implementation

humanity 101”do unto others”…

was obviously in direct conflict

with police professionalism and conduct as exhibited

in the extreme apprehension of Mr. George Floyd

the go-to rationalization to intensify force

for “officer safety” utilized the habitual

put down

shake down

take down

hold down

beat down

shoot down

or a knee on the neck

of a human being

of a people

restricting access

to life’s basic necessity

air

life slowly oozes out

of his excessively restrained body

from the weight of a protector

bolstered by three public servants

in a public square

for all to witness

in horror

recorded for civilization’s archives

the justification of force continuum declared

was a citizen’s “bionic” resistance

noncompliance of multi-directional orders

a human being franticly broadcasting

an inability to breathe

compliant, but resistant

to the inhumane treatment

tussling to withhold the life exiting his body

for nine minutes and eight seconds

for twenty measly dollars

pleading to his life’s two anchors ― momma and God

inexperienced accomplices lacked the courage

to demand implementation of humanity 101

of their teacher – superior – supervisor

are we to conclude that humanity 101

may not necessarily govern the core values

of policing and public engagement

and in this case involving another Black person

desperately pleading

to breath

to be heard

to matter

one found it not a hard decision

to render aid

or inhumanly extinguish life



ROBERT McCLAIN spends a good portion of his time exploring creative endeavors through photography, writing, cultural enrichment, and music. He has written and published poetry, short stories, and essays in numerous community publications, such as Saint Paul Almanac. Robert is a co-founder of “Soapstone Writers Collective," where he enjoys engaging with other creative people.

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