noun em·pa·thy ˈem-pə-thē
: the feeling that you understand and share another person’s experiences and emotions : the ability to share someone else’s feelings
Source: Merriam-Webster Dictionary
Within 20 seconds, a bullet had sailed through Sam Dubose’s skull and his lifeless body accelerated his car toward nowhere in particular – a ghost not yet aware of no longer being alive, still desperate to run away.
I wanted to run away, too. I felt something similarly violent shoot through my head, though tears, rather than blood, soaked my face.
This was sometime around mid-afternoon on July 30th, when officer Ray Tensing was indicted for the fatal shooting of an unarmed, black Dubose, a shooting that Tensing claimed was justified because he had supposedly been dragged by Dubose’s car, a claim later proved to be false when the video of Dubose’s senseless killing was released.
I empathized with Dubose. The countless black men and women whom have been killed by police this year alone remind me just how quickly my life can be plundered as well.
Perhaps the grand jury also empathized with him. Perhaps that is why they were able to indict Tensing when we know police who kill rarely face consequences.
Perhaps empathy will rightly lock him away for murder.
But empathy did not save Dubose’s life…