New Jersey Senator Cory Booker claims he disagrees with Colin Kaepernick’s methods, but he admits Terence Crutcher’s murder by police proves the NFL player has a point. And yes, that’s soft-pedalling it. On the other hand, this black senator does hail from a state that keeps electing Gov. Chris Christie and a nation full of people who think our first black president is a Muslim socialist from Kenya.
‘Right now, on the internet, you have another unarmed African-American who was murdered this week — or killed this week. From the video that I saw, even with the way he was being referred to, I mean there is this dehumanization going on on the audio, and people seem to be more outraged by an NFL player taking a knee than the murder or killing of an unarmed black man.’
Cory Booker took care to add he “disagreed” with the way Colin Kaepernick protests. After all, white people really hate having their privilege interrupted while trying to watch a football game. But he insists that it is Colin Kaepernick’s constitutional right to spark this conversation, and says he doesn’t want it to “stop there.”
Mike Lee, a GOP senator from Utah, then chimed in to agree with his colleague on both counts.
‘I think it’s disrespectful but that is his right to choose to send that message in whatever way he deems appropriate.’
Cory Booker also praised the Black Lives Matter movement for calling attention to the long-standing issue of police brutality in black communities. He observes that police brutality, excessive use of lethal force, and lack of police accountability are all issues that urgently need to be addressed.
‘[It’s one of] the biggest cancers in the country right now that in the land of free that pledges allegiance — we pledge ourselves, we swear an oath to the ideals of liberty and justice for all — [that] should have a criminal justice system that’s so broken.
Cory Booker also declared that he finds the Black Lives Matter protests “encouraging.” As Frederick Douglass the abolitionist once observed, “Power concedes nothing without a demand.”
‘To see so many young people taking to the streets, to see so many activists much more conscious now — to see movements like Black Lives Matter — this is all stuff that’s encouraging to me. Because the truth of the matter is we didn’t get the civil rights movement because a bunch of senators sat around and said, “Hey, this is a swell idea.”‘
This interview is part of the “BuzzFeed Brews” series, and criminal justice reform was one of the main topics. Both Cory Booker and his GOP colleague from the Senate, Mike Lee, are staunch advocates for criminal justice reform.
Watch: Wochit News reports on Cory Booker’s progress on criminal justice reform.
Featured image: Win McNamee via Getty Images.