Why Aren’t We Talking about Kajieme Powell?

Last week I wrote about the shooting of Kajieme Powell. Immediately after I watched the video, I started searching to see if I could find anyone else saying what I was thinking — that his actions were intentional, deliberate, and premeditated. That his actions were those of a martyr. At the time, I found nothing. Now, I’m finding a few people saying what I said– but I have to really search for it.

Someone linked me to this, which I highly recommend you listen to. I was also linked to this Facebook.

What the fuck is wrong with us? This might be the most important thing to happen in the movement that’s coming from the Brown shooting. There’s no arguing here about whether or not Powell charged at the cops. This is clear and simple, exactly as it was meant to be.

In about half an hour there will be a vigil for Mike Brown. Ferguson is still talked about, Brown is still commanding national attention. So what do we have to do to bring attention to Powell? Does anyone have any contact information for anyone who knew him? How do we move on from the idea that this was a suicide?

4 thoughts on “Why Aren’t We Talking about Kajieme Powell?

  1. Rob Michaels

    I’ve continued to search as well. It’s help me to clarify exactly what he did. I knew before, but didn’t fully appreciate he sacrificed himself so we could see.

    The challenge is that everybody sees this through their own lens. The incredibly subtle, spontaneous act of glancing back and moving sideways is missed by most everyone. Even the so-called experts who ‘have watched the video 10 times’ and still determine ‘it’s a good shoot’. It angers me even to write that sentence. But even then, I’ve seen comments that dismiss it as, ‘well, the cops didn’t shoot then, did they?”
    (well no, because he immediately moves sideways.)

    From there it get messy. Was there a specific thing he wanted us to see? Even there, people see what they want to see.
    Here – look at Cunningham’s comment.


    He sees it very clearly. Very, very, very, very few do.
    All more the reason it makes it more powerful.

    I think the first step is to first get people to recognize that Powell looks back and moves to change the police guns line of fire. That is an exact observation of the event. No interpretation needed. Why he did that will be subject to interpretation.

    It came up in comments, so I searched around and found that Cooper’s Rules for Guns talk about being aware of what’s behind the target.

  2. Rob Michaels

    Oh wow. I just looked at the official report given out at the press conference. It shows that one officer was 25 years old, the same age as Kajieme, with 3.2 years of service. The other was 31 years old with 2.6 years of service.

    I don’t know if that qualifies them as rookies, but obviously they don’t have much experience. But the way I see that is that they acted exactly like they were trained. I don’t fault the officers, I fault the training. But I don’t fault the trainers, because that’s what they were told to train. I fault the people who told them to train that way. Wait, who is that by the way? Oh yeah, “the system.”


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