BP #3 Riots in Charlotte

Article Source: http://www.nytimes.com/2016/09/21/us/protests-erupt-in-charlotte-after-police-kill-a-black-man.html?hp&action=click&pgtype=Homepage&clickSource=story-heading&module=second-column-region&region=top-news&WT.nav=top-news

Violence has once again broken out, this time in the city of Charlotte, North Carolina, after the police reportedly shot and killed an unarmed black man Tuesday afternoon. The police claim Keith L. Scott was armed with a gun, protestors insist he was clutching a book.

The protests resulted in an altercation late last night between law enforcement and the protesters, leaving at least a dozen officers injured and an unknown number of injuries to protesters. This is not the first time the nation has witnessed violence erupt from reported violence against the black community by law enforcement. This is also not the first time the police and the people have had conflicting accounts over the matter– the people cry murder; law enforcement claims justice.

These situations are always difficult, with conflicting witness accounts of what truly happened. However, the aftermath is nearly always a violent one. The heightened tension causes people to act impulsively, corrupting even the best of intentions. The desire for justice and truth is a pure intention– but the looting, setting things on fire, and general violence this situation has provoked is an instance in which these ideals are corrupted and only violence remains.

Aristotle defines justice as one of the four cardinal virtues–it is “the moderation or mean between selfishness and selflessness” (Aristotle 186). However, the protests quickly devolved into violent action as the people involved succumbed to their outrage of what occurred– and many times in situations such as these there also arises a high number of “crimes of opportunity”– seen in the looting and breaking into stores. Actions such as these have no arguable reasoning for any sort of “pursuit of justice”, instead they are simply actions of opportunity and anger getting the best of people. These people show a lack of virtue, or sticking to their virtues, and instead demonstrate a notable example of vices such as greed and anger.

Works Cited:

Aristotle, Ethics (1976) p. 186

Blinder, Alan. “Protests Erupt in Charlotte After Police Kill a Black Man.” The New York Times. The New York Times, 20 Sept. 2016. Web. 21 Sept. 2016.

“Justice (virtue).” Wikipedia. Wikimedia Foundation, n.d. Web. 21 Sept. 2016.


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