The death of Kajieme Powell

Cell phone video death of Kajieme Powell.

We are going to take an in-depth  look at a multi-faceted and lethal problem in United States society today.   I’m hesitant to give it a title, for fear of tainting your view of what plays out  – you could call it “police brutality” or “suicide by cop.”  Some see it as legalized murder; for others self defense.   However it is labeled,  it involves a similar repeating scenario with the same individuals and issues involved; police, males (often black), mental illness, crime, poverty and almost always guns. This 6:30 cell phone video records an incident that occurred in St Louis on Tuesday, August 19, four miles from where Michael Brown, the 18 year old youth who was shot and killed in Ferguson, Missouri earlier this summer.  Ferguson has turned into a flash point with protests and violence and international media coverage.  The death of Michael Brown inspired an inquiry from US Justice Department, and will likely spur a public trial of the officer involved. No such scenario seems likely for Kajieme Powell’s death, although the entire event is recorded on the above cell phone vide.   We will look at Kajieme’s death.  We’ll contemplate the issues involved.  We will talk about it, blog about it, and we will write up an IOW (Issue of the World) assignment that relates. This is a difficult and deadly issue in the United States today; a situation that is playing out all too often, and yet doesn’t seem to garner much attention from the police, justice department, or the US media.

  • Assignments:
  • Watch the video…
  • Survey Monkey – “a first look.”  Go here to access survey.
  • Google Docs discussion – due date TBA.
  • An in-class discussion…related topics.
  • IOW Issues of the World – partners allowed.  Go here for example. Due date TBA.


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