Photos Tied to Nooses a “Misguided Attempt” to Start Dialogue, Sheriff Says
Black man trying to start a conversation on the killing of Black people made the nooses found in Riverside Park.
This week, in Riverside and Atwater parks, nooses were placed in trees holding up pictures of Black men and women that have been killed by both police and private citizens.
The Milwaukee County Sheriff’s Office investigated the nooses, and at a press conference Friday Sheriff Earnell Lucas announced that they were not a hate crime, but rather a “misguided attempt to shed light on a very difficult subject.”
The person that made the nooses and hung the pictures from them was a 53-year-old, Black man, Lucas said. The man told the Sheriff he was trying to educate his son on the history of lynchings in America “and how they have taken on a different form from America’s past,” and also to start a conversation in the community.
Lucas said that the investigation concluded the nooses did not violate any laws. But Lucas said he told the man “how misguided and ill-fated an attempt it was.”
“Let this be a lesson for all of us, that coming to grips with our country’s recent history, and it’s dark past requires an acute ability to spark meaningful dialogue and a more thoughtful and a more sensitive manner,” Lucas said.
Lucas noted that following the killing of George Floyd, Milwaukee and the rest of the country, has experienced several straight weeks of protest “and the voices that have been heard for over the last 30 days now are calling for a respect for our humanity and for a race in a way this country has never, ever seen before.”
Many are calling for change in law enforcement, and many other areas, Lucas said. “But know and understand, at the base of that call is still the question of race.”
“There’s been a number of conversations already in the public,” Lucas said. “And whether it’s on the militarization of police, whether it’s on the issue of qualified immunity, or whether it’s on the issues of no-knock warrants. These are all discussions that we can have in this country and in this community on how we can do policing in this 21st century.”
Lucas said law enforcement must be willing to “come to the table” and have a “meaningful dialogue and discussion.”
“It’s been a difficult conversation for people to even say the words that Black Lives Matter,” Lucas said. “And if the six lives that were depicted on those placards and the voices of the people that we have heard from the last 30 days are any indication, yes Black Lives Do Matter and we ought to begin from that position right there.”
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