Tired Of Negative Race News In America? Here’s 20 Pictures That Flip The Script
As the saying goes, “If it bleeds, it leads.” The problem is, too many stories about the bleeding can make it seem like that’s all there is. Here are 20 photos and stories that show the other side of the coin.
1. Sergeant B. Hagarty was finishing his lunch at Chipotle in downtown Chicago. He spotted a homeless man digging through trash outside and knocked on the window.
He asked him if he was hungry. The 35-year-old veteran cop stood in line with the man, paid for his meal, and they shook hands “like it was nothing,” according to the woman who snapped the photo.
2. North Carolina cop Charles Ziegler was on his way to work when he spotted a mother strolling her baby in the rain.
In the photo you see him taking her stroller to his trunk, and offering her a ride. After a news station picked up the photo, Officer Ziegler was unimpressed with his actions: “I am not trying to belittle anyone, but I think this story’s been made more than it actually is. It’s me giving a lady and her child a ride.” Ziegler continued, “I don’t think it’s that big of a deal…Cops across the state and across the name, they do stuff like this all the time.”
(via Ed McNeal)
3. Officer Tommy Norman of North Little Rock is like the John McClane of race relations.
He was named America’s Most Wanted Police Officer in 2011 because he just can’t seem to stop doing good. There are literally dozens of photos across the internet of Officer Norman buying lunch for neighborhood youth, vouching for patriotism among youth and generally youthing it up with the youth.
He became such an internet celebrity that someone created a GoFundMe for him that has reached nearly $73,000, egged on by rapper Killer Mike, who seriously vouches for him: “I want people to get involved like a policeman in North Little Rock. He doesn’t know I follow him. He doesn’t know I know him, but…if you follow him on Instagram…this man is out of his patrol car every single day.” I highly suggest checking out Norman’s Instagram, which is basically like a one-man-media-narrative-toppling wrecking crew.
4. Simple acts of respect go a long way.
5. On March 11, 2005, Kevin Berthia was over the railing on the Golden Gate Bridge contemplating his last moments.
“As I jumped over the railings I heard someone say: ‘Hey, wait a minute.'” Officer Kevin Briggs spent 89 minutes talking Berthia out of doing it. In 2015, Berthia personally presented Briggs with an award at the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention.
(via John Storey of the San Francisco Chronicle)
6. Officer Zach Stamper was called to the scene after a report spoke of a “suspicious man” walking around.
Samuel Meixueiro, the suspicious man, had simply fallen on hard times. After hearing his story of commuting for hours via foot to reach his cashier job, Officer Stamper came back 30 minutes later with a bike and a duffel bag for his things.
7. In May, a North Carolina cop named Tim Purdy was dispatched after the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department received a call about an autistic boy who fled school, and was possibly suicidal.
Officer Purdy sat with the boy, talked with him and even made him laugh.
8. Here’s a Houston cop cleaning a blind homeless man’s feet.
(via ABC News)
9. As the legend goes, this cop was taking a routine vandalism report when a young black boy approached him.
The boy asked, “Are you a cop?” The officer replied, “Yes.” The boy said, “My mother said if I ever needed help I should ask the police. Is that right?” The officer agreed, and the boy asked him to tie his shoe.
10. In the midst of all hell breaking loose in the mainstream media of white cops killing black males, a black man and a white cop share a moment of prayer.
A Walmart shopper captured the image of Avery Rosser of Columbus, GA, and Muscogee County Marshal’s Office Deputy Clinton Powell hand-in-hand.
11. Here’s a Calumet City cop holding a baby that was found in an abandoned house.
12. A now famous photo that has reached “iconic” standards across mass media shows 12-year-old Devonte Hart and Portland Police Sgt. Bret Barnum sharing an embrace.
Devonte was holding a sign that said “free hugs” and Sgt. Barnum asked, “Do I get one of those?” It was during a protest march after the acquittal of Darren Wilson.
Oregon-based freelance photographer Jonny Nguyen had this to say about the encounter: “I had a gut feeling there was something special about Devonte, so I stayed at the scene. Before I knew it, Sgt. Barnum was speaking to Devonte. That’s when I got the powerful image of them hugging. From there, I knew I had something special. Something that I wanted the world to see. A powerful message I wanted to communicate. As a photographer, you always have to trust your gut — your intuition. It’s your best tool.”
(via Jonny Nyugen)
13. Another now-iconic photo features New York City Officer Larry DePrimo kneeling down in the cold, putting a brand new pair of boots he bought on a homeless man’s feet.
14. Officer David Taylor of the Crowley Police Department in Louisiana spotted a lost boy during the International Rice Festival in 2015.
“He was extremely upset … I put him on my shoulders to see if he would be able to see his parents,” he said. A half-hour later, they found the boy’s parents, but the boy had become so calm he had fallen asleep.
15. The city of Louisville likes to hold a local city run every now and then. In March, Officer Aubrey Gregory helped Asia Ford in this photograph that has gone viral.
Mayor Greg Fischer tweeted the photo out and said, “What a compassionate city looks like.” You’re goddamn right.
(via Jonathan Roberts)
16. Sgt. Erica Hay of the Ocala Police Department sits down with a homeless man to eat lunch.
Said passerby Tianna Greene who snapped the photo: “What really caught my attention was the fact she then pulled out food for herself and started to eat with him. She just seemed very, very comfortable. I got my phone out and started snapping pictures because I was so overjoyed with the interaction.”
17. In July, Georgia police responded to a call that complained of a tent pitched outside of Gordon State College in Barnesville.
They soon learned the tent belonged to 19-year-old Fred Barley, a biology major who was homeless at the time and planned to stay in the tent until school started to look for a job. It was either that, or trek six hours back and forth.
The cops quickly got him two nights in a hotel room. But that wouldn’t be all. News would spread and soon, a job at a pizza joint was lined up. Locals even showered him with gifts, including a new bike, clothes, and school supplies. As if his fortunes couldn’t get greater, a GoFundMe page was launched for Barley that eventually raised more than $80,000.
18. The officer’s name was Joshua Scaglione.
19. In October 2015, a fight broke out at a Washington, DC, high school and police were called to the scene.
After the cops broke it up, 17-year-old Aaliyah Taylor, a senior at Ballou High School, walked up to one of the cops and started doing the Nae Nae. The officer replied that she had better moves than Taylor. What ensued was a dance-off that would make “You Got Served” look, well, like the terrible movie it is.
20. Photographer Chris Hall simply wanted to “show people what the media wasn’t covering.”