November 30th of this year will mark one month that our 26-year old son, Christopher Richard Walker, was murdered in the streets of Altadena. Yet, there has not been one phone call or letter of condolence from not one “Jesse Jackson” or “Al Sharpton–community” type. The local NAACP has been quite silent as well. There have been no marches, no yelling concerns “that they’re killing our children”– no protests of any kind. Instead, our family (me, Christopher’s mother, his dad, his two sisters, and two daughters as well as his girlfriend—all who loved him—we are all supposed to simply go on with business as usual.
For the record, Christopher had left his marketing job in downtown LA for the day and had stopped at a local burger stand in Altadena for a quick bite to eat before picking up his 5-year-old daughter from her aftercare school program. He was not causing any trouble, nor had he been in trouble—yet he was cowardly gunned down by someone from behind. He was an innocent victim—a contributor to society who was cut down before he really had a chance to live his life.
For the past several weeks the media has focused strictly on the Michael Brown/Police shooting in Ferguson, Missouri. We have seen nothing but rioting in the streets and millions of dollars in property damage as businesses are thoughtlessly destroyed. Why, there even is a story of a St. Louis woman who accidentally killed herself with the gun that she had purchased for her own protection during the city’s unrest. All told, we may never know the lives and businesses negatively affected as a result of the constant violent protests to the Grand Jury’s decision.
There is a statistic out there indicating that to date, Police have killed over 5,000 civilians since September 11, 2001. My search for murders committed under the heading of gang violence (you know, mostly black-on-black and, or brown-on-brown), for one year alone in 2011 has rendered a daunting number of 12,664 individuals–people–our sons and daughters, mothers and fathers–all who were unfortunate victims of violent murder in this one year alone. Let’s see now, not to downplay the value of life by any means—but, a total of 5,000 civilians nationwide over the last 13 years equals just about 385 people per year.
This number compared to the total of 12,664 in 2011 (times 13 years), equals 164,632 individuals in total—a percentage significantly higher than the news reports we have received about details surrounding the death of this young man—a percentage higher by 103.13%. While I have nothing to offer to the family of Mr. Brown but our sympathy (especially at this time when our own family is personally experiencing the fresh and raw pain of the loss of a child), the evidence shows that Mr. Brown had just finished stealing from a convenience store, that he was impeding traffic by walking in the street, and that he was extremely agitated and aggressive toward the local authority—things for all of which he should have been, and very well could have been arrested.
Though it was a terribly unfortunate situation that Mr. Brown had seemingly brought upon himself, the Ferguson protesters continue to focus their time and energy to destroy their own community all in the name of justice. But, where is the justice for Christopher Walker and others like him who have been struck down by the numerous acts of gang violence so thoughtlessly perpetrated over the years? How long do our loved ones have to cry from the grave before we stop the insanity? Where are the marches for “Justice” for these? Are these individuals any less important—or any less dead since they were actually killed by their own kind? When will we address the problem in our own back yard?