Last night four suspects in Chicago were arrested for allegedly kidnapping and torturing a white man with mental challenges. The kidnapping was posted to one of the alleged suspects Facebook live feeds before going viral. The man whose name hasn’t been released yet was said to be held hostage from 24-48 hours.
This is a horrific and disgusting story this should be made clear. No matter what the reasoning may be, holding someone against their will is a crime and should be punished as severely as possible.
For this case in particular here’s where things get tricky. The four black alleged suspects while holding the white man were said to have made anti-Donald Trump remarks and anti-white remarks, and now many people are asking what would happen if the tables were turned? Wouldn’t there be more outrage nationally and on social media if the roles were reversed?
Well in the Fall of 2015 the roles were reversed and something similar indeed did happen.
It was in Dietrich, Idaho at a high school where three white teenagers, two which were tried as adults were charged with sexual assault after they held down a black teammate and then allegedly proceeded to put a coat hanger in his rectum.
The attack of the black victim reportedly was the culmination of months of racial epithets and abuse at the hands of these same teammates. In December of 2016 according to reports John R.K. Howard pleaded guilty to one felony count of injury to a child.
However, Howard would not spend any time in jail after taking a plea deal that prosecutors recommended that he complete 300 hours of community service for his crime. Reportedly as a condition of Howard’s plea is that he is also able to maintain his innocence despite the evidence against him.
The victim of the crime is still currently pursuing a $10 million lawsuit against the district for their “deliberate indifference” to the victims safety.
These two cases are similar and while minor areas of the story may change. Four versus three people, Idaho versus Illinois or black versus white. One thing that seems to be different as how much conversation on a national and social media level that the suspects in Illinois have garnered in comparison to that of those tried in Idaho.
There’s also another angle to consider. Is there actually a double standard taking place? Are the suspects in the case that took place in Illinois benefiting from being black?
ESPN’s First Take co-host Max Kellerman giving his Final Take on Wednesday made a point about double standards in football that I think is somewhat relevant when discussing and trying to understand the public perception of the two cases mention above.
Start at 1:36 – 2:36 and in one minute Max Kellerman sums up the double standards point better than I could even try.
There’s one last point I think has to be made.
Crime is crime and many of us agree that it’s bad, many of us also want to see those who commit said crimes be punished. I’m not positive but I’m more than sure that those four black suspects will be punished for their crime and deserving of it. Yet I know for a fact that three white suspects who did something nearly identical have not and will not be, and that’s the main issue at hand.