A video commentary on the police shooting of African American Alton Sterling has amassed over three million views and 172,000 shares on Facebook.
As both a police officer and an African American, officer Nakia Jones offers a powerful perspective on the shooting.
“What’s interesting to me is that the shooting involved a police officer, and I watched the video over, and over, and over, and over, and over again,” said Jones, revealing that she is both a mother of two and “wears a uniform with the blue.”
Jones talks about how furious and hurt she was by comments denigrating police officers when she and other officers are willing to put their lives on the line for the good of the community.
Jones then shares how and why she became a police officer. She grew up in a poor, predominantly African-American community in Cleveland. Having first-hand experience with things such as having parents on drugs and kids being bullied, she became an officer in 1996.
“I said I want to make a difference, I want to make a change, so I became that change,” Jones said.
Of particular significance to Jones is that, in order to became a police officer, she had to make an oath in front of the police chief to serve and protect the community at all costs.
In the climax of the video, she expresses how utterly furious she is and how disgraceful she finds the actions of the police officer who committed the murder.
“But how dare you stand next to me in the same uniform and murder somebody! How dare you! You ought to be ashamed of yourself!”
“If you’re afraid to go and talk to an African American female, or a male, or an Mexican male or female because they’re not white like you, take the uniform off; you have no business being a police officer! Because there is many of us that that are willing to give our lives for anybody and we took this oath and we meant it!” she says.
“If you’re an officer that is prejudiced, take the uniform off and put the KKK hoodie on. Because I will not stand for that; if you’re an officer that works with me and you’re wrong, then I will tell you that you’re wrong.”
A significant secondary theme in Jones’s video centers on the fighting among fellow African Americans. Noting that she’s confiscated real guns from children just 13 or 14 years of age, Jones makes the following point near the conclusion of her video:
“But to my brothers and sisters, my juvenile brothers and sisters, put them guns down y’all, we killing each other.”
“The reason why all this racist stuff keeps going on is because we’re divided. We’re killing each other; we’re not standing together. See, Martin Luther King and them stood together; you didn’t hear about a bunch of black people killing each other.”
“We’ve got to stand together because a house divided against each other cannot stand.”
She adds that African American men need to be smart and should make an effort to mentor the younger generation.