Wednesday, September 20, 2017
Good Hood Cop
By Malik Spellman
Published March 5, 2009

Well people we as a community have lost a great man, good brother and a Black urban professional from the hood by the name of Kenneth Garner. For many years I have seen this man in restaurants and at murder scenes. He has always given me respect knowing that I am from the streets and truly live by the code.

This brother respected those of us from the streets because he knew the importance of everyone doing his or her part at stopping the killing. Never once did this brother police officer disrespect me while I was out there in the streets. He would make other law enforcement officers respect our push towards stopping the killing.

Once I saw this brother over at Jack's Café where we spoke about some crooked cops who allegedly framed some brothers out of the projects. He told me those two guys who were known for being crooked on the force and framing young Black men will never arrest another brother or innocent person as long as he was alive to prevent it. I lost my mind at that point. I knew that he was different than the others. He was our spook who sat by the door.

I was in a meeting once checking the sheriff's department about oppressing Black and Brown people. And Mr. Garner, with his real smooth voice said Malik, what about us the LAPD? Aren't we on your list of police agencies that you monitor? Then he laughed. I responded by saying that it was not LAPD'S week to get reprimanded by me. But my message to other Black cops is that if you want to get the respect that you deserve you have to treat all people with respect. I heard in the department that some of these brothers are called thug huggers at the station. But let me be the first to say that getting respect from other human beings who come from the same thing that you come from is not a bad thing if you are sincere about helping others and giving your life in a genuine way for the sake of others. Kenneth, I have never been to the aid or funeral of a cop but because I know the caliber of the man you were, it is why you deserve a place in history in the articles that I write. There are only a few people in the history of cops that I would write about and you are one of them. I pray for you to get God's mercy and hopefully he is pleased with your struggle. Hopefully your family will benefit from the good that you gave to others who were less fortunate than you. You treated us brothers in the street with a level of dignity that will never be matched by any one else on the force as of this moment. I am truly at a loss for words right about now because this is something totally different than I have ever expected to do.

But since life is so swift and flexible, I have to live in the now. This, my brother, is one way of saying that you were respected by a host of other people outside of your own world.

Your dedication to our struggle will always be a reminder that not all people are the same and we as Black people can police our own. Kenneth God bless you my brother. I knew the day that I saw you on the news dealing with that brother who killed his entire family that it was heavy on your heart at the time. I said to myself then that they were giving this brother his last assignment. If you look at the footage of him telling the public that a brother was responsible for killing his family, Officer Kenneth had reached his own pressure point, which was an indication that this particular case was going to crush his heart. Kenneth we respect you and hope that your image as a good hood cop will be known throughout the station. And hopefully, others who are out there, wanting to be thug huggers can see the value in oppressed people. They don't have to be in the school of thought that you are. It's my opinion this man will always be my friend to the end because he gave us the respect that we earned as brothers from the streets. Keep on traveling my brother and remember to god be the glory, thank you Kenneth R.I.P. FOREVER.


Categories: Op-Ed

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