Some anti-racists were forced into a “Sophie’s Choice” of epic proportions after a black Dunkin’ Donuts employee punched a 77-year-old man to death for calling him the n-word.
The incident: Police say last Tuesday, Corey Pujols, 27, punched the elderly man after being called a racial slur, the Tampa Bay Times reported.
- According to an arrest report, the unnamed victim, who confronted Pujols after becoming upset about the drive-thru window service, died after falling and hitting his head on the floor.
- Pujols told police he asked the victim to repeat what he said after the man called him a racial slur.
- When he once again called him the n-word, Pujols punched him in the face a single time.
The quandary: Former MSNBC contributor Toure Neblett cut to the heart of anti-racists’ ethical dilemma by way of a Twitter poll which, in so many words, asked whether racism was worse than murder.
- “Black people—You’re on the jury. The Black defendant was at work. White customer called him the n-word. Defendant knocked out the customer and he died. How are you voting?” Neblett tweeted.
- The final results of the poll showed that 71.2% of respondents would vote “Not guilty” to convict Pujols because his victim uttered the n-word.
Context: In recent years, a shift in U.S. politics and discourse toward increased awareness of racial politics has sparked what some pundits call “The Great Awokening.”
- The May 2020 death of George Floyd has only accelerated progressive and anti-racist campaigns to interrogate the purported “systemic racism” at the heart of American society.
- On the other hand, a fierce countermovement, composed of conservatives and dissident liberals, has formed in opposition.
Coda: Neblett made his feelings on the Pujols incident clear on Wednesday, tweeting: “The brother told him say it again. The old man did. The brother knocked him out. The old man fell, lost consciousness, and died.”
- “He f*cked around and found out,” he wrote.