Written by Marcus Robinson, Photojournalist for CCNM
The Beat Goes On takes place on the eve of Thanksgiving as a young 19-year-old black man named Kajuan Raye was accosted by Chicago Police on his way home. A Chicago Police Sgt. called Raye and his friend to their police car as they stood on the corner of 65th Ashland Ave. waiting for a southbound bus. Raye took off running and the Sgt. pursued him, alleging later that Raye pointed a gun at him twice and fired shots provoking him to return fire. A bullet landed in Raye’s stomach, he was then rushed to Christ Hospital where he was later pronounced dead. On Saturday, the Cook County Medical Examiner’s office ruled the death a homicide because Raye had been shot in his back. The Police searched all night and the following day for the weapon the officer alleged Raye had but the search turned up empty.
The question remains, did Raye really have a gun? Does a Black life really matter in the city of Chicago or is there some hidden agenda Chicago Police or the rich and elite have to shorten Black lives. How does a trained professional make a mistake like this? Many in the black community feel white officers need to patrol their own communities? Then perhaps racism will not be the first thought that comes to mind when a Black youth is shot and killed. The Chicago code blue has demonized Raye. There are postings of this young man on Facebook like he was a local villain but when white kids commit crimes, somehow they’re presented as the victims.
Let’s face it, even the music industry is all about making money and allows promoters to market messages that demean women and black males. What right does any group of people have to tell another group of people how to live. Black people have lived under white supremacy and their political hypocrisy every since slavery. Raye’s family knows that he wasn’t perfect but they belief that he didn’t deserve to die just because he ran from the police?
A vigil was held by activist from Black Lives Matter (BLM) and the family on Friday night near the alley where Raye was killed. There was also a protest at the 7th district police station the following Saturday. Take a stance for Black life, because it does matter…