How to Talk to Cops So They (Probably) Won’t Kill You

Don’t yell at the cops, people. Don’t gesture at the cops. Don’t look cops in the eye. Cops are more scared of you than you are of them. Speak in low, clear tones. Conjugate all verbs and enunciate your words. Keep your hands as still as possible, and in clear view. Avoid tremors. Gently lower yourself to a face down position on the ground at their feet. Take slow, deep breaths. This is not the time for hyperventilation. If you must cry, do so as quietly as possible.

This comes up because, as they do, the police have murdered another unarmed man.

Just to let you know, I haven’t actually watched this whole thing. It was too disturbing for me. So if he jumps up and starts threatening that pile of officers somewhere between the part where he stutters “I can’t breath” and the part where his body goes limp, I take it all back.

Maybe if every person would just lay the fuck down when the cops come around, we’d have a lot less unnecessary death. And isn’t that what we all want? The chance to die in street violence that isn’t caused by the police? Or perhaps to live long enough to contract a cancer our insurance company won’t cover the treatment of? This is America. I have a right to suffer heart attacks that aren’t Taser induced.

White people: carry on. Unless, of course, you’re poor, disabled, or otherwise disenfranchised. In that case, you better get your white ass on the ground down here with me.