Sandra Bland: Community Of Hempstead May Not Feel Racism Portrayed By Media

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Sandra Bland has been buried and her friends and family, as well as their supporters, continue to search for any injustice that may have been done.

Though the evidence is mounting to support the idea that Sandra Bland likely did, indeed, commit suicide in her jail cell, the case has shed some light on what some consider an already racially tense location with a distant history of KKK violence.

Long before the case of Sandra Bland ever surfaced, Waller county was known as "Six Shooter Junction" due to white supremacist violence.

Of course, that could be said for hundreds of locations across the south and around the nation. And even to the present day, no doubt remains that there are some people on both sides who are still racist.

However, the residents who walk the streets of Hempstead every day and were willing to give their opinion on the matter to the Chicago Tribune don't seem to be totally sure about the racial tension allegations as they relate to the death of Sandra Bland.

For instance, an elderly watermelon vendor, Sylvester Nunn, said, "I've lived here my whole life. I know how it could happen, but nothing's happened to me. It's been all right with me."

And take this comment from the mayor of Hempstead, who happens to be black and the city's fourth black mayor since the 80's.

He said, "It's a sad thing. It is not a true reflection of people who live here. It creates a level of animosity that may not be true. The community has changed tremendously."

And even the county District Attorney tried to dispell insinuations of racial tension following the death of Sandra Bland.

DA Elton Mathis said the county "does and did have a lot of things that went on here that we're not particularly proud of, as far as racial interaction."

He also said he could understand how people "looking at some of the bad things in our past would jump to the conclusion that this was a murder and not a suicide."

But, he added, "people need to realize there is a new generation in control of government here ... a more progressive generation."

Of course, that doesn't take away the right that Sandra Bland's family has to finding out the truth, whatever it may be, about what happened to their daughter, sister and friend.

The possibility remains that foul play could have been involved.

What do you think happened to Sandra Bland in that prison cell? Do you feel she was a victim of racial violence?

Lacy Langley
Lacy is a writer from Texas. She likes spending time in the home office, homeschooling her kids, playing the didgeridoo, caring for her chickens (Thelma and Louise), Rolos, Christmas, and Labyrinth.

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