My prayers for this country today ended up taking a far different course as I heard the news of the jury in the Stephen Lawrence murder trial had returned guilty verdicts on the 2 men accused of his murder. I’ll not spend any time giving you the history in this case although I have mentioned it before and there will be undoubtedly many opportunities to find information on the subject on the net. As I saw the news there was a huge amount of reports stating how far the police have come since the Macpherson Inquiry into the original Police investigation. The Police, it is reported, have come a long way since 1993 and in some respects this is correct, particularly in the investigative techniques used now when a life is taken. In my opinion the Police have no where near come far enough in making a difference to the young people on the streets where the Metropolitan Police serve.
The Macpherson report made 70 recommendations due mostly to finding that the Police are guilty of “institutionalised racism”. If we deconstructed the term it means that racism is in the very fabric of the Police service. This I know to be absolutely true when I regularly spend time within a busy Police station’s custody suite and witnessing for myself the unspoken language between Police officers when receiving into custody children of all colours. I have also witnessed the “ banter” between officers when there are no members of the public around. It infuriates me to think that the public are being regularly fooled into thinking the Police have made a positive difference in the way they approach young people. I have yet to meet a Police officer who finds it unacceptable to swear at a child or push them up against the wall if they as much as question a Police officer when he has stopped and searched them for no other reason that they fit the daily demographic.
This is a contentious and sensitive subject and I would not want to say anymore than I already have, to be so would be invidious of me. I do pray for the Police service at this time as in an ideal world you would have to destroy the fabric in order to create something fresh and create something with a different fragrance. I don’t know how that could happen other than a direct miracle from the hands of God himself. I pray for wisdom in this sensitive time between communities who have worked tirelessly over the last 2 decades in order to bring factions of the community together.
I pray mostly that Doreen and Neville Lawrence can find closure now that someone has paid the price for the taking of a value life in their son Stephen. I pray also that the racism so profoundly still active in parts of London can be muted once and for all.