Students react to Baltimore uprisings


Illustration by Mrs. Bell

We interviewed several students for their reactions to the uprisings and rioting in Baltimore. These riots occurred in response to the death of Freddie Gray while in police custody.

by Laynie Duplantis, Staff Writer

The recent death of Freddie Gray has raised many questions and lots of violence. Gray was arrested in Baltimore, Maryland, April 12, and by the time he arrived at the police station, he was in critical health. He died a week later from spinal injuries. Gray’s death has raised many questions due to the fact his injuries occurred during the time he was in police custody.

Many people have been comparing this high-profile case to many other cases that involve police brutality, such as the killing of Michael Brown in Ferguson, Missouri.

“It’s become a common thing for people to react to situations like this,” sophomore Jesse Gonzales said. “People starting riots because of the police isn’t unusual anymore.”

Thousands of people across the East Coast have been protesting the fact that there has been no justice for Freddie Gray. These protests in cities such as Boston, New York and Washington D.C have made it clear that tensions about this case aren’t over.

“I think what happened to Freddie was wrong, but the riots are wrong, too. It’s just wrong the way it’s being handled. People won’t get their way if they choose to be destructive and mean.””

— junior Cheyenne Perkins

Some of these protests have caused an emergency nighttime curfew. Most of these protests were peaceful, but led to many arrests, including 60 arrests that were made in New York. Some of the African-American community feels that these riots and destructive behavior are completely justified, but there are people that disagree with this.

“The police were probably too rough on Freddie,” freshman Paul Estrem said. “But the riots definitely weren’t justified. The citizens shouldn’t be threatening the police, but the police also shouldn’t be using brutal force. I feel like both sides of the conflict are in the wrong.”

The trending hashtag #BlackLivesMatter has been used throughout the Baltimore uprising. This hashtag has been in use since the killing of Michael Brown. Some students feel that the Baltimore riots are kind of like deja vu.

“I feel like the police could be abusing their power, but it’s nothing we haven’t seen before,” sophomore Alex Nelson said. “It’s kind of a repeat of what happened in Ferguson.”

Although it’s believed that Caucasian police officers are expressing racism toward the African-American community, half of the officers who were convicted of Gray’s homicide were African-American. The riots in Baltimore have begun to die down and the state of emergency in Baltimore has ended.