Baltimore protester on the run, 2015. Photo by: Devin Allen
Baltimore protester on the run, 2015. Photo by Devin Allen

Distinguishing police brutality by distinct historical periods seems a rather pointless enterprise; nonetheless, I want to.


As I look at a terrified young black woman desperately attempting to escape further danger from the police, I recognize an important distinction between escaping police brutality in 1960 and escaping it in 2015. In Baltimore, a young black man looking to escape understands that he needs a generous lead…so examining distinct moments of police brutality throughout U.S. history matters because it equips the citizen runner with a sense of when to make haste: justice in the face of police brutality amounts to knowing when to flee.