Reports have surfaced that the estate of recently-deceased Breonna Taylor came into a large sum of money after a settlement with the city of Louisville.
In addition to the $12 million settlement with the family, the city of Louisville will also be implementing programs that encourage its police force to reside within city limits and be able to send social workers on certain emergency calls. That the timing of this occurs prior to any criminal charges being brought forward against officers raises separate questions about the motive and how they even decided money was owed.
Now, it is the philosophy of this writer that each individual should legally maximize whatever earnings they can accrue over the course of a lifetime. Even if the means are morally questionable. Why isn’t every family of the 1,000 police fatalities awarded ridiculously large settlements? Given that the mother and family of Breonna Taylor utilized the American justice system to their financial benefit in a way many don’t condone, they nonetheless operated within the legal system. Anyone upset with the family lawyer, Benjamin Crump, for his absurd victory first needs to address the larger problems of a legal system that allow for such over-litigiousness.
In short, bravo to the Taylor family for their court victory. Of course, they would no doubt prefer that Breonna be alive than cash in so lucratively.
A few things should be affirmed as fact. 1) Black Lives Matter has long suggested America is overrun with racism and systemic police brutality. 2) Black Lives Matter, through Congressional Democrats, vetoed Senator Tim Scott’s police reform bill that would have, by his assessment, given them 70% of what they wanted in terms of accountability and reform for law enforcement agencies. 3) Black Lives Matter nevertheless avers to seek transformative systemic change.
Since whole-scale political reform is anathema to their thought process, what better way of addressing community shortcomings than the direct outreach from people with means? The Taylor estate has a unique opportunity to make meaningful and lasting change in its community by spending its hefty haul on the very community it says has been harmed and continues to be hurting.
According to Zip Recruiter, the average salary for a police officer ranges from $30,000 – $60,000. This is also corroborated by other job-seeking sites. Since BLM and the Taylor family want the best of the best serving them, they should probably pay a little more – how about $75,000? After benefits and potential overtime costs, it might just be easiest to round the cost of a police officer to a tidy $100,000 annually. The same estimate could be applied to social workers.
Right off the top, the Taylor family could fund a community police force consisting of both 25 officers and 25 police officers over the course of two years, with an additional $2 million set aside each year for administrative costs and requisite resource needs (offices, vehicles, etc.). When the program experiences success – as it surely will (because this is what BLM claims it needs, right?) – the city of Louisville, the federal government, and even additional BLM grant money would come pouring in to maintain the initiative. These people could be placed where the greatest need presents.
In the sense of working as a collective, as BLM aspires, it would make sense that this money be spent on the community. It also stands to reason that they have less right to this money as individuals since we are told the entire black community is a victim against the entire white community. Therefore, how does just one black family out of millions reap the financial reward of systemic racism? (Note: This does mean all black families are entitled to reparations).
BLM and all other Critical Race Theory adherents constantly harp on white people that change begins at the microlevel; well, it stands to reason that the Taylor family can likewise create a space for change by allocating its resources where they would do the most good. Sure, they could pocket the whole lump sum, but is Louisville any better for it? Are policing practices going to change anywhere? Other than a financial band-aid for a gigantic emotional void, the next family to find themselves working through the grief of losing a loved one will be no better off than they are right now.
The alternative to sharing their windfall is to do nothing. Again, that is their right, however, their voice should then rightly fall on deaf ears the next time they decry systemic racism and systemic brutality. In the here and now, they have an opportunity to make meaningful and lasting change within the community they purport to care about. If they do nothing productive with that money, then based on tax returns they are no better than the vilified one-percenters that profit off the backs of the less fortunate. To put their $12 million in perspective, just 16,000 total Americans made more than eight figures in the past few years. In other words, .05% of Americans earned more than the family of Breonna Taylor in 2020.
I am not optimistic of the family doing anything selfless with their newfound money. Leftism makes people angry and narcissistic and therefore they have no incentive to help others when the entire philosophy pits one against another. Still, it’d be a welcome step forward in resolving the perceived notions of systemic problems.