McKinney, Texas: A Reminder of America’s Segregated Pools
For much of the last day, we’ve watched a horrifying video of a group of black teenagers’ encounter with white police officers in McKinney, Texas. The officers were called to the pool Friday in response to a “disturbance” involving teens who apparently did not live in the relatively affluent, mostly white suburb about an hour north of Dallas. Many of the teenagers apparently did not have permission to be at the pool.
According to BuzzFeed, adults in the neighborhood asked the teens to leave, made racist comments, and told them to go back to “Section 8 housing,” or public housing.
Moments later, a white police officer, Eric Casebolt, tackled a black teenager and drew his gun on a group of teens who rushed to her side. Much of the episode was captured on video.
The video of the violent encounter has incited a widespread, shocked response from viewers around the country and recalls the viral videos of violent and fatal encounters between white police officers and black people from Missouri to South Carolina. Yet the pool itself as the site of segregation, race-driven conflict, and violence is entrenched in American history.
The response of white homeowners in Craig Ranch North is reminiscent of aggressive encounters between black and white swimmers at both public and private pools throughout American history. “They were just doing the right thing when these kids were fleeing and using profanity and threatening security guards,” a resident who declined to be identified told Dallas–Fort Worth’s Fox 4 News. Signs have since been hung at the pool thanking the McKinney Police Department “for keeping us safe.”
Pool just put up this sign supporting McKinney PD & thanking officers for their response Friday pic.twitter.com/P7bC9hULCF— Zahid Arab (@ZahidArabFox4) June 7, 2015