The French motto, “give me liberty of give me death,” is apparently much more than a sound byte, it is in fact a cause de celebre. The reaction of legions of French residents to the shooting of 17-year-old An unfortunate incident unfolded in France this week. According to the Associated Press, a police officer fatally shot and took the life of a 17-year-old Black delivery driver identified only as Nahel M. brought thousands of French residents to the streets to protests the shooting.
Counter this reaction to the shooting of one slain Black teen to the dozens who have been killed in police involved shootings in the U.S. and the responses while the responses are markedly different they are also sadly similar and the outcome of unabashed racism. One glaring difference in the responses of the two nation’s is that the French have a zero-tolerance policy on killing unarmed Black citizens.
According to the lawyers representing the victim’s family, the police officer responsible for this tragic act has been detained on suspicion of manslaughter. The fatal shooting occurred during a routine traffic check, leaving the community stunned.
Identified as Nahel M., the young delivery driver tragically died after sustaining a gunshot wound at the scene. While one passenger in the vehicle was briefly apprehended and subsequently released, authorities were actively searching for another passenger who managed to flee the scene.
According to his grandmother, who spoke to a French journalist, the young victim had aspired to become a mechanic, a dream that now remains unfulfilled. Describing him as a kind and nice young man, she shared fond memories of him, reflecting the profound loss felt by his loved ones.
The shocking nature of this incident, combined with the rarity of such deadly use of force by law enforcement in France, has drawn national attention to the systemic issues plaguing the country’s marginalized communities.
Join our email list to stay connected.