Black people in some US states are still deprived of basic human rights and are considered sub-human, a researcher and historian in Washington says.
Several states, including Missouri, have laws enacted during the slavery era that rules black people cannot be citizens and have no rights as human being, said Dr. Randy Short, who has a Ph.D in African studies.
“Black people under Missouri law are property; they’re sub-human,” Dr. Short said in an interview on monday.
“In the United States, certain states, in particular the state of Missouri, have old laws that have never been completely repealed, where black people are not human beings and do not have human rights under the state law,” he added.
Short said last week’s acquittal of a white police officer who had fatally shot a black man in St. Louis, Missouri, in 2011, underscores the racist laws that still exist in the US.
More than 1,000 protesters marched Sunday in St. Louis during the third night of demonstrations after Jason Stockley, 36, was acquitted in the shooting death of Anthony Lamar Smith, 24.
Police in riot gear tackled some protesters and used pepper spray before starting the mass arrests.
A small group of people remained after nightfall and the scene turned chaotic, following the pattern of Friday and Saturday.
On Thursday, Judge Timothy Wilson cleared Stockley, who was charged with first-degree murder for killing Smith.
The officer quit the St. Louis Metropolitan Police Department in 2013 and was arrested in May 2016. Stockley was accused of planting a gun in Smith’s car but claimed in his testimony that he did this in self-defense.
The St. Louis region was gripped by violent protests back in 2014, when white police officer Darren Wilson fatally shot unarmed teenager Michael Brown.
US police departments have been under heightened scrutiny in recent years for the disproportionate number of police killings of African Americans.