Ebro in the Moring and Ben Crump discussed how the menthol ban would affect the Black community. Ebro spoke to Crump and said he had done some amazing work over the last decade fighting for the civil rights of African Americans. His work has been covered on social media and has represented some high-profile civil rights cases.
Ebro said Crump was able to bring justice to the Breonna Taylor case. Many people thought that case had gone dormant. However, recently, the officers in the case were brought to some sort of justice, he added.
“This is the first time police officers have been charged for killing a black woman on a federal level in the history of the United States of America,” said Crump.
From 2015 to 2020, a study shows that over 400 Black women were killed while in the custody of the police, and only eight officers were charged. Four of the cases were dismissed, while the other four pled guilty to misdemeanor charges. Crump said this goes back to what Malcolm X said about black women being the most unprotected and disrespected person in America. Because of collective efforts by legal teams and everyone fighting, Taylor received justice.
Crump said in his long career as an attorney that he has never seen the Justice Department go after police officers for killing Blacks unjustly the way they are now. The last time this happened was in the era of Robert Kennedy when he was fighting for Martin Luther king Jr. and John Lewis to have the right to vote in Selma, AL.
Crump talked about the menthol ban. Ebro said that people usually associate tobacco smoking with something terrible, so a menthol ban may seem like a good idea. However, Crump said the menthol ban would affect Black people because that is the brand of cigarettes that they smoke the most. The mental ban could inadvertently lead to adverse outcomes for people of color. Although policymakers claim police enforcement will not be encouraged, Crump said there has never been a time in America where the police have not enforced rules and regulations.
Ebro wanted to know what people could do to act. Crump said now is the perfect time for people to get involved because of the local elections that are happening soon. The civil rights leader said to remember that congressional members are local, and they come into the Black churches because they want votes. Crump said community members could ask their leaders how they feel about the menthol band and what they want to do about it.