Journalist Soledad O’Brien and her successful Black In America series has sparked some plenty of discussions worthy of debate regarding race relations. She continues the trend with the latest installment of the CNN program, BLACK in America: BLACK & BLUE – Soledad O’Brien Reports.
O’Brien’s series has garnered broth praise and criticism, some of which she addressed last year while speaking at her alma mater, Harvard University. For BLACK in America: BLACK & BLUE – Soledad O’Brien Reports, the reporter turns her focus on the NYPD’s aggressive “stop and frisk” policy and the lives of Black men who were slammed by the tactic.
More from the show’s press team:
As O’Brien reports with Co-Directors Ross Tuttle and Steve Maing, the NYPD reported made more than 5 million stops between 2002 and 2013. Of those stopped, more than 80 percent were African American or Latino, and 88 percent of the stops did not result in arrests, summons, or evidence of any crime.
“What is so shocking is that this police practice was used around the country – and in some places still is – with the theory that police were stopping criminals,” said O’Brien. “It’s shocking that the city where this was popularized was stopping so many innocent people.”
Black & Blue will portray the personal stories of the men affected by those aggressive policing tactics, many of whom were able to document the confrontations in shocking videos. It also shares the perspective of real NYPD police officers who alternatively believe in the “stop and frisk” tactic and confess that it was not about fighting crime but fulfilling arrest quotas established by senior officials. “Everything is numbers based…Summonses must be written; the arrests must be made…,” says one officer, his identity concealed for protection.
O’Brien will also speak with current NYPD Police Commissioner William “Bill” Bratton about stop and frisk and why Mayor Bill de Blasio appointed Bratton when it was he who started the abrasive tactic.
BLACK & BLUE, produced by O’Brien’s Starfish Media Group, will air Tuesday, Nov. 18 at 9:00 p.m. Eastern Time on CNN. It will re-air on Sunday, Nov. 23 at 7:00 p.m.
For CNNgo subscribers, the special will be simulcast on the app and CNNgo website.
Watch the trailer for BLACK & BLUE below.