Trevor Noah offered his thoughts on the news that a police officer was charged over the death of 20-year-old Daunte Wright during Wednesday’s episode of The Daily Social Distancing Show.
“The people of Minnesota and the entire country have been mourning and protesting,” said the late-night host at the top of the segment. “And today, the police officer who pulled the trigger was put on notice.”
Noah was referring to veteran police officer Kim Potter, who was captured on video firing her gun at Wright instead of using a taser during a traffic stop in Minnesota on Sunday. Wright died from the single bullet wound, and on Wednesday Potter was booked on second-degree manslaughter charges.
“And look, I think it’s good that she’s being charged,” said Noah. “But let’s be honest. That doesn’t mean much on its own. Charging a police officer is like announcing that you are withdrawing from Afghanistan. I’m not going to hold my breath for results.”
Noah went on to say, “I don’t think there’s any one change that we could make to police procedure or equipment or funding that would fix the entire problem of how cops treat Black people.”
He then referenced “one interesting point” that Mike Elliott, the mayor of Brooklyn Center, said earlier at a press conference. “As of this moment, I don’t believe any one of our officers live in Brooklyn Center,” said Elliott in news footage replayed on The Daily Show. “That is something that we are aware of. We do feel very strongly that we need officers to be from the community, obviously not every officer can live in the city where they work, I don’t think that would be feasible or practical. But there is a huge importance to having a significant number of your officers living in the community where they serve.”
Considering this point, Noah noted that the mayor is “completely right.” Added Noah, “And that is a startling thing to hear. Not a single one of his city’s police officers actually live in the city that they police, which is a huge problem.”
Quickly throwing in a lighter touch, Noah quipped, “When a cop is taking you downtown, he shouldn’t have to ask you how to get downtown.”
Continuing the serious discussion, he went on to say, “And it matters when you are not policing your own community when you are an outsider because then you’ve been sent in to enforce. You’re an occupying force.”
Driving home the point of the mayor, Noah called it “human nature” to treat people differently when you’re not from the same place. “Plus, it’s harder to brutalize people when you live in the same community,” he said.
Looking further at how different groups are policed in America, Noah used the next part of his segment to explore the Capitol riots as an example. “We’re still finding out just how much leeway a violent mob of white conservatives was given.”
View the whole segment below.