In 1994, Kalyn Chapman James became Alabama’s first-ever and only black woman to be crowned Miss Alabama. On July 10, James posted a video on her Facebook page in which she admits her belief that Micah X. Johnson – the black racist assassin who killed five police officers in Dallas last week – is in her words a “martyr.”
James currently works as a TV host in Miami, where she annually awards a scholarship to the top black American to finish at each year’s Miss Alabama contest.
Before he went on his rampage, shooter Johnson was affiliated with black nationalist organizations.
During negotiations with police after the killings, Castile told them that he hated white people and that he wanted to kill white police officers, especially, in revenge for the shooting deaths of black men such as Alton Sterling of Louisiana and Philando Castile of Minnesota. Protests have erupted in cities across the country, where largely young, black protesters have expressed outrage and fear over the shootings. Evidence shows that he had assembled bomb-making materials and had planned further attacks.
Government officials and citizens in Dallas have repudiated the killings of police officers and have expressed sadness and condolences over their deaths. There are plans afoot for a memorial to the fallen on July 12. President Barack Obama is scheduled to appear. Chapman, however, said in the video that was recorded in her vehicle that she feels no such sadness.
“I don’t want to feel this way,” James says in the Facebook video, “[But] I don’t feel sad for the officers who lost their lives … I know that’s really not my heart. I value human life, and I want to feel sad for them but I can’t help but feeling like the shooter was a martyr.”
She goes on to say, “I know it’s not the right way to feel, because nobody deserves to lose their lives and I know that those police officers had families and people who loved them and that they didn’t deserve to die.”
“But I’m so torn up in my heart about seeing these men, these black men, being gunned down in our community that I can’t help, I can’t help but feel like; I wasn’t surprised by what the shooter did to those cops and I think a lot of us feel the same way.”
While she does not condone violence against innocent parties, she said that she is tired by the perceived epidemic of police shootings of blacks. “I’m sick of this, and something has to be done, period.”
Spero News writer Martin Barillas is a former US diplomat, who also worked as a democracy advocate and election observer in Latin America. His first novel 'Shaken Earth', is available at Amazon.