Arguably one of the most well-known names in Hollywood is Tyler Perry. Perry is a Black media mogul with everything under his belt: writing, producing, acting and directing. In 2011 he was listed as Forbes’ highest-paid man in entertainment with dozens of nominations and awards under his belt. Many of the awards he has received reside in categories such as “African-American Film Critics Award,” and “NAACP Image Awards” clearly demonstrating how valued and respected he is in the Black community.
Perry deserves yet another award; shocking CNN. Perry gave his opinions on defunding the Police in an interview with CNN’s Anderson Cooper. Unwilling to fall in line with the demands of many Democrats and African Americans, Perry said, “I am not for taking money from the police department.”
Not only was Perry’s strength to announce his position refreshing, but his reasoning was heartfelt. “I think we need more police. My studio is in a neighborhood where I think we need police” said Perry. As for repercussions for defunding the police, Perry notes the danger: “we don’t need police that are undertrained. And you got to understand, I have really close friends who are police officers that I love dearly who are really good people, who have been very, very hurt by this as well.”
Perry addresses what many Black Lives Matter sympathizers do not, and that is the repercussions that hurt and kill is always…wrong. “Where there’s wrong, I’m going to stand up against it” said Perry. “When Rayshard Brooks was murdered, I thought that was wrong. When George Floyd was murdered, I thought that was wrong, like so many other people” he added.
“But when a police officer who was White in a suburb in Atlanta was shot in the head by a shoplifter, I thought that was wrong, too, and I reached out to do what I can to help his family” Perry continued, when 8-year-old Secoreia turner “was shot near the Wendy’s in her mother’s back seat, I thought that was wrong, too. So anywhere there’s wrong, I’m going to stand up against it.”
In summation, Perry says what many Americans believe, but are being silenced by the violence and hatred. “There are a lot of people in America who feel the way that I do. I think we need the police. I know that I need the police. I have several that worked for me here at the studio. We need them, but we need them reformed.”
Primarily, “we need them trained well. We need the right structure, right?” said Perry. “But some of the things inside of the Defund the Police [movement] I really understand like having officers who are clinically trained to deal with certain situations. I think all of those things are helpful” added Perry. “But taking money from the police department to make the police department smaller, that troubles me” he concluded.