Michael Strahan is sounding off sounds on police violence.
More than a week after the Charlotte, North Carolina shooting of Keith Lamont Scott, 43, celebrities are sounding off on how they school their children to interact with police. Most recently, footballer turned talk show host Michael Strahan sat down with People, where he explained he fears for his loved ones’ safety. “Even though a lot of these things have been going on, now we see it – there are cameras there,” he said. “I think it’s shocking for a lot of people and for anybody with kids. I think all of the events that have happened have been tragic and unnecessary.”
The father of four – who shares daughter Tanita, 24, and son Michael Jr., 21, with ex-wife Wanda Hutchins and twins Sophie and Isabella, 12, with ex-wife Jean Muggli – admitted he’s especially concerned about his eldest children. “They drive, they’re on their own,” Strahan continued. “They have their own places and they’re in college and it’s scary because they could be one of these kids in these situations.”
As for the key advice he’s given his kids when dealing with police, Strahan said it all about “learning how to handle it, to stay calm.”
“If you’re in a situation with a police officer, if he tells you to do something, just do it,” the 44-year-old said. “It’s not worth it. It’s not worth the fight, it’s not worth the argument. You’re not trying to prove a point – because as they say when you’re arguing or fighting with somebody, nobody can tell who’s right and who’s wrong.”
“I just think you have to be very careful and accountable because one bad choice and one split-second decision can change or alter your life or end your life,” he added. “I don’t want that for my kids and I don’t want that for anybody’s kids.” Continued Strahan: “Be respectful. Be respectful and listen and do exactly what you’re supposed to do and what you’re told to do. Don’t get upset, don’t argue, don’t fight. Just listen.”
Overall, Strahan believes keeping your composure will ultimately pay off. “I think if you take a deep breath and just go through the motions of what you need to go through, you won’t even remember you were there a few hours later,” he said. “It’s kind of like sitting in traffic – you get mad in the moment but you’ll be somewhere in a few hours and you won’t realize you were sitting in traffic because you just got through it.”
Though “a lot of it [racism] has always been there,” Strahan argues that social media and readily access to camera phones has brought much of the issue to light. “It’s not just your word against mine – now there’s actually proof of it,” the “Good Morning America” co-host said. “But I can’t say that all cops are wrong, or all cops are bad. I think that that’s the wrong approach to take because, as they say, whenever you need help, they’re the ones who show up there for you when everybody else runs the other way. We’ve got to respect that too.”
“I just think that definitely what we’re seeing now is not the way it’s supposed to be. I don’t feel like as I was growing up it was that way for me. It feels like maybe it’s gotten worse. And when you’re a parent, you worry about your kids in all situations,” Strahan said comparing today’s issues to those Blacks faced when was growing up. Still, Strahan admitted that the increasing loss of civilian lives at the hands of those who are to protect and serves is “disturbing.”
“It feels like it’s almost every day, something new. And you see the riots, you see the protests – which I’m glad because if people feel like they’re wronged you have to [react],” he said. “As a human being, you feel passionate about some things – I think one great thing in this country is we have the ability to speak up and show that,” he added. “I just don’t like when it becomes violent, because I don’t think you kill violence with more violence.”
Well said, Strahan, well said.