My Run-In With La Policia

I wrote this headline and blog post (below) last year and thought they were clever and funny. But they’re neither of those things. They’re just sad and ignorant.

I’m leaving them both as-is to remind myself how easy I have it. As a member of the majority, I can make these kinds of “jokes,” and I have the privilege to think they’re funny. Because when a cop pulls me over, I don’t have to be afraid. The authority figure with the gun is my friend.

For so, so many others, that’s not the case. Living in my little bubble of privilege, I cannot begin to imagine what a life living with discrimination is like. So I’m listening and reading and learning, and you should do the same. I won’t take my misinformed blog post down, but I wouldn’t recommend reading it. Instead, check these out:


When white people tell each other to stay safe during an uprising

Economic devastation fueling anger in Baltimore

Many organizers at the forefront of protests are women, despite men taking center stage


Police officers are always picking me up.

When I lived in NYC (and wasn’t reporting a story—that’s an important distinction), I was driven from the Morningside Heights precinct all the way up to the east side of 125th by two very nice gentlemen who also gave me tips on what to order at Sylvia’s.

As a Washingtonian, cops literally pulled me off the streets once a week. I was driven to a soccer game, a metro station and, once, to my house. (Aside: It was WAY better than Uber.)

Perhaps I walk around with a sign on my back that says, “EASILY ROBBED. SAVE HER. FILLING OUT A POLICE REPORT WITH THIS ONE WILL BE A NIGHTMARE.”

It was really only a matter of time before the local authorities here picked up on my trail. I was walking around San Isidro, a neighborhood about an hour north of my house. And FINE, I was admittedly lost, but just a little bit! I was only three blocks off. I would’ve found it eventually.

Anyhow, the Serenazgo—Lima’s version of police officers—found me and walked me to my destination.

I finally feel like this is home!