The cost of bearing witness: watching and sharing videos of police brutality online

Earlier this year, Tyre Nichols became the latest name invoked to describe when those meant to “protect and serve” instead inflict brutality on unarmed Black men. In this case, there were cameras on hand to refute the bogus story concocted by the law enforcement personnel – but while this footage ensured accountability, left unexplored was the impact of this footage on the public health. Particularly the public health of Black people, who are forced again and again to bear witness to horrors inflicted on Black bodies in order to keep the wheels of justice turning.

In response to this troubling phenomenon, I wrote a piece published this week in the BMJ which explores the impact of these videos on our collective health. You can read the op-ed here.