Imagine. It's a hot summer day, you decide to take your kids to splash in the fountains, and suddenly you're in the middle of this. A car drives into yours, you're handcuffed and told your car was reported stolen (it wasn't) and all this happens in front of your little ones. Via the Washington Post:
It was a hot Thursday afternoon, so India Johnson, 26, and Yasmeen Winston, 25, decided to take their babies to splash in the fountains at the World War II Memorial. The women, best friends since seventh grade, parked on Constitution Avenue near the White House and prepared to walk to the Mall.
Their babies were in the back seat, Mother Goose Club was singing through the car speakers, and the mothers were digging around in diaper bags when they heard the crash and felt the jolt.
Johnson and Winston looked up. A Secret Service cruiser had driven into their front left bumper, Winston told The Washington Post. Within seconds, Winston recalled, a uniformed Secret Service officer was pointing a rifle at them, yelling “Get out!” and “Put your hands in the air!” More officers surrounded them with guns pulled, the women said.
Over the next hour, Winston and Johnson said, they were handcuffed without reason, separated from their crying babies, and handled by police who, at first, did not wear masks to protect against the novel coronavirus.
There's so much wrong with this story. Imagine the trauma these ladies and their kids suffered:
Winston said she and Johnson were in “full mommy mode” in the parked Ford Focus when, based on the angle of the collision, they believe the Secret Service car drove across the centerline of Constitution Avenue near 17th Street and plowed into the front bumper on the driver’s side.
The babies — scared from the crash — were wailing, and the officers were yelling with guns drawn, Winston said.
“It felt like a dream. It was so unreal,” she said. “We’re trying to understand what [the officer] was saying, because we didn’t want to make the wrong move and accidentally get shot up.”
Johnson, barefoot, got out of the car first and immediately asked why they were being detained, according to Winston’s account to The Post and Maloney’s letter. Johnson told the officer where to find her documents.
Winston, still in the passenger seat, held her hands to the roof of the car, she said. The officer with the rifle pointed it at her head. She said she pleaded with him not to shoot her baby.
"Don't shoot my baby." What the hell kind of country do we have?