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Getting pulled over for a traffic stop can be nerve-racking for anyone, but many African-American men are taught one wrong move could mean “life or death.”

Leighton Watson, 23, a project manager in Richmond, Va., says his father, who is a retired police officer in Michigan, sat him down before he started driving and had a conversation that many black men have with their sons.  “It doesn’t matter what situation proceeded the traffic stop, it could mean death,” he said. “I could be driving down the wrong side of the road and tomorrow I’m a hashtag and on t-shirts.”

Here’s a list of 6 things black men should tell their sons about traffic stops.

1. Avoid getting pulled over for small infractions by keeping your car up to date (I.E. Broken Taillight).

2. If pulled over: Keep both hands on the steering wheel or in the air.

3.  Try to stay calm and be “Overly” respectful.

4.  Look straight ahead.

5.  Loudly say what you are doing, and explain every moment.

6.  Do not reach for anything, and if asked make sure you are verbally saying what you are doing as you reach.


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