The entrepreneur on Monday explained that he recently sent his son Bryce out to head home from Sports One Bar & Lounge, the Charlotte, N.C., bar Thomas owns, after the teen took in the NBA All-Star Game with his uncle.
But Thomas later became overcome with worry when he realized Bryce was wearing a hoodie.
“My son is 15, he don’t belong in no bar. So he said, ‘Dad, I wanna go home.’ And I gave him the key,” the dad explains in the Feb. 18 clip. “He literally had to walk not even five minutes, like, three minutes to get across the street to go to where we live.
“And I’m sharing something with you that I never even thought of before and that was the most terrifying three to five minutes in my life because he was wearing a black hoodie,” Thomas continues. “And there’s a lot of vagrants in the area but I wasn’t afraid of them. I was afraid of the people that were supposed to protect us because I didn’t want him to have a moment. I was terrified.”
Police brutality against black Americans has long been an issue, but the specific fear of unarmed black male teens wearing a hoodie being targeted stems from the shooting death of Trayvon Martin in 2012. Martin was visiting his father in Sanford, Florida, when he was shot and killed by neighborhood watchman George Zimmerman. The killing of the 17-year-old helped spur the Black Lives Matter movement.
After Thomas shared his emotional video, several fans weighed in to share how disappointing it is that living in fear is now a reality. They also echoed his concerns.
“The fear is real.”
“I totally can relate….. My son is a Black 28-year-old Man that wears a suit and I am still terrified….”
“I feel you n that’s so sad but real, as a mom of three boys that’s my fear each n everyday. The ones that such be protecting is the ones we’re most afraid of harming our children @peterthomasrhoa.”
“I feel bro it’s sad with have to think like that but it’s the truth 💯💯”