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  • Woman after police encounter: 'I was so scared'

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Two weeks ago, a black woman driving alone in Princeton, Louisiana, was pulled over for no apparent reason But she was not shot and killed. Or hauled from her car and body-slammed. Or even arrested for getting snippy. The officer explained that she was driving under the speed limit, something he said drivers do when they are tired or inebriated. He said he just wanted to make sure she was OK. Courtesy: Ayanna Reid Cruver
Two weeks ago, a black woman driving alone in Princeton, Louisiana, was pulled over for no apparent reason But she was not shot and killed. Or hauled from her car and body-slammed. Or even arrested for getting snippy. The officer explained that she was driving under the speed limit, something he said drivers do when they are tired or inebriated. He said he just wanted to make sure she was OK. Courtesy: Ayanna Reid Cruver

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About Leonard Pitts Jr

Leonard Pitts Jr

@LeonardPittsJr1

Leonard Pitts Jr. won the Pulitzer Prize for commentary in 2004. He is the author of the novels, Grant Park, Freeman, and Before I Forget. His column runs every Sunday and Wednesday. Forward From This Moment, a collection of his columns, was released in 2009.

On Sept. 11, 2001, he wrote a column on the terrorist attacks that received a huge response from readers who deluged him with more than 26,000 e-mails. It was posted on the Internet, chain-letter style. Read the column and others on the topic of September 11.

You can also read Pitts' series, What Works?, a series of columns about programs anywhere in the country that show results in improving the lives of black children.

Leonard also wrote the 2008 series I Am A Man, commemorating the 40th anniversary of Dr. Martin Luther King's assassination.

Email Leonard at lpitts@MiamiHerald.com or visit his website at www.leonardpittsjr.com

The Black List: Suggested Readings in African-American History

I am often asked by readers interested in gaining a better basic understanding of racial issues and/or African-American history if I will compile a reading list for them. These 16 books represent my best effort to do so.