Black Candidate Who Had the Police Called On Her While Campaigning Gets the Last Laugh

Breanna Edwards Sep, 20, 2018

Black women are magic and are well-known for turning lemons into lemonade.

Last month, Shelia Stubbs was handed some pretty sour lemons after she had the police called on her while campaigning door-to-door for votes in her bid to be the first Black state assemblywoman in Wisconsin’s 77th District.

“I felt humiliated. I felt outraged, I felt angry. I felt embarrassed,” Stubbs, 47, told CBS News.

According to the report, last month when Stubbs was out getting those votes, Madison police got a call about a “suspicious vehicle” from a male caller who thought that the occupants were “waiting for drugs at the local drug house.”

Those hardened drug-seeking criminals that were allegedly in the car?  Stubbs’ 71-year-old mother Linda Hoskins, who was driving the vehicle, and Stubbs’ 8-year-old child. Stubbs was standing nearby talking to a constituent, according to the Cap Times.

“It’s 2018,” Stubbs told the Times. “It shouldn’t be strange that a Black woman’s knocking on your door. I didn’t do anything to make myself stand out. I felt like they thought I didn’t belong there.”

Stubbs, ever so polite, declined to say which neighborhood she was in at the time, but indicated that it was a predominantly white one. She told the news site that she had been in the neighborhood no more than 20 minutes, and had knocked on about five or six doors before the officers showed up.

The officer who showed up questioned Stubbs politely.

“‘Well, how do you know what doors to knock on?’ [the officer asked]/ And I said, the walk list. And she said, ‘Can I see it?’ And I said, sure, here you go, and then she said, ‘I’m really sorry that that happened to you,'” Stubbs told CBS.

But even that Stubbs flipped around, although she stressed that her interaction with that officer, identified as Katherine Bland, was more than possible. Bland noted in her report that after the two finished speaking, Stubbs and her mother shared their cell phone numbers with Bland with an offer to help the officer improve race relations in Madison communities.

And though she didn’t get a chance to speak to the constituent who made that call, she hopes he sees her story and gets in touch with her.

“It’s just not OK,” Stubbs told the Cap Times. “When you specifically target people of color and call the police, sometimes there’s different outcomes.”

Oh, and there’s one more thing that Stubbs would like that guy to learn…that is who exactly she is. Stubbs won nearly 50 percent of the primary vote in her county, and as she is running unopposed will take her seat in the Wisconsin Assembly in January.

“I want them to see that I made it” she told CBS News. “I survived. I am now your representative.”