America to become great again- From the killing of Blacks you must abstain – By Yvonne Sam

By Yvonne Sam

Police killings are the worst manifestations of countless slights and indignities that have built up until there is an explosion.

Since the inception of the nation, racism has been and continues to be a systematic feature of American society.Since 1935, nearly every so-called race riot in the United States of America, and there have been more than 100– has been sparked by a police incident. Police, because they interact in black communities every day, and are often seen as the face of larger systems of inequality in the justice system. 

Sadly, for black Americans, policing is “the most enduring aspect of the struggle for civil rights,” because it has always been a mechanism for racial control.As Khalil Gibran Muhammad, author of The Condemnation of Blackness, puts it: “White people, by and large, do not know what it is like to be occupied by a police force. They don’t understand it because it is not the type of policing they experience. Because they are treated like individuals, they believe that if ‘I am not breaking the law, I will never be abused.’

In the South, police once did the dirty work of enforcing the racial caste system. The Ku Klux Klan(KKK),and law enforcement were often indistinguishable. Black-and-white photographs of the era memorialize the way Southern police sicced German shepherds on civil rights protesters, and peeled the skin off black children with the force of water hoses. Lawmen were also involved or implicated in untold numbers of beatings, killings, and disappearances of black Southerners who forgot their place. In the north police worked to protect white spaces by containing and controlling the rising Black population that was hurled into the Industrial belt during the Great Migration. Additionally, it was not unusual for Northern Police to join white mobs as they attacked black homeowners attempting to move into white neighbourhoods, or black workers attempting to take jobs reserved for white labourers. https://psmag.com/social-justice/why-black-america-fears-the-police

Today, all over America,black Americans are still so often, denied the same kind of smart policing that typically occurs in white communities, where police seem fully capable of discerning between law-abiding citizens and those committing crimes. Race continues to influence how people of African descent are treated by law enforcement.  Since the inception of the nation, racism has been and continues to be a systematic feature of American society. Some police forces in America have historically played critical roles in maintaining positional power

for whites https://www.policefoundation.org/race-and-the-police/. This, needless to say created a very difficult chasm to overcome when police departments attempt to implement community policing initiatives.  Again in the not-too-distant past, some American police forces were tasked with enforcing both de jure and de facto racial apartheid laws and customs when they were directed to by elected officials, which have not been forgotten by American Blacks.  This past history has greatly contributed to the current distrust of the police by Blacks.

The recent senseless death of  an unarmed and handcuffed Black man-George Floyd in Minneapolis caught on camera once again brought to light the treatment Blacks receive at the hands of the police.It would be one thing if allegations of police abuse were focused on one city, state, or region, but multiple investigations by the media and the US Department of Justice have uncovered patterns of abuse and excessive use of force — particularly against black residents — all over the country—-the land of the free and the home of the brave.

Once again the death opened raw wounds, assailed spirits,shocked already broken hearts and unleashed previously –restrained anger and fury. Protesters took to the streets in several cities in America and around the world, looting, setting police stations and police vehicles ablaze bringing America once more to full attention. The death of George Floyd served as the straw that broke the camel’s back.

A commonly tossed around response to protests over police shootings is, “What about black-on-black crime?” The question, often posed rhetorically, argues that people should worry more about violence within their communities — and, specifically, the higher rates of violence in minority communities — before they worry about violence by the police. The truth be told the answer misses the point that a lot of people in minority communities are very, very worried about the crime and violence there, and are doing something about it.

Another issue that demands consideration is that a lack of trust in the police, fostered by police use of force that is widely viewed as unfair, likely leads to more crime and violence. When people do not trust the government and the criminal justice system, they are less likely to rely on the law to solve conflicts. That might also make them more likely to resolve conflicts on their own, which can lead to a violent, if unlawful resolution.This is what scholars call “legal cynicism”: When people do not trust the government and criminal justice system, they are less likely to rely on the law to solve conflicts. And that might make them more likely to try to solve conflicts on their own, which can lead to a violent, if unlawful, resolution.

Start listening up America—There is a serious problem existing, that will get even worse. You will be extinguishing a lot of fires and structures. . You have already started putting out some in Minneapolis, but above all the fire that you are not paying attention to is the fires that you keep setting in the hearts of your Black citizens because you are completely ignoring them.  That is the fire that you should be putting out. It is not even worth stating that any Black person who committed this crime even from hearsay would have been in prison. We have a crime committed on camera with a different outcome because of color.

White folks have expressed growing concern over the fact that Blacks are burning down the very neighbourhood where they live, and what good will come from rioting. Point taken!.However, when Blacks burn areas in which they may live, they are not burning down anything that they own. It is simply their way of getting heard when they are ignored or unheard.  The late Reverend Martin Luther King Jr. said to be unheard is to riot. Now Blacks have the attention of America. Now America knows it is serious, but on a note of foreboding it will get more deadly serious. America, you fail to act when Black citizens tell you “they cannot breathe”. You do not move when a citizen says “can you check his pulse”. You don’t move when someone says,” you know what, that really didn’t feel good what you did”. “You don’t move when someone says , “there should be a different way that this can be done”.

Why do we do not bridge a language of understanding between whites and blacks and try to address each other’s needs.  Why don’t we start listening to one another?

America, you only move when you lose something, and such behavior cannot and must not continue.  It will not be tolerated. As Gil Scott Heron says in his song, “The Revolution will not be Televised”. This is no longer applicable as everybody has a camera.

James Arthur Baldwin, one of the greatest writer of the 20th century, and especially known for his essays on the Black experience in America, clearly stated “To be a Negro in this country and to be relatively conscious is to be in a rage almost all the time”.

America, now you have further enraged the Blacks, although they have been singing the same song and crying out for so long.

In your quest to become great again, then from the murders of Black men the police should abstain.

Correct the situation so together we can Forward go. If not be prepared to reap what you Sow.

—-

Yvonne Sam, a retired Head Nurse and Secondary School Teacher, is the Public Relations Officer of the Guyana Cultural Association of Montreal. A regular columnist for over two decades with the Montreal Community Contact, her insightful and incursive articles on topics ranging from politics, human rights and immigration, to education and parenting have also appeared in the Huffington Post, Montreal Gazette, Pride Magazine, XPressbogg and Guyanese OnLine. She is also the recipient of the Governor General of Canada Caring Canadian Citizen Award.

USA Racism: James Baldwin delivers earth shattering speech at Cambridge University (1964)

Black History Month – February

James Baldwin delivers earth shattering speech at Cambridge University during a debate with William F. Buckley (1964)

—   More info on James Baldwin below:

James Baldwin – Wikipedia  <click           https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/James_Baldwin

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Comments

  • Bernard  On June 9, 2020 at 4:33 am

    To make America great again.

    Why you always come across like you have an obligation to educate us? Like you know it all and that it is your duty to give us peons an education?

    The first thing that needs to happen in America is the ejection of Donald Trump from office. He is a divider, not a uniter. Not only that, America is now the laughing stock of the world. The greatness is in the flusher.

    In addition, he’s a well known racist, which you must know. Back in the 70s, he refused to rent his apartments to blacks. In 2017, when a black NFL player took a knee to protest police
    brutality, he got mad and called him a son of a bitch. He even encourages police brutality.

    Of course he did not start police brutality, he’s made it worse, For America to be great again, Trump has to go. What a disaster!

    By the way, who will pay for that big, beautiful wall again?

    How great is America now?

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