Friday, April 25, 2008

172 Bullets in Three Black Bodies...


As many Blackfolk were, I was looking at CNN about two hours ago when the verdict came in that all of the "police officers" were found not guilty of killing 23-year old Sean Bell on November 25, 2006 --- the day of his wedding. One of my former students at Vanderbilt University, Jackie Lopardo an attorney in New York, texted me her anger over the media and the verdict. I heard from Yaa Asantewaa who doubts if anything will be done in this latest case of police violence toward us.

And the beat goes on...

Sean Bell - 50 bullets
Amadou Diallo - 41 bullets
Deandre Brunston - 81 bullets

These are all Black men who were murdered by police. The total bullets in the bodies of Sean, Amadou and Deandre: 172. That's an average of 57 bullets ripping through the flesh of each of these Black men.

57 bullets
57 bullets
57 bullets...

These police murders have long been so routine, that I believe if I had to make a choice between abolishing the death penalty and abolishing "justified homicide" by police officers, I would choose the latter.

172 bullets
172 bullets
172 bullets...

While white folks get alarmed at the righteous indignation of Jeremiah Wright toward a nation addicted to violence at all levels, they should see this indignation arising in part from the long, sordid and murderous conduct of police in the killings of Sean, Amadou and Deandre and other Blackpeople. Police departments kill Blackmen as an indoor sport --- target practice if you please and no one gives a damn. It is sanctioned by a nation that has always seen Blacklife as cheap and dispensable.

We will see what Blackpeople in New York and the nation do about this latest "abortion of justice" as Al Sharpton labels it. Probably nothing, because we yield to white supremacy's aggressive brainwashing that convinces Us that Our lives are indeed cheap. I'm reminded of the last verse of Jayne Cortez' powerful poem, "There it is::

"And if we don’t fight
If we don’t resist
If we don’t organize and unify and
Get the power to control our own lives
Then we will wear
The exaggerated look of captivity
The stylized look of submission
The bizarre look of suicide
The dehumanized look of fear
And the decomposed look of repression
Forever and ever and ever
And there it is."

172 bullets...
172 bullets...
172 bullets...

6 comments:

  1. Nubianus1:45 PM

    Good post, Ray. Despite the anger we all justifiably have due to the injustice of the Sean Bell case, we need to harness this anger toward productive uses.

    If things are ever going to improve for African-Americans, we have to redouble our efforts to gain social, political and economic power here.

    Remember, time and demographics are both on our side. Whites now have a birth rate well below replacement in the USA, while the African-American population grows steadily both by natural growth and immigration from Africa, Brazil and the Caribbean. Even some Blacks immigrating to the USA from France, Belgium, the Netherlands, Germany and Spain. (BTW if any of you can speak Spanish and/or Portuguese, please encourage our Black brethren in Latin America, especially from Brazil, to emigrate to the USA. There's strength in numbers.)

    I know Blacks and Latinos have often been at loggerheads, but we're natural allies-- both fighting against White oppression, with Latinos having been invaded in multiple wars by the Anglos in Florida, the Mexican-American War and Spanish-American War. Latinos lost half of Mexico when Anglos invaded in 1848, and were ethnically cleansed by Anglos so that they could start slavery in the conquered territories. Blacks and Latinos today are natural partners in the fight for social justice, both fighting for affirmative action and against discrimination. Spanish is an easy language to learn, and the more that we reach out to each other, speak some Spanish ourselves, and support our Latino brothers and sisters, the more our alliance is cemented.

    I'd say if anything, the key for us is to gain political power, and to do that, it's best to concentrate ourselves geographically a bit more in a few states, where we will soon be the majority. On the one hand, we need Blacks throughout the country to demand our rights, but on the other, a better geographical focus is the key to political power, as it is throughout the world's democratic countries.

    IOW, we need to have our own "North American Nubia" where we have a demographic majority and political power. Some Deep South States are obvious candidates-- Mississippi, Alabama, Louisiana for example, all of which will soon be Black-majority within perhaps a decade. This would be a core of our nation.

    But we can have a second North American Nubia (or North American Africana, whichever name you prefer) in the Upper Midwest-- Michigan is one of the Blackest states in the Union, and much of Illinois is also strongly African-American in demographics, culture and social importance.

    Some of my homies from college have even urged conversion to Islam for African-Americans. It's not something I've considered myself, though I'll acknowledge that at least for many urban African-Americans, they've done quite well after the conversion. Many having been in jail or kept out of jail, they become more focused and disciplined, as fathers they take care of their Black children and care better for Black women, stay away from drugs and violence and so forth. (interesting link a friend sent to me-- Nubian Manifesto )

    IMHO there are many different personal routes we can take for empowerment, but as a group, we must stay strong and focused and, again, have enough of a geographic concentration that we can gain political power. Just as we should ally with Latinos as they become the majority in their own homelands in Southwestern states and Florida, so should Blacks ally with Muslims in Michigan (who will soon be the majority in that state).

    It's obvious from our people's history here, that we'll survive only by standing up for ourselves. Political and economic empowerment are the central aspects of this.

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  2. I agree we need to harness this potential power and channel it in positive directions. We must get organized. This decision is not surprising. Frankly, I would have been surprised if they were convicted. But, we continue to miss the boat. We continue to be reactionary instead of becoming proactive. Once a Black man is killed by the police, it's too late. We need to take preventative actions. What are those? That's for you to decide.

    Come and Get Your Reparations!

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  3. Jabriel,

    Desperate situations call for desperate measures, and there is a state of emergency within the Afrikan world because of the accelerated refinement of white supremacy.

    I advocate Toni Morrison's The Seven Days from her book, "The Song of Solomon"...here it is:

    'Okay, said [Guitar], 'but you have to know that what I tell you can't go any further. And if it does, you'll be dropping a rope around my neck. Now do you still want to know it?'"
    "Yeah."
    "You sure?"
    "I'm sure."
    "'I suppose you know that white people kill black people from time to time, and most folks shake their heads and say, 'Eh, eh, eh, ain't that a shame?"

    "Milkman raised his eyebrows. He thought Guitar was going to let him in on some deal he had going. But he was slipping into his race bag. 'I can't suck my teeth or say 'eh, eh, eh.' I had to do something. And the only thing left to do is balance it; keep things on an even keel. Any man, any woman, or any child is good for five to seven generations of heirs before they're bred out. So every death is the death of five to seven generations. You can't stop them from killing us, from trying to get rid of us. And each time they succeed, they get rid of five to seven generations. I help keep the numbers the same.'"

    "There is a society. It's made up of a few men who are willing to take some risks. They don't initiate anything; they don't even choose. They are as indifferent as rain. But when a Negro child, Negro woman, or Negro man is killed by whites and nothing is done about it by their law and their courts, this society selects a similar victim at random, and they execute him or her in a similar manner if they can. If the Negro was hanged, they hang; if a Negro was burnt, they burn; raped and murdered, they rape and murder. If they can. If they can't do it precisely in the same manner, they do it any way they can, but they do it. They call themselves the Seven Days. They are made up of seven men. Always seven and only seven. If one of them dies or leaves or is no longer effective, another is chosen. Not right away, because that kind of choosing takes time. But they don't seem to be in a hurry. Their secret is time. To take the time, to last. Not to grow; that's dangerous because you might become known. They don't write their names in toilet stalls or brag to women. Time and silence. Those are their weapons, and they go on forever."

    "You? You're going to kill people?"
    "Not people. White people."
    "But why?"
    "I just told you. It's necessary; it's got to be done. To keep the ratio the same."

    "And if it isn't done? If it just goes on the way it has?"

    "Then the world is a zoo, and I can't live in it."

    "Why don't you just hunt down the ones who did the killing? Why kill innocent people? Why not just those who did it?"

    "It doesn't matter who did it. Each and every one of them could do it. So you just get any one of them. There are no innocent white people, because every one of them is a potential nigger-killer, if not an actual one. You think Hitler surprised them? You think just because they went to war they thought he was a freak? Hitler's the most natural white man in the world. He killed Jews and Gypsies because he didn't have us. Can you see those Klansmen shocked by him? No, you can't."

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  4. Anonymous9:16 AM

    Guitar's plan is but one of a multipilities of actions. Force Hiliary to show her strips. Ask her the question, what is your response to the recent ruling in the Sean Bell case? After all she is still the Senator from New York.

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  5. Anonymous8:58 PM

    The general rule is that if (a) you don't act like a fool; (b) LISTEN to what the police tell you to do;(c) don't wield a gun or hang out with folks talking about a gun; (d) don't get involved in fights at clubs; and (e) don't walk around intoxicated while doing (a) - (d), then you might not get shot.

    I'm glad this black terror is off of the street and I'm glad those respectable detectives and police officers who risked their lives investigating this uncivilized territory were freed.

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  6. Anonymous,

    Your silly diatribe only displays your white supremacist attitude steeped in ignorance (the go together). Ask Oscar Grant about his being shot in the back in Oakland California by a police officer while his hands were handcuffed behind his back. Oh, I forgot: he's dead.

    Silly white boy, silly, silly, white boy...

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