Monday, April 28, 2008

Jeremiah's Right!

"Your own conduct and actions have brought this upon you. This is your punishment. How bitter it is! How it pierces to the heart!"

--- Jeremiah, 4:18, NIV

During the past four days, I've been amused to "hear" the corporate news media react to Dr. Jeremiah Wright's three extraordinary presentations on the Bill Moyers Show, the Detroit NAACP Freedom Fund Banquet and the National Press Club.

The silence has been deafening compared to the corporate media feeding frenzy over the out of context snippets from Wright's sermons delivered nearly seven years ago. The media "experts" on nearly nothing but commenting on nearly everything have zipped their pie holes shut.

This silence is because Jeremiah's right.

He is right about how a consistent and bloody history of domestic and international terrorism cause "chickens to come home and roost"

He is right about the cultural differences existing between Africans in America and European Americans relative to educational learning styles, music and linguistics.

He is right that his vilification by the corporate owned media is really an attack on the Black church and its historic role in forcing this nation to live up to the principals outlined in the Constitution which has always been a fickle lover to Africans in America.

He is right in speaking truth to power and questioning Dick Cheney's "patriotism". Cheney received five --- count them --- five deferments to avoid being drafted into the U.S. Army during the Vietnam War.

Jeremiah is right that few white Americans, and particularly reporters know anything about Black Liberation Theology.

If your perceived world through its media, educational and entertainment systems, reinforce the false notion that "white" culture, accomplishments, history, music and even "white" interpretations of the Sacred and the Eternal should be viewed as "righteous", "infallible" and superior, you will begin to think of yourself as a perverted "First Cause" --- a "god" if you please --- and see all others, not only as inferior, but possessing an inability to challenge anything about how you perceive the world in which you think you have created.

You will be utterly confused.

You will be unable to accept the simple idea that you may be incorrect about people of color, incorrect about how people should worship, and incorrect about the "superiority of white culture". In sum, you will have little need for anyone's opinion except your own and a narrow interpretation of the world around you.

Yes, Jeremiah's right, and unfortunately you're wrong...

Saturday, April 26, 2008

Toni Morrison's "The Seven Days" from the Song of Solomon

'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?'"
"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."

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...