Here’s something to think about: If you don’t read the newspaper you’re uninformed and if you read the newspapers you misinformed. Denzel Washington
Here’s something to think about: If you don’t read the newspaper you’re uninformed and if you read the newspapers you misinformed. Denzel Washington
Jury nullification occurs when a jury seems to ignore evidence, or the law was common in the segregated Jim Crow South, and white folk took pride in letting crimes against black people go unpunished. History is littered with such facts and that is what came to mind with Monday’s mistrial in the case of a white South Carolina police officer caught on video fatally shooting a fleeing, unarmed black after stopping him for driving with a broken taillight.
In the last few years, case after case reflect the debauchery of what is can only be called 21st-century lynchings! It is unknown how many such tragedies have occurred from the time black people were stolen and brought to America. Particularly since Reconstruction and the civil rights era where white defendants accused of crimes that left a black person cheated, abused, or dead were acquitted by all-white juries whose members could not see past race in assessing the evidence put before them. The most shocking case was that of little Emmett Till when his killers confessed but white people found them not guilty!
Though there was one black person on the jury considering the case of Michael T. Slager, the outcome was similar in a trial that was further complicated by the defendant’s being a policeman, which I should remind you were created to be slave catchers. History also shows juries are routinely reluctant to question the actions of an officer who had to act swiftly in a perceived life-or-death situation. This was not the case here; the officer lied in his report, tried to plant a taser, had an eyewitness and was recorded on video.
Slager was accused of murder and manslaughter in the death of Walter L. Scott, whom the North Charleston, S.C., the police officer stopped on April 4, 2015. A struggled ensued the cop said Mr. Scott supposedly took his taser and tried to use on him. Mr. Scott is seen running from Slager, who raises his Glock and fires eight shots at the fleeing man in about three seconds. Scott, at least 17 feet away, is hit five times in the back. Slager testified “I see him with a taser in his hand as I see him spinning around… That’s the only thing I see: that Taser in his hand.”
But Slager was either lying or delusional about his fatal encounter with Scott. The video also showed him dropping his Taser next to Scott’s body. It seems Slager has a fondness for the electrical device that can temporarily paralyze. Records show he accounted for 4 percent of all Taser use in 2014 by the 340-member North Charleston police force.
The jury saw that video at least a dozen times during the trial. But three days into deliberations its foreman, the lone black person on the panel, told the judge that one juror would not agree to convict Slager of either murder or a lesser charge of manslaughter, which would allow a sentence as little as two years. Urged to continue deliberating, the next day the jury reported that a “majority” was now undecided. A mistrial was declared.
They tell us the Slager will get another day in court; in fact; more than one. He also faces federal charges of depriving Scott of his civil rights. Meanwhile, Scott’s mother says she is putting her trust in a higher authority, which is what black people always do. “We are surrounded by a cloud of witnesses,” she shouted after the court proceedings ended with a hung jury. “He will get his reward. I’m just waiting on the Lord.” Shameful to believe that White Jesus will do anything!
In the meantime, the unsatisfactory outcome of the Slager trial with his guilt or innocence still up in the air despite what appeared to be enough evidence to come to a conclusion. This case has left a bad taste in the mouths of many black people – no a clear example of a return to Jim Crow status – it stinks!
But the authorities tell us that better police training and new procedures will solve the problem of police shooting unarmed black people. However, that does not address the issue of prejudice. And that’s my thought provoking perspective…
The disturbing events from Ferguson to South Carolina that we’ve witnessed seemed, according to the media, to have come as a surprise to many. Honestly, I don’t know why and frankly there should be outrage. If the despicable acts done to black people we done to a dog, white fold would be in rebellion! The only thing different here is the level of disregard the police exercised against unarmed black people. They think black people are still chattel and are expendable. What happened was the result of how America has trained its people to forget that it has always been this way, just look back at the racial strife a generation or so ago during the civil rights movement.
Then like now, they found a black face to calm the unrest or find some preacher to tell you to love thy neighbor and turn the other check after you have been beaten and bruised. Back in the day, they put dogs on peaceful “Negro” protestors and used fire hoses against unarmed men, women, and children. These attacks were done even when these folks left their staging areas, which was a church with real preachers leading the marches and the forces of evil still beat and trampled them.
If you go back far enough in our history, the police came about to be slave catchers and to control the oppressed people. The common wisdom, then like now, was to hire and put more black people on the force to use them to occupy the communities where blacks live. Let’s not forget, the FBI, America’s top law enforcement agency would not hire black agents, and it took lawsuits to make that happen. If this was the case, what do you think happened in Mayberry?
The riots sparked by the shooting of unarmed black teenager Michael Brown or in Baltimore resulted from the murder of an unarmed black man. Most scenes of protest, rioting, and an iron-fisted police crackdown emerged from similar situations history has shown. From the Civil War through the early 1900s, what is now called “race riots” were expressions of white rage. Frankly, history does not report the vile outrage of white who were the instigators of race riots.
Many, dare I say most were spurred by labor strife, rumors of a crime committed against a white person, or fears of black families moving into primarily white areas, whites would set entire black neighborhoods to the flame, destroying property and murdering blacks at will. Of course, this was justified because “they” said so.
Ferguson’s name has been added to the long list of uprisings that have taken place in nearly every city in America. Like the Harlem riots and many of the 1960s uprisings were sparked by conflict between the community and the police. In Los Angeles, the Watts neighborhood went up in flames in 1965, after three family members were arrested during a clash with police following a drunk-driving stop.
St. Louis, which is near Ferguson, has a history of racial strife dating back to the Dred Scott Decision. The city fell into chaos in 1965 after a 19-year-old black youth was killed as he fled police officer Israel Mason, who said the familiar excuse, the suspect tried to grab his gun during a traffic stop. Detroit burned for five days in 1967 after police tried to arrest dozens of people during a raid of an after-hours speakeasy. The primary period of black urban uprisings, which was 1963 to 1970, nearly all of them were sparked by confrontations between African-Americans and the police. Almost every single one!
So you see nothing much has changed, even though they will tell you it has and America is the greatest country in the world. The puppets and the conspirators of those who keep black people as second class citizens. In the two weeks of demonstrations featuring calculated violence by planted insurgents that manifested itself in Ferguson. We have had over four hundred years of frustration like you saw in Ferguson. Violence as harmful and self-destructive as it sometimes works. However, the popular reaction is the same since the African was dragged onto these shores; “There’s not a black-white divide the Negro are happy!”
The recipe for urban riots since 1935 is remarkably consistent and the ingredients are almost always the same: An impoverished and politically disempowered black population refused full American citizenship, a heavy-handed and overwhelmingly white police force, a generous amount of neglect, and frequently, the loss of Black life at the hands of the police. Yet, they are always surprised when tension is released.
Back in 1968, a report produced by the Kerner Commission an 11-member panel convened by President Lyndon B. Johnson to get to the heart of a series of violent riots in 1967 concluded:
White racism is essentially responsible for the explosive mixture that has been accumulating in our cities since the end of World War II. Actually, since the days of Nat Turner! What the rioters appeared to be seeking was fuller participation in the social order and the material benefits enjoyed by the majority of American citizens. Rather than rejecting the American system, they were anxious to obtain a place for themselves in it.
Police actions are always the spark because their Gestapo tactics have come to symbolize white power, white racism, and white repression. And the fact is that many police do reflect and express these white attitudes. The atmosphere of hostility and cynicism is reinforced by a widespread belief among black American’s in the existence of police brutality and in a ‘double standard’ of justice that is clearly one for Negroes and one for whites.
Much has been made of angry young black men, tattooed, with their pants sagging and their faces covered in shirts and bandanas. Some of them sometimes answered saying what black people have always said, “I am a man” when asked their names. That’s why I love these young black boys for saying enough is enough. And that’s my thought provoking perspective…
Politics Of America – Somethings Never Change
I found this article on the HuffingtonPost and thought it was worth sharing in light of the Terrorist attack last week in Charleston, South Carolina. The lists is long, extensive, and over on hundred attacks but it was not until the Charleston incident that white America realized what black people have saying since time and memorial or at least as on as the church has been segregated. It is the hate that hate produces!!!
When Dylann Roof allegedly opened fire at the Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church in Charleston, South Carolina, last week, it was an act of terror of the kind that happens all too often in black houses of worship. Roof has been charged with shooting and killing nine people, including senior pastor of the church and South Carolina state Sen. Clementa Pinckney.
Black communities in America have long used the church as a place to come together, to worship and to discuss social issues without fear of being targeted. But the ugly truth is that black churches have always been targets. White supremacists have sought to terrorize and destroy these institutions for as long as they’ve existed.
Although many church burnings, bombings and other hate crimes went unreported before and during the civil rights era, we know of at least 91 cases since the 1950s when black churches in America were the targets of what can only be described as domestic terrorism.
(Our list contains relatively few incidents from the 1970s and 1980s, in part because exhaustive records from those years are hard to find. However, one report has found that there were 1,420 church fires in 1980 alone. There was a spike in violence against churches in the 1990s, which led Congress to pass the Church Arson Prevention Act in 1996.)
I have witnessed a lot of history in my life and especially that which comes from the souls of white America and their hatred towards black people. As I watched the news coverage of the horrible South Carolina terrorist massacre on television I wondered how could these white folk be surprised. It seems as if they are oblivious to history when they know acts such as this have permeated their culture from the day they dragged Africans onto the shores of this place the slaves called “merica.”
The shocking part of this whole ordeal is that South Carolina has a long history of racial abuse and trauma upon people of African descent. The first shots fired in the Civil War took place in Fort Sumter leading to five years of carnage. Think about that for a moment; their forefathers, white supremacist, wanted to keep slavery so bad that millions of them died. Now, that is hate!
Since the terrorist attack upon the Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church a few days ago I wonder how they can forget the history that I know to be true. The long storied history of this church, which is one of the oldest black congregations in the South. The sins of their fathers must haunt them because they killed Denmark Vesey, one of its members, and many others. They burned the church to the ground to which the members had to meet in secret in the years when black churches were outlawed before the Civil War.
The terrorist told the people he killed, “I have to do it. You rape our women and you’re taking over our country.” He made a calculated and premeditated decision to execute members of Emanuel AME Church, who were simply engaged in prayer. Of course, they say he was deranged and mentally ill as oppose to the more factual language of terrorist! I know this isn’t going to be a popular post, but this is one day I would hate to be a white person in America. Shame – yes I accuse you of this and the sins of your fathers because you, white America, cast blame on all black people for the wrongdoing of any black person.
Now, National and International news has focused all of its attention on your son who gunned down nine innocent black people in a church during Bible study. All you can say is – he’s a young man whose “crazy” “deranged” “a lost soul” or whatever other pitiful name you can come up with for justification. But the truth of the matter is this young man went into a house of worship with the INTENT to kill black people. I might have been convinced he was a lunatic had he just gone in with his gun blazing and fired off without warning. But he sat down for an hour with other church-goers, had time to think about his actions and reloaded his weapon several times during the massacre.
White America does not want to deal with the so-called white supremacy issue or race. They don’t see it as a problem – for them. I am sure there are some well-meaning white folk who, I’m sure, are OUTRAGED over what happened in South Carolina. But in the same breath they will tell you they don’t think it’s fair to hold them accountable for the actions of their ancestors. But, unless they speak out LOUDLY, BOLDLY AND CLEARLY! You are guilty because you do nothing to change the sins of your fathers. Yes, you are the blame!
As I watched the South Carolina Governor pretended to cry yesterday. I wanted to ask her why the Confederate Flag is not being flown at half mast after the massacre. She knows full-well the firestorm that prejudice, bias and discrimination that message sends and bring to the hearts some members of her race that symbol creates.
Lastly, we see all these white folk hugging and praying with the hurting souls of black people as if we don’t know that the early hours of Sunday morning is the most segregated hours on earth! Oh, let’s not forget the shame of all who sang that old Negro spiritual – “We shall overcome someday”! And that’s my thought provoking perspective…