By RICHARD CHANDLER BURROUGHS–America is too racist to even pretend that it’s not. It’s not even close, so the assertion that this is not a racist country is ridiculous. It’s like calling Kanye West, modest or Tyrion Lannister, tall (obligatory Game Of Thrones reference).
The U.S. is 237 years old and up until the 1960’s black people could not vote. That bears repeating, because it sounds so unreal, but up until 1964, BLACK PEOPLE COULD NOT VOTE. This in a land that became the super power, with unmatched wealth, in large part because of the century + of free Labor from millions of African slaves. Ummmm, free labor. FREE LABOR that was worked to death!!
So, for about 4/5th of it’s life, America was a blatantly racist country, which has now morphed into a latent-blatant racist country. Is that to be forgotten so fast? Is new behavior supposed to suddenly set in? If you are 40 years old and something happened to you when you were 32 years old, something significant, horrible and traumatizing, is that easily forgotten already? White people aren’t compelled to change their views because they don’t need to. Black people aren’t going to “move on” or “let it go”, because slavery wasn’t that long ago.
Man’s capacity for inhumanity and cruelty to each other has proven to be nearly infinite. That’s from the beginning of time.
Make no mistake, man is cruel. Man is vicious. Man is xenophobic and has had to consistently be coerced, often through legislation, to become accepting of people who are not “them”. Religion, race, geography…..all of it has formed a “them” and justified cruel behavior towards “others”. It’s no getting around that.
It’s HIGHLY unlikely that a black person you know either intimately or casually, if murdered/killed, will have been killed by a white person. It’s HIGHLY likely that a black person you know either intimately or casually, if killed, will have been killed by a black person.
George Zimmerman was found not guilty of murdering Trayvon Martin, yet it doesn’t mean he wasn’t guilty of a crime. You know who else bears some guilt? YOU and I for not vehemently voicing disapproval, taking some sort of prolonged and dedicated action to stop the disgusting plague of black males killing black people. We’ve stood by and allowed young, black men, to be identified as killers by not doing our most to halt the killing.
Young black males excel at sports, by being fast, strong and quick, hence people identify young black males as fast, strong and quick. Lebron James, Adrian Peterson, Robinson Cano, Usain bolt. They get lots of press coverage for their athletic exploits. Most young, black males aren’t athletic aka, fast, strong and quick, yet that’s a preconceived notion that people hold because of that portrayal in the media , so when you go to college and your dorm starts a football team, it’s kinda disappointing to the white residents when lots of the black residents are “basic” in their athletic ability.
We don’t generally stop that line of thinking because it’s not an overtly negative connotation. We don’t see that as a negative profile. The athletic profile of the young black male can hinder people’s views of young, black males as more than just athletes, which is a real drawback, but that’s a negative byproduct of that particular black male profile. Banding together to stop the world from thinking of young, black males as athletic is a waste of time and won’t happen. Perhaps more black doctors, teachers, scientists, etc would balance it out, but it might not, because again, people are cruel and often think the worst of “others”.
Young black males also have a profile of being killers. They get a lot of press coverage for their
athletic murderous exploits. Most young black males aren’t athletic killers, yet that’s a preconceived notion that people hold because of that portrayal in the media and the fact that too many young, black males are killing out of control.
Stick-ups, burglary, car theft, selling drugs…..young black male’s are identified with all of that, because they do way too much of that and RAP ABOUT IT AD NAUSEUM.
The African-American narrative is colored by negativity, criminality, obesity, getting over and twerk, twerk ,twerking. We have to do waaaaay better by ourselves, because we give agency for people to treat us like “the perception” of how we all treat each other. So a part of the guilt of Trayvon Martin’s death lies at the feet of the black community.