” Evil doers” can be killed. Bombed to hell and back. Justifiably.
” Demons” can be shot down. Evaporated. Justifiably.
” Criminals,” justifiably, can be incarcerated or murdered.
Black lives don’t matter!
Africans, once the first humans, became animals. Lower than animals. A pope grants rights to Europeans. Do what you want with them!
” The Europeans…were obliged to make slaves of the Africans…” Charles de Montesquieu, philosopher. And the year was 1748.
We can increase the numbers of “lovely White…” by “excluding all Blacks and Tawneys.” Benjamin Franklin, statesman and scientist. And the year was 1751.
” The Negroes of Africa have by nature no feeling that rises above the trifling.” Immanuel Kant, philosopher. And the year was 1764.
” Comparing them by their faculties of memory, reason, and imagination, it appears to me that in memory they are equal t the whites; in reason much inferior…and that in imagination, they are dull, tasteless, and anomalous…I advance it therefore…that the blacks…are inferior to the whites in the endowment of both body and mind.” Thomas Jefferson, president. And the year was 1782.
” The Negro…exhibits the natural man in his completely wild and untamed state…for Africa is no historical part of the world.” George W.F. Hegel, philosopher. And the year was 1830.
” Between the civilized European and the barbarous African there is a great gulf set…” Charles Dickens, novelist. And the year was 1848.
” I content that we are the finest race in the world and that the more of the world we inhabit the better it is for the human race.” Cecil Rhodes, British financier and Colonizer of South Africa. And the year is 1900.
This is the violence before the first captured African. Violence before the first African became enslaved. Violence before the first brutal act, the first rape, the first murder.
When the “demon” became visible to Officer Darren Wilson on that 9th day in August, when the “demon” is shot multiple times, when the “demon” lies dead in the street for 4 hours, Wilson was protecting himself–as scripted. For centuries.
The “demon,” the “evil doer,” “the inferior,” less-than-human, the Black young unarmed 18-year old Micheal Brown is murdered –as scripted.
Darren Wilson saw a “demon.”
And the year is 2014.
I exited. I followed him in that direction. After I said on the radio, ‘Shots fired. Send me more cars,’ I was yelling at him to stop and get on the ground. He kept running and then eventually he stopped in this area somewhere. When he stopped, he turned, looked at me, made like a grunting noise and had the most intense aggressive face I’ve ever seen on a person…And he started running at me… And I ordered him to stop and get on the ground again. He didn’t. I fired, a multiple shot. After I fired the multiple shots I paused for a second, yelled at him to get on the ground again, he was still in the same state. Still charging hands still in his waistband, hadn’t slowed down. I fired another set of shots. Same thing, still running at me hadn’t slowed down, hand still in his waistband… (from Officer Darren Wilson’s testimony)
The man with the weapon, the gun, feared for his life.
White Europeans and later American slave merchants feared for their lives in Africa. So they wheeled and made deals. Hunted down and captured. Kidnapped and chained men, women, and children. The “civilized” world, the world of “lovely whites,” of “superior” beings, humans, shipped “creatures” less than human to the New World.
They enslaved as a matter of normalcy, business, development, industry. They brutalized, tortured and maimed, raped and murdered with impunity.
For hundreds of years!
After “freedom” came for the Black in the US came and even greater fear eased only by separation and lynching.
And then the rise of institutionalizing the “schizophrenic”: the “militant” and insolent Black.
And then the prisons, rising and spreading everywhere to accommodate the urban Blacks, disenfranchised and neglected. Solitary confinement.
And the narrative of violence continues to condemn and justify the proliferation of violence, of injustice.
We know the history in the South, in Birmingham, in Salem, in Jackson…
But in New York–Abner Louima.
In Oakland, California–Oscar Grant.
In Sanford, Florida–Trayvon Martin.
In Milwaukee, Wisconsin–Darrius Simmons
Now in Ferguson, Missouri–Michael Brown
Where is America? Where are our fellow citizens? Huddled in fear because Black Americans are finally angry again? Ready to stand their ground in silence behind the ever increasing presence of militarized police? Ready to defend their safety from the “demon,” the “evil doers”? Ready to maintain the peace at all cost?
For they must defend themselves. The structuring of laws based on the violent narration of what constitutes violence (and what does not constitute violence) permit such injustice to prevail.
Standing your ground, America?
To leave in the wake of your violence a Black body riddled with bullets and a narrative justifying this violence, to acquit or refuse to convict murders and vigilantes means, here in the U.S.A. that Black lives still do not matter! And the year is 2014!
No Black lives do not matter–yet!
Photo source: By Jamelle Bouie