Russell Kinsaul and the Willful Ignorance of Racism
On Friday September 5th, two people are dead in another senseless shooting in St. Louis, Missouri, on the north side of the city which is predominantly black thanks to the city’s history of redlining minorities out of certain neighborhoods that were reserved exclusively for white people. The shooting was part of a crime spree that resulted in six people dead and two people injured in a twenty four hour period. I was watching the story unfold on local television station KMOV, St. Louis’ CBS affiliate. The reporter on the story was Russell Kinsaul. In the video, Mr. Kinsaul was interviewing state senator Jamilah Nasheed about this problem. Out of the blue he asked the senator why black people weren’t protesting.
As soon as I heard the question I reached for the remote and flipped the channel I was so incensed. Instead of being a professional reporter asking pertinent questions in order to help people develop a real understanding and appreciation for the issue at hand, Mr. Kinsaul wanted to play a race card by making an implied comparison to the racial chaos that was playing out with recent events in nearby Ferguson, Missouri where white police officer Darren Wilson shot the unarmed Michael Brown. If black people are going to protest the murder of black people by white cops why blacks don’t protest black on black crime?
The KMOV website describes Mr. Kinsaul as having strong Midwestern roots and takes great pride in his community and spends his time on efforts to improve the lives of children in our community. I’d describe him as a petty white prick who wouldn’t hesitate to spice up his lame reporting with racially charged innuendos. The Midwestern roots that are mentioned in his bio are the same Midwestern roots that led the authorities of Ferguson to come down hard on black people, harassing black people for walking down the street, shooting unarmed black people as they walk down the street, and when black people protest the murder of one of their own by a police officer whose salary they help to pay with their taxes these people want to pull out their tanks and military gear to put black people in their place.
Mr. Kinsaul was reporting on a story about a shooting. Instead of keeping on track and doing his job, he wants to make a racially politicized statement with his question about where is black people’s indignation over this murder. He’s no different than all the people who constantly ask why don’t black people protest black on black crime but go out of their way to protest a police shooting. It’s the kind of question I’d expect from somebody trying to make a name for themselves on FOX News, not from a local reporter that should be sticking to the facts.
If Mr. Kinsaul wanted to make comparisons why stop there? Where are all the white people who want to protest their support for the person or people who kill black people? Where are all the white people who want to contribute money to the defense of people who kill black people? Where are all the videos that show the black people who were murdered doing something wrong in their past? Where are the Facebook pages of the victims? Where are the white people who are going to help hide the identity of the murderer or murderers? Where are the tanks ready to come down hard and heavy on the black people? Where’s the police chief to say that a fair and impartial investigation will be conducted even though they already know who killed who?
I find Mr. Kinsaul about as disgusting. The story is that two people were murdered in a senseless crime and we don’t know who did it. The story is that this crime happened within a short time window that saw a crime wave hit St. Louis, in particular the black community. Instead of focusing on this story, Mr. Kinsaul wants to ignore the story at hand to go back to something that happened a few weeks ago in order to make a statement about black people.
And just like a few weeks ago, when Darren Wilson killed Michael Brown and got the support of his racially insensitive police department and local government officials, Mr. Kinsaul got the support of his racially insensitive television station. Why else would KMOV air his garbage unless the editor, camera operators, producer, anchors, and other personnel at that television station agreed with that socially retarded poison this man spews?
This is the type of bullshit that leads to the mistrust and misunderstanding that perpetuates our racial status quo. It’s not just the cops in Ferguson that work hard to keep black people at a distance and in their place. It’s also television reporters who want to pretend that there’s equivalence when a criminal shoots unarmed black people and when tax paid police officers do it. It’s also reporters that want to proselytize that black people have a false sense of outrage when cops kill one of us but don’t have a problem when we kill our own. Too many of us have a role to play in this game that keeps racism front and center in our social collective.