brotherpeacemaker

It's about our community and our spirituality!

In Memory Of Leonard Riggins

rigginsmarquee625nov6

On Wednesday, November 5th, fifty two year old Leonard Riggins stopped to help at a crash scene he just so happened to come across after work, probably on his way home.  Mr. Riggins, a fifteen year veteran of the fire department, was off duty but still dressed in his firefighter uniform and driving home in a department vehicle.  Inside the just crashed car was nineteen year old Christopher Brandon who had just carjacked the vehicle before wrecking it.  With his stolen vehicle wrecked and still in need of transportation, Christopher Brandon shot the Good Samaritan point blank in the chest and left him for dead, bleeding in the street as the thief stole his vehicle.

Since Mr. Riggins was still in his firefighter uniform Brandon may have thought Mr. Riggins was a police officer and panicked.  St. Louis County police spotted Brandon minutes later in yet another car, allegedly the fourth he had stolen that night.  Brandon took off on foot and pointed a handgun at the officers chasing him.  The police officers fired, killing Brandon and putting an end to his chaotic carjacking spree.  Christopher Brandon had been arrested six times in the past sixteen months with his last arrest on September 28th.   However, there is no record that he was ever charged.

According to the reports, it appeared that Brandon attempted to carjack four cars within a span of minutes.  Moszell and Nicara Kent were two of Brandon’s victims.  They had just pulled into their driveway with two of their children, ages 4 and 11.  Mr. Kent confronted Brandon who he thought was trying to jump their fence.  Brandon reached under his black sweater and pulled out a gun.  He allowed the family to get out of the car before he drove it away.  The Kents called 9-1-1 for help and chased after the car so he could tell police which way Brandon went.  When Mr. Kent reached the intersection at the end of the block, he saw a wrecked car.  It’s been alleged that the car was previously crashed by Brandon and may have been taken from someone as well.  Brandon crashed the Kent family’s car a few blocks away where Riggins approached thinking he was coming to the aid of a motorist.

Brandon may have shot Mr. Riggins out of panic, but it doesn’t excuse the fact that he made the choice to take the steps necessary to become a cold blooded killer.  A loaded handgun didn’t just materialize in Brandon’s hand.  He had made the choice to arm himself and he made the choice to become a criminal.  He made the choice to take what didn’t belong to him, what clearly belonged to others, with the threat of deadly force.  The fact that Brandon made the choice to use that deadly force against a man who made the mistake of coming to help him is devastatingly tragic.

I understand that there is anger and frustration in the black community.  No one is more frustrated with the overall lack of opportunity for employment and education that is the staple of the black community.  But this does not mean that black people are entitled to simply circumvent our responsibility to ourselves, our community, our elders, and our ancestors who have fought the hard fight to get us to where we are now.  We don’t have the luxury of, or the right to, just throwing the progress that the black community has made over the last century and becoming the very epitome of the negative stereotypes that are so often associated with black people through social programming.

Not only did Brandon contribute to everything negative about the black community.  Brandon also made the choice to take from the black community one of our own who was actually trying to better the black community and be a positive black role model.  The black community needs as many people as possible to buck the stereotypical negative trends and actually help keep our black community stable.  But thanks to Brandon’s choice to reinforce the clichéd black on black crime we will be more apt to remember Mr. Riggins and everything he did for the black community as little more than a crime statistic.

I would like to extend my personal condolences to the Riggins family and to the friends and associates of Mr. Riggins.  I would like to celebrate the life of Mr. Riggins with you.  In the belief system of Ifa, we believe our ancestors have the potential to influence our lives and help guide us on our spiritual paths.  Considering Mr. Riggins penchant for community service I would be willing to bet that he would be one of the greatest spiritual influences in the lives of your extended family.  No doubt your spiritual influences have just gotten a lot stronger.

Saturday, November 8, 2008 Posted by | African Americans, Black Community, Black Culture, Black Men, Black On Black Crime, Black People, Life, Thoughts | 5 Comments

Greener Pastures

Last night I was dreaming of Osun.  I was sleeping in an all white bed in an all white room when my partner told me Osun was on the phone.  I reached for the all white receiver and when I said hello Osun appeared in the chair right next to the bed.  She was truly stunning.  Her hair was jet black and she had it in a loose bun on top of her head with strands hanging down framing her face.  She had golden irises and some of the fullest lips I’ve ever seen done in a golden lipstick.  Her skin was a smooth medium brown.  She was saying something to me that I didn’t quite understand.  She was upset because someone had made a comment about her lips.  There was water falling out of the mirror that hung over the sink in the all white bathroom next to the bedroom.

Suddenly my partner was waking me up in real time.  It was one o’clock in the morning.  Somebody was trying to steal our minivan.  I was instantly awake and out the door.  The minivan was in its designated parking space in the little lot right off the alley in the back of the apartment building.  The doors were unlocked.  There was a brick sitting on the dashboard.  The steering column was smashed.  The papers that were in the glove box were strewn around the shotgun seat.  The windows were not smashed.  The doors were not broken.  It looks like we may have left the van unlocked and the would be thief saw an opportunity.  We believe the only thing that saved our van was that the would be thief found our Esu that we keep in our car and was suddenly seized with fear.  Esu had been pulled out of his space and unwrapped.  What ever it was we were thankful.  The minivan suffered a little damage.  But it was better than replacing an entire minivan and whatever else we may have lost like baby boy’s car seat.

The next morning we got in the minivan getting ready to drop me off at work.  The minivan started and immediately died.  We tried it again, feathered the accelerator, and it died.  We tried it another time.  The vehicle’s engine wouldn’t even turn over.  Our minivan was dead as a door nail.  We went back inside and called the body shop.  It turns out the minivan not starting is an anti theft feature.  The steering column didn’t look that bad.  The keyhole for the ignition had scratches but was intact.  But the damage it did suffer was enough to make it shut down.  A tow truck took the minivan away to the body shop just around the corner and I had to catch the bus to work.  I was three hours late.  The bill is expected to run just over five hundred dollars.  I was fucking livid.

I worked hard to save and buy my minivan and some selfish bastard who didn’t give a rat’s ass about other people’s property has now cost me five hundred dollars.  More than likely, in my neighborhood, this was a black person.  More than likely this was the type of black person that many people like to use as the model for black behavior.  However, nothing can be further from the truth.  This is just one depraved individual in an entire neighborhood of people who were more than happy to leave our minivan alone and let us keep it.

If I was to follow standard operating procedure I would condemn the entire black community for the poor judgment of one individual.  I would start saying something that runs along the line of this is the type of thing one needs to expect living in the black neighborhood.  I’m supposed to go and tell all my neighbors that I’ve had it trying to do something positive for the black community and I need to make a fresh start somewhere else, somewhere that isn’t as black.  That way, I can feel better about moving my family to a much safer environment, possibly a formerly all white neighborhood.  I can do the George Jefferson and take my partner “Louise” to move on up the eastside.  But the fact of the matter is that crime is a fundamental part of life in America no matter what neighborhood you live in.

Case in point, I have a brother who lives in a major metropolitan area in the southeast.  He moved his family out of the city into the suburbs and he bought him and his family a nice little corner spread.  He was one of the first black people in his new neighborhood.  His family felt a lot safer in their new digs.

One day my brother went out to his Toyota sport utility vehicle one early morning to go to work.  He got in, turned the key, and his car made the loudest racket ever.  He must have triggered every car alarm in the county.  He quickly turned off his engine, got out, and looked up under the car.  His catalytic converter had been pilfered.  He was pissed.  According to the demographics of his neighborhood, my brother was the victim of some white thief.  While I may have been a random victim of a crime of opportunity by one of my black neighbors who may have taken advantage of my oversight in a classic example of black on black crime, my brother may have been the intended target of a crime by his white neighbors in a classic example of white on black crime.  And for what he paid for putting his Toyota back together, I can do two more trips to the body shop with the minivan.

But even with all of this taken into consideration I’d be willing to bet my brother would never think to get his family out of his virtually all white neighborhood in order to get somewhere else more safe.  I really don’t think such conclusion jumping thinking should apply in my circumstance as well.  The would be minivan thief in the black neighborhood is no more indicative of all black people as the successful catalytic converter collector in my brother’s neighborhood is indicative of all white people in the predominantly white neighborhood.  More of us should learn to keep things in perspective instead of jumping the proverbial ship that is the black neighborhood at the first transgression.  The grass isn’t necessarily any greener on the less black side of the fence.

Friday, October 10, 2008 Posted by | African Americans, Black Community, Black Culture, Black in America, Black Men, Black On Black Crime, Black People, Life, Racism, Thoughts, White On Black Crime | 4 Comments

The Slander Of The Gander

I absolutely positively cannot wait to get my hands on the latest copy of the New Yorker.  The art cover features Barack and Michelle Obama in their true guise, at least according to a lot of less than well informed Americans who get their information from an institution of inconsequential integrity such as FOX News, more accurately described as the bizarro world news network.

Despite his protest to the contrary a lot of hardworking, white Americans cling to their bitter belief that Mr. Obama is a closet Muslim and Ms. Obama is a fist bumping terrorist who is also a Louis Farrakhan devotee and is the leader of the Chicago chapter of the Osama bin Laden fan club.  Ms. Obama loves Osama so much she married a man whose name is just one letter away from the terrorist leader.  I would not be surprised if there was a rumor floating about that she was set to live in Omaha until she realized it didn’t rhyme with Osama or Obama.

The magazine features an illustration from Barry Blitt named The Politics of Fear in which the Democratic presidential nominee and his wife are shown wearing traditional Muslim garb in the oval office of the White House, presumably after Mr. Obama won the presidency.  The drawing of Michelle Obama has a huge angry black woman afro while wearing fatigues and combat boots with an automatic assault rifle over her shoulder.  Mr. Obama is wearing a traditional Muslim headdress and attire ala Osama bin Laden style.  And to top it all off the stars and stripes is shown burning in a fireplace blaze while Osama’s portrait hangs above.

The only thing the cartoon needs is little caricatures of Sasha and Malia.  It would be the icing on the cake of comic fabrication to see the two girls depicted with bomb vests and copies of the Quran while wearing the traditional garb of Arab women.  I know that they’re much too young to be wearing the covering from head to toe.  But we are trying to drive home the point that the reality surrounding the Democratic candidate has been distorted to the point of severe absurdity.

This is not the first time the Democratic presidential nominee has been lampooned.  Dozens of cartoons of the Senator from Illinois appear in various newspapers, weekly and monthly periodicals, websites, and elsewhere on an hourly basis.  He has been satirized on Saturday Night Life.  Comics galore stand in line to ridicule any weakness in his political armor.  And even one of the hardest working white joes in the workforce is ready to make a dime off of this historic presidential run of an African American by plastering a picture of the monkey Curious George with the caption Obama ’08 on a t-shirt.

The official response from Mr. Obama’s presidential campaign referred to the illustration art as tasteless and offensive.  If anybody has a clear reason for being offended by this lampoon it would be the Muslim community that continues to be slandered by an affiliation with terrorism and unpatriotic tendencies.  Mr. Obama refused to give an opinion about the cover.  Other people have made their much less than favorable opinion known.  Unfortunately for Mr. Obama, many people will continue to unfairly associate his character with a negative stereotype without any foundation in reality.  Not unlike the way Mr. Obama continues to hold fast to his opinion that black people need to take more personal responsibility for the conditions of the black community before the nation takes any social responsibility.

At the annual NAACP convention Mr. Obama reiterated his call that black people show greater responsibility for improving their own lives.  Mr. Obama urged Washington to provide more education and economic assistance.  He called on corporate America to exercise greater social responsibility.  But he received his largest applause as he urged blacks to demand more of ourselves.  Said Mr. Obama, “I know some say I’ve been too tough on folks talking about responsibility.  NAACP, I’m here to report [that] I’m not going to stop talking about it.  Because as much I’m out there to fight to make sure that government’s doing its job and the marketplace is doing its job, none of it will make a difference, at least not enough of a difference, if we also don’t at the same time seize more responsibility in our own lives.”  I guess the other racial groups don’t have to have any personal responsibility.

Mr. Obama insists on holding steadfast to the notion that the black community is somehow more corrupt or somehow more irresponsible than any other race of people.  A cursory glance at headlines would support Mr. Obama’s assumptions.  But the headlines are controlled by a dominant community that would rather backhand people in the black community than extend a helping hand.  We all could take more responsibility for our communities.

For example, Mr. Obama could have gone before the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) and tell the Jewish community that Israel could take more responsibility for ending the tensions with the Arab community and Iran in particular.  Mr. Obama could stand at his podium and tell Hillary Clinton to take more responsibility for the debt she incurred when she campaigned against Mr. Obama.  I didn’t see anybody say John Edwards or anyone else deserved a handout for racking up debt.  What makes these other examples of irresponsibility so much more tolerable?

I seriously doubt that the problem of broken families in the black community is significantly more of a problem than the broken families in other communities.  I have to admit that I have not seen any numbers on the subject.  But if the propaganda that says black crime is so much more staggering than white crime compared to the actual crime numbers broken down by race is any indication, I have to say that unless Mr. Obama can produce some actual numbers from credible sources, all he is doing is reinforcing the negative image of the black community to his supporters who want to believe the stereotypical hype against black people.

There is little to support Barack Obama’s emphasis calling for more responsibility for the black community in relation to the level of responsibility in other community’s.  No matter what the reality is Mr. Obama will cling to his supposition that black people are the most irresponsible community of people in America.  So why would he of all people expect anything less from those of us who think he is a Muslim and his wife is a whitey hater with nothing to support their claims?  The way I see it, what’s good for the slandered goose is even better for the slandered gander.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008 Posted by | African Americans, Barack Obama, Black Community, Black Culture, Black Hair, Black History, Black Men, Black On Black Crime, Black People, Life, Michelle Obama, Politics, Racism, Thoughts | 30 Comments

The Race Card

The Race Card

Every time a black person points out the disparity between the black community and the white community some white mindset proponent of the status quo complains that some black person always have to play the race card. What exactly is the race card? If a black person says that white people are kicking his or her ass people with a white mindset will simply roll their eyes and say that the black person is trying to play the race card. There have been a number of comments to this blog about claiming race to be an issue when it is nothing but a figment of my imagination regardless of the reality all around us.

Reality says that the phenomenon of unarmed black people being shot in doorways forty times by four or five police officers for reaching for his identification or carrying a bag of groceries only happens to black people. But if black people say that this only happens to black people then they are simply trying to play the race card.

People with a white mindset celebrate the death of a teenaged black young man at the hands of boot camp guards. The young man’s heinous crime that ultimately cost him his life was taking his grandmother’s car without permission. Grandma would have gotten her car back. The boy had no plans to take it to a chop shop or sell it out from under her. But he was sent to a boot camp nevertheless. And when he couldn’t do the physical activity required of him the guards ganged up on him as if he was the only thing in their petty lives they had to control. In front of the cameras they killed him and then the system tried to cover its murder by claiming a latent sickle cell trait. Maybe that was some kind of euphemism for a baton across your neck and ammonia tables up the nose. But when black people say this only happens to black people they are simply trying to play the race card.

An elderly black man is assaulted by cops for having the audacity of asking for information. The poor police officer is so exhausted and frustrated with the flooding of New Orleans, Louisiana that the officer has no choice but to attack the black man for expecting to be treated with the common courtesy anyone would expect from a servant of the public. The man is wrestled to the ground by four of New Orleans’ finest and an agent of the FBI. Holding the black man’s hands in front of him and the officers of the law are screaming at the man to put his hands behind his back. The man replies, let go and I will. His eye swollen shut and his body bloody and bruised the man is arrested for disorderly conduct and drunken behavior. But the retired school teacher hadn’t had a drink in decades. But when a black person says this type of thing happens specifically to black people they are simply trying to play the race card.

When white students hang nooses from trees on school property and a fight between black students and white students erupts it is only the black students that get persecuted for attempted murder. But when black people point this fact out it is dismissed as black people trying to play the race card. A black girl breaks curfew and a white cop feels entitled to punch the girl in the face. When black people make the observation that no white girl is on video being punched in the face by cops then black people are trying to play the race card. White people can take rifles into schools, department stores, libraries, churches, and shoot the place up in high profile style. A white man can wear a bomb into a place of business and keep cops at bay for hours. But let a black man stand in front of police with a hairbrush in his hands and cops will blow him away in the time it takes for them to pull their guns out their holsters. Its black people who are constantly judged as the far greater danger to civilized society. But anyone who points out this discrimination is playing the race card.

When a black person makes the observation that every single Fortune 500 company’s office environment is predominantly white the observation is minimized by someone saying making the race card claim. Black on black crime is a phenomenon that is growing by leaps and bounds and to the vast majority of the public’s eye has reached epidemic proportions but nobody notices that white on white crime is even higher and much more prevalent. Anyone who tries to point out this fact is trying to play the race card. A talk show radio personality can say black quarterbacks are only mediocre but because the liberal media wants to promote black people that don’t deserving promotion. But its black people who are accused of playing the race card.

The fact of the matter is that white people have been playing the race card ever since these two races came across each other. From day one black people have been judged as subhuman and unintelligent. The discrimination against black people is obvious if anyone cares to look. There are differences in educational opportunities, differences in employment opportunities, medical services, law enforcement and neighborhood protection, political representation, housing and financing. Any category you choose to look you’ll see discrimination that can be traced back for generations. But be careful. Anyone who is black and expresses an interest in looking at discrimination with an honest eye needs to be aware of the stigma associated with such examination. People who want to protect the status quo will play their race card and dismiss anything you see that is unfair is nothing more than a play of the proverbial race card.

Thursday, January 3, 2008 Posted by | African Americans, Black Community, Black On Black Crime, Life, Racism, The Race Card, Thoughts | 9 Comments

Baby Grace

Baby Grace Small

The little girl’s body was found in a plastic box on a sandbar off the island of Galveston, Texas back on October 29th. The authorities announced the gruesome find and identified the girl as Baby Grace. Based on forensics, an artist was able to make a drawing showing what the little girl may have looked like. The drawing was of a blond headed little white girl. Not quite four weeks later arrests have been made in this case not too far from Galveston up interstate 45 in Houston, Texas.

According to CNN an affidavit from the Galveston County Sheriff’s Office goes into detail on how this little girl was beaten with belts, picked up by her hair, thrown across the room and held under water before she died. The two year old little girl was identified as Riley Ann Sawyers and the people that killed her were her mother, nineteen year old Kimberly Dawn Trenor and her husband, Riley’s stepfather, twenty four old Royce Clyde Zeigler II. A medical examiner said the child’s skull was fractured. Her body was found by a fisherman. She was stuffed inside a blue storage container that washed up on an uninhabited island in Galveston’s West Bay.

The toddler was last seen three or four months before her body was found. After her death, her parents stored the body in a plastic container they bought from Wal-Mart in their garage for one to two months. Then they carried the container to the Galveston Causeway and tossed it into the bay and watched it drift away. Ms. Trenor and Mr. Zeigler were charged with injury to a child and tampering with evidence. Bail was set at $350,000 each.

This case is just one of the more recent examples of the widespread phenomenon of white on white crime. White people are murdering each other, kidnapping and torturing each other, sexually abusing each other in godless ways, robbing and stealing from each other, and making false accusations against each other. There are white people who are neglecting their communities, their families, their children, and themselves. But their crime rarely reflects on others in the white community.

But on the other hand black people who commit crimes are assumed to be the example of standard behavior for black people. When there is a high profile black person accused of criminal behavior he or she sets a poor example for others that has a profound and overwhelming impact on the black community. How many times have we heard something along the lines of the arrest or conviction of so and so leaves a stain on the entire black community? And yet we never hear the same equivalent of these words spoken on behalf of the white community. How many times have we heard that gangsta rap is tearing away the foundation of the black community every time someone in the black community is alleged to be a criminal? But you never hear the same thing said of white forms of music that promote anti social behavior.

According to Mediamark Research Inc, white people support the gangsta rap music phenomenon by purchasing more than seventy percent of the rap music in this country. But no one ever associates this music with the white people who do crime. However, let a prominent African American get busted for dog fighting or be shot to death by a hail of bullets and the first thing some people want to say is that hip hop is killing the black community. Why is it killing the black community when the white community is just as guilty of indulging in this phenomenon? Which music culture is responsible for Riley Ann Sawyers’ murder?

But instead of seeing Riley’s murder as a component of a larger issue associated specifically with the white community everyone is more than ready to just see it for what it was, the heinous death of a little girl. No one is asking what form of music the parents listened to. No one is making claims that this is standard white people behavior. And no one has mentioned that this is another instance of white on white crime. The purity and integrity of the white community remains intact. No one is making plans to move away from the white people who are so violent. No one is going to say property values are dropping because of the white crime phenomenon. No one is writing a book on why white people are violent and/or what white people must do to save their community.

Most people will continue to live their lives in the white community with a business as usual attitude. There will be a little talk and there will be a little gossip about what happened to this little girl. The families of everyone involved has been impacted so of course their worlds have changed. But to the general community this will be the end of it.

Tuesday, December 4, 2007 Posted by | African Americans, Black On Black Crime, Crime Statistics, Gangsta Rap, Hip Hop, Justice, Life, Racism, Thoughts, White On White Crime | 11 Comments

Read Them And Weep

Table 43

The numbers are in for 2006 and I must they are more surprising than I could have even imagined. In three different categories black people committed more crimes than their white counterparts. In the category of murder and non negligent manslaughter white people committed 4,595 crimes (46.9%) compared to 4,990 crimes (50.9%) committed by black people. In the category of robbery white people committed 39,419 crimes (42.2%) compared to black people’s 52,541 (56.3%). And finally, in the category of criminal gambling, white people committed 2,358 crimes (26.2%) compared to black people’s whopping 6,467 crimes (71.8%). Click here to see Table 43 for yourself.

Now let’s get to the really surprising part.

Out of the 10,437,620 crimes committed in the United States 7,270,214 were committed by white people while 2,924,724 were committed by black people. In terms of percentages that means 69.7% of the crime in 2006 were committed by white people and 28% committed by black people. According to the numbers published by the Department of Justice and the Federal Bureau of Investigations, black people should be far from being America’s number one problem.

It is true black people are the main culprits in the three categories mentioned in the first paragraph. But in twenty eight other categories the white community is seriously out of hand. White people rule such categories as forcible rape (65.3% to 32.5%), aggravated assault (63.2% to 34.5%), burglary (69% to 29.2%), larceny (68.6% to 28.9%), motor vehicle theft (62.7% to 34.9%), arson (76% to 21.6%), arson violent crime (58.5% to 39.3%), arson property crime (68.2% to 29.4%), other assaults (65.2% to 32.2%), forgery and counterfeiting (70.1% to 28.2%), fraud (68.7% to 30%), embezzlement (65.7% to 32.2%), stolen property (64.6% to 33.7%), vandalism (75.4% to 22.2%), weapons (57.7% to 40.6%), prostitution (56.7% to 39.6%), sex offenders (with the exception for forcible rape and prostitution, 73.3% to 24.5%), drug abuse violations (63.6% to 35.1%), family offenses (66.9% to 30.7%), driving under the influence (88.4% to 9.2%), violation of liquor laws (85.4% to 10.7%), drunkenness (84.3% to 13.2%), disorderly conduct (63% to 34.7%), vagrancy (56.7% to 41.6%), suspicion of crime (58.7% to 38.2%), curfew and loitering violations (61% to 37.2%), runaways (68.5% to 25%), and all other offenses with the exception of traffic (67.5% to 30%).

Time and time again we hear about black on black crime rates and how black children are out of hand and how single parent homes are tearing apart the very fabric of the black community. Let the media tell the story and black people are downright insane with criminal activity. Unfortunately, in the past, the only numbers I could ever find were the numbers associated with murder where black people out number their white murdering associates by 395 crimes. But according to these numbers from Table 43 it looks like white criminals are in a league of their own compared to their black counterparts when the full measure of criminal activity is applied. William Bennett may have been correct when he said that if one wanted to reduce crime all one had to do was abort every black baby. But if someone really wanted to reduce crime to an even greater degree it would be far more efficient and far more effective to abort every white baby.

But, the people in the news only want to bring attention to the murder rates where the number of crimes committed per race is compared to the overall population of the race. To stand back and listen to the media tell the story, and most of us do, black people are seven times more likely to commit crimes or black people crime rates are seven hundred percent higher then white crime rates. This is automatically translated to mean that black people are committing more crimes and deserve a disproportionate amount of scrutiny from the public and law enforcement. And although everyone makes the assumption that the correlation between rates and numbers is directly linked, the reality is that the black community is far from being the only purveyors of gloom and doom.

When the suggestion is made that rates and percentages can be manipulated, people pop out the woodwork to defend the system. How many times have I heard someone say something like I simply couldn’t handle the truth? How many times have I heard someone say something along the lines of it is a given that black people commit more crimes? When asked for the raw numbers broken down by race, white mindset defenders howl like a wolf to the moon.

At best all I could do is take the percentages and the population numbers and do the math to get some estimates of the raw numbers. From this exercise it appeared certain that white people were the criminals more often than people wanted to admit. But without the true numbers from some governing body few people would be converted by my statistics. But Table 43 is here and we should finally be able to put all this nonsense to rest. All that is left to say to those people who insist on keeping the propaganda that the black community is some kind of threat to society is read’em and weep.

So will we see more news stories about the proliferation of white on white crime? Will we see more articles about the criminality of white people? Will we see anything that will suggest that white people commit more crimes than anyone else here in America? In all honesty I would have to guess that this will mean nothing. The reality is that the status quo will remain regardless of any evidence that it is built on a foundation of lies. Too many people in key places want to adhere to the subjugation of black people that they will continue to spread the misinformation. Regardless of any evil anyone else commits black people are the most evil.

Wednesday, October 31, 2007 Posted by | African Americans, Black Community, Black Culture, Black On Black Crime, Black People, Crime Statistics, Justice, Life, News, Racism, Thoughts | 11 Comments

Racism On Cruise Control

Racism On Cruise Control

One issue in the propaganda against black people that I have been paying a great deal of attention to lately is the belief that black people are responsible for most of the crime in America. Some visitors to my blog quote statistics from impartial sources such as right winger David Horowitz, the epitome of racist thought Pat Buchanan, and Tom Metzger who was a leader in the White Aryan Resistance. Good white gentlemen such as these would never say anything to perpetuate an impression that black people are less civilized than white people. I can understand why some white people would buy into their rhetoric without even batting an eye to verify their racist claims. But what I find truly amazing and sad is the fact that there are a number of black people who have embraced such racist views on the black community without any evidence of accuracy or honesty other than these white people said so.

Lately, I’ve spent a good percentage of my time researching numbers from the Bureau of Justice Statistics to find the numbers to counter a lot of claims I’ve heard on the news and from visitors to my blog. People are quick to rattle off some statistics about how black crime percentages are several times higher than their white crime counterparts in certain areas. But I have yet to have anyone supply real numbers from the bureau or any other source that can at least front that they’re impartial. Usually someone will say something like the rate of black males from age X to age Y commit crime at a rate of thirty five percent while white males in the same age group only have a rate of five percent. Because the differences in rates are so high people automatically translate this into numbers. But no one would say the guy with money in the bank at a rate of ten percent automatically has more money than the guy with money at a rate of two percent. Everyone would ask the next logical question, how much money does each person have?

After so many years of propaganda that says blacks are criminals, blacks are mentally inferior, blacks are lazy, blacks are dishonest, and other blacks are negative nonsense, we have gotten to a point where the negative black propaganda no longer needs to be nurtured or sold to the community at large. In fact, the negative propaganda has become so ingrained into our conscious and subconscious that black people are now saddled with the burden of proving that we are not the stereotypical image of black people widely accepted by the public at large.

The black job applicant in an interview has only a few minutes to prove why they are the best candidate for the job and to prove that he or she isn’t the typical black person that we all know black people to be, but the so called exceptional black person who embraces the same values as white people. The more the black job applicant does to downgrade the non-white ethnicity and promote the desire to be assimilated into the white dominated corporate system then the easier time the applicant will have convincing the employer to allay their skepticism. Chances are that the job applicant could never overcome the mistrust an employer has developed for the black community in total. All the applicant can hope for is to convince the employer that they are different and are better.

When a person has the audacity to say that black people are no different than any other group of people there is an immediate backlash from the public. It is only natural for some white people to find such a claim a threat to their sense of superiority over black people. But some black people who have successfully convinced themselves on the idea that they are superior to the average black person would be threatened by anything that would cause them to reassess their opinion of the black community and force them to realize the simple fact that they aren’t so special after all. Either group would work to undermine any evidence that black people are not the criminal misfits certain agencies, entities, and individuals that centuries of misinformation say we are.

No one is saying that there are no criminals in the black community. No one is saying that crime in the black community should not be a concern. But it is unfair to say that black people have a proclivity to commit crime at rates that are far higher than the white community without giving the public the complete information and some indication as to what the actual numbers are. People hear one thing and immediately assume another. Based on nothing more than rates people are ready to believe that black people are responsible for the vast majority of crime in America. Black on black crime is this outrageous phenomenon but white on white crime is virtually nonexistent. But the numbers say something else. The numbers are far more different than most people are willing to accept.

Interestingly, when some people are faced with the truth they still adhere to the lies. Maybe the lie is simply more comforting because it is what we’ve been conditioned to believe for so long. But the longer people allow themselves to be manipulated by the lies and the misdirection the longer people continue to make the choice to have the truth buried under a mass of assimilation and obedience and adherence to group controlled thinking. Try to explain the concept of real numbers to people and they’ll close their eyes tightly shut, turn their head away, and plug their fingers in their ears to keep their mind immersed in the fraud. To most people, the fraud has become the truth simply because that is what society has come to want to support. The truth is now the fraud because our community no longer believes in concepts such as honesty and reality but in what can be sold to a jury of our peers.

The community of our American peers has rendered its verdict and the verdict is that black people are more prone to be anything and everything evil and white people are law abiding and everything good despite what reality may say. And there are way too many intelligent folks who claim to be looking for the truth, but the reality is that they are looking for anything that confirms what the vast majority of the public already believes. The propaganda no longer needs active nurturing for it is soundly embedded into the American psyche.

Saturday, September 22, 2007 Posted by | African Americans, Black Community, Black Culture, Black Men, Black On Black Crime, Black People, Black Women, Life, Racism, Thoughts | 13 Comments

Bush Understands the Need for Change

Gulf Wars II

“I recognize there’s a debate here in America as to whether or not failure in Iraq would cause there to be more danger here in America. I strongly believe that’s the case. It matters if the United States does not believe in the universality of freedom. It matters to the security of people here at home if we don’t work to change the conditions that cause nineteen kids to be lured onto airplanes to come and murder our citizens.” – George H. W. Bush

The President has made a claim that the more than a half trillion dollar fiasco in Iraq is part of an effort to change the conditions that would cause young men to become murderers and for the population to be the victim of these young men. The conditions the President was aiming to change were related or rooted in the political climate of Iraq. But Mr. Bush conveniently forgets that the majority of the hijackers were from Saudi Arabia. Iraq, then led by Saddam Hussein, was the obvious and unverified hands on favorite to suffer the wrath of a country that needed petroleum energy. Add the fact that irrecoverable damage would have befell the American dollar had Iraq carried out its plan to use the euro currency to transact the sell of its petroleum. Had Iraq sold oil for euros instead of dollars the resulting currency collapse would have pushed the United States down a financial hole that would have been inescapable of ever escaping. The ripple effect through the rest of the world would result in a global crisis the world would suffer for years. So we’ll just skip over all of that.

For all his apparent intellectual simplicity and his inherit failure to think things through thoroughly, even President Bush understands the connection between the sociopolitical climate and people who may be living under a tyrannical form of subjugation. There is a potential for danger if such an arrangement continues unabated. Without so much as a single flutter the President will look anyone in the eye and say that the half trillion dollars and nearly thirty eight hundred American lives lost in the attack on Iraq is more than a bargain in the effort to protect America from the menace of an ideology that takes great umbrage with our freedom.

Okay. More instances of self induced amnesia is called for. Let’s conveniently forget that the freedoms enjoyed by countries such as Norway, Denmark, Sweden, and such suffer from virtually no attacks on their freedoms. Maybe this is just more propaganda designed to keep us from knowing the truth. So we’ll just skip over all of that. I also know that these countries don’t bother to invest half their gross domestic product in a huge war machine. These countries realize that they can make their citizens safer by following an ideology that doesn’t inflict their views of economics and social standards on countries around the world that live civilly under political systems that are unfamiliar. It is quite possible that it is not our freedom that is under attack. Maybe the people in these foreign lands are simply trying to defend themselves from an attack on their way of life. But we’ll just skip over all of that right now.

If it is understood that the political systems can adversely affect a people subjugated then why doesn’t America do more to help its own population of a people subjugated and driven to commit crimes attacking other people’s freedom? We constantly hear how the black crime phenomenon is just exploding in urban areas and how a small segment of the population, the descendants of Africa, is responsible for it. According to the Bureau of Justice Statistics we could possibly save thousands of lives every year if we took steps to counter some of the hopelessness in the black community. If the United States made sure that a small percentage of our available educational and employment opportunities went to the African American community. It would also be helpful if people had access to medicine and medical services and actually felt like people cared about their health and their lives.

So if the United States can spend over a half trillion dollars in a humanitarian effort to help the free the poor people of Iraq from their subjugation, how much would we be willing to spend and sacrifice in an effort to help the black community right here in America? We are spending something in the neighborhood of ten billion dollars a month in the war to free the people of Iraq. That is over three hundred million dollars a day. How much would the United States be willing to pay to help its own subjugated people?

It is a rhetorical question. We all know the answer is zilch. If a school does so much as reserve one open placement for a person of color we know that there are attorney’s all across America waiting to attack their attack on white privilege and holler reverse discrimination. We all know that if the United States government gives a single solitary dollar to the betterment of the black community someone will be quick to slap the stigma of welfare on the effort and people will immediately back away from the project as if it was laced with anthrax. And universal healthcare? Don’t get me started on the evils of socialism. That’s just downright un-American.

So we’ll continue to spend three hundred million a day in Iraq and throw in a couple of American soldiers’ lives to boot. We’ll do this in a humanitarian effort to help those people over there. Never mind the fact that they no longer want the United States military there. We are going to help them whether they like it or not. And the subjugated people of America? Maybe someday another country will come and liberate us from our oppressive regime.

Friday, September 21, 2007 Posted by | African Americans, Black Community, Black Culture, Black Men, Black On Black Crime, Black People, Black Women, Iraq, Justice, Life, News, Philosophy, Racism, Thoughts, Universal Healthcare, White Privilege | Leave a comment

Statistical Rates Are Not Real Numbers

Percentage

Yesterday a person woke up with a dollar in their pocket. This morning the same person woke up with two dollars in their pocket. The person had managed to double their savings in a single day. That’s a daily percentage rate of one hundred percent. That’s an annual percentage rate of well over thirty six thousand percent. Corporate America would kill (and some literally do) just to get one thousandth of that kind of rate on their investments. Many companies would be happy to get just a ten percent return. So the rate on that dollar investment yesterday was way significantly higher than most people could ever hope for.

But what are the real numbers on such an investment? Our dollar investor earned a dollar yesterday and doubled the money. Let’s take a look at someone with a million dollars in the bank with an annual rate of return of just six percent. That rate is pathetic when compared to the thirty six thousand percent annual rate. But in just one day that million dollars at six percent return earned over one hundred sixty four dollars in a single day. It doesn’t take a financial investor to figure out who came out ahead yesterday. The dollar investor may have had the higher rate but the barely a millionaire earned a lot more money.

The bottom line is that the rate is only a number indicating a ratio. In the example above the base was the initial investments. We’ve seen that a remarkable rate of 36,500% on a one dollar investment can’t compete with a six percent rate on a million dollar investment. No one would ever confuse the dollaraire with the millionaire regardless of the rates. And yet, some how, when we think of crime rates, somebody has managed to sell the American public that black people commit far more crimes than their white counterparts based on nothing but rates.

According to the year 2000 data from the census bureau white people comprise 69.1 percent of the population while black people makeup 12.3 percent of the population. We will hear things like black people commit crimes at a rate per thousand population compared to the white rate per thousand population. If the population numbers were equal we could leave it there without any need to go further. But the population is far from equal. We need to see what the numbers are before we start assuming one group commits more crimes than the other.

The Bureau of Justice Statistics has some numbers for certain categories of crimes broken down by race. Unfortunately, the way the charts are organized and the explanations behind them makes it difficult to determine exactly how many black people commit a specific type of crime compared to white people. Also, there are certain numbers that are not included as part of the crime statistics. For example, when a police officer kills a person it’s not considered homicide but when the reverse happens it is part of the statistic counts.

Statistics should be used with caution and do not necessarily reflect reality. With that said, statistics should be kept in their proper perspective. Any agency that routinely touts statistics without the benefit of offering actual numbers to determine the impact of their argument should be viewed with suspicion. If a person goes to the bank and ask for a balance on their savings they would never settle for hearing the interest rate. The rate could be the highest rate in the land. But regardless, most people would want to know the exact amount they have in the bank down to the penny.

I’d like to know my account balance please.
Your money is at nine percent interest!
That’s great, but I’d like to know my balance.
Your money is at the highest interest rate available.
That’s wonderful. But how much money is it?
Sir, you have your rate isn’t that enough? We have to help the next person.
No it’s not enough. I want to know how much money I have.
Security! Code black at teller three!

We should be looking at criminal statistics the same way. If someone is saying that blacks commit crimes at a higher rate than their white counterparts that’s one thing. But if people take such a claim on rates and are automatically accepting this to mean that black people are committing more crimes than white people then we really need to back them up and say, that’s not necessarily true. Rates are really immaterial for this comparison. We need to see the actual numbers. Actual numbers of who is committing crime is a far more accurate measure than statistical numbers, rates, and ratios.

There’s a joke about a woman who’s told that twelve Brazillions were killed in a terrorist attack. The woman replies excitedly, oh my gosh those poor people! There’s a pause and then the woman says, how much is a brazillion? It was a dumb blond joke. But at least she was smart enough to get clarification for something that she didn’t quite understand. Too many people hear one thing and then connect dots that don’t exist to form a conclusion. Too many people are given rates and make the assumption that they are actual numbers. More people need to ask the question what do the rates actually mean.

Friday, September 7, 2007 Posted by | African Americans, Black Community, Black Culture, Black On Black Crime, Life, Racism, Thoughts | 3 Comments

The Message Behind the Cartoon

Don’t Snitch

I found this cartoon on the Mirror On American blog while surfing the internet earlier this week. The cartoon depicts a late night in a traditionally black urban neighborhood where a man has just shot another man in the back. The children in the cartoon probably witnessed the shooting. But the little girl tells the shooter that she didn’t see anything. The shooter tells the little girl that she’s a good little ho. But what really makes this cartoon speak to me is the billboard in the background of the scene selling the urban image of guns, music, and thug life sponsored by BET and the Warner Music label.

The cartoon is from Ed Gamble of the Florida Times Union and was published August 17th. It looks like Mr. Gamble understands a little deeper than most about what’s happening in the black community.

Few would argue that crime is not a problem in the black community. I don’t know a single soul who would argue otherwise. Yes there are black people killing black people in the black community. However, there are also white people killing white people in the white neighborhoods. But because there has been such a negative stigma placed on crime in the black community it is the only one that catches our collective attention so we can point our collective finger at black people and collectively say look how uncivilized you are. Black crime is magnified but little is done to correct the situation other than more police and more black people in private jails under contracts with the state.

The billboard in the background of the cartoon shows just one example of how corporate America is using advertising to sell the image of the black thug life to people in the black community. Corporate America is selling the image of a good life in the black community is the one where you can rap your life away with money, guns, bling, and women. The message from white dominated corporate America is that the only thing that matters is immediate personal gratification. The only things missing out of the cartoon’s image is the suggestion of alcohol and the proliferation of cheap fast food.

It is very true that black people are not doing nearly enough to take care of our own. Black people and black families are spending too much of their time trying to do what they can to get by or to get their own immediate gratification going on. And the age old paradigm of black people going to work in corporate America with all of the baggage that follows us isn’t helping and it isn’t about to change anytime soon. White people have described black people as lazy at work. White people have described black people as criminals at home. And the black community responds by following the script white people dictate. We simply are not doing enough to break this programming.

Some people found the cartoon offensive. It isn’t the most flattering portrayal of the black community. People will see the image and say that the Mr. Gamble was being insensitive and racist in his portrayal of black people. To say the cartoonist is being racist is to say that the society that inspired the cartoonist is in itself racist. It isn’t enough to stop the cartoonist from drawing his interpretation of what he sees. If we want to stop the image we have to stop it at its root. We can arrest the shooter, but the damage to the black community has already been done. The man who was shot is already dead.

Besides, the shooter is just a manifestation of the programming and not the true root of the problem. While some people are content to lock up another brother who made the choice to become the very definition of how white people describe blacks, a smarter move would be to do what we can to keep more black people from becoming the very characters white people say we are. We have to look at the image in the cartoon and see the complete picture. We can’t just stop and say that a black man shot another black man. That’s pretty obvious and that’s all societal thinking wants us to see.

But we have to learn to look in the background and see the messages from corporate America that is constantly telling black people how we are supposed to behave. BET, owned by the media conglomerate Viacom, and Warner Music, owned by Warner Brothers, are both white corporate entities that do a thousand times more damage to the black community than any single black person with a gun could ever do. We need to acknowledge the fact that the programming exist. Once we know that it exist we can learn to recognize it. Once we learn to recognize it we can learn to resist it. And once the black community learns to resist the programming we can learn to write the script the way we want it to playout.

Tuesday, August 28, 2007 Posted by | African Americans, Black Community, Black Culture, Black Men, Black On Black Crime, Black People, Black Women, Gangsta Rap, Hip Hop, Life, News, Racism, Thoughts | 6 Comments