By: Bertha Lewis, The Black Institute, OpEd
That was a sign held by a protester that I saw on news coverage in Ferguson, Missouri on Monday night. I would change that slightly to HOW TO GET AWAY WITH MURDER: BE A WHITE COP, KILL A BLACK MAN!!
Once again the most outrageous decision of a racist criminal justice system came down on the heads of black people in this country. NO INDICTMENT, NO INDICTMENT?? Seriously? What does a black person in this country have to do in order to be viewed as a human being? How many times will we have to hold our breath, wishing and praying that this time things will turn out differently? How many more murders by the police of unarmed black men and boys do we have to endure before this nation metes out justice to the victims? We all knew how it would turn out, we all have seen it before, at least people of color have, but I repeat we still cross our fingers and pray fervently that by some miracle the demon of injustice can be pushed away once and for all. It has taken me almost a day to stop from crying. To stop from raging. To stop from despairing. To stop from being immobilized. If I hear be calm, be peaceful, be nonviolent one more time I am going to lose my mind. Why must we always be peaceful and nonviolent when so much war and violence is perpetrated on us? Why do mostly white people that celebrate winning football and basketball games and spring break get to overturn cars, set fires, riot and loot and this country thinks it is just a human outpouring of joy? I am so tired of being treated as subhuman and then commanded to act in a superhuman way. Thank you Boss for not shooting me. Thank you Boss for locking me up for 15 to 30 years before I can be exonerated for crimes I did not commit. Thank you Boss for allowing me to show you how I teach my sons and daughters to fear the police and fear the white establishment that perpetuates the embedded racism so much a part of the fabric of our very existence.
I am so glad to see young people on the front lines of this struggle. I am so glad to see young people take the lead and challenge the powers that be. Challenge the notion that they have no right to react to the violence that is being perpetrated on them, singularly and as a whole. Every time we want to deal with cops murdering black people, we get ‘WHAT ABOUT BLACKS KILLING BLACKS?’. What about it? We can talk about that and we can deal with that, but don’t keep trying to deflect away from the question and the issue. Cops are getting away with murder and killing black people with impunity.
WE CHARGE GENOCIDE!! Yes there it is, the ugly truth. WE CHARGE GENOCIDE AND THE FIRE THIS TIME WILL NOT BE EXTINGUISHED. LET IT BURN!
For more information contact:
Kira Shepherd, The Black Institute