Black people have never denied that black on black crime is a problem in America. Hence the reason why so many African American men and women have created mentor programs, non-profit organizations, and empowerment groups to improve the lives of children of color, especially in low income areas. None of us deny that far too many of our youth are dying in big cities like Chicago nor can we escape the gang related violence in other urban cities.
As a young black man, I am probably the most critical person of my own race for what we do to ourselves and what we do to each other which is painfully obvious in my first published book, Tired of Being Black. See for yourself https://www.amazon.com/Tired-Being-Black-Rodney-Jordan-ebook/dp/B009EPUJM6/ref=tmm_kin_swatch_0?_encoding=UTF8&qid=&sr=#nav-subnav
However, what continues to frustrate black people is the inconsistent practices of law enforcement officers, the lopsided news coverage on related subjects, and the lack of concern/compassion from those who cannot relate to the racial disparities in the United States.
Korryn Gaines, a young black mother in Baltimore, was fatally shot by police Monday, August 1, 2016 after pointing a gun at police. http://www.nbcnews.com/news/us-news/baltimore-county-police-fatally-shoot-korryn-gaines-boy-5-hurt-n621461. In defense of the police officers, I think any normal person would have shot her too. We all have the right to defend ourselves. On the other hand, why is she dead yet Anthony Vigliotti is still living after doing the same thing on Friday, July 8, 2016 in Branford, Conn? http://wtnh.com/2016/07/08/man-arrested-for-pointing-gun-at-cop-during-road-rage/. Now, some may argue that these were in two different locations. While that is true, it doesn’t equate to the differences in how we see whites treated by police officers versus blacks across the country. In Norfolk, VA, a white man, armed robbery suspect, was barricaded in his home for three days before finally being taken into police custody. Meanwhile, the black man believed to be responsible for the Dallas police shootings was killed immediately by a robot for the same thing. Why was one man allowed to stay closed-in for three days while the other wasn’t even given three hours? This is why black people are so angry.
The news coverage doesn’t help at all. Black men are labeled “thugs,” white men are considered victims of their “circumstances.” “The black guy deserved to die because of his past but the white guy was apprehended because he has emotional issues dating back to his childhood or there is no way he could know right from wrong after growing up rich.” When black males are killed by police, news pundits drag them through the mud making every case for why they should be dead and then criticize those who publicly demand justice. On the other hand, when police officers are murdered by a black man, they receive nothing but support from the same so-called news experts. “Blue Lives Matter” they repeatedly scream yet they tell members of the Black Lives Matter movement to shut up. Again, this is why black people are so angry.
To add insult to injury, those who’ve never had to deal with these unfair practices act as though they didn’t see people like Alton Sterling or Philando Castile get murdered on video. When people say, “Black Lives Matter,” hypocrites say, “No! All Lives Matter!” Some of them even drive the knife a little bit deeper when they tell black people to “get over it.” Yes, this is another reason black people are so angry.
If “All Lives Matter” where is the support and concern for black lives?” If every life carries the same value, why doesn’t everyone change their Facebook profile pic to honor the lives of people like the gentlemen I mentioned earlier or Trayvon Martin, Tamir Rice, or Sandra Bland?
Whether law enforcement supporters want to believe it or not, cops have committed their fair share of sins too. In the same way, not every teacher should be in front of children, not every doctor should be diagnosing patients, and not every mechanic should be working on vehicles.
There is nothing wrong with standing with “blue” but why can’t all Americans stand with black too?
If a group of people you associate with aren’t suffering from injustice, it is very easy to act as though you don’t care but it doesn’t negate the fact that it is still someone’s reality. White people don’t have to worry about being profiled by the police, just like men don’t have to worry about equal pay, the same way heterosexual people don’t have to fight for marital rights and equality. What’s amazing though is that people will join hands for every cause except black ones.
“Pray for Orlando.” “Pray for Dallas.” (Expletive) the black people. Wouldn’t you be angry?
Rodney Jordan is a fifth and sixth grade STEM Teacher in Northern Virginia.