"My black is smooth, eternal, deeply rooted, powerful beyond measure."
It sometimes begins with a conversation; well, in this case, "ear hustling". A few days ago, my awesome daughter Lulu and I took the train into the city. While she was seated in the thick of whatever she was listening to on her headphone, I sat next to her, being momma hypervigilant, scanning my surroundings (unfortunately, with the rise of crime in NYC, I have to pay extra attention) when the train rode into the Atlantic Ave. station and its doors opened up; two individuals walked into the subway car; a white male and a black female. It was clear that they were friends; the conversation that was being had while they were waiting for the train to pull into the station continued when they boarded and sat. I was not trying to be nosy; the volume of their voices made it impossible for me not to ear hustle.
The white male and black female were discussing the mass shooting that occurred at Tops Supermarket in Buffalo on May 15, 2022, where 10 BLACK lives were lost and 3 individuals were injured. There was a synced pause during the discourse; the black female said " This ain't going to be the last mass shooting, I'm so immune to it that it makes me numb" The white guy's response, "yeah I feel you". Shame on the black sista for having an indifferent attitude toward the loss of life that was executed in brutality in the spirit of pure hatred. And for the white guy, I'm not surprised at his response, it's not like he's an ally; the audacity of privilege.
I cannot be immune to this as a black woman mother to a black son and daughter. I am angry, no, I take that back, I'm PISSED and OUTRAGED.
She is right, this is not the first nor last time; if it isn't a mass shooting, it will be death at the hands of police or the continued day to day killing of our black and brown people by way of gun violence, drug use, and poor health. I am PISSED that as a collective, our response to the atrocities happening to our people has and continues to be passive, without real action that will force change in a magnified way. I am getting sick and tired of vigils or prayer groups; as well-intentioned as it may be is to some, it has proven to be ineffective, confirming the stronghold of white supremacy- gives us church and a bunch of candles, photo ops, permits to march and news coverage and we will be alright; an ongoing narrative of our people.
Through media, I have seen individuals from white supremacist groups declare that we are in the midst of a race war; RACE WAR?? BIG LAUGH! to be engaged in a war would entail some sort of fight back or retaliation...we don't even tip the scales of this so-called race war. Other white supremacists have evoked the Replacement Theory as justification for these race killings. Oh for those who don't know, Replacement Theory is the plot to diminish white people (I will go deeper into this on a future blog)..yeah a PLOT to diminish white people. Plot to diminish white people? hmmm, I believe it to be the other way around; here are the facts according to the FBI data:
About 64.9 percent of the 8,052 reported hate crime incidents in 2020 (2021 data is not yet available) were based on race, ethnicity, or ancestry bias; Within that category, Black Americans made up more than half of the victims-2,871 an increase from 1,972 in 2019. Black Americans make up only 12.1% of the population; data from the Pew Research Center states that 20,084 instances of anti-Black crimes were reported over the past decade.
I will say that I would not be surprised if these numbers are actually higher than what is being reported.
Activists are calling on the Biden administration to formulate a "National Summit" on hate crimes and right wing exrtremism against black people. Asking a white president/administration rooted in white supremacy to help us understand hate crimes against us?? that don't even sound right.
A very good friend of mine during one of our many spirited talks about race in America cites a fracrured community among blacks in the US as the big issue; "what made the civil rights movment was black people's ability to come together in a polarizing magnitude; the church was not a tool of pacification, but one of community organizing, a hub where strategies were outlined for implementation and execution; the same rang for post civil rights movements such as the Black Panthers whose philosophies differ but the emphasis was the same, in order for significant change to happen, black people need to come together beyond vigils, prayer circles or protest-ineffective responses to the attempted extinction of our people."
Nat Turner had the right idea....
Gone too soon....
• Roberta A. Drury, 32, of Buffalo
• Margus D. Morrison, 52, of Buffalo
• Andre Mackniel, 53, of Auburn, New York
• Aaron Salter, 55, of Lockport, New York
• Geraldine Talley, 62, of Buffalo
• Celestine Chaney, 65, of Buffalo
• Heyward Patterson, 67, of Buffalo
• Katherine Massey, 72, of Buffalo
• Pearl Young, 77, of Buffalo
• Ruth Whitfield, 86, of Buffalo