The War on Blacks!

Was the War on Drugs Successful?

The War on Drugs was a successful war, but not on drugs. What the War on Drugs was successful at was imprisoning young black youths, removing them from schools and making schoolwork more challenging and frustrating for children who were already stigmatized.

Imprisoning children destroys families, by trapping them in a vicious cycle of poverty where they lose the constitutional right to vote, lose the ability to get an education (since they are denied access to federal financial aide for college), plus a history of imprisonment makes most decent paying jobs inaccessible to them. What a way to begin a life!

This has created a cycle of ex-convict and delinquent youths robbed of their “manhood” while imprisoned, trapping them in a world of violence, environmental toxins and isolation that inevitably leads to more violence, premature death, imprisonment, drugs and unfulfilled dreams.

Society does not recognize its role in this targeting of communities of color. Every time a black youth ventures outside his invisible fence of concentrated poverty, and gets harassed or murdered, it has a profound and pervasive impact. Perhaps this is why such news is not covered; only black-on-black crime is covered.

Until a few years ago, I had no idea of the magnitude of structural racism destroying families in communities of color. Blacks are 14-15% of the US population yet about a 1/3 of the prison population. This is not because Blacks are more violent, but rather because of racial profiling that targets them, especially while they drive or when in school.

Seen from the eyes of Black youths, the world is not a hospitable place. Black youths are viewed suspiciously and deemed criminals by society. Black youths and communities are aware of these beliefs.

Imagine Black youths out to have “fun”, yet can’t, because White adults stare, show fear at their presence, stare past them, clutch their handbags, follow them into a store and even arrest or murder them while buying perfectly legal items at a retail outlet.

How would you feel if your children shared such experiences?

Black youths cannot go to a convenience store without being accosted, followed or watched by store staff. Perhaps some of this suspicion is justified, but most is not.

Solution:

As adults show Black youths the same respect you show other youths: start with a genuine smile and be prepared to be amazed at the results.

Many children from communities of color lack exposure, making communication difficult. Definitions and non-verbal cues have different meanings for them.

Was the War on Drugs Successful?

The War on Drugs legalized racial profiling in the minds of law enforcement officers and the justice departments. A brief review of articles noted in the US Citizens database gleaned many established and new observations. Granted, these observations are anecdotal; therefore these are areas for further investigation. Racial profiling targets Black persons, especially the youths. Racial profiling equals police harassment, with attendant police brutality and violence.

The magnitude of the devastation caused by the War on Drugs on communities of color added exponentially to the psychological trauma of slavery, chronic discrimination and an inferiority complex.

Many communities of color live in a state of dysthymia (chronic low-grade depression) with many folks feeling helpless and hopeless about the future. Many search for meaning through religion, others through gangs, and still others through living in isolation. Remember at least one in three families have a loved one in prison. That is disruptive and defeating.

The War on Drugs has resulted in mandatory sentencing of poor drug offenders. For example, possession of five grams of crack – a cheaper form of cocaine – carries a five-year sentence, while cocaine carries a five-year sentence if the equivalent of 5,000 grams is in a person’s possession. Similarly, stiff sentences apply to marijuana, which is now legal in a few states and has medicinal uses. Where did this all begin you might ask?

The War on Drugs started in the Richard Nixon era. The privatization of prisons took off with the Justice Department collaborating with private prisons after Bill Clinton reduced the budget for law enforcement and the Justice Department.

Since then, explosive growth in prison populations suggests that private prisons have successfully rounded up the criminals from the War of Drugs. However, that was not the case, as it was just a smokescreen of stereotypes. Closer inspection of data refutes that claim by the demonstration of disparities in the justice system and law enforcement.

Private prisons and the Justice Department have a lucrative partnership (paid for by taxpayers) that arrest targeted individuals despite known innocence. These innocent victims, usually challenged in self-defense, are subjected to repeated adult bullying by police officers, correctional officers, judges and prosecutors. They become the main pool or source of income for private prisons and judges.

One wonders if police officers and correctional officers are selected for their brutality and, perhaps, their affiliation with ‘White Supremacy’.

New York City charges about $168,000 per year for each prisoner. This sum does not include benefits and other essentials. New York City does well, considering the accommodations at Rikers. States get more taxpayer dollars to warehouse prisoners than they receive to help poor families. $168,000 a year! Let that sink in while absorbing the landscape of American police state.

Could the above serve as an incentive or driver behind the rise in incarceration rates and prison populations? The United States is 5% of the world’s population, yet it has 25% of the world’s prison population (that is 2.2 million prisoners).

If prisons are packed with low offenders, how is crime controlled?

“Distrust all in whom the impulse to punish is powerful.” – Friedrich Nietzsche

My thoughts: Police officers take the easy way out to increase their statistics and make themselves look like crime fighters. However, police officers surreptitiously frame innocent victims while leaving gang members undisturbed to wreak fear and oppression in communities of color. #BlackonBlack Crimes

Police Officers choose victims rather than finding criminals.

Associate Editor’s comments: I share the same thoughts on the war on drugs as it too has ruined many families and communities that are White, Black and Hispanic. This especially true in the poor sections of cities and communities where all those races are targeted.

As a side note, the irony in all of this is that the Government created this mess early on in the Iran-Contra Affair, when the government willingly flooded Black neighborhoods with cocaine in order to fund Nicagua’s Manuel Noriega, which in turn spiked drug related arrests even more.

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Iran%E2%80%93Contra_affair

Please share your thoughts… I am interested as I continue to do research.

911 The New Number to Call For Revenge – Part 2

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Yesterday, four heavily armed WHITE cops came to my house attacked my son and I because of a WHITE accuser’s concern for my health.

What did I say to generate such concern:   I can’t think well….I am going to rest.     Does that statement warrant cops invading my home with assault rifles, others guns and weapons– enough ammmunition to kill platoon?  Does it justify cops attacking me  and my son?

The four cops would not listen but handcuffed me, knowing I was hypoglycemic.    They did not call EMTs for backup as they should have given this was medical. Did they check my blood sugar? NO However, their actions certainly aggravated,  exacerbated and they almost killed a hypoglycemic person because of the accusations of a white person.

When did 911 become the number for revenge or concern because one is not eating. Perhaps accusers should be questioned more.

The accuser ran to her husband for protection…wondering why I would be upset? *#$%**

911 is the new number to call for Revenge.

 

Will I always need a WHITE PERSON to advocate whenever I encounter the boys in blue uniforms?

What a world we live! As a black person I am not free. Any white idiot can accuse a black person or call the police on a black person for any stupid reason.   The police (not being paid to think) will ignore the words of the black person and believe the white person. I am guilty until a WHITE person says I am not. Is that justice? Separate and unequal?  And Isn’t abuse of police power and police brutality?  Also abuse of 911?  The police didn’t seem to mind;  they showed off their weapons and were itching for the opportunity to use them.

Folks, when in need of revenge, CALL 911 to get your local police to do the job of revenge for FREE.

911 The New Number to Call For Revenge

 

black-life
Black Life

The Day That I Started To Understand Racism

For the first time in my life, I had a sense for what it was like everyday for my black friends. They regularly have to make decisions about whether they will defend their honor and stand up to racism or shrink back again from the threat of violence and its consequences.

For those of us for whom thinking about race is an optional matter, we have to be very careful about touting the advances in racial matters. Things are better than they were even a generation ago. But the realities are still there. I don’t think we can continue to pretend that racism is only “really” racism when someone is starving, being killed, or being enslaved. My friend, Pastor Jon Robinson, said it like this:

Privilege not only causes white people to miss instances of racism but it causes them to think they get to set the terms or parameters for what constitutes racism as well. For example; situations that can universally be understood as racist like a blatant hate crime, are “in bounds.” But anything that’s not as obvious is dismissed and those who attempt to shed light on less obvious forms of racism get accused of race baiting or, my personal favorite, playing the race card. Which essentially means that if it’s not obviously racist to a white person then it’s not racist.

“The frustration and pain of not having my perspective taken seriously or feeling like I have to defend my position all the time, is even more of a problem than living in fear and making the kinds of choices you describe. I spend almost every day feeling like I have to fight to the death to be heard, seen and respected.”

Dr. Jeremiah Gibbs

IMG_8342 It was a hot June day in 2011. My wife and I had been parents for just four days.

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Carter Woodson: Black History Month

Black History Month Carter_woodsonquote12

We do not show the Negro how to overcome segregation, but we teach him how to accept it as final and just. – Carter G. Woodson #quote

Lately, I am reminded of my blackness. I like it. I am bold, audacious and fair. My speech and syntax are different. My…

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Black History Month – Carter Woodson An Intellect

 

We do not show the Negro how to overcome segregation, but we teach him how to accept it as final and just. – Carter G. Woodson #quote

Lately, I am reminded of my blackness. I like it. I am bold, audacious and fair. My speech and syntax are different. My grammar is a mixture of American, British and Jamaican English, and it is not perfect, but it is my culture.

My strength amazes but my wit, intelligence, and plain-old common sense, are phenomenal.

I tell white folks a smidgeon of my background:

• some are amazed I survived,

• some are impressed with my accomplishments

• some think I am one of kind

• some think I should have severe mental illness given my stressful and traumatic personal history some even think I have hysteria

• some even hate ….because that is who they are.

I tell black folks a smidgeon and more:

All shake their heads in understanding. Understanding of stressful and traumatic environments, places where black dignity, self-confidence, self-pride and community are continuously demolished, denigrated and humiliated. They all have experienced, the Black Experience of blatantly-overt and majority-witnessed abuses and injustices of discrimination at the hands of the greater society that does not care.

( There are significant number of progressives white and non-white folks. They understand the power of cultural diversity and the devastating damage of American history in black culture.)

This month is Black History month. #blackhistorymonth Started by historian Carter G. Woodson in 1826 as “Negro History Week,” the second week in February to coincide with the birthday of two great Human Rights Leaders: Abraham Lincoln and Frederick Douglas.

Why?

At the time of Negro History Week’s launch Carter Woodson argued teaching black history was essential to ‘ensure the physical and intellectual survival of race within the broader society:

 

“If a race has no history, it has no worthwhile tradition, it becomes a negligible factor in the thought of the world, and it stands in danger of being exterminated. The American Indian left no continuous record. He did not appreciate the value of tradition; and where is he today? The Hebrew keenly appreciated the value of tradition, as is attested by the Bible itself. In spite of worldwide persecution, therefore, he is a great factor in our civilization.” Carter G. Woodson

In 1976, at the bicentennial celebration of this country, Negro History Week was expanded to a month. Seize the opportunity to honor the too-often neglected accomplishments of black Americans in every area of endeavor throughout our history.- President Gerald R. Ford

The differentness of races, moreover, is no evidence of superiority or of inferiority. This merely indicates that each race has certain gifts which the others do not possess. – Carter G. Woodson #quote

http://www.africanamericanhistorymonth.gov/about.html

The Forgotten Black Experience, not Trending…What is it?

BE:  behind cages
BE: behind cages

Have you ever been part of a conversation, physically, but not socially? Everyone makes eye contact with each other except you. They are all planning some other event and you are not invited! Without knowing it, you are invisible and irrelevant! The Black Experience is the risk of being ignored in a way that is deeply personal, emotionally and physically damaging. Tim Wise can tell you more than I about, The Forgotten Black Experience and its people.

These nuanced encounters happen every day to black children and adults all over.

Still, I think it is all in my head.

But the same pattern,

Repeated over and over again

Not only to me, but to million others,

Tells me it is not in my head!

Yes, I know this happens to other cultural groups, even those privileged. But there are significant historical and physical differences. Today racism smolders, erupting at a moments notice under seemingly benign circumstances.

The new type of racism is nuanced, non-verbal and lethal. Some systems, particularly those in medicine and public health, have institutionalized racism; it is part of their social fabric.   It is so ubiquitous, they don’t see it.  Embedded in their hierarchy and bureaucratic systems is the survival of White Privilege.

White Privilege, to be blinded, to deny, to be bystanders who benefit in the face of gross overt societal inequities.

Openly manifested in the language and climate are their discomforts with black people and other targeted ethnic minorities.

All systems with gaps and disparities have elements of racism accompanied by discrimination and stereotypes, which result in limited access to blacks and other minorities. Access is a huge problem for many disadvantaged groups. Quality care is another. All of these are part of the black experience, interestingly, this happens before people of color utter a word.

The Unending Black Experience #13

My recent hospital admissions were prime examples of discrimination on many levels without any recourse, unless I died. Forget complaining to the hospital or some local government agencies paid to protect you. I wasted several days and calls over months only find out staff changes left my complaint out in the cold and lost in the shuffle.

Finally, I realized they were not there to help only to get a pay check, a total waste of taxpayers dollars. I received conflicting information and no follow-up — I got tired of calling them back! Yes, I digress because I was tortured and bullied for over 17 hours in a hospital emergency department before urgent surgery.

How can I not be bitter? To not have my pain controlled and to wake up surrounded by vomit and blood filled buckets still untouched (or not cleared) after 2-4 hours of sleep… would this happen to a hospital board member or a friend of that mean, bully nurse in the ER? I think not! There would be media interest and outrage?

Now, I have anxiety at thoughts of entering another ER or hospital…and I should…

Did anyone care? NO! Does anyone care now? Sadly, probably not!

Will the ER crew that night change their ways? NO, they got away with it! Who knows maybe that nurse got promoted! OKay, I am being too cynical, am I? Can you blame me? You really don’t know the story so you can’t make that determination.

That hospital’s administration, my insurance company and the government agencies (who claim to protect our rights) were not interested a story, a classic example of systemic racism / discrimination that lead to increase morbidity and mortality –(disparities)–among millions of black people and other ethnic minorities.   I guess discrimination was not and is  not trending!

I wonder…

That is part of the Black Experience, never quite knowing, but suspecting based on repeated patterns of exclusion and lack of appreciation for your contributions. People claim we whine, do we?

(BTW, I do not think my insurance company should have paid for the ER part of my visit but they didn’t care.)

With little oversight of these nuanced and overt instances of racism that occur daily in Healthcare, these problems, which are causing significant harm, remain growing elephants ignored. The perpetrators instead of being shown more culturally responsive ways to handle other cultures are quietly given the nod of approval by hospital administrators, who are making millions off a system that is drowning this country in debt. Where is the government when we really need them? Busy with politics along party lines, while Main Street suffers!

Another way these systems make the playing field uneven! They keep the status quo of the dominant privileged classes by improving their health, education and access to exclusive opportunities. That is justice in America!

*********

Make no mistake

You or your ideas are not of interest

Or importance to them

Unless it comes from their own!

Such was my experience at a recent meeting. In the past, this would ruin the night but not this time. The people who refused to look me in the eyes were also the leaders and deceitfully the most passionate advocates for disenfranchised people/communities.

Then there was the “Aha” moment! I realized, “This was The Problem!” These people wear facades of advocacy. Intentionally or not, they perpetuate a system whose woven threads of discrimination, fear, and greed are part of the social make-up of the dominant privileged class.

Where is my evidence? Look around you, there is no need for evidence based studies to confirm a fact!

Finally, part of the Black Experience rest on the shoulders of black people. It is what you choose to do with that experience that will make the biggest difference in your life and others.

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I tire of always seeing the world through the lens of a culture that is not my own. Why can’t more people see it from my cultures’ point of view?   Why aren’t we given multiple chances like everyone else?

One reason: the Success of media in reinforcing stereotypes and its Failure to Listen to the undertones of other cultures!

Failure-to-Listen-in-red.nice

Want to hear more stories?  Check these out!

Unending Black Experience: White Privilege Stories

What the Hell is the “Black Experience(BE)?”

Unending List of The Black Experience -Updated 04/08/2013