Friday, January 6, 2017

Race, Rage, Revenge

Four Black people kidnapped a handicapped white man, who could not protect himself and tortured him, beat him and filmed the assault. The country is in an uproar. When two Black girls names and faces showed up on the news as two of the perpetrators my mouth dropped in astonishment first because they were Black, and at the same time the horror of them being women was shattering.

Brittany Covington (who filmed the felony assault) and her older sister Tanisha Covington and friends were all officially charged with the following: Hill was charged with aggravated kidnapping, hate crime, aggravated unlawful restraint, aggravated battery with a deadly weapon, robbery, residential burglary; Cooper was charged with aggravated kidnapping, hate crime, aggravated unlawful restraint, aggravated battery with a deadly weapon and residential burglary; Brittany Covington was charged with aggravated kidnapping, hate crime, aggravated unlawful restraint, aggravated battery with a deadly weapon and residential burglary; Tanishia Covington was charged with aggravated kidnapping, hate crime, aggravated unlawful restraint and aggravated battery with a deadly weapon. These are someone's children and grandchildren.

When I look at this I see the reflection of the country. I see what we taught them and what we applaud: violence and taking from others. It is how the West was won and the East was taken: blood, and murder, deception and aggression. When it is our Colored daughters it speaks against and points to what ails not only the soul of the country, but what ails the souls of Black folks!

But, the country is full of contradictions and erratic behavior and white people clamoring for a chance to ring these Colored girls up on charges of a hate crime. It is a hate crime, but the clamor for it puzzles me as much as it did when white Americans clamored for President Obama to say the words: radical terrorism. It was odd. It didn't feel comfortable and it was hard to measure why placing a name upon something was more important than solving a problem, or probing into why something is what it is and so forth.

I will not sign a petition to make this crime a hate crime. It will solve nothing, It is only suppressing an urge for killing the girls that many want to do. Part of the outrage is at the misunderstanding of self, and the individuals left alone in this society. Miseducated children become something in life we are all terrified of and being an American means pretending that what is staring us in the face isn't really there. Why there is surprise that children will be cruel in reverse enrages our young people because they keenly feel abandoned into a system of education that excluded the vital parts of their development. If they aren't surprised at the large numbers of killers and sadists and sexual deviants we graduate each year from high school why are we?

If I do anything, and I will, I will do better at what I am doing in the development of children and young adults in my part of this country: the Washington DC metropolitan area.

Why'd I say that? I opened up a shit storm of reaction from white men!

Jeff Mayhugh  out of his mouth said, "Going to jail for them would be like going to a family reunion. Now they get to spend time with their momma." "gaz chamber please." another said. "Hang um! In the Gas chamber!" "kill them and their families."

"Set them on fire while we all sit around with popcorn and watch!" a married mother of two small children named Anna put out into cyberspace.

"Typical hoodrat trash." another said. In the midst of this one white man said, "This is a horrible thing.. don't make it worse buy going off the handle.. these people will be brought to justice.. don't take things to far... Hold the Liberal PC police to it.."

Things got dicey when a James Kerstetter got involved reacting to my thoughts beginning with 'I will not sign a petition...' He said, "Of course you won't. It's a hate crime and that fucking trash is getting charged with it too."

"James. OK." I replied. "You obviously didn't read or understand what my reasoning is. Can't go far with this discussion."

"Your right running bear. It's a black and white thing. You see black I see white. Just know that my way of thinking just isn't mine. There are a lot of people tired of the reverse racism. Time to defend ours. Try that shit in my neighborhood I dare ya....."

James McMenamy stepped into the fray and said, "Nobody needs your permission to label this a hate crime. A hate crime is a hate crime regardless of class, color, national orgin, religious beliefs, education or any other pathetic excuse of the offender."

This went on for some time until the host pulled it down because it got uglier and uglier. I was sadden by it all because I have been involved in live face to face, fact to fiction conversations with white men in the past over volatile subjects centered around race and regret having them because during it all a sadness overtakes me. There is something in denial and rhetoric that manages to hold their fears in at a check point. Black Americans find it easier to vent rage and require historical retribution or compensation for the evil deeds done upon them by white people.

It only saddens me because of the maturity level I am at. Time was I didn't feel sadness, or give a damn about how deep those emotions came from to frame each participants nightmares. So, if one can change and listen to another does the other one whose ears are closed change, or is the dynamic between the two staring at any hope of resolving the issue at hand? Usually no. But, what would happen if we, on opposite sides of the rage of debate, together sat around a table of food, played games and looked at our families and sought out ways to make our children's lives easier?

Gregory E. Woods, Keeper of Stories
Jan. 5, 2017

Artist rendition of young Black womanhood. artist unknown.

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