Unlike King, I Don’t Have A Dream

Yesterday was the 56th anniversary of the death of W.E.B. Du Bois (on the eve of the March on Washington). Today is the 56th anniversary of the March on Washington. And the 64th anniversary of the lynching of Emmett Till.

I wonder, since so many white people love to quote part of the last part of the speech, how many have actually read the entire speech? Because, if more of you had read it, you wouldn’t be using it as a cudgel when you want Black people to shut up about racial issues. What I do know is that most white people who consider themselves educated haven’t read Du Bois. And that is a shame.

On August 18th, the New York Times Magazine published a special edition called The 1619 Project. It’s been interesting to watch the fallout and only confirms why I don’t have a dream. Too many want to debate the basics of U.S. history in regards to slavery. Until there is general agreement about the basics, there can be no moving forward.

As the title of this post says, unlike King, I don’t have a dream. I know as a religious person, I’m expected to. oh well. With the continuing move to make this country a white ethnostate, there doesn’t seem to be a reason to have a dream like King’s. Please, do not come into the comments and say things will change once Trump gets out of office (whichever way he goes). That is ahistorical. Trump is not the cause of the problem, he is the result of 65 years of political and social activity in this country. I could go even further and say that Trump is the tangible result of this country coddling and placating Confederates and their descendents for 150-or-so years. But the day is almost over, and I really don’t want to dig into the historical and political science weeds.

More later.

Eric and John and Michael and Kajieme and… (Five Years On)

I should be writing about El Paso and Dayton, but friends, I have written about this country’s idolatrous relationship with guns more than enough and I write about white supremacy all the time.

It started on July 17th.

Continued on August 5th.

And August 9th.

And August 20th.

For six weeks in 2014, the killing of Black men by agents of the state was all over screens.

It’s not as if Black people getting killed by agents of the state was a new phenomenon. It most definitely isn’t. What made these six weeks different was there was video (in most cases) that could be played on a loop.

The movement that started because of the August 9th killing has changed many things. Not enough things, but many.

Five years on, Black people are still killed by agents of the state for anything and everything.

Five years on, the agents of the state still do not (for the most part) face punishment.

Five years on, the families of those killed have to fight to set the record straight.

Five years on, law enforcement agencies still fight against changes in procedure.

In the aftermath of El Paso and Dayton, it is with a melancholy heart that I write about Eric and John and Mike and Kajieme. And think about the others. And see the connections between this and El Paso and Dayton.

The U.S. is so outside the norm when it comes to OECD countries. Especially around guns and mass shootings. And policing. And incarceration.

In no other OECD country is there the toxic brew of easy access to guns and white supremacy. This toxic brew plays itself out in many ways. It plays itself out in law enforcement (and others) having an unnatural fear of black/darker bodies, which causes people to want to arm up to alleviate the fear. Which, in turn, lets those who have other issues (like toxic misogyny, a thread through every mass shooting) create chaos.

It’s been five years. And the toxic brew of easy access to guns and white supremacy is still causing chaos. That’s all there really is to say.