Sunday, September 16, 2007

A Lesson in Modern Racism: The Jena 6

Imagine a world in which black teenagers had to ask permission to SIT under a tree. Imagine an America in which barber shops were for whites or blacks, segregated shops. Imagine a state that allowed a school to have segregated proms, one for whites and one for blacks. Imagine a town that would charge black teens with attempted murder for a school fight. Imagine that white kids put nooses in a tree in response to the request to sit under the tree, garnishing it with school colors. Now, fifty years ago, this wouldn't have been so uncommon. But this isn't 1950, its the year 2006, and the town is Jena Louisiana.

In September of 2006, six black kids in Jena made a request that would alter their lives forever. They asked if they could sit under a traditionally whites only tree. This was followed by nooses hung in the tree baring the school colors. Then, a school fire that white kids essentially blamed on the black kids. With the 85% white population against them, what happened next was to be expected. Six black kids got in a fight with a white kid. When he was knocked conscience, they gave him some more to remember his words, kicking him in the head a few more times. The kid escaped with some bumps and bruises, a bad school fight to be sure.

Now a quick interlude. When I was in junior high, I saw three white kids beat up another white kid. The one kid got slammed face first into the locker and knock out cold. The three other kids then kicked him for nearly five minutes until teachers got there and broke it up. If my memory servers me well, he came back to school with a broken arm and a slight concussion. What happened was that all four were suspended for four weeks. No one was charge, and all parents were called. This was a harsh penalty at the time, and those kids were watched closely for the rest of the year.

But in Jena, the prosecutor had announced to the black students that he could end their life with a stroke of the pen. This was done to prevent a violent out cry against the injustice done by those white kids hanging the nooses. As promised, he tried the six black kids who got in the fight as adults with aggravated battery and attempted murder. One has already been found guilty and will be sentence at the end of September. Attempted murder? This was presumably because the white kid was unconscious. Of course, one must ask what stopped them from killing him if he was not conscious? It was a school fight, likely started by racist remarks, the kind that ignorant ass wipe trailor park white trash are saying now in response to this. In Jena, blacks are out numbered by whites nearly 7 to 1. Segregation lives on, and racial hatred and bigotry isn't even masked in Jena.

This incident makes the news in most other large countries on a regular basis, yet I didn't hear about it until recently. How is this possible? An obviously racist town puts ridiculous charges on six sixteen year old kids and it barely makes the news. What is wrong with this country?

What normally happens today in America when race issues arise is that white people start talking about how its some how the black peoples fault, how they think theres racism everywhere and there really isn't any racism at all, or at least its very little. Us white folks like to believe that we have overcome racism, that desegregation and any other program designed to level the playing field between whites and other minorities. Its so easy to white people to think the ACLU, NAACP, Jesse Jackson, and Al Sharpton push things to far. Its easy to say get a job to an unemployed black man who claims its harder for him to get a job. Its easy for white people to turn a deaf ear to black people in the work place that say its harder to move up if your black. After all, racism is all but dead in our country. Right?

I am white. I am not a racist. I hate and show my disdain and disgust for racists openly. So white America should listen to what I am about to say and at least ponder it. I don't know everything and I don't believe myself better. But I have believed much of what I have stated above myself at different times.

White America. There is an ever increasing problem in this country that you are allowing to happen. Racism is again rising to the top to separate those of use who call our selves Americans! The belief that white people are some how better than black people is once again becoming popular. The ignorance that is racism has not been extinguished, it has lived on to burn another day, and it now shows its self to our blind and deaf society. White America, the victims are black, but this is not a black issue, this is a white issue! This is an issue that white Americans need to stand up and address, we cannot allow this ignorance to run our society and dictate our cultures future any longer! White America should stand up, side by side with our fellow black Americans and demand justice in the small town of Jena LA! Black people can yell and scream and white people turn a deaf ear. But if white people will call white people out for their arrogance and ignorance, something can change! Do not let our legacy as a culture continue along this path of racial inequality! Do not let Jena go silently into history, do not let our legacy be shamed by the ignorant trailor park white trash would have us go. The KKK is a legacy of ignorace, we should treat it as the crust of shit it is! Don't let the story of Jena fall on deaf ears!

1 comment:

tina said...

Seems like we just keep going in circles!