By Michael P. Jeffries
‘Black lives matter” has replaced “Hands up, don’t shoot!” as the mantra of those protesting for justice in Ferguson and throughout the country...anti-blackness more accurately captures the dehumanization and constant physical danger that black people face. The “anti” in “anti-blackness” is denial of black people’s right to life. Black humanity is desecrated in plain view, as Mike Brown’s dead body laid uncovered on the street for four and a half hours before being unceremoniously hoisted into an SUV. Brown is described as “it” and “a demon” in his killer’s testimony, and killing black people is all too frequently rewarded, as George Zimmerman and Darren Wilson raised hundreds of thousands of dollars in defense of their actions, and Wilson remains employed.Just a Reminder:
...when well-meaning people shy away from discussing anti-blackness, they cede the discussion to people like Rudolph Giuliani, who suggest that black people are exterminating themselves, and “black crime” is the root cause of black suffering. Anti-blackness is already part of the public discourse. We saw and heard it in the dehumanizing anti-Obama posters and slogans during the presidential elections in 2008 and 2012. We can read it in the comments section of articles about Trayvon Martin and Michael Brown, and on Twitter, as everyday citizens mock “Hands up, don’t shoot!” by tweeting, “Pants up, don’t loot!” We can no longer ignore anti-blackness. We must name it, and meet it with equal force.