Monday, February 15, 2016

Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia: Original Racism

The death of Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia has simultaneously recalibrated talking points for the upcoming presidential election and intensified the importance of President Obama’s remaining months in the White House. Scalia reportedly died over the weekend while on a hunting trip in Texas. He occupied the highest bench for three decades since being nominated by President Ronald Reagan and unanimously confirmed in 1986. 

Like Bernie Sanders or Donald Trump, Justice Scalia is a Racist Suspect. 

Before his SCOTUS residency, Scalia commanded the United States Court Of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit, where, according to the New York Times, he issued opinions “skeptical of claims of employment discrimination.” In 2013, he helped erode the 1965 Voting Rights Act, which he branded a “perpetuation of racial entitlement.” And during the courts re-reconsideration of Affirmative Action, Scalia echoed predictable “Bell Curve” dogma about the intellectual ineptitude of negroes. The late justice explained that, “Most of the black scientists in this country don't come from schools like the University of Texas. They come from lesser schools.”

Scalia wasn't practicing White Supremacy. He was looking out for our best interest, so that aspiring black scholars don't strain our puny colored brains.    

Dr. Frances Cress Welsing, a third generation physician and author of The Isis Papers, discussed Scalia’s assessment of black aptitude during one of her final lectures before her 2016 death. 

150 years since emancipation, and [Justice Scalia] is justifying why black people should not be admitted to the law school because they don’t have what it takes. Maybe there’s a little nursery school law school that they can attend. That’s kind of more suited to what we’re going to allow them to do anyway.” 

The American Slave Coast, co-authored by Ned and Constance Sublette in 2015, explains how the United States was founded and thrived on a slave system that required the perpetual rape of black people. The organized sexual exploitation of black bodies informs the genesis of the United States Constitution that Scalia was charged with decoding. The Sublettes write: 

The story of the Constitution’s making in 1787 has been told any number of ways, typically suffused with a cue-the-kettledrums aura of religiosity and an assumption of American triumphalism. Constitutional historians have tended to portray their subject as the most important political document in world history, in the greatest nation in history. In extreme cases this has involved elevating the framers to a sort of secular sainthood, as in the post-Reagan years, when a school of constitutional interpretation called 'originalism' emerged in American jurisprudence. Most prominently associated with archconservative Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia, originalism is a fundamentalist movement that seeks in effect to construe the Constitution as static and unchanging by mind-reading the intentions of the presumably divinely inspired Framers - a word Scalia writes with a capital F, the way they did it in the eighteenth century. His opinions are shot through with variations on phrases like: 'The Framers recognized …,' 'The Framers contemplated …,' 'The Framers viewed…,' and 'The Framers’ experience …' This is a peculiarly subjective lens through which to view a document created by so many people, at such sharp cross-purposes with each other.

'Aware that the South would not join a Union that prohibited slavery,' writes Scalia’s generally dissenting colleague, Supreme Court Justice Stephen Breyer, who does not capitalize 'framers,' 'the framers in effect postponed the question of slavery’s continued existence by writing into the Constitution a series of compromises.' But if we were to follow the notion of original intent from the point of view of the South Carolina Framers, we would see the Constitution as protecting the right to own and trade [and rape black people.]

Tuesday, January 26, 2016

STAR WARS: The Force Awakens (Through the eyes of a C.O.W.S Listener)


(GUEST POST)

Tonight I took my son to see the new installment in the STAR WARS franchise. We arrived early and got prime seats, center screen near the back of the theater so that we could have a good view of things. I’ll leave out what I see as minutiae in the first 5-7 minutes of the film and focus on the non-white/black male star; John Boyega. In the film he portrays a “Stormtrooper” who is on his first raiding mission to retrieve a map that has in it’s contents, the location of Luke Skywalker (The last good Jedi). Boyega portrays Stormtrooper “FN-2187” who while on this mission, is ordered to kill the remaining villagers by the new “Darth Vader-like” character but can’t find the nerve or lacks the courage to do so in comparison to all the other Stormtrooper who blast away at the poor victims. He is immediately singled out by the “Darth Vader-like” character that feels something via the “FORCE” (weakness, betrayal…it’s not made clear but there’s something amiss) with FN-2187. FN-2187 returns to base and is exhausted, clearly troubled by the mass murder of the villagers he’d witnessed a few moments earlier. He takes off his helmet and is dripping with sweat, breathing heavily alone in a spacecraft when his superior walks in and asks, “Who told you to take your helmet off?” He puts the helmet on and reports as ordered to have his weapon inspected. Fast forward to FN-2187 rescuing a rebel fighter pilot who was kidnapped from the raid because he may know where the map is. FN-2187 clearly wants to leave his “captors” but needs a pilot…. a “SAVIOR” (in my eyes) so he and the pilot commandeer a spacecraft and escape. FN-2187 who has by all indications, been a Stormtrooper since childhood, behaves and acts nothing like a military trained fighter but more like a confused and afraid child, takes orders from the pilot who by his own words, knows nothing about flying the oppositions spacecraft. The pilot asks FN-2187 “What’s your name?” he replies “FN-2187” (Prisoner #, slave name? both are apt in this context), the pilot says “No, what’s your real name?” (I immediately thought about the scene in roots with Levar Burton; Kunta Kinte vs. Toby) – he says, “This is all I’ve ever been called” – The white pilot says, “I’ll call you Finn” (As in FN – Fucking Nigger came to mind for me) Boyega agrees and accepts his new name.

My antennae went up when on the raid, Boyega’s character couldn’t pull the trigger which took me back to the Walking Dead analysis on The C.O.W.S. and how none of the non-white black male characters had the courage under fire, to pull the trigger – even in the face of life threatening danger. This theme is carried out multiple times with Boyega in this movie – even though at times he fights back but never over takes his opponent convincingly. To get back on track; Finn and the white pilot escape after a gunfight and crash on a nearby planet. Finn wakes up in a desert, totally disoriented but sees smoke over a sand dune and runs to it; the spacecraft has crashed and is on fire; the white pilot is no where to be found, only his jacket remains of which Finn takes as his own and uses as cover from the hot sun. He walks and walks until he comes upon a village. He runs there looking for water, but no one will give him any. He sees a large watering hole where a space creature akin to a large rhinoceros is drinking, and falls on his knees to get a drink – the water is clearly not sanitary but he is so thirsty, he drinks anyway (drinking from the same watering hole as an animal.)


The story goes away from Finn and goes to the evil mother ship where they realize “FN-2187” has ESCAPED! And he’s the one who helped the rebel pilot escape as well. They make it clear that FN-2187 has been “programmed” since childhood and never illustrated any signs of psychological issues and was loyal to the “1ST ORDER”. They even had a picture of a young black boy – maybe 5 or 6 on the screen instead of FN-2187’s current picture as a young man. So in effect, Stormtroopers are “slaves” raised from childhood to fight for their oppressor and FN-2187 is a run-away slave (Note that he was asked “who told you to take your helmet off?” by his superior moments earlier…. in my estimation, all Stormtroopers are non-white black males who have been enslaved to work on the plantation). This paints a much clearer picture of his behavior once viewed through the lens of Racism/White Supremacy. His heavy breathing, sweating, anxiety, lack of confidence, lack of self-control – traits that none of the white characters illustrate, but are stereotypically associated with non-white black people – these are all wrapped up in the character portrayed by John Boyega.


After he drinks from the “Doggy Dish”, he sees the female heroine being harassed because she now has in her possession, the little android that is carrying the map. Word has spread around the galaxy that the android has it/and FN-2187 has escaped so everybody is on the case…The VOLTRON EFFECT. Finn attempts to rescue her from her attackers but stops short after he sees her beat up two men handily. The android recognizes the jacket that Finn is wearing because it belonged to his master who happened to be the white pilot who flew Finn off the plantation. The android tells the heroine who chases Finn down…. a Stormtrooper who’s visibly afraid of a skinny white girl…a Stormtrooper…trained since childhood? She “outsmarts” Finn by basically doing a magic trick and appearing out of nowhere and kicks his butt! He once again appears weak and unable to defend himself even from a woman who is much smaller. They begin to run from more attackers…Finn grabs her hand of which she immediately asks, “Why are you touching me?” …. They end up on the Millennium Falcon (Han Solo’s ship), which was stolen and hidden on this desert planet. Once again, Finn is being ordered around in what could be termed a military environment by a civilian (The heroine) who was just earlier picking up scrap metal and selling it at the junkyard so that she could buy food. He is reduced to being her whipping boy for much of this scene as she orders him to shoot at the opposition’s ships on their tail. While she is proving to be adept at flying a spaceship – he is floundering and bumbling trying to shoot the guns. They end up being captured by Han Solo who wants his ship back and once again – Finn is in a subordinate role to the female who saves his butt from monsters and is being painted more and more as the movie goes on as being savvy, intelligent, brave and versed in the engineering of spaceships.


They go to a planet for refuge and are plotting a plan to find Luke Skywalker of which Finn wants no part…he makes clear that “I can’t go back to that place…I can never go back!” Which sounds more like ex-con, prison-speak the more he says it. He walks out on the crew (Han Solo, Chewbacca, the android and the white female) who are all very composed while he is emotional and running away from the fight. (The Walking Dead)


I’m going to stop here because this theme continues throughout the movie all the way up to the point where Finn fights the villain with Luke Skywalker’s light saber and loses. But in turn, the female heroine (who learns she is a Jedi as the movie goes along) picks up the light saber and defeats the evil antagonist and saves herself and Finn. Finn, who was knocked unconscious by the evil one, ends the movie laying on a hospital bed in a coma. In effect he’s dead, having served no real purpose at all.


What looked to be a tender moment in the making with the female heroine kissing Finn’s lips (Cowbell) – ends up with her kissing his FOREHEAD (Like a mother kissing a child) but – he’s totally unaware and unresponsive to this affection. The movie was entertaining and not much different from other STAR WARS films. I was expecting more from the non-white black male’s character simply because of all the hype associated with his performance. His role was reduced to running…. always running and sweating and looking for guidance, never in control. Han Solo asked him what was his job while he was a Stormtrooper he replied, “I was a Janitor!”…. Even in this depiction of the future, we are running away from slavery. Slavery that has us in servile positions as janitors on the mother ship (plantation).

Wednesday, December 09, 2015

Daniel Holtzclaw: The Rape Of Black Bodies Is White Culture

Today is the third day of deliberations at the Oklahoma County District Court. Eight White Men and four White Women have yet to reach a conclusion on the guilt of Racist Suspect and former Oklahoma City police officer Daniel Holtzclaw; this suspected predator is charged with 36 counts, including oral sodomy, sexual battery, and six counts of first-degree rape. All thirteen victims are black females. 

OKC Artists For Justice co-founder Candice Liger appraised the closing arguments articulated by White defense attorney Scott Adams. Holtzclaw’s lawyer assessed Oklahoma City’s east side, Holtzclaw’s alleged “hunting ground” and home to a high percentage of the city’s black citizens. Liger reports that Adams told the all white jury that they didn’t know this place. “It’s nothing to see somebody walking at 2:30 in the morning high on pcp, drunk… This is the beacon of criminal behavior.” According to Liger, Adams insisted “people don’t call police on the east side. Not because they fear the police, but because they hate the police.” 

Liger’s evaluation was corroborated by a Jezebel report, which affirms that Adams’ closing argument suggested these black victims are a treacherous syndicate with an “agenda” to railroad and shakedown one of the “finest” officers and the Oklahoma City police department. 

This represents the most recent confirmation of Syreeta McFadden’s premise: only under the System of White Supremacy are dead black boys and violated black females put on trial for their own exploitation. Holtzclaw never testified. Meanwhile, more than a dozen black females where subjected to a month of skepticism and defamation. 

The Interracial Con Game states, “A White male has never been executed for raping a black female in the history of the U. S. – because White males raping black females was not (and still isn’t) considered a crime.” The sexual plunder of black bodies is an essential component of White culture. It’s difficult to conceive of an all White jury convicting Holtzclaw (any White person) for partaking in the ritual rape of black females. A tradition that views black bodies, “the whole world as the White man’s brothel.” 

For the last thirty days, Holtzclaw’s attorney assailed the credibility and humanity of these black females by belaboring the criminal history and substance dependency of several of the victims. Holtzclaw may have used this same reasoning while searching for vulnerable prey. Senior ACLU attorney Sandra Park told RH Reality Check reporter Kanya D’Almeda that officers like Holtzclaw “can use stringent drug laws to help perpetuate or commit sexual assault.” A 2005 ACLU report charges “racially targeted law enforcement practices, prosecutorial decisions, and sentencing policies” have reduced black female bodies to what the African American Policy Forum describes as “vessels for drugs.” 

Easy pickings for police predators. 

Oklahoma’s KOCO describes why one of Holtzclaw’s alleged victims, a 44-year-old black female, declined to report her abduction to police: “‘[I] didn't think anyone would believe me. I'm a drug addict.’ She said she dealt with the trauma by using more drugs. ‘The only way I knew how to deal with it was to get high to block it out.’” 

The Oklahoman’s Kyle Schwab documented a similar response from a different victim during the trial. 

“The defense attorney pointed out during the woman's testimony that she has past felony drug convictions. The attorney also noted the woman's ‘tired’ demeanor, asking if she currently was under the influence of drugs. The woman said she used crack cocaine a few days before Tuesday's testimony. She said she relapsed because the trial has taken a toll on her.” 

It should be noted that while these black females have been stigmatized and discredited for their drug afflictions, there’s a swelling movement for a “gentler war on drugs.” Skyrocketing numbers of White heroin addicts and prescription pill abusers warrant compassion, unlike the decades of “pathologizing of black people” in the name of combating the scourge of narcotics. 

But run-ins with the law and drug usage obfuscate the primary reason why Holtzclaw purportedly terrorized these females and why many are justifiably reluctant to believe that a dozen Whites will deliver a conviction. The rape of black females – black people in general – is a sacred Racist tradition. 

Ned and Constance Sublette’s 2015 publication, The American Slave Coast: A History Of The Slave Breeding Industry, documents that one of the most lucrative institutions of colonial America was the exploitation and desecration of black procreation. Chapter two of the text is titled: “The Capitalized Womb.” Constance explains how “the weight of all this fell upon [black] wombs.” 

There is an explicit, unbroken pattern of commodification and defiling of black females from the antebellum plantation to the fictitious White House of ABC’s hit series, Scandal

“The sexual exploitation of black women by White Men had its roots in slavery and continued throughout the better part of the twentieth century,” writes Danielle McGuire in At The Dark End Of The Street: Black Women, Rape, and Resistance. “When African Americans tested their freedom during Reconstruction, former slaverholders and their sympathizers used rape as a ‘weapon of terror’ to dominate the bodies and minds of African–American men and women.” 

It’s en vogue for many scholars to name-drop Claudette Colvin as a courageous and ignored precursor to Rosa Parks and the 1955 Montgomery, Alabama bus boycott. Her commentary in Claudette Colvin: Twice Towards Justice was decades before the Holtzclaw trial, but remains depressingly applicable. “Black girls were extremely vulnerable. My mother and my grandmother told me never to go anywhere with a White Man no matter what. I grew up hearing horror story after horror story about black girls who were raped by White Men, and how they never got justice either. When A White Man raped a black girl – something that happened all the time – it was just his word against hers, and no one would ever believe her. The White Man always got off.” 

Holtzclaw has one White parent and one non-white parent. But a black victim testified under oath that he asked her: “Is this the first time you sucked a White cock?” 

Last week marked the 60-year anniversary of Parks’ refusal to forfeit her seat to a White passenger. Presidential hopeful and Racist Suspect Hillary Clinton along with legions of Whites professed their admiration and connection to the tired negro seamstress. But historian Jeanne Theoharis documents that Whites regularly served Parks the same sexualized contempt as Holtzclaw’s alleged victims. In the middle of the Montgomery boycott, a White reporter “peppered her with a series of aggressive questions accusing her of seeking publicity, impugning her morality, and referring to her as a prostitute,” writes Theoharis. 

Because the rape of black bodies is at the core of White culture, the projection and branding of black females as whores and sexual deviants is constant. This is why Kerry Washington’s hit series, Scandal, must depict a black female as the White president’s “sidepiece.” And this show is followed by Viola Davis’ How To Get Away With Murder. Whites honored Davis as the first black actress to receive an Emmy for a lead role in a drama; a role where her White husband describes her as a “disgusting slut” who’s only use is “dirty, rough sex I’m too ashamed to tell anyone about.” 

These depictions of black females are predictable and necessary for a Racist culture founded on the molestation of black bodies. White Supremacy is engineered to produce Holtzclaws and all white juries to exonerate them. A conviction would contradict centuries of White rapist entitlement enjoyed by the likes of Thomas Jefferson, Strom Thurmond, Domonique Strauss-Kahn, and now Holtzclaw.

Wednesday, October 21, 2015

Shots On The Bridge: The Context Is Racism

I harbor and advise skepticism when the suffering of Black people becomes grist for White authors. The ten-year “anniversary” of the levee failure and the 2005 deluge of New Orleans was accompanied by the latest hemorrhage of Katrina literature, primed to commemorate and cash in. 

On the final Tuesday in August, Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Ronnie Greene was in Washington, D.C. to discuss the freshly published Shots On The Bridge: Police Violence and Cover-Up in the Wake of Katrina. The book deconstructs the Danziger Bridge Shooting – where New Orleans police officers gunned down a pair of unarmed Black families, leaving two dead, four savagely maimed – and a decade of court wrangling. 

Greene shared one sentence with his D.C. audience that confirmed my suspicions and nearly decimated my willingness to read his book: “I really tried to put this shooting in context of what [the officers] were going through, what the department was going through.” 

In his discussion and the text, Greene describes the officers as Katrina’s “hostages,” laboring in the wake of unimaginable ruin and bedlam. Police leadership was flagrantly inept. Local officials and global news outlets insisted looting hooligans might overrun Louisiana. The officers, like many, had failures in the city’s bleakest hour. 

This position is tenable if the carnage on Danziger Bridge is a singular example of NOPD misbehavior. 

It is not. 

Greene documents decades of pre-Katrina, during Katrina, and post-Katrina police delinquency and abuse of New Orleans’ Black citizens. He cites the 2011 Department of Justice findings, which concluded, “NOPD’s mishandling of officer-involved shooting investigations was so blatant and egregious that it appeared intentional in some respects.” Even hinting that a natural or manmade disaster should mitigate our assessment of this slaughter and the years of fraud concealing it, minimizes the barbarism of the involved officers and devalues the Black lives terminated and mangled. As Greene meticulously documents, much of the Danziger conspiracy took place well after New Orleans was dry. 

In spite of my concerns, I had to read Greene’s offering. While sharing his motives for writing this grisly account, he remarked that Katrina created “so many horrors you couldn’t keep track.” Shots On The Bridge provides an abundance of detail about the NOPD ambush and cover-up that could have easily been debris in the wreckage. But most importantly, it emphasizes that an atrocity was perpetrated against innocent, loving families. These grieving relatives’ unwavering pursuit of justice may be the greatest - and least cited - example of NOLA “resilience.” 

The police fraudulently cast the Madison brothers as a band of armed ruffians who “had been looting and terrorizing people since the storm.” In truth, Ronald Madison was a mentally challenged 40-year-old with the mind of a six-year-old; he cried at the thought of abandoning Bobbi and Sushi, the family dachshunds, and rejected the chance to evacuate before the storm. His protective brother Lance comforted and shepherded him as they struggled to survive an inundated city. 

While crossing the bridge, officers shot Ronald in the back twice. He asked his brother Lance to, “Tell Mom I love her.” Ronald was shot in the back five additional times, stomped, and handcuffed after his death. 

Lance Madison survived, only to be shackled at gunpoint, arrested, charged with eight counts of attempted murder, and crammed into a temporary jail at “Camp Greyhound.” “He was held in a cage with a portable toilet. German shepherds circled the cage.” Lance’s love for his brother demanded that he recite witnesses’ names and remember critical facts of the Danziger carnage for the twenty-five days of his confinement.

The Madison family received reports of Ronald’s death and Lance’s arrest early. “For more than nine months, Sherrel Johnson did not know where her son JJ was.” Her son, James Brissette Jr., accompanied the Bartholomew family across the Danziger. Greene informs us that floodwaters claimed all but one of Johnson’s photographs of her 17-year-old son. If JJ were alive, she could take more pictures. 

“Bullet after bullet shredded JJ’s body from the heel of his foot to the top of his head; the teen now lay dead on the pavement. Seven gunshot wounds and even more pellet wounds, fired from multiple weapons, tore into JJ’s right leg, right buttock, and right elbow; pierced his left arm and shredded his neck; and lodged in his brain. His wiry body was left unrecognizable.” 

JJ and Ronald Madison were the only casualties that day, but NOPD brutes littered the bridge with bullet-riddled black bodies. The horror is presented in excruciating clarity: “Screams mixed with gunfire. The mother, father, and daughter, Lesha, cried out, bloodied and in pain. A bullet grazed Big Leonard Bartholomew’s head. Another tore into Lesha’s stomach. More gunfire ripped into Susan Bartholomew’s right arm, nearly severing it from her shoulder, her limb held together by skin. Lesha, at seventeen years old, one inch shorter than Susan, lay atop her mother, trying to shield her as bullets tore through the concrete barrier.” 

Shots On The Bridge skillfully blends court transcripts and police reports with crushing anecdotes from bereaved and wounded victims. Jose Holmes, who was blasted repeatedly, was thought “too far gone” and nearly left for dead. His recovery is all the more astounding because some of the hospital staff accepted the NOPD lies and “told Jose he needed to get healthy because, once he was released, he would be arrested on attempted murder charges.” 

Little Leonard Bartholomew was fourteen-years-old and a hulking eighty-five pounds at the time of the shooting. His family was reduced to bleeding carcasses clinging to life. He was shot at – not hit, slapped by a white patrolman, and handcuffed. Given the day’s events, he was fortunate. 

Greene rightly encourages readers to reflect on Little Leonard’s tearful apology upon reuniting with his dismembered family members. 

“I should have been shot, too. It isn’t right that I got off like that but everybody else has to go through all of this pain. And I’m just walking around, I’m fine. I don’t have to worry about injuries. It just isn’t right.” 

There’s an immense depravity about a Black teen suffering PTSD and survivor’s guilt not from Hurricane Katrina, but from crossing paths with the New Orleans Police Department. 

Readers can juxtapose the families’ suffering against the online comments that erased the 2011 federal convictions

Shots On The Bridge is an important reminder that Katrina and the cataclysmic levee fiasco are not the only horrors from 10 years ago.

Tuesday, October 20, 2015

Racial Profiling Of John Henson Recalls Former Bucks Teammate Larry Sanders


Milwaukee Bucks’ center John Henson inked a four year $44 million extension on October 1st. One would think (hope) a robust salary inoculates him from Racism. Unfortunately, all the nickels in the world can’t buy sanctuary from White Supremacy. Henson’s recent trip to Schwanke-Kasten Jewelers, a White-owned Wisconsin retailer, provides confirmation. 

Henson describes his attempt to patronize “the leading jewelry store in Southeastern Wisconsin” as “one of the most degrading and racially prejudice things I've ever experienced in life.”




As the White jewelers watched a 6’11” 220lbs. black male lumbering toward their establishment, they didn’t see new money. They designated Henson a menace, bolted the doors, shooed him away from the premises, and scurried for their lives to the rear of the store. This, of course, mandated a police call. Henson says two officers assured the terrified Whites that all was well, but only after they ran his plates and interrogated him. 


In 2013, black 16-year-old Corey Stingley was suspected of shoplifting in Milwaukee and summarily strangled to death by three White men. No one was indicted. All things considered, Henson may have been lucky. 


This latest instance of shopping while black under White Terrorism calls to mind one of Henson’s former teammates, Larry Sanders. The two were Bucks teammates for three seasons, which included a 2013 playoff run against LeBron James and the Miami Heat. 


In December 2013, Sanders was cited for disorderly conduct and assault and battery for his involvement in a Milwaukee nightclub scuffle. Like Henson, Sanders too concluded Racism was a factor in the brawl and the subsequent reporting on the skirmish. He published several comments online, which stated in part: “I take full responsibility for my actions, this is something I’ve dealt with my whole life...from being the black male being followed around the store to being the black male helped around the store.. I’ve seen the American society from both ends...ppl are hypnotized by the media to feel and base certain judgment toward certain groups of ppl…” 


He wasn’t finished. “Guess it’s my turn, we “thugs” aka black men in America built this country and now we are the primary source of entertainment… guess we’re still building…slavery never stopped.” 


Sanders was clowned for “playing the race card,” scolded as another black baller who deserves a prison-orange jumpsuit instead of an NBA jersey. Bleacher Report summed up Sanders as “an irresponsible miscreant, unworthy of the money he’s being handed.” 


But in 2015, Sanders pulled a Dave Chappelle. The 26-year-old left $27 million on the table and retired. He checked himself into Rogers Memorial Hospital to get help for mood disorders, anxiety and depression. The former first round draft pick explained how being perpetually promoted as “this angry [black] man” pushed him to “a place of anxiety and fear, suffering.” Sanders described his exodus as an effort to preserve and nourish his mental health.


Kellen Winslow’s Hall Of Fame football career had to end before he realized that in “the real world… I was just another nigger.”  In several respects, Henson and Sanders may be ahead of the curve.

"Non-white people, particularly black males, have sometimes been called "Bucks" by those White persons who practice White Supremacy (Racism)." Neely Fuller Jr.

Thursday, September 24, 2015

Why Racists Gave Viola Davis An Emmy #HTGAWM

Emmy-winning Viola Davis cantbreathe

Viola Davis is a superb illustration of the labor required for #BlackSelfRespect. White Terrorism saturates her life, mandates that “classic beauty” be anything but black. She testifies to unrelenting abuse in the 2011 documentary Dark Girls, remembering how she was “constantly being called ‘black ugly nigger’ — those words together.” 

This spiritual molestation is common for black people around the globe and helps explain the vicarious adulation so many black females experienced when Davis became the first African American female to win an Emmy for her lead role in the ABC drama How To Get Away With Murder. Danielle Moodie-Mills writes that during Davis’ moment of unprecedented accomplishment, “She stood on that stage, fierce, beautiful and firm in her blackness and womaness.” She paid homage to “General” Harriet Tubman as “she called out racism and challenged a system that refuses to see black women as whole.” 

Davis and HTGAWM executive producer Shonda Rhimes are lauded for subverting racist projections of black people and producing opportunities for black actresses to be broadcast as commanding, professional, and valued. 

But even though HTGAWM is a ShondaLand production, Rhimes did not write or create this series. Those credits belong to a gay White man, Peter Nowalk. He praises Rhimes as his guru and gushes about the lessons learned from years collaborating on her other lucrative franchises, Grey’s Anatomy and Scandal. There’s widespread gratitude for Nowalk devising the character Annalise Keating that allowed Julliard-trained Davis to make history. 

Yet her unparalleled triumph felt familiar. 

Davis’ victory seemed an encore of Denzel Washington and Halle Berry palming 2002 Oscars for exemplary portrayals of black hooliganism and debauchery. Nowalk repackages and camouflages worn-out Racist concepts of blacks toiling to help whitefolks and presents profoundly anti-black moments in the limited scenes when Davis is sans wig, unadulterated black. At its lowest, black female sexuality is – as usual – cast as malignant and scandalous. 

One of Davis’ signature works is her 2011 Oscar-nominated portrayal of The Help’s Aibileen Clark, a servant for a White Supremacist family in 1960’s Mississippi. In spite of the film’s success, Davis candidly observes another constant: “I have been given a lot of roles that are downtrodden, mammy-ish… Then you’re going to be hungry for your next role, which is going to be absolutely the same. That’s the truth.” Nowalk’s debut project was “her shot at the anti-mammy,” according to GQ contributor Amy Wallace. Annalise Keating represents “a flinty, stylish defense lawyer and law professor,” and a scarce opening to animate a black female character as “cerebral and alluring… with a handsome husband and a lover on the side.” Ostensibly, Nowalk unshackled Davis from a racist industry, that, according to Kirsten West Savali, “pathologizes, reduces and co-opts blackness at every turn, especially black womanhood.” 

But Annalise’s time and energy is almost exclusively in service to Whites. She’s an attorney extraordinaire with blouses worth more than Aibileen’s house. Other than one humdinger of an exception, black people are not privy to her counsel. Whites are the sole beneficiaries of her legal acumen, and the bulk of her customers aren’t even “good” Whitefolks. She successfully, ruthlessly defends White drug traffickers, alleged White sex offenders, admitted and suspected White killers. Her clientele is a smorgasbord of white-on-white crime. Mimicking Hattie McDaniel’s venerated contribution to Gone With The Wind, Annalise has no children and devotes the bulk of her time to the maintenance of unscrupulous white lives. 

Now, about that humdinger. 

The show’s sixth episode is the lone outlier, the only time Nowalk’s lead character devotes her energies to aiding black people. Keating successfully liberates a death row inmate (David Allen) who had been wrongly caged for decades. Kayla Kumari Upadhyaya digests the plot of the episode and why it signifies vintage ShondaLand entertainment: 

“A white senator used Allen as a pawn to gain political power and gentrify an inner-city [black] area for financial gain. Annalise loudly condemns the racialized nature of the Senator’s scheme in one of the best Viola Davis moments in an episode full of spot-on Davis moments (seriously, this is going to be her Emmy reel episode, right?).” 

Unfortunately, Racists don’t permit black people to enjoy a full glass. They must kick it over. Before one can appreciate a primetime drama with the courage to indict a White man for the deliberate caging of black bodies, we’re reminded that Annalise is still primarily concerned with the well being of whitefolks. Her white husband specifically. 

Her lying, adulterous, womanizing, murderous, “handsome,” White husband. 

Following her courtroom conquest, she jettisons her makeup and straight hair - props to imply strength. She confesses that she’s been lying, planting evidence, and framing the innocent to protect her guilty White spouse, Sam Keating. The scene concludes with Davis’ character dissolving into a whimpering puddle while declaring her need for psychopath Sam ad infinitum. 

The politics of black hair exponentially magnify the significance of this scene and all other settings when Annalise reveals her natural. Franchesca Ramsey reminds us “there are very few black women on TV wearing their natural hair.” “There's a long, complicated history of black women being told by society [Whites] that their natural hair is unprofessional, ugly, distracting, and a whole host of other insults.” In another display of #BlackSelfRespect, Davis lobbied to have HTGAWM include her unprocessed do. It’s fascinating to deconstruct Nowalk’s politicking of black hair. 

Upadhyaya unpacks the unmasking: “Annalise sits at her vanity and slowly peels back her layers. She removes her wig, her eyelashes, her makeup, never breaking eye contact with the reflection of her natural self. It’s an intimate, powerful moment television doesn’t often show: A black woman removing all the elements White Supremacy tells her she has to wear to be beautiful, successful, powerful. And let’s not forget that that wasn’t just Annalise taking it off: It was Davis, too...” 

What happens in the narrative at this moment? Sam admits to having an affair with a dead blond girl. More layers are unearthed as the audience discovers that before they were married, Sam was her therapist – helping Annalise cope with the trauma of child rape. He was previously married, but had an affair with Annalise. She accurately diagnoses his fetish for mistresses who are “weak, broken, messes that” require his straightening. The scene ends with Sam violently subduing and momentarily smothering his black wife. 

Annalise’ authentic locks re-emerge at the top of episode six. Wes, a law student and main character played by Harry Potter star Alfred Enoch, determines that his law professor is lying to protect her murderous white husband. He confronts Annalise and her natural hair to declare explicitly and repeatedly that she is “disgusting.” 

This is not “anti-mammy” or “anti-racism;” this is the routine war to insist that black females be rebuked, abused, and de-feminized at all times. 

The anti-blackness of Nowalk’s series is most forcefully emphasized in the presentation of black female sexuality. During a Variety interview, he disclosed, “Some of the characters are very driven by sex and I think that’s cool. I think Annalise — and Viola and I talk about it — she’s definitely driven by sex.” The problem becomes blatant in how Nowalk animates Annalise’s sexuality. 

Her marriage – again, her husband's a White killer – began as an affair with a married man. His infidelity continues, while she’s stepping out with a dying cancer patient’s husband. And she doesn’t merely have adulterous sex with this black male, she betrays him continually, has him incarcerated unjustly, and decimates his life. This is not a critique born of “respectability politics.” This is an emphatic restatement of Melissa Harris-Perry’s conclusion that “the implications of sexual images for black American women are different.” “The sexualized myths of black women have conspired to narrow the political and social world for sisters.” How To Get Away With Murder was supposed to be beyond those confines. 

Alessandra Stanley helped launch the series when her contentious New York Times piece described Davis as “darker-skinned and less classically beautiful.” Earlier in the same paragraph she writes, “As Annalise, Ms. Davis, 49, is sexual and even sexy, in a slightly menacing way.” Unarmed black teens like Renisha McBride and Michael Brown Jr. are “menacing.” Is the sexuality of primetime, Emmy-winning White actresses branded as “menacing”? The scripting of Annalise’s promiscuity promotes Stanley’s perception. 

This is best illustrated during the first season's winter finale. After an ugly verbal dispute and a second round of domestic abuse, Annalise’s White husband gives a mic drop and reminds us that black females are disgusting. 

“You're nothing but a piece of ass. That's what I saw when I first talked to you in the office that day. Because I knew you would put out. That's all you're really good for. Dirty, rough sex I'm too ashamed to tell anyone about. That's how foul you are. You disgusting slut.” 

Should this be the Emmy reel episode?

Friday, September 11, 2015

Hurricane Katrina: Sniping Looters With Chris Kyle


We've had a bountiful serving of commentaries and ceremonies on Hurricane Katrina and a decade of ethnic cleansing and resilience in New Orleans. Former President George Bush rebuked Kanye West by nuzzling black children, the Danziger Bridge killers of Ronald Madison and James Brissette Jr. celebrated their 2011 federal convictions being trashed, and the 9th Ward got a plaque.

There's been more time reminiscing about New Orleans’ looters of yore than jabs at federal inmate, former Mayor Ray Nagin.

Between Wendell Pierce’s new book, Lil Weezyana, and the consistently vulgar Chicago Tribune… the late Chris Kyle was forgotten.

Which seems impossible considering American Sniper christened 2015 with six Academy Award nominations and grossed more $300 million. “The most lethal sniper in U.S. military history” sports a list of honors nearly equal to his number of confirmed kills. In June, he was posthumously awarded the Texas Legislative Medal Of Honor. More than 200,000 petitioners insist Kyle be awarded the Congressional Medal Of Honor, and just this summer, a Georgia Family converted seven acres of farmland to a monument for the murdered Navy Seal.

No evidence places “killer Kyle” in the Crescent City when the levees broke. But Nicholas Schmidle reports that the deified veteran bragged about notching extra kills on the flooded streets of New Orleans:

“In the days after Hurricane Katrina, he said, the law-and-order situation was dire. He and another sniper… set up on top of the Superdome, and proceeded to shoot dozens of armed residents who were contributing to the chaos. Three people shared with me varied recollections of that evening: the first said that Kyle claimed to have shot thirty men on his own.”

Perhaps if Clint Eastwood had included this scene in the fallen soldier’s biopic, he would’ve nabbed an Oscar or three. 

In his autobiography, Kyle habitually brands the people he slayed in Iraq as “despicable savages.” Identical verbiage was employed against the drowned black citizens of New Orleans. Sheri Fink writes that Former Memorial Hospital (Baptist) employee and Suspected Racist Dr. John Thiele feared “crazy Black people, who think they’ve been oppressed for all these years by White people,” would wade through toxic sludge to rape, dismember, and torture hospitalized elderly patients. Some of Dr. Thiele’s armed colleagues evoked Kyle’s spirit by threatening to shoot “looters,” “including wide-eyed children” near a hospital window. 

In Katrina: After The Flood, Gary Rivlin depicts Tulane University’s Lance Hill bearing witness as Katrina transmogrified Whites “to their original state.” Hill “watched as two White men thanked a white National Guardsman for helping to protect their city. ‘Now if you can just keep the blacks from coming back.’”

Kyle may have been absent, but local police, state troopers, National Guard, military personnel, privately contacted Israeli forces, Academi (Blackwater), and gun-toting White civilians saturated the streets of NOLA. AC Thompson conducted years of research on nearly a dozen Black people who were killed in the week following Katrina by New Orleans police officers or random White citizens. Enforcement officers alleged that Baton Rouge police targeted and molested black evacuees and branded them "'animals' that needed to be beaten down." The documentary Welcome To New Orleans records a gang of Whites gleefully admitting to carnage Kyle could only counterfeit. They picnic and reminisce about “looters” they capped after the storm. “It was like shooting pheasants.”

Banishing, hunting black bodies, terminating black life is a hallowed occasion in the history of White Supremacy. The hurricane, levee failure, and contempt for black life consumed more than a thousand black lives.

Kyle told tall tales where he added to that number.

Wednesday, July 01, 2015

Dukes Of Hazzard Canceled (Again), Empire Returns In September

I’ve seen more episodes of Dukes of Hazzard than Empire

One of these programs encourages antiblack violence in support of White Supremacy and will remain on the air for the foreseeable future. 

The Dukes of Hazzard, which was canceled when Madiba was still in prison and before Dylann Storm Roof existed, has been expunged from the TV Land lineup. No reason was given, but it's suspected that the Confederate flag dispute prompted the removal.The show's featured getaway ride is named “General Lee” and brandishes a Confederate flag. 

Much like Ferguson 2014, White Supremacists have done a masterful job framing our understanding of the most recent illustration of white pathology. We’re groomed to accept Roof as a “unique” White man. Told Racism will be stifled by removing a symbol of “turmoil for African Americans.” 

They were referencing the Confederate battle flag, but… black people are being EricGarnered with shrines to Racism and White killers. 


The removal of Dukes creates space for an infinite number of viewing options that invariably sanctify identical concepts of white power that guarantee American Snipers like Roof. 

The manifesto attributed to the Charleston Terrorist quotes a
pivotal scene from the 1998 film, American History X
I see all this stuff going on, and I don’t see anyone doing anything about it. And it pisses me off. 
This is part of the Hitleresque tirade Derek Vineyard presents to a troop of White Supremacists before a Roof-like assault on a non-white business. Edward Norton earned an Academy Award nomination for his portrayal of Vineyard. Roof’s muse goes on to kill two black people, rejoices after stomping through a black male’s skull. 

This film – and Empire – will have more broadcast time now that Dukes has been banished. 

Many reports acknowledge that the former CBS series was "one of television’s highest rated shows" in the early 80’s. They do not suggest that flagrant appeals to white power were an integral aspect of the show’s charm. In edition to invoking the Confederate general's spirit and the flag of white defenders of black enslavement and treason, they made “Dixie” a hallmark element of the production. 

The song's opening verse tells all: I wish I was in the land of cotton. The theme song of the Confederacy, "Dixie" has become an exalted white power hymn that Whites defend and coalesce to sing on campuses and sporting events across the land. Campuses including the University of Mississippi and South Carolina's The Citadel.


"Norman Seabrooks, The Citadel's first African American scholarship athlete, disliked hearing 'Dixie' as a fight song, and he would sit down or walk away when he heard the tune. As captain of the football team, he would leave the locker room early and step on the field before the band started playing. Other black cadets exhibited similar protests, and Seabrooks' classmate Larry Ferguson faced a severe backlash for refusing to play the song as a member of the Regimental Band. Ferguson's academic scholarship was threatened and one night, he and his roommate returned to the barracks to find their room trashed, racial threats painted on the walls, their books shredded, and a doll hung from the ceiling by a noose."

The stars of Dukes are white delinquents who habitually #CrimeWhileWhite. The show’s signature moment features “General Lee” and the Dukes evading authorities while the car horn blares the secessionist ditty that yearns for the "bondage, beatings and rape" of the plantation phase of White Supremacy. 

In 2015 Washington state, one of my White “neighbors” has the very same Dukes Of Hazzard, “Dixie” melody for his car horn. White Supremacy memorabilia transcends region and time because collective devotion to White Terrorism is unbounded. 

Irrespective of recent events, it’s unlikely my “neighbor's” car horn will be prohibited.