The recent verdict by an Ohio grand jury on the killing of 12-year old Tamir Rice is yet another indication that the rule of law is not very often upheld in courts in the United States. Tamir Rice is not the first unarmed black teenager to be shot in America and my fear everytime a black person is killed senselessly by cops is – Will this really be the last time?
There have been way too many Twitter hashtags acknowledging the deaths of African-American mothers, sisters, daughters, wives, fathers, sons, brothers and children. Way too many and there needs to be no more. The horror has to stop. This is part of what all those hashtags have been about. It is time for some waking up. Justice and equality is long overdue. Why should people even have to struggle for their inherent human right to equality, fairness and justice.
It is true that America occupies an infamous presence in conversations surrounding racial injustice (even in Hollywood movies, ever notice how the Black characters very often tend to die first?), however, the latter exists in Western nations around the world. A friend told me of another friend of hers who had mentioned that he has been stopped several times by police in Canada. As she was telling me that story, she paused and added – that’s probably because he is black and that is not good. Desmond Cole’s story on the racial profiling that he has experienced in the hands of police officers in Canada, gained so much attention last year. Oh and let me not forget the condescending language and attitudes that sometimes surface from inhabitants of Western nations, at the mention of the word ‘Africa’ or any country in that continent.
There is a need for de-cleansing of minds, there is a need to face head-on and overcome, the stronghold of white supremacist thinking. I write “face head-on” because people say and do things without even realizing how racist what they just said or did is. Also, there seems to be that idea that because of how far Western nations have come in terms of formally recognizing the existence of different races, we should thus use sparingly the word – racist, in this 21st century. However, concealing issues doesn’t solve them.
From slavery and colonization till present day, there still seems to be something about black people and black spaces (eg. African countries) that spurs white supremacy into action and any kind of action from that sort of ideology of supremacy can hardly be good. We have seen white supremacy among police officers, civilians and in courts of law lead not only to embarrassment and injustice but also to untimely, painful and unwarranted deaths.
Racial injustice against blacks is pretty much a global problem. I do hope this article is a wake up call for those who need it. Enough is enough.
Love & peace,