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Est. April 5, 2002
December 10, 2015 - Issue 633

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The White Bullet Difference

"Whether it’s Wall Street’s theft of Main Street
or police shootings of Black men, white people
won’t lift a sorry finger to call wrong wrong,
until it smacks them in the face."

In the land of “exceptionalism” where justice and equality are core principles, the question of the hour is, does America play favorites? In light of increased consciousness about this country’s racism - and mainstream media’s resistance to accept it fact - I’m compelled to highlight a few bold-faced contradictions that this country - my country - spoon-feeds and white-washes you, me and every American with again and…yet again.

Another white male, 57-year old Robert Lewis Dear stepped out of his car and shot up a Planned Parenthood clinic in Colorado. Credible reports say that the suspect accused of the shooting spree made remarks about "baby parts" to investigators after his surrender.

Within minutes of hearing about the incident, my brief analysis leads me to ask five key questions:

   1.  Are not guns the problem here?

   2.  How does a mass shooter get to shoot police…and live?

   3.  In the aftermath of this shooting, is his mental health seriously an                 issue?

   4.  Why are Americans so hesitant to appropriately call out this attack for           what it is: domestic terrorism?

   5.  Why doesn’t the press zero-in on the ideological basis for his attack,               that is, his Christian faith?

You might be able to tell that I’m pretty upset by this latest incident. I’m upset that another gun incident has occurred in this country while Blacks are daily vilified in the mainstream media as the “bad guys.” I get equally upset that high-profile Americans are scared shitless by Conservatives in this country; so much so that they are mute on issues that might one day bite them in the ass.

Whether it’s Wall Street’s theft of Main Street or police shootings of Black men, white people won’t lift a sorry finger to call wrong wrong, until it smacks them in the face. What am I talking about? Well, it’s been reported that US figure skating icon Nancy Kerrigan says she was "devastated" when she heard that friend and former skater-turned-police officer Garrett Swasey had been killed during the shooting rampage at Planned Parenthood. She told the Boston Herald Swasey was like a brother to her growing up in in Stoneham, Massachusetts where they skated together.

The Nancy Kerrigan twist demonstrates my observation. Of all of the shootings in America - just this year alone! - you ain’t heard a damned thing from Nancy Kerrigan - or countless other notable names - about senseless gun violence.

Swasey, an officer for the University of Colorado-Colorado Springs, was one of three people killed in the shooting spree this past Friday that left several other people wounded. The other victims' names had not been released by early Sunday (when I penned this commentary).

By the way, isn’t it strange - or let’s Contradiction #1 - that law enforcement immediately released the name of this slain officer after the shooting, yet they fight like hell withhold the names of officers involved in extrajudicial killings of Black males?

Law enforcement officials say they haven't determined a motive for the shooting, although one official told the Associated Press that suspect Dear said something about "no more baby parts" after his arrest. AP said the official spoke on condition of anonymity because the official was not authorized to discuss the case. Yet, that person is leaking ‘confidential’ information anyway, which leads to Contradiction #2: Why isn’t this leaker in jail? Somebody knows who the leaker is! This takes me down a road I can’t resist and that is the Obama Administration’s persecution and prosecution of federal civil servants turned whistle blowers. Research the names of Stephen Kim, Thomas Drake, Chelsea Manning and Jeffrey Sterling - all of whom have been harassed and/or imprisoned for their responsible stewardship of the public’s assets.

Contradiction #2 is revealed when one compares the Administration’s treatment of those federal workers to that of General David Petraeus and CIA Director John Brennan - also two civil servants. The actions of the latter two men are worthy of the label ‘high crimes and misdemeanors,’ yet Congress opted instead for plain ol’ ‘misdemeanor’ for Petraeus and the proverbial wink-and-nod to Brennan’s bold-faced lie to Congress.

I digress. Planned Parenthood shooter Dear killed a police officer! And, that leads to Contradiction #3: How many Black males have been arrested after killing police officers? Contrast when how police officers have killed Black males who have killed no one at all? In other words, why wasn’t Dear a victim of the police’s shoot to kill because I felt threatened mentality? Maybe because Dear is a white male…just as Dylan Storm Roof in Charleston is a white male?

And yes, let’s move to Contradiction #4: the paradox of mental health status. I’ve said it before and now repeat that anyone who willfully kills another person is in dire need of mental health therapy. Yet, the contradiction lies in white males getting away with murder because of their ‘mental health status’ while Black males - whether dead or alive - are vilified to the point of the media parading past lives before the camera to inform the public of a life doomed because of the three afternoons spent in the principal’s in the first grade! Please!!!

We know: Different rules for different folks. We know: White people get to break laws, get breaks when they do, and walk away with their lives still salvageable. We know: Republicans versus Democrats is not the answer, and neither is a ‘national conversation.’ What I know is that if we Blacks are serious about destroying these contradictions, a commitment to destroying one bastion of systemic oppression is in order. In my opinion, a commitment would begin with a long-term economic boycott. I believe it would create the buzz and eventual din in the ears of an America that remains both purposely tone-deaf to its Black citizenry and obsessed with its profit-driven, exploitative economy. Columnist, Perry Redd, longtime activist & organizer, is the Executive Director of the workers rights advocacy, Sincere
that currently owns the FCC license for WOOK-LP 103.1FM/ His latest book,
Perry NoName: A Journal From A Federal Prison-book 1, chronicles his ‘behind bars’ activism that extricated him from a 42-year sentence and is now case law. He is also the author of As A Condition of Your Freedom: A Guide to Self-Redemption From Societal Oppression, Mr. Redd also hosts a radio show, Socially Speaking, from his Washington, DC studio. Contact Mr. Redd and BC.

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Executive Editor:
David A. Love, JD
Managing Editor:
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Peter Gamble

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