Sunday, August 14, 2016

We're All Oppressed African Americans


We’re All Oppressed African Americans

by Stephen Lendman

America has always been an elitist society, serving its privileged class exclusively, a sham democracy, uncaring about its most needy and vulnerable - today offering them crumbs at most.

It’s been viciously racist from inception, at war with its people of color, notably African Americans, changing from chattel to wage slavery, Jim Crow to its modern-day version, freedom to mass incarceration, a deplorable history of racial injustice.

Inner cities across America are virtual war zones - killer cops lethally shooting over 1,100 victims last year unaccountably, a epidemic of state-sponsored violence, overwhelmingly against young Black males, almost always unarmed threatening no one, this year’s pace of killings exceeding 2015.

On average, over three lethal cop shootings occur daily. Headlined incidents in Ferguson, MO, Baton Rouge, LA, Baltimore, Dallas, New York, Chicago and Saturday in Milwaukee mask state-sponsored persecution affecting millions of African Americans nationwide - in large and small cities, urban and rural areas, safe havens unavailable anywhere.

Cops across America lethally shoot, brutalize or otherwise abuse African Americans with virtual impunity. Horrors go on multiple times daily because federal, state and local authorities permit it. 

Being young, Black and male in America automatically makes them a potential target for cops to arrest, abuse and too often murder in cold blood unaccountably.

In the 1960s, US inner cities burned for social justice. Civil and voting rights legislation followed. Everything gained earlier was lost  - conditions today far worse than then, especially economically.

Black youth unemployment is over 40% nationally - in some cities exceeding 50%, an untenable situation, the stuff rebellions are made of.

At times, justifiable pent up rage explodes - Milwaukee on Saturday in response to the latest headlined cop killing.

What began as a peaceful Black Lives Matter protest turned violent after police killed an unnamed 23-year-old African American man.

Police claiming he was armed with a handgun was disputed by eye-witnesses. Angry protestors set fires and threw rocks at cops. Arrests were made on unspecified charges.

City alderman Khalif Raney spoke for others, saying “(t)he Black people of Milwaukee are tired. They are tired of living under this oppression.”

He explained Sherman Park where the incident occurred is “a powder keg,” adding “(t)his entire community has sat back and witnessed how Milwaukee has become the worst place to live for African-Americans in the country.”

“Now this is a warning cry. Where do we go from here? Do we continue…with the inequities, the injustice, the unemployment, the under-education, that creates these byproducts that we we see this evening?”

African Americans put up with these abuses nationwide. Powder keg conditions could explode anywhere in response to police killings, unjustifiable arrests, other forms of brutality and increasing social injustice.

Will cities again burn like in the 1960s? Will things be as bad or worse ahead? Will America become more of a battleground for oppressed Blacks than already? 

Will other disadvantaged Americans join in the struggle? Will the stuff revolutions are made of become reality?

Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago. He can be reached at lendmanstephen@sbcglobal.net. 

His new book as editor and contributor is titled "Flashpoint in Ukraine: US Drive for Hegemony Risks WW III."

http://www.claritypress.com/LendmanIII.html

Visit his blog site at sjlendman.blogspot.com. 

Listen to cutting-edge discussions with distinguished guests on the Progressive Radio News Hour on the Progressive Radio Network.