“Happy” 150th Juneteenth

Victoria Americus hosts 150th Juneteenth block party and invites her black friends

Happy 150th Juneteenth to everyone! Today we commemorate the last set of slaves finally hearing that they were free from the shackles of slavery and could now move around as free people in society. Reconstruction really helped to advance the cause of black people in the United States some became elected officials and things were on the up and up. Of course after Reconstruction we had a resurgence of some virulent racists but the Civil Rights Movement and Dr. King helped to put an end to them! Black people gained the right to vote across the country, affirmative action was put in place to ensure that blacks had access to schools and jobs that were once denied to them and racism died! So today we celebrate Juneteenth as the starting point from where TRUE equality stemmed from. My only question is why are all these people still complaining about racism? Don’t they know it’s dead? They would be much happier if they just accept that any problems they are facing is because of their own doing. If they only realized that white people voted in Obama TWICE they would understand that all these claims about racism still existing are false! 

Yes today is the sesquicentennial of Juneteenth and yes it is a day to remember when freedom finally reached the enslaved black people in Texas three years after the Emancipation Proclamation went into effect but what are we really celebrating today? Is it the end of slavery? Is it that black people now have access to the human rights and American principles of “Life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness?” I say nay. Today shouldn’t be your average barbecue celebration but today we need to serious look at how much progress we have truly  made. I have been slacking with my posts, not because I haven’t had anything to write but that things just kept coming one after the other to the point where I was overwhelmed. In this age where black people are rightfully recording police interactions, we now have access to a plethora of encounters where pregnant women are tossed around , 14 year old girls are pinned down under white men, a young black man who was imprisoned for three years without trial over  committed suicide, and nine people were killed at a Bible study held a historic black church founded by the revolutionary Denmark Vesey by a white terrorist who was there to take back his country. These are just a few of the stories that made the news because as we know racism never sleeps. 

Sure the Rachel Dolezal situation was hilarious with the memes and in an academic sense a great way to have a discussion about racial identity but the people affected by the examples listed above all have one thing in common, their blackness is a crime (blackness is always a crime even in death just look at all the dead black people put on trial at their murderer’s trial). Take for instance the situation out in McKinney, Texas. The cops were called after a bunch of  teenagers showed up at a pool party hosted by someone who lived in the neighborhood. A white woman assaulted the host and basically told them to go back to their Section 8 housing (She denied saying that but this was after she was suspended from her job  so take your white tears elsewhere). The wannabe Rambo officer Eric Casebolt not only forced the black teenagers to submit to his orders while their white peers were able to stand around, but in the most memorable image of the incident, Casebolt throws and pins down Dajerria Becton under him. I wonder what the image of a 200 lb black man on top of a sub 100 lb white girl would have looked like and what the reactions from the police apologist would have been like? Don’t think to hard about that answer because we already know. The truth is had the situation been reversed, the imagery of the black brute from Birth of A Nation would have immediately emerged from White America’s collective subconscious (This happens to be the 100th year anniversary of that movie first premiering in theaters yet the racist images still linger).

The image of the black brute plays a significant role in our “criminal justice system”[sic] where black men (and women) are criminalized to the nth degree starting as early as preschool . Kalief Browder spent three years on Riker’s Island without a trial over a alleged backpack theft. I don’t know about you but anywhere else that would be called detention. The US quickly condemns other countries that imprison people indefinitely yet right here in the “land of the free” Kalief wasn’t treated like he was human. Kalief was the same age as me and though we will never meet, I truly hurt for him and what he endured. His body was made criminal and brutalized and neglected by the state. His life did not matter to the America system but it does to me. Kalief, like Rekia Boyd, Michael Brown, Eric Garner, Aiyana Stanley Jones, Trayvon Martin, Jordan Davis, Amadou Diallo, Sean Bell, Freddie Gray, Tanisha Anderson, etc. etc. etc. has become a name for which I fight for. He, like the numerous amount of black people killed by the state from enslavement to now, is my motivation.

The American racist state killed Kalief Browder in a tradition dating back to slavery and so it is no surprise that the same system gave birth Dylann Storm Roof. People continue to say this was an isolated incident. False. He is mentally ill. False. I don’t know why this happened. Really you have no clue why a racist terrorist would shoot up a historic black church? No you know but you refuse to acknowledge that racism never died. To acknowledge that racism is alive and well would mean you’d have to admit that slavery continues to cast a long shadow over not jus11252487_10207059602151142_8543562229224129052_nt America but the world as black lives are still criminalized and hated. For example the current situation in the Dominican Republic regarding Haitians and Dominicans of Haitian descent, (just read some of the racist xenophobic comments by those defending the law and you can witness the power of the slave masters to transcend almost 200 years to speak through their nativist  puppets).

Dylann Roof is a child of American white supremacy fed on its milk of anti-blackness and bathed in its lies of black domination fed by conservative media who still refuse to acknowledge this as an attack on blackness (I guess they don’t want to be accessories but they already are).He was not mentally ill as he waited an hour before he began his onslaught and had actually visited the church before. This was premeditated murder. In his statement to the unarmed people he murdered he told the story of how the black brute was busy raping his *read white* women. Dylann would have have been celebrated a  mere 50, better yet 40, maybe 30,  is being celebrated by many that hold his same ideology of white supremacy. When Roof was apprehended he  came into custody in tack without a single bullet hole, severed spine, or crushed voice box although he was truly armed and dangerous. He was even given a bullet proof vest to protect him from the black snipers waiting to take him out *insert eye roll and sound of Jamaican kissing his teeth*

1610988_10207058805291221_577728716378448963_nDylann is America’s spawn and though he was arrested for his terrorist attacks, he is only carrying out what is at the core of America’s being as a racist empire. Roof descends from the tradition of the slave patrollers/night riders who made it their goal to terrorize enslaved black people and freed people after slavery. What’s important to mention is that the way black people are policed by cops also comes from this tradition of “keeping the niggers in their place.” So on this 150th anniversary of Juneteenth, though I am able to vote (even though many black people are facing more obstacles to cast their ballot), though I am able to peacefully assemble (until the Police are like “that’s enough of that solidarity with brutalitzed people in Baltimore”), and though I am able to write my critiques of the racial state that is America and its illusion of post-raciality (for now), we are still not free. 150 years is only 36% of the 408 years of America’s existence and if the last 150 has shown us anything is that we haven’t even scratched the surface to begin to reach true equality. After all my black body is guilty until proven innocent.

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FYI: There has already been a white man threatening black church goers. Read here.

Reader for AME  Terrorist Massacre

14 #CharlestonShooting Tweets Show How the Media Covers White Terrorism,” Natasha Noman, Mic

“These Are the Victims of The Charleston Church Shooting,” Jessica Simeone, Tasneem Nashrulla, Ema O’Connor, Buzzfeed News

“The Incredible Story of the Historic Church Where the Charleson Shooting Took Place,” Jenée Desmond-Harris, Vox

“Take Down the Confederate Flag—Now,” Ta-Nehisi Coates, The Atlantic

“Shooters of Color are Called ‘Terrorists’ and ‘thugs.’ Why are White Shooters called ‘mentally ill’?,” Anthea Butler, The Washington Post

“There’s One Word the Media Isn’t Using When Talking About the Charleston Shooter,” Zak Cheney-Rice, Mic

“Black America ‘Suffering from Racial Battle Fatigue’ After Barrage of Incidents,” Jesse J Holland, Associated Press

“Rolling in Sackcloth and Ashes,” Jennifer Bailey, The Huffington Post

“‘Allies,’ the Time for Your Silence Has Expired,” Rev. Denise Anderson, The Huffington Post

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I dedicate this blog post to the nine souls who were added to the countless names of those murdered by white supremacy in all  its forms. 

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  • Clementa Pinckney, 41: state senator, church pastor, and rising star in the South Carolina Democratic Party
  • Cynthia Hurd, 54: St. Andrews regional branch manager for the Charleston County Public Library system
  • Sharonda Coleman-Singleton: a church pastor, speech therapist, and coach of the girls’ track and field team at Goose Creek High School
  • Tywanza Sanders, 26: who had a degree in business administration from Allen University
  • Ethel Lance, 70: a retired Gilliard Center employee who previously worked as the church janitor
  • Susie Jackson, 87: Lance’s cousin and a longtime church member
  • DePayne Middleton Doctor, 49: who retired in 2005 as Charleston County director of the Community Development Block Grant Program
  • Mira Thompson, 59: a pastor at the church
  • Daniel Simmons Sr., 74: who died in a hospital operating room

Rest in power and in peace.

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