The Nonviolent Movement Helped & Hurt Blacks – Part 1

| August 27, 2014 | 0 Comments


In the wake of Mike Brown’s death, it seems that his last words to his loved ones (based on the live stream of his funeral) of the world knowing his name came true. Now, he might have wanted it to be for something other than his death, but the world knows his name now. The world knows about Ferguson, Missouri. The world sees the race problem America STILL has and the world saw the harsh crackdown on peaceful protestors and media of the militarized Missouri police forces.


There are several responses to this. I’ve attended two local protests marches and donated to supplies for citizens in Ferguson (food, water, umbrellas, masks, etc.) in lieu of actually being there like I wanted. I see responses from younger people who are organizing and looking for action. I see responses from some people who are angry and want to burn down police stations and make some noise that can’t be ignored. I see responses from some middle-aged and older people who urge calm and a nonviolent means of protests like voting. Others want a combination of everything I’ve mentioned. Still, others (white and black) say that Martin Luther King, Jr.’s nonviolent methods are best and prevail the most, so everyone should just pray and stay quiet, make “them” like “us” and work to change their hearts and minds over time.



I lean more towards a combination of all methods used to stop police brutality and racial profiling; to get cops some training to not be afraid of anyone who isn’t white; to do something to make them pay attention to “us” to effect change.

Here is something that many people don’t apparently know: Not everyone was a fan of MLK. No, not people like James Earl Ray (MLK’s murderer), but people like Malcolm X, Angela Davis, and H. Rap Brown. People like my own mother. (She likes him now and respects what he did, but my father was more here for MLK. My mother was decidedly NOT.)



And then there’s me. I have problems with the nonviolent movement that lead to the Civil Rights Act of 1964. The movement led to some changes in law, but it seems like black people as a race became either tired after arriving, less vigilant, or – and this is a hated black people descriptor – lazy. There’s a gap between the fight for Civil Rights (all factions from nonviolent to violent) and life as we know it now. Racial injustices have continued since 1964 (“Just because Civil Rights is law doesn’t mean that we all abide.” – MeShell Ndegeocello) but the vigilance has dropped off to a very few, and I am glad to see now that there may be more than Al Sharpton and Jesse Jackson left to speak out on it. We don’t have an MLK, but out of this, I think we might get our next one – our next Stokely Carmichael; our next James Forman; our next H. Rap Brown (hopefully without the cop killing); our next Angela Davis; our next Huey Newton and Bobby Seale. I remain hopeful that now that people know Mike Brown’s name, this just “feels” like a galvanizing cause because we’ve had enough. Black Civil Rights 2.0? I’m on board.

To be continued…


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...

Tags: , , , , , , , ,

Category: Politics

Leave a Reply


Get every new post delivered to your Inbox

Join other followers