War on Black America: Nameless, Faceless Victims - Blacks Most Often; Justice In America Remains Denied
16 December 2014
By Stephen Lendman
Black Americans are in the eye of the storm.
Militarized cops target them nationwide.
According to Operation Ghetto Storm, police, security
guards, and other self-appointed enforcers kill black
youths and adults on average every 28 hours.
"(S)tate-sanctioned killings." Casualties of war.
Ongoing daily against black Americans. Compounded by
other systemic abuses.
Including judicial unfairness. Get tough on crime
policies. Mandatory minimum sentences. Guilty unless
proved innocent. Three strikes and you're out.
Racist drug laws. Stop-and-frisk. Driving while black.
Filling the world's largest gulag. Mostly with people
Blacks most vulnerable of all. Getting longer
sentences. More likely to receive capital punishment.
Virtually never afforded justice.
Legal protections don't help. Jim Crow never ended.
Systemic injustice defines America.
One in every eight black males is incarcerated on any
given day. According to Law Professor Michelle
"More black men are in prison or jail, on probation or
parole than were enslaved in 1850 before the Civil War
Mostly because of the racist war on drugs. Waged
"almost exclusively in poor communities of color."
In some inner-city ones, around 80% of Black youths
can expect criminal injustice prosecutions one or more
times in their lifetimes.
Around 70% return to prison within two years of
release. If we returned to pre-1980 prison levels, "(m)ore
than a million people working in the system would see
their jobs disappear," said Alexander.
Billions of dollars are at stake. America's
prison/industrial complex is by far the world's
largest. Bigger than China's with four times the
Over 60% of black men born in 1965 or later without
high school degrees have prison records. Marking them
Vulnerable to re-arrest. Targeted by militarized cops.
Arrested for any reason or none at all. Murdered by
In big cities. Small ones. Urban areas. Rural ones.
Militarized cops make their own rules. Operating
extrajudicially. Killing with impunity.
On December 20, two police officers patrolling
Brooklyn's Bedford-Stuyvesant community were shot and
killed in their car.
NYPD deputy chief Kim Royster said Wenjian Liu and
Rafael Ramos were struck in their upper bodies.
The assailant fled to a nearby subway station.
Identified as Ismaaiyl Brinsley. Dying of a
self-inflicted gunshot wound.
New York Governor Andrew Cuomo condemned "this
deplorable act of violence." Ordered flags on all
state government buildings lowered to half staff.
Honoring Liu and Ramos. Saying:
"I join with all New Yorkers in mourning the loss of
Officers Wenjian Liu and Rafael Ramos."
"Like all law enforcement personnel, Officers Liu and
Ramos put their lives on the line in order to serve
their communities, and it is with great sadness that
we mourn their passing after a senseless and
deplorable act of violence."
"My thoughts and prayers go out to the loved ones of
these two brave men. We will remember their service
with pride and endless gratitude."
"Tonight, we all come together to mourn the loss of
these brave souls."
On Saturday, thousands from New York and elsewhere
gathered in and around Christ Tabernacle Church in
Queens. Attending Ramos' funeral. Honoring the slain
Including police and mourners. The Washington Post
reported "a sea of police officers watch(ing) on big
screens set up for the ceremony."
Mayor Bill de Blasio attended. So did Governor Cuomo
and Vice President Joe Biden. "At the end of the day,
we are one," said Cuomo.
"One people, one state, one community, one family.
Somos uno. Somos uno. Somos uno." We are one in
"Our hearts ache for you," Biden told Ramos' family.
"Your husband, and his partner, they were a part of
New York's finest, and that's not an idle phrase."
"When an assassin's bullet targeted two officers, it
targeted this city and it touched the soul of an
Mayor de Blasio called the shootings "a particularly
"When a police officer is murdered, it tears at the
foundation of our society. It is an attack on all of
"It is an attack on everything we hold dear. We depend
on our police to protect us against forces of
criminality and evil."
Obama issued a statement on the day of the killings,
"I unconditionally condemn today's murder of two
police officers in New York City."
"Two brave men won't be going home to their loved ones
tonight, and for that, there is no justification."
The New York Times headlined "Long Line of Blue,
Mourning the First of Two Slain Comrades."
Reporting "an overwhelming display of solidarity and
sorrow." Saying "tens of thousands of police officers
from across the country joined with (their New York
comrades) to pay their respects…"
Who mourns for killer cop victims? For Trayvon Martin.
Unarmed. Threatening no one. Murdered by Sanford, FL
neighborhood watch coordinator George Zimmerman.
A killer cop equivalent by any standard. An earlier
article discussing his acquittal asked when is killing
a non-threatening unarmed teenager not murder?
When civil rights don't matter. When Jim Crow justice
When victims are black. When mostly or entirely white
jurors call cold-blooded murder self-defense.
When a jury of peers representing both sides fairly is
verboten. When killing black males in America is OK
when whites do it.
When a culture of violence prevails. When
institutionalized racism is longstanding. When
conventional wisdom says black males aren't victims.
They're prone to violence.
When equity and justice are four-letter words. When
human life has no value. When society doesn't give a
damn if a black male dies. When lawlessness is part of
the national culture.
Cold-blooded murders is considered self-defense when
killer cops are involved.
Who mourned for 18-year-old Michael Brown. Murdered by
police officer Darren Wilson. Exonerated despite
killing an unarmed youth. Posing no threat. With no
An independent autopsy revealing six bullet wounds
showed Wilson wanted him to die.
Who mourned for 12-year-old Tamir Rice. Playing in a
park. With his sister and friend. Gunned down by
What about Eric Garner. Father of six. Called a
"neighborhood peacemaker." A generous, congenial
Threatening no one. Deserving to live. Murdered by
police officer Daniel Pantaleo's chokehold. "I can't
breathe" cries for help were ignored.
What about Oscar Grant. Unarmed. Threatening no one.
Oakland, CA transit officer Johannes Mehserle thrust
him face-down on the ground.
Claiming he resisted arrest. Despite having committed
no crime. Shot in the back. Murdered in cold blood.
Five bystanders witnessed it. Videotape on at least
four cameras confirmed it.
Convicted of involuntary manslaughter. A rarity.
Sentenced to two years in prison. Reduced to 292 days.
For time served in jail. Free since June 2011.
Grant's family, relatives and friends were outraged.
Demanded first-degree murder. His mother Wanda said
"Oscar was murdered and the law has not held the
officer accountable." Jurors didn't comment.
What about Amadou Diallo. New York cops fired 41
shots. Struck him 19 times. Killing him while standing
unarmed in his apartment building vestibule.
What about Sean Bell. New York cops murdered him in
cold blood. Celebrating the eve of his wedding. Struck
dozens of times. As he emerged from a nightclub
unarmed. Unthreatening. Prosecutions didn't follow.
NYPD cops illegally entered unarmed Ramarley Graham's
home. With no search warrant or probable cause.
Murdering him in his kitchen.
Similar incidents occur often. Killer cops are
absolved. Occasionally, disciplinary reprimands
follow. Cops lie.
Claiming self-defense. Deadly force used only when
threatened, they say. Hundreds of cases annually show
Black lives don't matter. Cold-blooded murder is
called justifiable homicide. Nearly one black victim
daily proves otherwise.
Who mourns for society's most vulnerable? Nameless,
faceless victims. Blacks most often. Justice in
America remains denied.
Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago. He can be reached
at firstname.lastname@example.org. 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
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