Photo: http://www.voguevoice.com/but-nobody-protests-black-on-black-crime/ Black-on-Black Crime Myths Discredited
Many opponents of the Black Lives Matter (BLM) movement point to the issue of “black-on- black crime” and question why we do not protest when a black person kills another black person. Their argument is to say that crimes committed by black people against black people are an epidemic not being addressed by the black community. Instead, our focus is misplaced and amped up when a police officer kills an unarmed black person. They say black lives matter then, but not in our communities where crime and violence is rampant. The “we ignore black-on-black crime” narrative then overshadows, or at the very least is used as a counterargument, against the issue of potential police misconduct against black people.
Let me begin with the false notion of “black-on-black” crime. First of all, this is a myth because research shows that people are more likely to be a victim of crime from someone they know, or the ethnic group from the place where they live. If a black person lives in a predominately black community, it is more likely they would become a victim of crime at the hands of another black person. Critics of Black Lives Matter and those seeking to race bait somehow gloss over this fact. By the way, the same concept holds true for white people who live in predominately white communities. Do we call crime in these communities “white-on-white” crime?
How about “yellow-on-yellow” crime, as a derogatory reference to Asian people who commit crimes against other Asian people? How about “brown-on brown” crime, as a derogatory reference to Hispanic people who commit crimes against other Hispanic people? Here’s a great one: how about “red-on-red” crime, as a derogatory reference to Native Americans who commit crimes against other Native Americans. Just say these references aloud a few times and you should realize how ridiculous each sounds. Then ask a question: why are these terms not used, even though crime statistics support their “validity”? Again, people are more likely to be a victim of crime from someone they know, or the ethnic group from the place where they live.
For the sake of argument, let’s give some validity to the “black-on-black” crime narrative. Critics of movements like Black Lives Matter will say we sit back and allow “black-on-black” crime to occur in cities across the country. Where are the protest marches when a teen is gunned down in Chicago? How about when there is a gang-related shooting in Memphis? What about drug-related violence in St. Louis? Where is the outrage in the black community?
Let’s think about this for a second: again, people are more likely to be a victim of crime from someone they know, or the ethnic group from the place where they live. Do you think for one second that black people who live and work in Chicago are not anxious about the safety of their children on the way to and from school? Do you think for one second that black people who live and work in Memphis are not worried about their children getting caught up in gangs and criminal behavior? Do you think for one second that black people who live and work in St. Louis are not concerned about drug-usage in their community and the violence that usually follows? I question the motives and sincerity of anyone who would dare think we are not disturbed about these issues in our communities. They say: If Black Lives Matter, Why Don’t Black People Protest About Black-on-Black Crime?
While we see images of BLM protests that spring up when a police officer kills an unarmed black person under strange circumstances, we do not see images of community rallies when crime gets out of control in inner-cities. These protests exist, and they are more abundant than protests when law enforcement officers shoot unarmed black people. Let me repeat: These protests exist, and they are more abundant than protests when law enforcement officers shoot unarmed black people. I am sure critics who read this will not believe this fact, so let’s dispel the myth once and for all that we do not care about “black-on-black” crime. We do, and black people around the country protest violence in their communities, and work tirelessly to bring forth change.
The following list, though not exhaustive, documents several “black-on-black” anti-crime protests conducted in 2015 alone. Why was there little coverage of these events? Maybe it is to keep the disproven narrative of “black-on-black” crime alive. Or maybe it is because the rallies below are not a sensational as rallies against allegations of police brutality. In either case, the only way to dispel the myth that black people do not protest against violence in their own communities is to do some research. An even better approach is to join one of the anti-crime rallies orchestrated and led by black people around the country. Then everyone will know that Black Lives Matter in black communities, even when we don’t hear about it or see it in the news…
East Flatbush, NY: Dec, 2015
Jersey City, NJ: Nov 2015
Chicago, IL: Nov 2015
Harrisburg, PA: Nov 2015
Charlotte, NC: Oct 2015
Irvington (Indianapolis, IN): Sept 2015
Portsmouth, VA: Aug 2015
Rockford, IL: July 2015
Ypsilanti, MI: July 2015
Pittsfield, MA: June 2015
Brooklyn, NY: June 2015
Hartford, CT: June 2015
Tampa, FL: March 2015
Joliet, IL: March 2015
Milwaukee, WI: March 2015
Baton Rouge, LA: Jan 2015