Critical Race Theory, Scientiﬁc Race Theory, and the reality of living while Black in the USA have been under rigorous review and debate over the past few months.
And before many of us has had a chance to understand the issues, another Black man is killed by a Minnesota police ofﬁcer- while making a trafﬁc stop.
The Derek Chauvin trial for the murder of George Floyd has highlighted all the issues of race in America, and the spotlight has turned toward how to survive being Black.
It is no longer enough to simply be aware of our surrounding (all of our surroundings are threatening), or to practice the protocols of driving/walking/breathing, etc., while Black.
No, the matters at hand demand that we address and resolve the systemic nature of the policies, practices and, yes, the possibilities embedded in being a citizen of this country.
The critics of critical race theory have objected to identifying the underlying features of ‘supremacy’ embedded in the founding documents: initially a country of, for, about so-called white people; or, to be more precise, white men of Anglo-Saxon origins. Let’s be clear: other people did not become white for almost a century after the founding of this nation (Italians, Irish, et al).
In the beginning, not even white women were included in the nation’s privileged class of citizens.
The disposition of persons descended from the majority of Africans was that of “chattel”, and in some few exceptions, may have been given the status of “free person of color”, but only a very few.
What is objectionable to the opposers of critical race theory? It is that the country’s history and reputation as the greatest nation on earth has become a subject of debate, where there should be none.
These are historical facts.
Science has long proved that there is no basis for deﬁning race. Period.
On the other hand, divisions of class, caste, and the broad spectrum of political power are more clearly divided. Recently, Isabel Wilkerson, and over prior decades, others have written extensively about those structures and how they operate in this country, and abroad.
About power: Black voting blocs proved to be so effective in the 2020 election, especially in Georgia, that the ruling parties are passing voter restriction laws to squash the use of that power.
Since the rise in public (on camera) killings of Black men at the hands of police (too many to name), and white vigilantes (Ahmad Aubrey), the everyday lives of Black folk in America are under intense scrutiny. These murders have risen steadily over the past ten years, and public health ofﬁcials have declared that Black lives are compromised and shortened from living under a racist regime.
This is a pandemic for which no inoculation can prevent, or reverse.
Is there a treatment or cure for this disease, and as some have described it- the original sin of the country?
It is not enough to declare that Black Lives Matter. Contrarily, it must be mandated and legislated that Black lives are in fact, human lives. Human lives matter.
After so many generations under the practice of white supremacy, what does it matter if we’ve since been legislated as humans (when once we were mere “chattel”)?
How do you reverse the dynamic where one group has historically-and constitutionally- been on top; the other perpetually on the bottom (if not under the law, but in practice and policing policy)?
Clearly, it has not happened, yet.
We need an absolute declaration that this pandemic- systemic racism, white supremacy, and the murder of Blacksis a clear and present threat of genocide.
What is genocide? Here is one deﬁnition: Genocide is an internationally recognized crime where acts are committed with the intent to destroy, in whole or in part, a national, ethnic, racial, or religious group. These acts fall into ﬁve categories:
1. Killing members of the group
2. Causing serious bodily or mental harm to members of the group
3. Deliberately inflicting on the group conditions of life calculated to bring about its physical destruction in whole or in part
4. Imposing measures intended to prevent births within the group
5. Forcibly transferring children of the group to another group There are a number of other serious, violent crimes that do not fall under the speciﬁc deﬁnition of genocide. They include crimes against humanity, war crimes, ethnic cleansing, and mass killing.
And that brings me to this question: Has our government been complicit in the genocide of Black folk? Is it still, now? And is this a matter for the world court to intervene?
You decide. Toniwg1@gmail.com