On social media there’s this moronic meme going around bemoaning the fact that Ray Rice lost his job while the California Highway Patrol officer caught on film assaulting an African-American woman too still has his. Y’all must think I’m some new kind of fool. When the incident with the CHP actually took place none of the so-called revolutionaries sharing this meme now were outraged about the incident. I learned of it through an African woman on my FB friends list.
When she sent me the link I immediately read it, signed the related petition, re-posted the story and the petition in order for others to do the same. But the very same African-Americans who were just so OUTRAGED over Eric Garner and Mike Brown later oddly enough had nothing to say on the links about African-American WOMEN who were assaulted by the police. Those links received TWO LIKES and ONE COMMENT. One African-American man was amazed and disappointed that the CHP incident did not garner the attention it should have, and he publicly said so. Kudos to him. But the rest of y’all who want to feign concern NOW just in order to bitch about some supposed racism? You better sit all the way down!
Using the battered bodies of African-American women to protect African-American men, the only part of our community whose humanity you value? Let’s keep it 💯: whether the color of the fist connecting to an African-American woman’s jaw is mahogany or cream-colored you really don’t give a fuck about the pain of that woman. And though the brutality that African-American women suffer at the hands of law enforcement(quiet as it’s kept within a community that only acts when victims are male), the REALITY illustrated by statistics is ugly. When African-American girls and women are molested, assaulted, raped and killed it is primarily at the hands of African-American men. But there will be no outrage and marching about this. There will be no empathy and demands for vengeance. The same excuse that the slaveowners used for their violence against enslaved African women is now employed against their great-great granddaughters: ‘she deserved it’. “Black wenches are different-too much attitude”. “You have to use a firm hand with these women, they tend to get out of line and don’t know their place!” To put us “in our place” some will use their fists and penis. Others will serve as apologists for the African-American men who do so. And after all this you will have the unmitigated GALL to demand that African-American women hold YOU down against racist attacks. You will act surprised when African-American women like Kim Foster call you out and refuse to provide you the support that you’ve taken for granted and don’t deserve. But I feel Kim Foster.
For so long I’ve been vested in the African-American freedom struggle. I realize, however, that confronting the internalized sexism of my community and acknowledging the unique plight bequeathed to me due to both race and gender simply isn’t a concern of said community. The focus of my ethnic group is on the heterosexual, cisgendered African-American male. Those of us who do not fit that category-African American women and African Americans who are GLBT- do not matter as much.
I’ve often begged for reciprocity. Those days are over. The events of the past three months and the strident voices within my group cheering the oppression and mistreatment of African-American women have left me with one option: withdrawal.