Because of two "Sheeds," one I worked with, and one I saw on a billboard yesterday, as to a problem both blacks and whites don't pay attention enough to, save for sensationalizing it in the media, especially if there is a man bites dog aspect to it, like with Treyvon Martin, probabilistically speaking, as homicide is most common within one's own ethnicity, partly for the obvious reason of motive as to how different racial groups tend on average to socialize and live among members of the same ethnic group, if scarce resources, i.e. poverty, probably make that significantly worse too.
This is what it says in the comment on the above video, a billboard I saw last night at 3rd Avenue North and eighth street in Birmingham, Alabama for Rasheed Ali Ward: Sheed. I knew a Sheed once too, from work, whose story of gun violence follows.
RITTCD, Inc was born on June 17, 2010 when my son was captured by the Invisible Body Bag. The reason I call it this because without warning it took my son away. IHe was not polite, did not introduce itself, nor did he announce his coming. He was rude in his taken of my son. He shot him down in cool blood without compassion. Nothing. Keith Hilson was the real target but somehow where RaSheed and his friend was standing, talking; Keith came out of his friend's home wearing a bullet proof vest. Words were exchanged and bullets from a AK-47 was fired. Two people died that night on June 17, 2010. Keith Hilson died on the sence & my son RaSheed Ali Ward later died at UAB hospital. Another mother's son was fatally wounded, but survived. The benefit is for all the RaSheed's who has died and their bodies are a know homocide. We at RITTCD is fighting daily to help every mother & father from going thru this heart breaken experiences. The lost of a love one is hard to bear but the lost of a child is unspeakable. My tongue stuck to the roof of my mouth. I just thank Father for the 19 years. My prayers is with Keith Hilson's mother , family and children. Not only did Keith's mother lose him but before he died 4 months earlier his brother RayRay (Steve Hilson was murdered as well- shot more than 30 times) in the back. One man was arrested for this murder of RayRay. But because of the violation of Constititional Rights it has in the past been for Judges to place killers on higher bonds, or no bonds.
That's rather haunting I thought, as to a man coming to terms with the loss of his son, which is devastating whatever one's race.
As to gun violence and race in the United States, statistically speaking more of a risk to experience for African-Americans, I worked with a fellow named Rasheed once; my Sheed.
Sheed was a skinny little guy, probably 140 pounds dripping wet, but feisty and tough. He was a boxer from Philly, who cleaned floors with me at a company called DMI, a semi-fly by night company that cleaned floors in suburban Philly.
It was kind of a come down from JHU and Mtn. Brook and UCI, although I did work hard at it. That's life.
In any event as to my Rasheed, we and another African-American who's name escapes me right now, if I belive it was Tommy, cleaned the Drug Emporium in Villanova for about six months together every Tuesday night.
We got to know, and trust each other, to the point that one night Sheed forgot about racial boundaries, making the following statement in front of me:
"What is about these little bitty niggas datin these big ass white chicks?"
He stopped after saying that, and laughingly said, "I mean African-Americans," since "whitey" was in the room.
We were a funny bunch, me trying to keep up my Spanish when it was show time, but still talking as "floor technicians" do. Even floor technicians have something to say, even fallen from academic grace ones.
In any event, one night I came in, and there was no Sheed.
I asked,"Yo, what's up with Sheed?"
Tommy replied very casually, "Sheed got shot."
I didn't quite know how to respond to that, and fortunately he wasn't shot twice too badly.
One bullet was a "through and through," nine millimeter passing through his torso that just missed anything vital, if the other wound in his arm wasn't trivial in character, as it cut a nerve.
The resulting nerve graft made it difficult for Sheed to work anymore, and of course boxing, his real love in life, was totally finished.
That experience with Sheed is why when the whole Treyvon Martin thing came down the pike, it didn't really bother me, except to say, where is the outrage, white and black, when so many young black males like Sheed, or RaSheed Ali Ward, the young man from the Billboard.
If people want to get agitated about something, ask yourself why when something like that happens, it doesn't seem to draw that much attention, which in closing I saw first hand with my Sheed.
He came by the store about three weeks later, arm very heavily bandaged, and if he tried to maintain a brave front, I knew him well enough to know there was fear of having been maimed in his eyes too.
I asked him about how the investigation was going, in which the shooting was fairly similar in character to the one above; Sheed was on the pay phone, someone was in a hurty, words were exchanged, a certain code was violated, and wham.
As to the investigation, Sheed told me something along the lines of,"What investigation dude? When I was being released, the hospital people said 'We can't do that, since your a gunshot wound victim. Gotta have a report.'"
There never was one, because the police never came, because as a country, we tolerate some violence that means the police know the drill, that blacks won't be real cooperative, and not enough white people care about that type of crime, both of which is why the whole Treyvon Martin case isn't something I actually really care about at all, since it's not in touch with problems of a more grave character.