Kankakee, Illinois, USA
March 18
That One
Columnist for Kankakee Daily Journal, Host of The Ron Jackson Coffee & Conversation Show Saturdays on WKAN 1320AM, or wkan.com, justrondering.blogspot.com. Public speaker(Youth, women in unhealthy relationships) Author of " How to Handle Your Man"

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APRIL 14, 2012 1:33PM

Violence Card: the New Black Crutch

Rate: 1 Flag

I received more than a few invitations to read an “eye-opening” piece about violence, in particular black on black violence in America.

“Playing the Violence Card,” is an op-ed piece published in the April 5, 2012 “Wall Street Journal,” by Khalil Gibran Muhammad. It is readily available on the Internet. 

I read it again and again. Then I thought, “Just when you think it’s safe to go back in, another toxin is released.”

The article condemns and disagrees with anyone who dare's to challenge the selective interest in rare white on black crime with the question, “What about the disproportionate number of black on black crimes?”  The author labels it “playing the violence card.” 

He further suggests that the epidemic of intra-racial violence is the result of “social and institutional roots,” and it should be addressed “through collective effort well beyond the boundaries of black communities.”  He also called the violence card “a cynical ploy that will only contribute to more fear, more black alienation and more violence.”

Muhammad, an American historian, cites a comparable period from the late 19th to the early 20th century when white on white crime amongst poor immigrants was rampant. The violence was remedied by an aggressive force of social workers, police, and community and labor activists creating a better social welfare net.

 After reading his piece almost a dozen times, it seemed poisonous. Putting his words into the hands and minds of those already looking for someone or somewhere else to blame for the self hatred in the black community is far more damaging than dumping tons of free crack cocaine in the middle of the hood.

The actions he referenced in the early 1900s to stop poor white immigrants from killing each other were duplicated in the early 1960s and even today. That operation was called the Civil Rights Act of 1964.  It provided black Americans with previously denied opportunities. And many blacks took advantage of it. Others didn’t.

Citing the poverty in black communities as a direct cause of violence is another misplaced diagnosis. There remains abject poverty in the Appalachian region, yet there are not daily murders of poor whites by poor whites.

There are roughly 27 million blacks in America. If we took the rule-of-thumb that ten-percent of most things could be bad or different, that would account for 2.7 million blacks involved in the perpetual violence. Of those, 1.5 million may be locked up at any given time. That leaves one-million creating and reproducing the havoc.

I would never say that racism is nonexistent. However, it doesn’t exist in its insurmountable form of a half century ago. Racism today is like little dog droppings in a public park. We all have the power to step over it. Yet, some choose to step in it or take a stick and stir it up while yelling, “See, I told you it is still here.”

It is also unreasonable for Muhammad to assume that other races and factions should go into the black community to effect change (known as the Blindside phenomenon). Although the Civil Rights Acts ended segregation, Blacks remain the most segregated group in America, separating from the rest of the country with Black-Only associations like Miss Black America, Mr. Black Olympia, Black McDonald’s Franchisees Association, Black Student Associations, Black Police Associations, Congressional Black Caucus, and hundreds of others. Black agitators can’t extend a challenge to “outsiders” or financially shake them down to help solve black problems while rejecting their participation in black achievements.

We see this approach fail in our foreign policy when stick our noses in other cultural fights and it changes nothing. America couldn’t make the Vietnamese or Koreans like each other.

And America can’t make blacks like each other.


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That's an easy way out. Black Americans have a unique history. No, it's not an excuse, but to not take it into account is to not recognize the danger it presents to everyone, black or white. It doesn't work to have the economic disparity that exists in this country. Period. It doesn't work to have schools that suck in the cities, and fewer and fewer opportunities for advancement for those barely hanging on. Period. The recent reductions in aid to community colleges, for instance, is an issue that needs to be addressed, and that's only one of them. Talk about that.
Mr. Rijxn is a little off point. Maybe a lot. He uses as an example to debate Mr. Muhammad's opinion that poverty plays a direct role in the black on black violence the fact that there remains abject poverty in the Appalachian region, yet there are not daily murders of poor whites by poor whites. However Rijxn fails to realize that those people living in the Appalachian region are quite spread out and don't live on top of each other like their poor Black counterparts living in urban cities or public housing . They don't have liquor stores right in their faces either. Hence, poor Black families living in the country south don't have an equal murder rate among themselves either.

Furthermore, I wouldn't say that the Civil Rights Act ended segregation. The CRA was meant to give Black people self determination or the right to choose. It also prohibited the government from discriminating at Black people's expense. I would call the Black events such as Miss Black America more along the lines of self determination, not a form of separatism like Mr. Rijxn thinks.

But the fact of the matter is that there is a lot of White on Black crime. So someone stating, “What about the disproportionate number of black on black crimes?” is “playing the violence card.”
Ben. Every ethnic group brings a uniquness to America. What about white kids who attend those same poor schools as blacks? Why dont they have the same failure rate and propensity to commit crime? I knew an elderly black man who said he learned to read and write using the dirt floor of his home.
dimdim... What? Alcohol has no place in white kids' lives? And what about whites who live in overcrowded trailer parks? There is NO excuse for teh rampant blackon black crime and it didnt just start- almost 300,000 blacks murdered since 1975, and 94% of those were committed by blacks. Please, stop justifying it. Are the KKK and Aryan Nation also self determination?
Great column. I just finished reading a book about the epidemic of racial violence in america .... and how the media ignore it. Kind of fills in the blanks of this and other articles. It is called White Girl Bleed A Lot by Colin Flaherty.
Thanks, John. I'll check it out.