Tuesday, April 10, 2012

A matter of degree?


I have to confess to taking a step away from the internets over the weekend. Once word came down that there was a shooting spree in Tulsa, Oklahoma…and information was released that all five victims are black…well, I found myself in need of a break.

Now…well, now I find myself pondering whether the difference between what happened in Tulsa over the weekend and the murder of Trayvon Martin isn’t just a matter of degree.

Catch thy knee – you know that I know that you know and I know that we don’t have a motive in the Tulsa shootings. We do have racist Facebook postings…but white people who post about [insert “N” word here] are exempt from racial profiling so we shall not draw any conclusions from that shit. 

Tis okay…the lack of motive actually factors into my pondering.

There is a noticeable difference between how new anchors deliver news on the Trayvon Martin murder and how they speak about the shootings in Tulsa.

A change in tone…from uncertainty to concern…from confusion to that comfortable mental space Americans have developed to store easily confirmed wrongs.

I can't help thinking that…can’t help pondering the quizzical…what if this is all just a matter of degree?

What if the Tulsa shooters had planned to use Oklahoma's Stand Your Ground law?

Think about it.

What if the Tulsa shooters had left their vehicle…followed their victims…called the police…incited a confrontation…and then shot them?

What if they then claimed they were afraid?

I’ve always known that racism is rooted in fear and insecurity.  Confident and secure people don’t feel the need to oppress others…they don’t fear competition…they don’t resort to violence.

So, what if the Tulsa shooters claim fear…if the one who lost his father at the hands of a black man lifts that up as an example of why he feared then killed…

…isn’t it just a matter of degree?

I find no comfort in this quizzical.

Because if the reason Tulsa is outraged while Sanford sleeps well at night resides within a matter of degree…if that’s true, then the racism has metastasized and we are farther from the cure than I thought.

Blink.

4 comments:

Alexander said...

I am starting to fear more and more that this country is going to have to burn to the ground before it can rise like a Phoenix to assume the vision it was founded on...liberty and justice for ALL.

And it won't be the left the draws the first blood. It will be the racist, homophobic, xtianist goons on the right who insist they're being oppressed and MUST do their god's work (because apparently he's too impotent to do it himself).

freebones said...

i don't get the impression that sanford is sleeping well at all. they're too busy waiting for the "niggers" to riot as soon as the prosecution decision is announced.

the respectable negros blog did a fabulous post about that recently.

their fear is more rooted in racial profiling, i do think.

when five people are shot dead, the stand your ground law becomes moot. i hope everyone involved makes that connection. it seems obvious... but then again...

James Ala said...

Seriously? You thought that four hundred years of slavery and one hundred years of Jim Crow would fade in a mere three generations of post Brown vs Board of Education USA? It's going to be a long, hard, trek before we even get to the base of the mountain, with fools saying "what mountain, I don't see no mountain?" all the way

Beyond The Political Spectrum said...

Of course we all know, guns don't kill people...dangerous minorities do.