Last year when that Jena 6 thing jumped off, and people took up the cause to fight for justice, I was against it. Not that I'm against justice. No never that! I just felt that the situation or the incident was blown out of proportion. To this day, I still say that the fight for which those 6 kids were arrested for had nothing to do with race, or a noose being hung from a tree. But that was last year. People protested, marched, the kids went to jail like they were supposed to, but they found time to make appearances at the BET Awards like they were heros. Those 6 kids were the new faces of injustice; the new Rosa Parks if you will.
Now here we are, several months after that Jena stuff blew over and we have a new story. Not much mention has been made of Baron "Scooter" Pikes from Winnfield Lousiana, or the injustice he suffered. Ironically, he's the first cousin of Mychal Bell, the prominant figure in the Jena 6 case. Also, the town he (Pikes) lives in is a hop skip and a jump as they say, from Jena Lousiana. Baron was arrested for an outstanding warrant by the police. No big deal, black men get arrested all the time. But Baron was tasered several times, while handcuffed, over a 30 minute period and died in police custody. The cops in question have not been reprimanded for their actions to this day, despite his death being officially labeled a homicide by the state coroner.
This happened back in January, not that far removed from the Jena 6 hype, and I'm at a loss as to why this story hasn't gotten any attention on a National scale. I don't wanna think that the Jena 6 was an embarrasment, by it being the wrong case for the cause of injustice. I sure hope thats not the reason activists have been silent on this one. If you ask me, this would be the most appropriate case for people to act on. What better a case to use for the fight against injustice than this one. Especially on the heels of the Jena 6 movement, and not to mention the Sean Bell verdict. Remember him? He was shot 50 times by New Yorks finest while out celebrating at his bachelor party. Oh yeah, he died too, and he was unarmed. But then again, stuff like this rarely happens. Cops are nice people, and they're particularly sensitive towards minorities. So much so, that they go out of their way to help them because they respect them as humans.
They did the same thing in Shenadoah Pn. about a week ago. Don't know if you heard about it, but a Mexican immigrant was killed by a group of white kids. Clearly it was a hate crime, as the suspects were screaming racial slurs as they beat the man to death. Witnesses to the crime all reported that it was racially motivated. One of the key witnesses to the crime was on Democacy Now this afternoon, and said that she knew the guys since it was a small town, but the cops have yet to arrest anyone. She said, that instead of trying to apprehend the suspects as they ran away (she pointed in the direction of their flee) they were more focused on handcuffing her husband, and accosting him. Oh yeah, she was white and her husband is Hispanic by the way. Uh huh, they showed up on the scene while dude was getting his ass beaten because he called them. They were there at his side as he was stomped and kicked in the head repeatedly. This was more of a racial incident than the Jena 6 beatdown, but again, I doubt it will ever gain any traction in the media, or as far as activists are concerned.
I teach my daughters to respect the police as all children should be taught. But its really fucked up when in the back of my mind I have to make a decision whether to tell them that the police, the people who are supposed to serve and protect us, cannot be trusted. In a way, I'm kinda happy that I'm not raising a young black man right now. Being a black man raising a son in the wake of whats going on could be a tough one. But then again, cops are known for jumping on buses, grabbing black women, and slamming them to the pavement for giveing them the finger. Shit like that has surely done alot by the way of reducing crime.
Whats a black man to do?