this was posted at black women vote! today when i went for my daily dose. Shecodes said it all.
Al Sharpton defends the Dunbar Village rape suspects, throws black women and children under the bus
Please excuse any typos, etc. I've got the 'flu and need to rest to get my strength up.
Queens, it is my time to start drawing lines in the sand with black organizations and black activist groups. After hearing some disturbing news last night, I decided to officially withdraw my membership, financial support, and volunteering time from any organizations that do not prioritize the needs of black women, as outlined in The Black Women's Agenda. I can no longer in good conscience support the efforts of many of these organizations -- not because I do not believe in some of their causes, but because many of them have made it abundantly clear that they believe that black women are not considered worthy of the same protections, rights, and support that they enjoy from us.
There was a response in my comments section a few weeks ago that has shaken me to the core, although I didn't respond to it. It came from PioneerValleyWoman, from the blog, Episcopalienne.
I had just finished writing this comment:
I am ready to go to war too. I will not be terrorized in my own home, myown neighborhood, or by my own culture.Yes I am all for education andprevention. However, once someone has made up their mind to be a domesticterrorist, they will be treated as such by me.I remember in college, I had a group of black guys who I considered very good friends. We studied together, ate together, laughed and the same jokes and everything. Then one day, my girls and I showed up at a dorm room party, and the young brothers starting shouting and chanting gleefully, "Hooray! the hoes are here! the hoes are here!"
I will never forget two things:
1) My level of shock and betrayal at the "brothers" who I literally CARRIED through statistics and economics class, who I always treated with dignity and respect, and who I loudly defended against racist white students who complained about affirmative action.
2) The humbled cowardice of my female friends. They nervously smiled and walked into the party.
From then on in our circles, the term for black women became "jokingly andlovingly" b*tch or hoe. "It must be hard for a hoe in this school, etc". "Why are you so mad? It's just a joke". I felt like a voice crying in the wilderness. Sometime after I graduated, the 'joking nature' of b*tch gave way to genuine terminology, spoken with a straight face.
I'll never forget Wade Stevens (yes I am calling you out by name, you jerk), Mr. Black Sensitivity and Consciousness, who physically restrained me fromcalling the police when a black girl was being beaten senseless in broad daylight on campus, claiming that 'she probably deserved it'. Like I said, this is a real war, not a metaphorical one. We have genuine casualities, and we need to wake up to the fact that nobody is going to protect us but ourselves. .
PioneerValleyWoman responded with this comment, which has been reverberating within me ever since:
"Shecodes, there is something that occurred to me in light of the story you told about what happened at that party--the use of the pejorative "ho". Of course, there are the obvious sexual connotations about being a "ho,"but it might very well be deeper than that. It has occurred to me that there areways in which black women see themselves as working on behalf of community uplift and the ways in which black men might see that community activistwork. Think of the recent use of "pimping" being applied to Chelsea Clinton, and a Snoop Dogg videotape I once saw, in which he described his lawyer, a blackwoman who was working on some case on his behalf, as "riding for her pimp."Many black women, working on community uplift, see themselves as working on behalf of the entire community, thus we see nothing wrong when we work on behalf of black men's interests. In our mind, everyone benefits. But some black men may not see it that way. They might not beworking as hard on community uplift as the women do, and if anything, work on behalf of their interests exclusively. Yet, they are quite glad to be the beneficiaries of the women's efforts. At the same time, the women might not be getting any reciprocity from the men whom they are working so hard to help. In the men's eyes, they might not be asking for any, and the men are not giving it. The women presume racial solidarity and respect might result from their efforts. The men see instead that they have an army of "hos" who are pimping themselves on the men's behalf, servicing them, bringing all their hard-earned resources home to the men, but not getting anything in return. This very well ties into the message of this blog, black women working on behalf of their own interests exclusively. The message couldn't be clearer. Perhaps some black men see black women's dedication to their interests as"hoing" themselves...Time to cut the apron string...." [emphasis added]
PioneerValleyWoman's comment struck deep in my soul -- I knew that I had the answer to the question that I have been asking my entire adult life about the millions of 'missing in action' people in the fight to free Black women from violence and oppression.
The ugly truth is this: Although these men and women are black, THEY ARE NOT ON OUR SIDE. They are not interested in equality for all people -- they are only interested, deep down inside, in black male supremacy. As women, we are the firewood to fuel their activist engines.
Case in point:
Black female bloggers have been screaming ourselves hoarse about the atrocity in Dunbar Village for months now. We have often complained of the deep, complicit silence of all of these so-called 'civil rights' organizations. Don't we have a civil right to be protected from violence?
There are six gang rapists on the loose, who are likely to continue attacking other black women as we speak with complete impugnity. Not one word of support, one dime of assistance, or even one drop of concern from the NAACP, The Urban League, the National Action Network, 100 Black Men, 100 Black women, any major traditionally black churches, any historically black colleges, any major black activists, or any traditionally black fraternities or sororities. Of course, their excuse, as usual, is that they have 'other' concerns to worry about. And those 'other' concerns are absolutely, positively NEVER in defense of black female victims of black on black crime. And no, a 50 person march and a few half hearted, watered down statements about 'general violence in our communities' without targeting the perpetrators of those crimes, don't count.
Now I am hearing that Al Sharpton is finally going to have a press statement about Dunbar Village -- but IN SUPPORT OF THE ALLEGED RAPISTS. The 'pompadoured preacha' as Gina likes to put it, doesn't like the way that these vicious, violent boys are being treated. Well, well, well... did I call it, or did I call it?
On February 18th, I wrote the following:
"Now if the police had rounded up these boys, and beaten them with the same lack of mercy that the youths did to this poor woman, or God forbid raped the rapists, all of these organizations would have descended on Dunbar Village like the wrath of God, demanding ‘justice’, and clutching their breasts with overwrought sympathy for these ‘troubled youths’. Certain activists would set their spin machine into 'warp speed overdrive' to transform these vicious batterers and rapists into the image of helpless, heroic victims of society, worthy of our financial support and parental concern."
I AM STARTING A MASS WALKOUT OF BLACK WOMEN TO BLACK ORGANIZATIONS THAT REFUSE TO DEFEND US from the most likely threat to our personal safety -- which is black on black violence. Will you join me?
I CHALLENGE EVERY BLACK WOMAN within the sound of my voice to evaluate the actions of all organizations that claim 'to speak for all black people'. Google them, listen to their past podcasts, radio shows, and flip through their books. If you do not see a commitment to The Black Women's Agenda, then I urge you to consider cutting them off financially. Stop volunteering for their thier causes. Stop attending their galas, award shows and 'party mixers'. If you discover organizations that actually do take the equality and safety of black women seriously, let us know, and black female bloggers will advertise those agencies to the hilt, and encourage our readership to support them. Don't be fooled by talks about 'staying together' for the sake of 'unity' and 'solidarity'. What we have going on here in the black activist world is not 'unity'. It's HUMAN SACRIFICE on the altar of black male supremacy.
But don't just walk out. Tell them WHY you are walking out, and that you'll be back when they stop crying 'The hoes are here! The hoes are here!" when we come to the bargaining table.
Posted by SheCodes at 8:11 AM
**UPDATE***Apparently, the NAACP may have sent lawyers down to defend the Dunbar Village rape suspects. I am awaiting confirmation on this.
March 11, 2008 1:40 PM-SheCodes