What We’ve Got Here Is Failure To Communicate

29 Mar

I saw this segment on Bill O’Reilly last night. While the crux of the story centers around Trayvon Martin, I’m not talking about that, but rather the big picture that’s being discussed in this video.

At :55 seconds in, the first guest, Faith Jenkins, makes the point that too many people are trying to get something out of this case and that’s just wrong. Agreed.

However when O’Reilly talks to the other guest, Jasmyne Cannick, she says that this is the culmination of years of frustration of being racially profiled. Agreed.

Back to Jenkins who acknowledged the point of profiling to best identify crime when the statistics point to most crimes being committed to young, black males. Jenkins states that profiling sometimes crosses the line (around the 4:20-4:30 mark).

That was the big point. Of course profiling crosses the line, you’re picking on someone for an external factor simply because the greater probability that other people who also possess that factor happen to criminally inclined, I.E., skin color.

Profiling crosses the line because race is that “line”. It may not be fair, but that’s reality.

Life is tough for black people in America, many people write you off right from the start, being black in America comes with it’s own struggles. This is not a secret, we all know these problems exist.

But, is the police department to blame for profiling all young black males, because too large a percentage of them have criminal records, or should more (though certainly not all) of the blame fall onto a black culture in America that hasn’t done enough to prevent these young-males from going astray?

Surely many people in Black America do try their best to keep these problems from growing. However it’s clear that despite their noble intentions and best efforts they are too few in numbers to be able to keep pace with the downward trajectory of their own race.

The essential question is “Who should be most responsible for the general perception of black people in America?”

Should white America be more accepting of all aspects of black culture regardless  or should black America be more accepting of white culture? This question is the core of the chasm that divides America on race. This is not a perceived chasm existing only in space, it is real and exists in every city in the country.

Additionally, with the attention given to “hoodies” now as the rallying point in the Martin case, is the answer really more people wearing an article of clothing that already got a kid profiled and killed or is time to reverse course and shun the attitudes and ideas that have gotten us to this point?

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