In their Wednesday, September 15 e-newsletter, Chicago based Black Star Project reports that 78 children 18 years and under have been murdered since September 24, 2009. This date marks the tragic loss resulting from the horrific mob style beating death of 16-year-old high school honor roll student Derrion Albert at Fenger Academy High School on Chicago’s South Side.
“What has changed? Most died from gunfire. Most were young Black males. All were children of our city. When will enough be enough?” asked Black Star founder and head Phillip Jackson.
One of the area’s latest victims was Deantonio Goss. According to published reports, the 16-year-old sophomore was gunned down while walking in an alley on his way home from Bowen High School around 3 p.m. Wednesday, September 8 when someone opened fire in that 8600 block of South Saginaw Avenue just blocks from Deantonio’s home. Darryl Jackson, Deantonio’s father, said his son wanted to go to barber college. Jackson said that Deantonio was athletic and had been involved in boxing since he was 7. Deantonio was pronounced dead at 3:52 p.m. at Stroger Hospital as noted by a spokeswoman for the Cook County medical examiner’s office.
And just two days later following the 78 children killed e-newsletter release, on Friday, September 10, the Black Star Project followed with yet another report citing that within the past nine-and-a-half years, 67,000 Black Americans have been murdered and that Black leaders and government have all but ignored this carnage befalling central city communities across the country.
“Many young Black men feel angry and are desperate because Black communities and America have failed them,” says Black Star head Jackson in the September 10 sharing.
He adds, however, that while some of this hopelessness may be understandable given our unique “extreme negative circumstance” in this country, it still “does not give any young Black man the right to hurt others. “Are young Black men doing the work of the Ku Klux Klan? (Have they become) the primary killers of Black people in America? Without much debate, the answer is yes,” Jackson contends.
The writing notes that although the reasoning for Black-on-Black killings may differ from the Klan’s impetus, the results are in Jackson’s words “arguably more horrific.” The dates, parallel time lines, and related numbers sadly but factually speak for themselves.
Noting a Tuskegee Institute study, Jackson revealed in his newsletter that the Ku Klux Klan killed 3,446 Black people in America “during an 86-year span” as compared with Black men who kill about the same number of Black people “every six months.”
Backing up Jackson’s Tuskegee documentation with this writer’s findings, authors Molefi K. Asante and Mark T. Mattson in their work “Historical and Cultural Atlas of African Americans” list that between the 29 years of 1889 and 1918 in the then 48 states from Alabama to Wyoming, 2,932 Black people were lynched.
Comparatively, with our current 2010 Black-on-Black homicide stats, the authors chronicle the decade between 1890 and 1900 “as the most dangerous time” in the post Civil War era for Black men to be alive. They add that nearly 1,700 persons were lynched in that decade compared to 921 in the decade between 1900 and 1910; 840 from 1910 to 1920, and nearly 400 between 1920 and 1930.
Again, comparatively speaking, that would be 3,861 Black people killed by white hands between the 40 years of 1890 and 1930, still on the low end when measured against current day reported Black killings by Black hands.
Returning to the Star writing, statistics from the United States Department of Justice demonstrates the shockingly horrendous magnitude of this Black-on-Black reality during the nine-and-a-half year period from 2001 through 2010. In two U.S. wars, 6,754 American soldiers were killed including 2,019 soldiers in Afghanistan since 2001 and 4,735 soldiers in Iraq since 2003.
Shockingly for our nation’s central city communities, the newsletter released data would reveal that during this same nine-and-a-half years that the U.S. has been at war oversees from 2001 through 2010, approximately 67,000 Black people were murdered during this same time in the United States.
Yet another observer of stats comparing the killings of the Ku Klux Klan and the still growing Black-on-Black homicidal numbers is Clinton L. Black in his 2007 work “Why All Black People Are Coming to an End.”
According to his figures, the Ku Klux Klan lynched 3,437 Black men, women and children in the 115 years from 1866 to 1981. Today, he writes, Black people are murdering 3,437 Black men, women, and children in a115 day period.
Noting his findings, mathematically he postures that a Black person commits a crime against another Black person somewhere in America every second. His figures conclude that at this rate, that would be “six Black-on-black crimes a minute, 3,600 Black-on-Black crimes an hour, 86,400 Black-on-Black crimes a day, 604,800 Black-on-Black crimes a week, 2,629,743.83 Black-on-Black crimes a month, and 31,556,926 Black-on-Black crimes a year.”
The author contends that although the overwhelming majority of these crimes go unreported, this is still the most “devastating force” against Black people in the world today. Let’s look at the numbers. For the purpose of this writing, we will use and anchor Black Star’s figure of 67,000 Black-on-Black killings. Reviewing Black Star’s Tuskegee figure of 3,447 Blacks killed by lynching, Black hands murdered 63,554 more Black folk then did whites during this present day period.
Taking a look at Asante and Mattson’s research of killings where 2,932 Blacks were lynched by whites. Black hands today murdered 64,068 more Black folk then did whites during the 29 years between 1889 and 1918.
Since the U.S. has been at war oversees where approximately 6,754 American soldiers were killed, Black hands murdered 60,246 more Black folk then the numbers of reported Americans who died in Afghanistan and Iraq citing Black Star figures over the past nine-and-a-half- years from 2001 through 2010.
And finally, we do not want to exclude author Clinton L. Black’s findings. According to his figures, the Ku Klux Klan murdered 3, 437 Black men, women and children. Black hands killed 63,563 more Black people within the past 10 years than did the Klan over the 115 years from 1866 to 1981.
The majority of these crimes were committed by Black men primarily in the 17-44 year-old-age range against other Black men in that same age group . And although Black men may comprise only 6.5% of the U.S. population, such crime detailing accounts for nearly half of America’s homicide victims.
And here is a shameful present day irony. Exactly 118 years ago, Holly Springs, Mississippi born Ida B. Wells published a strong editorial in her paper “Free Speech” which brought her fame and nearly got her killed.
A graduate of Rust College in Mississippi, Wells was a teacher, a journalist and Black America’s most devoted crusader against lynching. But after her 1892 writing revealed names that were responsible for the lynching of three Memphis African Americans, a mob of whites demolished her printing press and office.
They threatened to lynch Wells in front of the Memphis courthouse. But there was nothing new about such threats on her life. She had received her share of threats and hostilities from white men. She fled to New York City where she was hired by an African American weekly and launched her anti-lynching campaign.
Where today in this our era of Obama is our Ida B. Wells? The Black Star newsletter contends that there was a time when Black communities “wanted Black men to protect them from white men who wore ‘hoods’ while these whites killed Black people and destroyed their property.”
Now today, Black communities in this age of Obama are no longer asking Black men to protect their/our families, women, children and property, but are pleading with (mostly white) police departments, state National Guard units and even the government to protect them/us from our own Black males wearing “hoodies” and occasionally ski masks who are now in larger numbers killing Black people and destroying our property.
“It really is a pitiful fact; no other people on earth hate, rape, rob, assault, envy, betray, distrust, kill, exterminate and outright violate Black people more than Black people! No other race of people in the whole world deliberately destroys their own people quite like Black people! In a real sense, we as a Black people are a weapon of mass self-destruction!” says Black Star.
And as noted in my September 9 article on the dismal Black male graduation numbers, I have been following and consistently reporting on these Black male stats now for over 20 years. The 1982 study for example by sociologist Robert Staples titled, “Black Masculinity – The Black Male’s Role in American Society,” stated 28 years ago that:
“The largest group responsible for homicides in this country is that of Black males in the 20 to 24-year age range. And their victims are similarly young Black men – a fact which has as its most tragic consequence that homicide is listed as the number one cause of death among Black males aged 15 to 30.”
Now, this was 28 years ago and I very clearly remember including this quote in teachings, writings and presentations.
On top of the Black-on-Black homicide states, we have a most recent story appearing in the September 9, 2010 MCJ that the overall 2007/08 graduation rate for Black males in the U.S. was only 48 percent and that in New York state, the graduation rate for Black males is only 25 percent, a most alarming stat when noted that New York has the nation’s “highest enrollment of Black students.”
And if we could not top the Black-on-Black homicide rates of 67,000 Black people between 2001 through 2010 or the stat reflecting that as of 2007/08, Black males in the U.S. now have the lowest graduation rates ever (and in that same article we are also not graduating from college significant numbers of Black males), Black Star just released another finding Monday, September 20 noting that “Black students nationally score at rock bottom on SAT and ACT with no outcry or action from leaders or parents.”
Jackson adds in a quote that these scores “predict and parallel low college admission rates, high unemployment rates and high incarceration rates. Black students are in trouble!”
But no, not only are Black students in trouble. Black people are in trouble and a positive and prideful Black future is in serious doubt.
What concerns this writer just as much if not more than the data is why is it that from decade to decade, we are continually witnessing our people and particularly our children dying as a result of a slow but readily visible, understandable, and predictable self-imposed genocidal decay in our social, educational, political, and economic infrastructure while our leadership, our ministers, our educators, our politicians, and our community stakeholders are saying and doing absolutely nothing.
I say “self-imposed” as it is my position that in 2010, 145 years following 1865’s Emancipation Proclamation, we can no longer use as an excuse or blame racism or White Supremacy for our Black community ills. And I make this statement while still proudly claiming a cultural nationalist–albeit a politically conservative and morally conscious–ideology.
Hopefully, we are not like helpless children waiting on someone else – “others” – or Obama with funds to all of a sudden rise up with proposals for solutions at which point we all with our 501’s pop up with a response as though your organization all of a sudden has some unique insight as to why our young men are killing one another or why our Black males are not graduating or why our students are scoring low on the ACT or SAT.
Again, the ACT 2010 composite score numbers by race in accordance with Black Star figures – Asian American (23.4); Caucasian/White (22.3); American Indian (19.0), Hispanic (18.6), and African American/Black (16.9).
Where are you now? Why are we not hearing from you today, Thursday, September 9, 2010 at the preparation of this article? Why did we not hear from you 28 years ago when Robert Staples and others earlier began to announce this trend in 1982?
And of course, “tooting” my own horn at this juncture, I must say that within the past 30 years and continuing, the culturally specific African Centered educational and social developmental model has and to this day enjoys tremendous competitive success nationally in the education of Black youth (Black males in particular) in the positive social development and character cultivation of our children and also in the preparatorial learning readiness of students in Pre-K through elementary school levels.
As of 2010, we can now point to significant numbers of our pupils nationally who are now college graduates enjoying with confidence, dignity, pride and high self-esteem, earned career and professional gratification in their selected fields. Such is the success record of Black-on-Black defined and controlled education as compared to the abhorrent above reported “Black-on-Black crime.”
But of course, our successful African American mainstream embedded leadership, educators, politicians and community stakeholders don’t want to hear what works for our children and/or for our communities, particularly if it is a culturally privileged Classical Higher Order Upline “Black only thang.”
Solutions to this dilemma facing us must no longer, in isolated fashion, originate from outside or outside inspired sources. It is us, our own people that have allowed this condition and self-destructive behavior to befall upon our youth as a result of our irresponsive inaction in this regard.
But there are those of us who know how to fix it. And it is therefore only us as a Black people who can render an effective and successful life reclaiming and future restorative solution for our children and for our tomorrows.