And, Marley, I don’t know Chicago crime figures but how many of those uninvestigated crimes were innocent Black people gunned down by Black people? How long have cities like Chicago, like Baltimore, been in non-white control? Have they improved Black lives?

I notice your reference to people of color are limited to criminal activities where people of color commit crimes against people of color, tangible things or evidences. You seem to have an issue seeing and acknowledging system issues that are invisible that keep people like these trapped together so that they harm each other. Yes, crimes in those communities are higher because their is a concentration of Black people is some spaces — therefore, they commit crimes upon each other. Poverty, lack of opportunity, mental health issues (many young people are running around angry without the proper mental health care), poor parenting, bad schools, unsafe neighborhoods and sometimes drive violence. Some people just give up. Gangs come into play because people are looking for way to fit in and be accepted because they aren’t accepted outside of their communities. It’s not as simple as you make it seem. While Black people have some power of their destinies, there are many areas they do not control. Most job creation and business happens at the hands of Whites who tend to hire their own first, then anything except for a Black person next.

On the flip side, Blacks could do more to prepare themselves to be competitive in this society. Some people simply don’t want to assimilate (or their families never taught them the game of assimilating for survival). Assimilating is an activity that people must do — which is terrible, but it’s the truth. All non-White people in America must assimilate to Whiteness in order to “succeed.”

The ‘invisible ways’ these communities are being held back now happens in towns and cities run, almost exclusively by mayors and community leaders from chosen from the Muslim communities.

While I will acknowledge people of color do harm each other and sometimes our leaders are corrupt and do harm to us, many times we are harmed in more long-term ways by White people (i.e. the Flint Michigan water scandal, purging black voters from voter roles). Sometimes people of color tend to model the behavior of the original oppressor (Whiteness) when they gain power and ascertain the privilege they’ve been told they need in order to be accepted in White spaces. It happens all over the world. We cannot have this discussion without truthfully discussing how people of color also oppress their own when they run their own communities and operate in corruption.

In America, now, let’s look at the Jussie Smollett case and why it should be prosecuted to the full extent of the law.

Smollet’s false report is deplorable, was racist, and a waste of public resources, but so are the allegations of young White girls and women falsely accusing Black men of raping them. We can do this tit for tat all day long — but again, you’re talking about crime. Your views go immediately to crime when we are having this discussion about racism, and not systems. People commit crimes for a variety of reasons, but if I go to college and get a degree then take my degree and try to get a job only to find I’m not employable because my first or last name tells the employer what my race or ethnicity is — well that’s a problem.

Black people have made a difference to their own lives and the lives of others, in fact, Black people are supporting President Trump and wearing MAGA hats. They cannot believe he’s a racist…and by all accounts, Black people cannot be racist.

Have you ever paid attention to those Black people at Trump rallies. Many of them are likely paid. They travel to all of his rallies and just happen to land in the same space behind the President for television spots and ads. I live in FL and these Black people have been investigated not for crimes, but because they turn up all of the nation outside of where they live to attend Trump rallies. It’s cool, but they aren’t real supporters, some are paid supporters. Yes, there are Black people who support the GOP, but not necessarily Trump per say based upon their anti-abortion and religion beliefs. Then, there are Black people who have decided to give Trump a chance and genuinely have put aside all of his racism aside (yes, the man is selectively racist). That’s fine too. Black people are not a monolith. People who tend to be richer/wealthier tend to lean GOP Trump. Money trumps race for many Black people.

Black people tend to be very conservative and don’t always agree on the liberal ways of the Democratic Party. When choosing of the two evils, so Black people prefer the GOP because they align more with their religious beliefs and moral ethos.

Does that mean that you are more comfortable in White spaces? Does it mean that you are not comfortable going into Black spaces” I was going to write that a Black woman with your clarity and learning would be a role model for Black youth, girls particularly?

Lastly, I learned to navigate both spaces (White and Black). My family is Black, rich in culture and tradition, and I’m Southern so my Blackness runs very deep. I can do either space, but I dislike professional White spaces because usually there is only one or two people of color, and White people seem to be puzzled by my presence. I’m always going the extra mile, I can count how many times I’m engaged by Whites when in their spaces. I must make the first move. It’s not a good place to be. It’s very stressful. I shouldn’t walk into the room and I’m the only one, or I can count on one hand how many people of color are in the room.

My parents also instilled in us the importance of education, and they tried to ensure we were prepared for college even if we didn’t go. If you’ve read anything about some of my personal stories, I was abused and placed in foster care, so my life was rocky. But I had something inside of me that made me scrappy. I had to fight, I wanted to fight, and I learned to fight early. I didn’t grow up in violence. I lived in decent mixed communities. I went to school in a time when schools were able to spend quality time with kids.

I taught my children to not forsake their culture, but I also taught them how to assimilate in order to go between our two realities. Something White people do not have to worry about because they are the majority. It’s really complicated. Black parents were educated differently, grew up in different places, had access to different levels of resources, and some folks simply just weren’t able to this assimilating thing. There are people in every culture who reject assimilation and find other ways to survive. Yes, I teach young people — but today young people tend to not want to take advice. So my education is relative, especially for young Black people educated in White spaces. They tend to not understand things in life will change for them. No one should have to teach assimilation to young people, but we do.

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