NOT DONE WITH CHRISTOPHER DORNER TRAGEDY
Dorner--How many people even remember what he was denouncing?
…NOT DONE WITH CHRISTOPHER DORNER TRAGEDY…
Dr. Joyce Watford, an Educator and aDescendant of America’s Slaves
“HE WHO FORGETS IS DOOMED TO REPEAT!”
When the Christopher Dorner fiasco was taking place in 2013, I was appalled, troubled, and saddened by the national response to the tragedy as we all watched historic, systemic white supremacy and Jim Crow play out (right before our eyes) so much so that I was moved to send Mr. Ford an email—a copy of which follows:
Dear Mr. Ford, I have come away from reading your piece on Dorner, thinking that it is time to Unite and stop blaming the Victim.
Not only was Dorner a bonafide member of the Sons of SAM (a veteran of the United States military), Dorner was also a member of several lost generations of blacks, growing up in the Post-Civil Rights Era, when black social and educational institutions, families, and racial unity were dismantled, not by him--but by historic, systemic racism and white supremacy backlash.
Desegregation/integration, tokenism, and symbolism made many blacks of this Era think that the racial struggle was over, and blacks had finally arrived because now they could work side-by-side with whites, sit beside them in schools, and even marry them--making too many blacks forget the brutal struggles that had made their lives now seemingly so different from those of previous generations.
They forgot/We forgot the warning of the ancestors that the key to freedom is vigilance—you must be vigilant in keeping the struggle alive. We did not heed the warning, even though Dr. King reminded us that power is never given—it has to be taken.
Yet, we turned blind eyes to the white backlash that had begun to challenge the rights our forebears fought so hard and long for, even during the 50's and 60's when the Civil Rights Movement was taking place. As soon as President Lyndon Johnson's initiatives became legislation, outlawing Jim Crow and racial discrimination, and granting us equal opportunities the same as those that whites enjoyed, whites were already plotting to erode our gains and set us back for at least a hundred years or more.
We should have known that they were not going to go down so easily. A new Jim Crow was born and put into place, making it harder to recognize racism, white supremacy, and discrimination. This new Jim Crow would be color-blind, raceless, and faceless--now harder to attack, prove, convict, and conquer.
It would work the same as the old, be just as brutal and deadly, but the deaths would now be economic and not caused by a noose and a rope. The new Jim Crow would figure out how to limit blacks by subjecting them to economic genocide. First, there had to be a system in place to control blacks.
By taking away their schools, whites would control their education and their children, making sure that the race would never again be able to rise up and challenge a nation founded on racism and white supremacy. So, integration/desegregation laws were passed that resulted in closing many black schools and depriving black children of educators who looked like them, who taught them about their history, and who taught them what it was like to be black in their homeland.
Next, black social institutions, families, and racial unity were dismantled and/or infiltrated by special groups (both black and white) who had their own special racial agendas. The race became splintered and fragmented to this day.
There was/is no longer a racial cohesiveness that bonded/bonds black people together who shared/share a common racial identity. Actually, the notion of a black racial identity became offensive to many blacks who were intermarrying with other races and especially with whites. Because of the racial symbolisms and tokenisms handed to blacks, many bought into the lie that it was really a new day and that blacks no longer needed to wear the label of "victim" or worry about inequalities, racism, and white supremacy.
The symbolisms and tokenisms hid the truth that blacks were still being unfairly picked off in the workplace, in integrated/desegregated institutions, and in their unimpeded pursuit of the American Dream the same as their white counterparts. If injured blacks complained about racism, discrimination, unfairness, or injustices they encountered in these white-spaces, they got no help (not from the NAACP, HRC, or EEOC) because these institutions that once fought against racial injustices no longer worked for blacks.
They too were infiltrated and rigged to protect racism and white supremacy (the new Jim Crow). The new Jim Crow leaves no smoking guns (or dead bodies hanging from trees), like the old Jim Crow. The new Jim Crow attacks your character or work performance which is documented in bogus, arbitrary paper trails, carried out by supervisors bent on taking you out in the worst kind of way by economically injuring/killing or diminishing you.
This is what Dorner was the victim of. This is what happened to him. When he learned that the system was rigged and he had been targeted by it, there was no one he could turn to, he thought, to help him fight it. There was no Johnny Cochran, no Thurgood Marshall, not even the Commander-in-Chief or the NAACP or the EEOC or any plain old spokesman for justice and peace or the police because he was the police— he felt abandoned and betrayed; so he took matters into his own hands, as he was trained to do, got the attention he needed, and exposed historic, systemic racism and white supremacy in the LAPD.
Perhaps his life could not have been saved. But he was a Veteran, for God's sake! He deserved our empathy--he could have been suffering from PTSD, and no Veteran should be allowed to go out the way he did, while the nation and the world watched. I think it was scandalous the way he was left alone and treated (like a criminal) when some of us knew he was telling the truth because what he said happened to him has happened undeservingly to too many of us--even after we have played by the rules and done everything we were told to do to be economically successful in our country.
He was another Victim of the new (yet historic) Jim Crow—raceless and color-blind systemic racism and white supremacy. But to me, he was a martyr who did what he did as only he could do to expose the workings of historic, systemic racism and white supremacy in the LAPD.
Most of us know that systemic racism and white supremacy exist across the land (as it has always existed) and all of our lives have been touched by it at some time or other, even the President of the USA, when we observe what is going on in Washington, D.C., with the Republicans who cannot function for the people and the country because they cannot accept a black man over them. So they criticize him, challenge him, berate him, and obstruct him every step of the way.
What is that if it is not personal, historic, systemic racism and white supremacy?
I am sure there are many who want to attack him with the new Jim Crow and are trying hard to get a bogus paper trail on him whereby they can take him down. We all need to know and recognize how the new Jim Crow works because it is after all of us, except for a few “window-dressing” symbols and tokens--but they had better watch their backs too.
It is time to stop attacking each other and blaming each other for what our country and white citizens cannot get past, like a birth defect or handicap that somehow limits and/or handicaps us when compared to them.
That limitation/handicap is and has always been the color of our skin.
Sincerely, Dr. J.