The BlackStar’s New Year Resolution

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A new year is now upon us. Hopefully, 2007 will bring us more peace than 2006, although, that prospect in some respects seems very grim.

Still, the nation delivered a stunning rebuke of the Bush Administration’s policies by driving many Republicans from office. Across the country, we saw American voters repudiate the Bush mandate of pre-emptive war in Iraq based on lies. The “decider� was humbled, albeit, temporarily. And before this year started, we saw the “official� number of dead American soldiers surpass the 3,000 mark. 

However, in actuality, that mark had already been reached. That is because we now know that the Administration and the Pentagon suppress the true numbers of dead soldiers by engaging in semantic mendacity. When they tell us of soldiers who have died in Iraq, they don’t count those who die after being evacuated out of the areas of conflict in Iraq. For example, if a soldier is critically wounded on the field but doesn’t die until he is taken or, airlifted out of the combat zone then his death isn’t counted among the tally.

Our “president� had the temerity to say that the number of dead Iraqis from the conflict was about “30,000 give or take.� His flippant comment about the deaths of that amount of human beings is bad enough. Yet, we now know that that figure is much higher, due to the work done by John Hopkins researchers, published in the Lancet. According to the study, the figure is placed at over 600,000 people. And with the country out of control, stopping the bloodletting will be a major challenge in 2007.

Here is where many unanswered questions about the Democrats come in. Will they curtail the excesses of this criminal Administration that has broken law after law? Speaker Nancy Pelosi has said that impeachment is off the table. If that is the case then the impeachment clause in the Constitution has now been rendered null and void. If this president doesn’t deserve impeachment who does and what is the purpose of the clause?

There has been talk that the Democrats should stop the war, or, at the very least dry up the funding for the Iraq quagmire. But many Democrats have argued against “the way� the war has been waged, not, the immoral nature of it. Given that, pressure must be applied to the Democrats to force them to act with due speed to end the occupation.

Another problem for the New Year that we must deal with is the occupation of the Black community by killer cops. Last November 25, we saw the execution of 23-year-old Sean Bell in Jamaica, Queens by undercover NYPD cops, in a hail of 50-plus shots, with the initial 11shots most likely being fired by a drunk cop.  The Queens District Attorney has yet to issue any statement of consequence as to the state of any investigation into the conduct of the officers. That maybe because no such investigation is being conducted.

The outrage of the community is high, as we have seen in the marches that have taken place in Queens, Harlem, Brooklyn, and on Wall Street and down Fifth Ave. But more must be done to force the powers to institute policy changes that will insure that cops don’t come onto our streets with itchy trigger fingers. We must also insist on either a requirement that cops—especially white ones—who patrol our communities, live there. They should have something in their background that proves they have the requisite understanding of our community to free them of the racist stereotypes so often projected on our community.

Some claim that the Bell murder had nothing to do with racism. But does anyone really think that racial profiling isn’t the real reason that Bell and friends were fired on 31 times by Officer Mike Oliver as he emptied his first clip and proceeded to reload? Isn’t it crystal clear that what Oliver was firing at was the sum total of his racial fears of Black men? 

The authorities seem to playing a wait-and-see game. Apparently, they think that if they wait long enough, outrage over Bell’s murder will fizzle out. In 2007, we must show them how wrong they are.

Yes, we have embarked on a new year with new possibilities. In the Black community, it’s another opportunity for us to galvanize our strength to repel all the problems and hostile attacks that plague us. Hopefully, this year we can start seizing the moment. We must do it for Malcolm and all our brilliant heroes.

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