SCOTT ADAMS, Dilbert's creator, offered some well-reasoned comments regarding SF 49s' player Colin Kaepernick who is insulting the nation by his antics during the national anthem in support of Black Lives Matter.
- (Buck Lidel, my "journalism" mentor of some 50 years ago would cringe at the word count of the leed paragraph; he always said "Keep the leed to 10 words or less." I blew it this time.)
My issue with Kaepernick and other "celebrities" who figuratively thumb their noses at national symbols is that their actions have zero impact on the people who indiscriminately are killing blacks. Children as well as adults.
These murderers - as we learn when the police finally apprehend them - mostly are blacks.
There is no doubt that there have been too many shootings by white cops of blacks; no argument there. But there are MANY more shootings of blacks by blacks than white cops shooting blacks Black Lives Matter seems to focus solely on the police, ignoring black-on-black murders.
The Miami (FL) Herald of March 12, 2016 included a headline that reads: Grim toll from decade of gunfire in Dade: 316 kids, teens killed.
The article’s writer, Charles Rabin, noted that:
- Since the 2006 killing of Sherdavia Jenkins, 9, an average of 30 youths are killed annually
- Most victims are in their late teens but the numbers include 18 children under the age of 12
- Families of victims are frustrated by the lack of progress and chronic violence
(It's an article worth reading; it documents a continuing disregard of life in and around Dade County FL.)
These children, with rare exception, are murdered not by white cops - on whom "Black Lives Matter" anger seems focused - but by other blacks.
While the killing - deliberate or otherwise - makes the local news, unless the crime can be attributed to A white shooter, the death of another person does not cause even a passing mention in the media of other locales.
We don't see the likes of Al Sharpton strutting before cameras when a black kills a black, no matter the age of the victim or the killer.
We do hear politicians railing about gun control, but once the cameras and voice recorders stop rolling, we hear nothing about taking illegal guns off the street or arresting the purveyors of illegal guns; indeed, save for a few 5-second clips about memorials and funerals, the murder is just "history." (Not for the victim's kin, of course, who continue to suffer their loss.)
CAVEAT: I grew up in south Florida. I have a son who is a cop and I own a legally purchased handgun.
The Dade County school superintendent, Alberto M. Carvalho, has became a favorite of the media. Unfortunately for Carvalho - who heads the fourth largest school system in the nation - most of his appearances before the press have him bemoaning the loss of yet another student.
Dade County always has had black-on-black crime. Little was done about it then; little is being done about it now.
The difference is that now there are many black police and in a number of Dade County jurisdictions, the top cop is black.
So, the question remains: despite hand wringing, gnashing of teeth, and tears without number, WHY are children - mostly black children - murdered and no one, not police, not neighborhood leaders, not preachers, seems to be able to even reduce the amount of black-on-black murders?
I (sadly) realize times have changed.
While there was crime when I was going to school, most of my peers had respect for (or fear of) authority, be that parents, police, teachers, and the like. (I qualify that because when I was in junior high, Dade County, trying to ape New York City and Hollywood's presentation of it, had a handful of gangs. The difference was that any gang "warfare" rarely resulted in anything more serious than a cut and all combat was focused on the opposing gang; "zip" guns were not suitable for drive by shootings.
There ARE some things that can be done to reduce the number of murdered children.
- Eliminate automatic weapons.*
- Let parents do what is necessary to keep their children in line - from an early age, **
- The district attorneys and courts must stop reducing charges from felonies to low-level misdemeanors; end the slaps on the wrist and tisk-tisking.
- Make possession of a weapon during commission of a crime (e.g., a drive-by shooting) an automatic jail sentence; no option. ***
- Focus on prevention by increasing the "See Something, Say Something" and similar awareness programs.
* My son the cop disagrees, noting that a cop is not always at hand when needed and we need to be armed as well as the criminal. It worked for the U.S. and the Soviet Union ("mutual destruction") but I don't think it will work for John Q. vs. the criminal. I also wonder how many times John (or Jane) Q. would get into a firefight with a criminal or gang of criminals.
** That does NOT mean abusing the child, but it DOES mean warming a bottom when needed, it means "snooping" in the child's room; what a parent doesn't know can end up hurting their child and maybe others as well. Hugs are a better option, but don't always yield the desired results. Permissivness is, I think, at the root of many problems.
*** Yes, I know that jail is said to breed criminals; if they were not criminals they would not be in prison in the first place. The inmates may learn something new, but likely they would learn it on the outside anyway. At least in prison they can get (a) free room and board, (b) free medical care, and (c) free education - well, free to the incarcerated, not so the taxpayer.
Nothing anyone can do - not a school superintendent, not an out-of-town media seeking preacher, not a parent, no one - can totally eliminate crime, and certainly ill-focused programs such as Black Lives Matter won't end black-on-black crime.