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OpEdNews Op Eds    H3'ed 5/13/20

The Epidemic within the Pandemic: Jogging While Black and the N-Word

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It is oft said among Black People in America that "when the white man gets a cold, the Black man gets pneumonia. When the white man gets pneumonia, the Black man gets buried". There is much wisdom to be unpacked in that old adage. However, as the citizenry of the United States wrings its collective, proverbial and literal hands about its newest STD (Socially Transmitted Disease) those with a certain pre-existing condition face an epidemic within the pandemic. It is an epidemic that has spanned centuries and there has been no effort to develop a vaccine; in fact quite the opposite. These citizens are stricken with the pre-existing condition of being Black People in America.

Video of February murder of unarmed black jogger released, no arrests made | WNT Ahmaud Arbery was out jogging when he was shot by Gregory and Travis McMichael, who said they believed he was responsible for a number of local break-ins ...
(Image by YouTube, Channel: ABC News)
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When I turned 16 years old, I received my driver license. As one might expect, I was excited beyond words. Considerably precocious (and idealistic) for my age, I signed up as an organ donor at the time I passed my road test. In most states, there is a designation on your driver license that you are a donor in the event that you become a traffic fatality. After the license arrived in the mail, I proudly showed it to my father who saw the donor designation and with a look akin to terror said to me: "Boy, don't you do that! You get your butt down there (DMV) right now and change it. That just gives them more incentive to let your black ass die!" He was livid, and I was both confused as well as stunned. My father was a Marine and a very quiet man that rarely showed emotion or used even mildly profane words. By the time you saw emotion you were probably in a situation that you wished you weren't in. He never told me who 'they' were, because I inherently knew. I also immediately executed his order.

Covid-19 has been disproportionately deadly among Black People in America. The same is the case with virtually every one of the over 100 types of cancer. Same with diabetes, heart disease and hypertension. Whether it is infant deaths or life expectancy it is, indeed, a matter of fact that Black People in America are dead last across the board in terms of "health outcomes". Mass incarceration, which is a health outcome, disproportionately affects Black People in America; especially men. Most eight year old science students are aware that the way to destroy and/or contain any species is to eliminate the males. One thing that a dead male, or an incarcerated one (a distinction without a difference) will not do is procreate; therefore when one is eliminated dozens are eliminated. This is the essence of what I term, Blackism.

Black People in America remain grossly under-represented in the health profession's workforce relative to their proportions in the population. Educational disparity is the raw material for the aforementioned. The persons most impacted by Covid-19 are the wretched of the earth: the old, those with pre-existing conditions and those most likely to receive social security or other benefits from an increasingly morally bankrupt society. Covid-19 is an opportunity to exploit and exacerbate the culling of the herd by an institutionalized socio-political structure that serves both the witting and unwitting participants who perpetuate it. Ironically, that same entity demands that the Black Person in America peacefully request it to destroy its own house; which it shall never do sans strong incentive to do so.

For months, I have heard the unrelenting chant that "we are all in this together". Negative. We are not and we never have been. Because "we" and "U.S." are both distinctive and different as history and the resultant statistics clearly indicate. A key metric, and actual statistic, that contributes to the culling of the herd is a category termed "unintentional injuries". It is my modestly educated supposition that unintentional injury is the polar opposite of intentional injury. Ergo, I am lead to deduce that aside from Black People in America intentionally injuring themselves, they lead the pack in virtually every negative "health outcome". A recent example of one of these negative health outcomes, hereinafter referred to as NHO's, is the case of Ahmaud Arbery.

Verbing While Black

On February 23, 2020, Ahmaud Arbery, an unarmed 25-year-old male Black Person in America was jogging along a road in Satilla Shores, a community near Brunswick, Georgia, when he was confronted by two armed European-American men in a pickup truck. The confrontation ended with the young man being shot dead. Ahmaud's NHO was Jogging While Black. The murderers remained free from justice for months and now there is a "national outcry".

Oscar Grant III was a 22-year-old male Black Person in America who was fatally shot in the early morning hours of New Year's Day 2009, by European-American BART Police Officer Johannes Mehserle in Oakland, California. Responding to reports of a fight on a crowded Bay Area Rapid Transit train returning from San Francisco, BART Police officers detained Grant and several other passengers on the platform at the Fruitvale BART station. European-American BART officer Anthony Pirone kneed Grant in the head and forced the unarmed Grant to lie face down on the platform. While Pirone held Grant down in a prone position, Mehserle drew his pistol and shot Grant in the back. The murdering thug in uniform, Mehserle, not only became a fugitive subsequent to the killing of Oscar, once captured he was found guilty of the lesser charge of involuntary manslaughter. Oscar's NHO was Riding Mass Transit While Black. Thirty (30) months after shooting a 22-year old in the back Mehserle was a free man and there was a "national outcry".

The shooting of Walter Scott occurred on April 4, 2015, in North Charleston, South Carolina, following a daytime traffic stop for a non-functioning brake light. Scott, an unarmed male Black Person in America, was shot and killed by European-American Michael Slager, a North Charleston police officer. Slager was charged with murder after a video surfaced that showed him shooting Scott from behind while Scott was fleeing, and that contradicted his police report. Walter's NHO, which resulted in getting shot in the back, was Driving While Black and there was a "national outcry".

Jordan Davis was a 17-year-old high school student and male Black Person in America. On Friday, November 23, 2012, he was murdered at a gas station in Jacksonville, Florida by European-American Michael David Dunn, a 45-year-old software developer, following an argument over loud music played by Davis and his three friends. Dunn opened fire on the occupied vehicle full of teenagers killing Jordan. Jordan's NHO was Listening to Loud Music While Black, and there was a "national outcry".

On September 6, 2018, off-duty European-American Dallas Police Department patrol officer Amber Guyger entered the Dallas,Texas, apartment of male Black Person in America 26-year old Botham Jean and fatally shot him. Guyger said that she had entered the apartment believing it was her own and that she shot Jean believing he was a burglar. She was in the wrong apartment, on the wrong floor and though dark she could see a "silhouette". The silhouette was a 26-year old eating ice cream in his own living room. Botham's NHO was Eating Ice Cream While home.The fact that Guyger, a white police officer, shot and killed Jean, an unarmed black man, and was initially only charged with manslaughter resulted in a "national outcry".

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Rohn Kenyatta is a native Californian that has three children and believes that all of the world's problems could be solved if "we were all just good to children". A noted Public Speaker, he is a contributing columnist for Black Agenda (more...)

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