A System of Oppression Working the Way It Has Always Worked

August 4, 2013 | Revolution Newspaper | revcom.us


In slave days, the slave masters enlisted "regular white people" in slave patrols to roam the roads and paths, fields and forests. These slave patrols maintained a watch on places Black folks might slip off to, where they might share experiences between plantations, and where slaves might plot escape or rebellion. The slave patrols were authorized to brutalize and kill slaves who were "where they were not supposed to be." Even a slave sent on the road by his or her master might be hunted down and killed by these slave patrols.

What does that tell you about the kind of system this has always been?

In Jim Crow days, thousands of Black men (and others) were lynched for the most minor transgressions against institutionalized and degrading "customs"—like stepping off the sidewalk when a white person approached, calling even young white boys "sir,"... or, for nothing at all. Over and over again, as in the case of Emmett Till in 1955, juries let them off and then the killers openly bragged about what they did.

What does that tell you about the kind of system this has always been?

And now, again, George Zimmerman stalks and kills a young Black man for no good reason, and is let off with a pat on the back by the system:

What does this tell you about the kind of system is still in effect?

The reality we must all face is that in this Amerikkkan society, Black people have no rights that white people are bound to respect. That basic reality has not changed in hundreds of years. This is the same system at work.

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