Why Don’t We Black Men Deal With THIS?!
“After dark on June 18, the police say, as many as 10 armed assailants repeatedly raped a Haitian immigrant in her apartment at Dunbar Village and then went further, forcing her to perform oral sex on her 12-year-old son. They took cellphone pictures of their acts. They burned the woman’s skin and the boy’s eyes with cleaning fluid, forced them to lie naked together in the bathtub, hit them with a broom and a gun and threatened to set them on fire.”
Our tendency to ignore acts done “BUTU” (By Us To Us), seems about on the order of white folks forgetting that between the Emancipation Proclamation and right now, Jim Crow, lynching, firebombing and Co-Intel Pro, among other coercive tools, were and are used to impede and shackle our “American Dream.” Well, what does it mean when deafening silence greets a crime about as horrific as it gets?
What does it mean when it is a sign of public “intra-racial traitorousness” to note such a profoundly sick, spasm of violence…and asking, ‘where are the black leaders on this one?’ What’s happened to us, to our relationships, to our humanity, that our children, our youth could “allegedly” perpetrate this? And we ain’t got shit to say, including me, up to this point.
What can black men do to stem the violence in our communities? Certainly, violence in general is a male phenomenon. What can we do about this/how do we in the AfroSphere respond?
As some of my friends in the AfroSpear – Sokari and Aulelia – have pointed out, rape is a tool of coercive, demeaning, genderized power. As men, we have to let go of our patriarchal impulses, our ‘power over’ and raise up the WOMAN Power in our midst. We need to be silent, when its our tendency to dominate and speak when we feel like shrinking from our responsibility to face our own behavior. We aren’t expected to be patriarch’s by free women; but we aren’t supposed to be fencesitters when our women are being debased by other men either.