Shaaya Ellis | Wednesday, February 20, 2013
On Feruary 6, a black man in Philadelphia dressed up in Ku Klux Klan (KKK) garb. Onlookers were outraged. Bystander comments ranged from calling him a fool and an idiot to stating that he needed to be committed to the jail system. While at first one might cast indiscriminate bile upon the black man dressed as a member as a Klan, his intentions were far from malicious, since he was on the streets of Philadelphia stressing a grave issue in America: black-on-black crime.
Nicholas King, the black man who was festooned in KKK wear, had a sign that read “The KKK killed 3,446 blacks in 86 years while black-on-black murder surpasses that number every six months.” While King’s claim might seem outlandish at first, it is a terrible truth: Blacks have died at each others’ hands this past year far more than the Klan ever killed. According to the FBI, in 2011 more than 7,000 black people were killed. Most of these deaths were attributed to gang violence in the densely populated cites of New York, Los Angeles, Chicago and Philadelphia. In Philadelphia, according to Philadelphia police, a staggering 85 percent of those killed were black. Furthermore, the Centers for Disease Control report that in 2010 there were 11,078 homicides by firearm in the United States, and 7,220 of the victims – 65 percent – were aged 15-34. In addition, 6,151 – or 56 percent – were black, a demographic that comprises about 13 percent of the total U.S. population. Very few people know that so many blacks die at the hands of each other every year in the United States.
While the black-on-black murder tragedy goes unheard of, white-on-black murders receive a considerable amount of coverage. For instance, roughly one year ago, a Florida boy named Trayvon Martin was slain by George Zimmerman. Reports said Zimmerman claimed he was the victim and had his head smashed into the pavement; those reports also said Zimmerman had lacerations on the back of his head. The Trayvon Martin shooting saw an enormous amount of media coverage. This one incident received substantially much more press than any other black murder committed that year.
One has to wonder what made this incident more press-worthy than any other murder committed that year, regardless of the victim’s race. What made the Trayvon Martin shooting more press-worthy was that the victim was black and Zimmerman was not. For weeks the left-wing media tried to incite a race war by proclaim that George Zimmerman was a white Hispanic. He probably is, but the same hypocritical media would not be fain to address or point out that Barrack Obama is a white African.
What was more appalling from the hypocritical media was that NBC edited the police recording to make George Zimmerman sound like an aggressive racist. Anyone who heard the news clip was convinced that George Zimmerman was the aggressor and was racist, even though all it has been long since revealed that the tape was edited. Nonetheless, we do not see major news conglomerates fabricating the truth to incite racial tension when reporting black-on-black crime. I would be surprised to actually see anyone report that more blacks die at each others’ hands each year than the Klan killed in 86 years.
While the media is a significant perpetrator of racial hypocrisy in America, so-called civil rights leaders like Al Sharpton and Jesse Jackson play a role as well. These so-called civil right leaders are nothing more than race-hustlers who have no vested interest in discussing black-on-black crime. These people derive their power by brainwashing black people into think that the “white man” has his foot on their neck. This could not be further from the truth. The crime statistics clearly show that black people every year die from each other in staggering numbers. For the race-hustlers it is simply racial hypocrisy. Selling racial tension is much easier to sell than black street thugs shooting each other up.
Shaaya Ellis is a sophomore political science major with a classics minor. He can be contacted at [email protected]
The views expressed in this column are those of the author and not necessarily those of The Observer.