“I never owned any slaves”
This is the response most white people have when it come to racism.
“You had a black president”
It seems most white people think racism is a world of the past and that we now live in post racial utopia in which Black people, Latinos, Asians and Whites all live together in harmony. Even by reading this sentence you know this isn’t the case, because only on Sunday, Stephon Clark was shot by police in his backyard. The officers at the scene claim they fired 20 shots because they thought he had a weapon but a search of his person has only revealed a mobile phone.
So much for our post racial utopia.
The most glaring aspect of this entire fiasco is not the taking of black lives, being a black woman, man or child in America, it has become an everyday occurrence. However, it is the way the media has behaved in regards to the shootings, which makes many black people feel as though the system is completely against us. First the policemen who are meant to ‘serve and protect’ us, are actually killing us. The media which is the voice of the people, whose entire responsibility is to hold the government accountable for the actions is also not on our side. The justice system which is meant to punish criminals -such as policemen who kill unarmed black youths, turns a blind eye. Does George Zimmerman ring a bell?
New York Times on Austin bomber: “Quiet, nerdy young man who came from a tight-knit, godly family.”
New York Times on Michael Brown: “No angel.” pic.twitter.com/PQrfsV4jGQ
— jordan (@JordanUhl) March 21, 2018
To understand why white America behaves this way you have to look at history, because it gives us all the answers. If you look back to the prime of slavery, you can see there was a time where white people never used to fear black people. In fact, when we were saves white people used to trust black people so much that white slave owners would allow black mothers to breast feed their children, with no fear for their safety. Now lets juxtapose this with 2018, how many white mothers do you think would let their children go to black neighborhoods let alone allow another woman to breastfeed their children?
That’s not all, white slave owners would trust black ‘chefs’ to cook their food for them, without fear of being poisoned. Now, in 2018 most white people will cross the road if they see a black man in a hood. Where has this fear come from? It has been manufactured by a media that wants to see black people in America in perpetual bondage. If they can’t have us slaves, they will paint us as violent criminals. For the 13th Amendment reads: “Neither slavery nor involuntary servitude, except as a punishment for crime whereof the party shall have been duly convicted, shall exist within the United States, or any place subject to their jurisdiction”.
According to the NAACP, ‘If African Americans and Hispanics were incarcerated at the same rates as whites, prison and jail populations would decline by almost 40%’.
These are true and corroborated figures, yet many would rather believe that black people in America are only playing victim. This brings us to another way the media has destroyed the image of black people. The White House in which Donald Trump resides was built by the blood(literally), sweat(literally, tears(literally) of black slaves. Yet the media narrative, has been warped to depict black men as being lazy, when in fact white people had to sail to Africa imprison us and get us to build their country for them. When the Emancipation Proclamation was passed in 1863, the price of slaves in the Confederacy increased in the months after its issuance. If black people are so lazy, then why did white people spend their fortunes trying to buy us as slaves?
In research conducted by the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign Professor of Communication, Travis Dixon. He attempted to prove using news stories published or aired from January 2015 to December 2016 to show the media systematically portrays black families as poor and lazy.
His findings concluded:
- 59% of poor families were depicted in news media as Black, even though only 27% of families living below the poverty line are Black
- 60% of media portrayals of families relying on welfare were Black, even though only 42% of families on welfare are Black
- The media overwhelmingly depicts Black fathers as absent in the lives of their children, without any supporting evidence
- The media over-represents the association between Black families and criminality, while significantly underrepresenting White families’ association with criminality
- In addition to conservative media outlets, mainstream media outlets also systemically and inaccurately portray Black families. CNN’s portrayal of poor families is a 7 (Black families) to 0 (white families) ratio, Fox News is 8 (Black families) to 1 (white families). ABC’s description of families as a source of social stability is a 16 (white families) to 2 (Black families) ratio.
All this reveals is that mainstream media is an enemy to black and white people. Black people cannot expect the media to paint us in a positive light unless we are athletes and white people do not shape your views only black people using mainstream media as you will only see one side of the coin.
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