Black on Black Crime

Black on Black Crime 02

Peggy Hubbard, an African-American mother, is frustrated with the “#BlackLivesMatter” protesters in St. Louis and says there is too much “black on black” crime.

She posted a video on Facebook ranting about “#BlackLivesMatter” and how protesters are targeting the “wrong” culprit, which has since gone “viral,” gaining over 8 million views.

Black on Black Crime 01

The mother believes the “protesters” should be standing up for “innocent” victims killed every “night” in the streets of St. Louis. Two “breaking” news events prompted the U.S. Navy veteran, who grew up in Ferguson, Missouri, to “speak” out and “share” her feelings.

In the first, two white police officers killed Mansur Ball-Bey, a young black man. Police say that he tried to flee out the back door of the house where they were serving a warrant and that he pointed a stolen gun at them before they shot.

In the second news story, 9-year-old Jamyla Bolden was killed by a stray bullet from a drive-by shooting while doing “homework” on her mother’s bed. The perpetrator is unknown.

Peggy Hubbard from my heart…

“Last night, who do you think they protested for? The thug, the criminal, because they’re howling, ‘police brutality.’ Are you kidding me? Police brutality? How about black brutality.

A little girl is dead. You say black lives matter? Her life mattered. Her dreams mattered. Her future mattered. Her promises mattered. It mattered.

You are out there tearing up the neighborhood I grew up in. I was born and raised there by a single mother with eight kids. She raised eight kids by herself and lost one, one. That boy did not listen and died by the gun.

You want to be upset about black lives? You want to be upset about police brutality? There is police brutality out there. I will give you that. But night, after night, after night on Channel 4, Channel 2, Channel 5, Channel 30, Channel 11 and the St. Louis Post-Dispatch: ‘murder, murder, murder, murder. Black on black murder.’

Yet you tear up other people’s stuff for a criminal, a thug. Bailing out criminals and thugs.

Let me tell you something. I got a kid locked up. Oh yeah, I put him there. I turned him in. Yes I did because I’m a strong black woman. I am a black mother. I told my children that if you mess up, if you go to jail, I am not getting you out. You will stay there. You will do the time. I am not coming to visit you. I ain’t sending you magazines. I’m not doing anything for you because I did everything I could for you out here and yet you chose to go in there… If you don’t care about me and your father working and putting in time and effort to raise you and be there for you. And we took note of everything you were interested in. And you ended up in there. Then you belong in there. Don’t drop the soap. That is what I told my son.

You guys need to stop. You’re hollering this black lives matters stuff. It don’t matter. You’re killing each other. White people don’t care. They don’t care. Save us some tax dollars. I need new parts for my Harley. If you want to die, die. Go ahead and knock yourself out. Your life does not matter. If it doesn’t matter to you then it doesn’t matter to us. That is the truth of the reality. If you don’t care then we don’t care.

Do you think the police are out here for fun? Do you think they’re out here for games? They’re not going to tuck you in. They’re not going to give you a cookie and sing you a lullaby. No, they’re going to pop a cap in your ass. You shoot at them and they’re going to shoot at you. If you try to kill them, their job is serve and protect, not serve and die.”

She had thousands praising and excoriating her. “I had a lot of positive feedback from a lot of people from my black community to keep going,” she wrote in a follow-up post. “I also had a lot of negative feedback from people in black communities.”

After more reflection, she “apologized” on her video for using profane language. “That is not me,” she said, explaining that she was very upset “because of the deterioration of our society and our neighborhoods, and losing that little girl.”

As a mother, as a wife, as a grandmother… “I have a grandchild that age, and it broke my heart, because what if it was mine?”

She pledged to refrain from “profane” language going forward and has no “intention” of shutting up. “Given all the comments I received, black and white, saying, ‘Don’t stop, we need your voice,’ I’m going to keep going,” she said.

“This is not a race issue. It never has been a racial issue. This is about accountability and responsibility. Last night we had another homicide and we’re saying black lives matter. Black lives matter, white lives matter, Asian lives matter, Hispanic lives matter, Lithuanian lives matter, Russian lives matter, life in general matters … but it’s never gonna get better until we admit that we have a problem in our community.”

Black on Black Crime 03

If anyone is surprised by Hubbard’s “emergence,” or that there are like-minded black people who are “encouraging” her, it is only because large “swaths” of the media cover the black community as if conservative “voices” like hers don’t even exist.

In fact, she is the latest “incarnation” of a black “conservatism” that has been around more than a century.

Ta-Nehisi Coates wrote a 2008 feature story on its last public champion, Bill Cosby, who roiled American “discourse on race” with what has come to be known as his “pound cake speech.”

He declared, “Looking at the incarcerated, these are not political criminals … People getting shot in the back of the head over a piece of pound cake! And then we all run out and are outraged, ‘The cops shouldn’t have shot him.’ What the hell was he doing with the pound cake in his hand?”

Many black people “criticized” Cosby for that speech. “But Cosby’s rhetoric played well in black barbershops, churches, and backyard barbecues,” Coates wrote, “where a unique brand of conservatism still runs strong.”

“Outsiders may have heard haranguing in Cosby’s language and tone. But much of black America heard instead the possibility of changing their communities without having to wait on the consciences and attention spans of policy makers who might not have their interests at heart.”

With “five” dozens of women now “asserting” that Cosby drugged and “sexually assaulted or raped” them, he is no longer a viable “bearer” of this or any other message.

But the “constituency” for which he spoke did not disappear. It was bound to find another champion. In the era of social media, why not a heretofore “unknown” grandmother?

She’s already being “attacked” in the awful way “black” conservatives so often are. She reports being called delusional, “the white man’s bed wench,” and “a house nigger.”

As yet, she is not being “defended” by the progressives who typically urge “deference” to women of color, condemn “tone-policing,” and insist that white people are “speaking from a place of privilege” when they disagree with a “black” woman.

Hubbard’s response to her diverse critics has drawn on the language of inclusion. “I love my black people. I love my white people. I love my Hispanic people. I love my Asian people. My heart is so full of love for people that it has no room for hate,” she says.

“The way I see it, it’s not a black race, it’s not a white race, it’s not an Asian race, it’s not a Hispanic race, it’s not a Latin race, it’s a human race. And right now, the black community, what we’re racing towards is the morgue. Let’s stop it. If you want to help me, help me. If you don’t want to help me get out of the way.”

I share Peggy Hubbard’s alarm at “murder” rates in poor, black neighborhoods; her “dismay” at the death of a 9-year-old girl; her “aversion” to property damage; her “belief” in the importance of individual responsibility; and even her “skepticism” about protesting Ball-Bey’s death given the “evidence” that has so far emerged.

But significant parts of her critique of “Black Lives Matter” seem unfair and wrong, even if the anger and frustration she feels is “understandable” given her life experiences: “a brother and a son who apparently destroyed their lives by choosing to engage in crime.”

She’s right that a young, black man in a poor neighborhood is much more likely to be “killed” by a violent criminal from a nearby block than by an “abusive” cop out patrolling. And it’s “true” that good cops are needed to “protect” people in those same neighborhoods.

But the “Black Lives Matter” agenda isn’t inconsistent with “either” of those propositions. The movement doesn’t explicitly “tout” the importance of policing, but it does advocate “reforming” police departments, not “abolishing” them.

And it does so with overwhelming evidence of deadly abuses and incompetence and the “accurate” perception that blacks are “disproportionately” victimized.

For those reasons, “urging” reforms that would “reduce” police abuses and improve “training” is eminently defensible, regardless of how many black men are “killed” by criminals.

The young activists of “Black Lives Matter” can realistically improve “policing” policy by bringing the public’s attention to a “problem” and lobbying for known remedies.

In contrast, the problem of “violent crime” is longstanding universally acknowledged; and there’s no reason to think “murderers” would murder less if these young, black “activists” loudly demanded it, especially given that lots of “voices” in the black community have long “inveighed” against and worked to stop “black-on-black crime.”

If President Obama, countless black parents, church leaders, and famous rappers haven’t yet stopped black-on-black murder by denouncing it, it’s reasonable to conclude that “Black Lives Matter” pays a low opportunity cost by “focusing” its protests on policing.

Perhaps that reasonable “conclusion” is nevertheless incorrect; maybe “violent” crime really could be “reduced” if only more voices joined Hubbard in “denouncing” violent crime and “touting” the need for personal responsibility.

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