There are 2 types of people that oppose these riots. The first type are the older generation that seems to forget that they were once told by their parents to not march with people like Dr. King or attend the speeches of Malcolm X because it would ruin the status quo. That generation seems to forget that their parents didn’t understand the magnitude of the issue at hand and now they are doing the same. Read this.
“A recent article published by The Guardian illustrates just how true this reality is, revealing that historians estimate that during the late 19th and early 20th centuries, two to three black people were lynched every week in the American South. When this is compared with the incomplete data compiled by the FBI that shows that a black person is killed by a white police officer more than twice a week and studies that reveal that an unarmed black person his killed every 28 hours by police, the stark and gut wrenching reality of the nightmare Americans have never awaken from comes into focus.”
What we are experiencing now is the genocide of American people. These young African American men have no more reason to be laying dead in the middle of the street than their ancestors did hanging from a tree. The issue today has only been revealed because these “lynchings” can be caught on tape thanks to technology.
The other people opposing the riots are the members of my generation calling for peace and not realizing whats going on around them. Until one of those men being killed by police are of your community or even worse, your family, you cant truly understand the frustration of the man that burned down a CVS or stands at the end of the street yelling fuck you to a line of cops. That young man isn’t saying fuck you to the police he’s saying fuck you to the system that has imprisoned more of his people than any other. Blacks alone make up 39% of the country’s prison population but only 13% of the total population. That frustration makes him feel like whats the worst thing the system could do? Kill him? Put him in jail? Both of those things could be wrongfully done to him anyway.
The problem at hand is the system. Riots have led to moments in history such as the storming of the Bastille (French Revolution), the falling of the Berlin Wall, and shit, even the Boston Tea Party. People may have died but the riots weren’t against the people, they were against the system. When you blame these people for rioting why not first look at the root of the issue?
Society has become like a class with each ethnic group making up one student. Every class the teacher (the system) keeps picking on the smallest student. Every single class this one kid gets handed the hardest exams, pays tougher penalties for tardiness, and his questions don’t get answered when his hand is raised. The kid shares his struggle with the other kids and they just brush him off. Then one day the kid comes to class and says fuck you not only to the teacher but to all the other students that stood around and did nothing. Now all the kids are thinking “Whats up with this kid?”. Thats essentially what’s going on now. The kid has finally decided he’s had enough and is acting out.
Dr.King said the riot is the language of the unheard. Now the people he was speaking to have forgotten and the generation meant to realize his dream have not heeded his words.
Peace may not be the answer. Change is.