All of the usual suspects are now out in force condemning “violence” and organizing for “peace” and condemning the looting and so on as they usually do. Let me get this straight. So we just had ANOTHER police officer gun down an Afrikan male and mind you in Ferguson where there is a legacy of more than 20 years of police oppression and repression. We then get a legal proceeding that bears no resemblance to any grand jury proceeding regularly occurring involving potential murder charges in any court anywhere in the US. For more than 20 years the people have been subjected to SYSTEMIC violence and mistreatment and not one politician, civil right activist, or organization anywhere gave two figs. NOW when that irregular legal proceeding essentially says NOTHING HAPPENED that the state should be concerned about at all, and you get a reaction, you NOW want to condemn “violence” and economic consequences and protect life and property and build common ground. Would you be saying any of that if the flames were not rising? NOW you promise change, NOW you promise reform, NOW. Nothing THEN. And you wonder why some of the people dismiss you. I’m talking to you pastor. I’m talking to you NAACP. I’m talking to you police chief. I’m talking to you governor. And you add insult to insult to injury deigning to call this “justice.” You were not with the people in their pain and suffering, you have no real authority over them now and you never will. How do you respect laws that don’t respect you or even your humanity? The people will ultimately listen to those who stand with them in times of war AND peace. If you did not respond when the peace was originally breached by injustice, then you cannot show up in your military gear in time of upheaval and expect to be honored as a commander. I myself condemn, but what I condemn is the sold out Afrikan leadership that continues to allow this to happen with no credible plans for doing anything about it. What I condemn is the broad fictitious liberal concern with the symptoms when it is, itself, at the root of the disease. When you call God to abide with you, He will. But when you allow Satan to come, he will as well and do not be surprised when he moves in and makes your accommodations begin to look and smell like his regular digs.
In the scripture there is David and there is Goliath. Of course, we often tell this story as the faith in God overpowering the giant. Indeed, that is true. Yet, Eurocentric theology does not often grapple with one central issue in the tale. You see, Goliath had to be FOUGHT. He was not invited, no one wanted his presence, no one sought the conflict, but he came. And when he arrived, there was a debate among the righteous about how to respond. But what became clear in that debate was that this battle would have to be fought. So those who were supposed to be the warriors were called to the occasion and they miserably failed. In their cowardice and concern more for their personal well-being and their lack of faith in God and his relationship with the people, they failed to step up. The political leaders, the king and his court, failed to move despite their sworn oath to defend the people. One by one, as valuable as each member of the community said their freedom was, nobody had the guts to fight. It was David who had faith and he went out. He had only a slingshot, turning down the king’s armor, with which he had no experience or training. Anyone betting here, would predict that they knew what would happen and that it would not be pretty. We know the rest of the story. But what I want to confront us with here is the following. If I was one of the scared, cowardly leaders or generals who did not have the courage to fight, who did not stand, would I be legitimate in debating the “appropriateness” of David using a slingshot? Those who do not fight, and do not train me to fight properly, and who are willing to simply allow me approach the enemy overmatched, are simply hypocrites to deign to lecture me about technique.
In an atmosphere of slavery, there was always a Harriet Tubman and a Frederick Douglass among the people, there was also always a Nat Turner, a Gabriel Prosser, a Toussaint L’ Overture, a David Walker. Afrikan people cannot get conned into thinking that one group was “nice” and nonviolent and the other “violent”,” believing that we all MUST have one strategy or confusing rhetorical and/or physical responses to violence to be violence itself. Harriet Tubman supported John Brown AND Douglass. Nat was told to have been exposed to Walker’s work and so on. There was always a Du Bois and a King, an X and Elijah and Garvey, a Washington, a Ture and a Thurgood Marshall. It’s NOT a case of one versus another. ALL contributed to our freedom and to the effort of forcing the unjust system to respond to our needs and aspirations. So don’t expect ME to publicly dishonor the Brown family OR the peaceful demonstrators NOR the angry street soldiers for the benefit of the system or to pit them or their respective responses rhetorically against each other. Ultimately, we are all fighting the same battle against the same forces. We all fight how we know and the way we think best. I just thank God they ARE fighting and those who are part of the system or who are actually fighting against us, who have ad hominem critiques, should sit down and shut up, particularly since they did little or nothing beforehand.