(In other words, sit down and STFU!) Comprador: a person within a country who acts as an agent for foreign organizations engaged in investment, trade, or economic or political exploitation
While he was in London Saturday pimpin’ for the TTIP (never mind the lies he told) and issuing dire warnings about the #Leave (#Brexit) campaign, President ‘I’m the President for all Amerikans not just the black ones™’ held a town hall at the Royal Horticultural Hall, citing his need to ‘connect with the youth as an antidote to the cynicism he often feels among his peers’.
Someone in the audience had asked him why he hadn’t done enough to prevent racial profiling at airports (I’d guess a Muslim), when he ‘turned his attention to the Black Lives Matter movement’.
According to the Paper of Record:
“He praised the movement as “really effective in bringing attention to problems,” but said young activists should be more willing to work with political leaders to craft solutions instead of criticizing from outside the political process.
“Once you’ve highlighted an issue and brought it to people’s attention and shined a spotlight, and elected officials or people who are in a position to start bringing about change are ready to sit down with you, then you can’t just keep on yelling at them,” Mr. Obama said.
“And you can’t refuse to meet because that might compromise the purity of your position,” he continued. “The value of social movements and activism is to get you at the table, get you in the room, and then to start trying to figure out how is this problem going to be solved.” [snip]
“You then have a responsibility to prepare an agenda that is achievable, that can institutionalize the changes you seek, and to engage the other side, and occasionally to take half a loaf that will advance the gains that you seek, understanding that there’s going to be more work to do, but this is what is achievable at this moment,” he said.”
Echoes of Hillary Clinton’s ‘challenge’ to BLM protestors, no?
Now it seems that Lawrence Ware and Lauren Whiteman weren’t all that pleased about President Half-Loaf’s comments, and jointly penned ‘Tell the Negroes to Wait: Obama, Black Lives Matter, and Compromising with White Supremacy’.
“The implication that Black Lives Matter is not doing its job correctly because they are not being polite in their dealings with lawmakers and politicians reeks of respectability politics. Somehow, the President has placed the responsibility of implementing socially just policy on private citizens, not the elected officials. He has shifted the burden onto BLM, but none of the support or benefits.
Like all citizens, members of the Black Lives Matter movement have a first amendment right to “petition the government for a redress of grievances”, even if that means they need to yell to get a point across. Also, to refer to the movement’s actions strictly as “yelling” distracts from their accomplishments and is a thinly-veiled attempt to silence them, or at the very least, make dealing with them more convenient. Black Lives Matter has no obligation to comply with either wish. This is all reminiscent of what happened on April 12, 1963.”
What happened on that date was that eight white clergymen had penned an open letter they’d titled ‘A Call for Unity’, in which they urged the Negroes in Birmingham to ‘exercise patience’ at the glacial pace of racial progress’.
“…We are now confronted by a series of demonstrations by some of our Negro citizens, directed and led in part by outsiders. We recognize the natural impatience of people who feel that their hopes are slow in being realized. But we are convinced that these demonstrations are unwise and untimely.”
You may enjoy reading the letter itself, and noting that the clergymen were issuing instructions to turn away from outsider MLK, Jr. as well as ‘his demonstrations’, which inspired hatred and violence, while at the same time acknowledging the protests as ‘technically peaceful’.
Also from the letter:
“We agree rather with certain local Negro leadership which has called for honest and open negotiation of racial issues in our area. And we believe this kind of facing of issues can best be accomplished by citizens of our own metropolitan area, white and Negro, meeting with their knowledge and experience of the local situation. All of us need to face that responsibility and find proper channels for its accomplishment.”
How ironic, then, that more militant blacks, especially those in the northern cities who had been demonstrating against rat-infested housing, decrepit and segregated schools, unemployment and murderous cop terror ‘, disdained King’s tactics of non-violent civil disobedience. Crimson Satellite’s ‘Malcom X on 1963 March: “Farce on Washington” is a critical reminder that not all blacks were pleased with the march, once ‘permitted’ to being orchestrated by the Kennedy White House. No radicals, no gripes against the Democratic Party, see?
But back to Ware and Whiteman:
“In response to the clergymen, King felt compelled to respond. Sitting in a jail cell for the very demonstrations “A Call For Unity” decries, Martin King writes:
“Just as Socrates felt that it was necessary to create a tension in the mind so that individuals could rise from the bondage of myths and half-truths to the unfettered realm of creative analysis and objective appraisal, so must we see the need for nonviolent gadflies to create the kind of tension in society that will help men rise from the dark depths of prejudice and racism to majestic heights of understanding and brotherhood.”
“In just one paragraph, King links the struggle for racial justice in Birmingham to the cosmic struggle for justice everywhere. He even implies that Socrates (the father of the Western philosophical tradition) would approve.
The eight clergymen’s plea for patience rings hollow. They sit in relative comfort, and either fail or refuse to see that they are benefactors in a racial system that exploits black folks in the South. Of course they sense no urgency. Their lives are not in danger. I cannot help but notice an echo in what the president said about those in BLM.”
The Times piece concludes:
“It was not the first time that he has cautioned Black Lives Matter activists that social change cannot happen overnight. In a private meeting at the White House in 2014, Mr. Obama told a group of young black activists that change was “hard and incremental,” one participant said at the time.
When some activists at that meeting said they felt that their voices were not being heard, Mr. Obama replied, “You are sitting in the Oval Office, talking to the president of the United States.”
Well, fat lotta good that did, President Comprador; but I’ll forgo counting the many ways you’ve further immiserated the lives of blacks during the years of your misrule. But in a related matter, yes, Teach for America “Twitter is the Revolution’ candidate DeRay McKesson did run for the mayoralty of Baltimore, but only managed to garner between one and three percent of the votes (depending on coverage) in the eleven-candidate primary. It seems that the number of Twitter followers one has doesn’t always turn into electoral success, nor does out-of-the area fundraising, even if one them happens to be (tada!) Beyoncé.
But aha; Beyoncé the BLM social acivist! Via telesur english:
“Beyonce cemented her status as the queen of surprise releases Saturday night by making public a completely new album and videos called “Lemonade” which featured footage of Malcolm X and mothers of two Black men who were killed on the hands of white police officers.
Social media users and Black Lives Matter activists hailed the special event and the album as some of its videos featured appearances by the mothers of two Black men, Michael Brown and Trayvon Martin, whose shooting killings by white men sparked protests and ignited debate about racism against minorities in the country and police brutality.
Brown’s mother Lesley McSpadden is seen crying as she holds a photo of her late son who was shot dead by a white policeman in the state of Missouri in 2014.”
Miz 1% is ridin’ high again!!
BONUS (and exquisitely related): ‘Black culture isn’t the problem – systemic inequality is; Bill Clinton isn’t the first person to blame ‘black-on-black crime’ for higher poverty and prison rates among black Americans’, Boots Riley at the Guardian; some snippets:
“The idea that it is black folks and our supposedly immoral and savage culture that creates our disproportionate rates of poverty and imprisonment is everywhere: cop shows, news media, movies set in black neighborhoods and high-school social studies classes have all perpetuated this misconception. And some are now using this old, false idea to disparage Black Lives Matter, saying that the real problem facing black communities isn’t police violence, racist oppression or economic exploitation but “black-on-black crime”. We hear this all over the place, from news columnists to Ray Lewis to Rudy Giuliani – and, most recently, reiterated by Bill Clinton. [snip]
“We’ve been duped. When black neighborhoods are compared with white neighborhoods of similar income levels, you see similar rates of crime. The fallacy of comparing white neighborhoods with black neighborhoods is in lumping together wealthy and upper-middle-class neighborhoods (categories that not many black folks are in) with middle- and low-income ones. But that’s not how the world works. Poor white people in Memphis aren’t kicking it with rich ones in Bel Air.
Explaining crime and poverty as a result of black behavioral choice, further, disguises ways that both are caused by capitalism. Recasting systemic inequality as cultural choice suggests that black people aren’t determined enough – that it’s their own fault they remain in poverty. Out of economic deprivation comes violence – not because poor people have bad attitudes or cultural deficiencies, but because without a real economic safety net, the machinations required for survival can involve illegal business. And whereas legal business has the police to physically enforce the laws that govern it, disputes and agreements in illegal businesses are settled and enforced by the practitioners themselves.”
Boots’ essay was originally published at creativetimereports.com with the title ‘Guns Don’t Kill People, Capitalism Kills People’. (the comments were abysmal and quite depressing)
The statistics he brings in his essay reminded me of his and the Coup’s ‘Strange Arithmetic’ (the lyrics)
History has taught me some strange arithmetic
Using swords, prison bars, and pistol grips
English is the art of bombing towns
While assuring that you really only blessed the ground
Science is that honorable, useful study
Where you contort the molecules and then you make that money
In mathematics, dead children don’t get added
But they count the cost of bullets comin out the automatic
Social Studies, the goliath to tackle
Which turns into a sermon on simplicity of shackles
Physics is to school you on the science of force
‘Cept for how to break the hell out the ghetto, of course
Home Ec can teach you how to make a few sauces
And accept low pay from your Wal*Mart bosses
If your school won’t show you how to fight for what’s needed
Then they’re training you to go through life and get cheated…