Darren Wilson, the officer who killed 18 year-old Michael Brown on August 9 in Ferguson, MO, has raised tons of money since this killing. How much? As of Friday afternoon, August. 22, Wilson has raised over $235,000 from 5,900 donors. For what? This guy has yet to be arrested, he is on paid leave, and most of us have no clue as to where he even is. I cannot imagine what this money is needed for. This can only be described as some people, undoubtedly mostly white, feeling an innate need to monetarily support black death.
Racism is real. ?For some reason, we still have to defend this concept as if the abundant studies and surveys and sociological/psychological books on this topic were not enough. Let’s look at some of these and then show how these donors are part of an ongoing pattern of black degradation and prejudice. Not just pure hatred, but implicit bias; that is, blacks are still looked at in ways that are inferior to their white counterparts. Whether the possessor of such attitudes and perceptions is knowingly harboring prejudice or not, these realities are troubling.
A recent study from PEW showed that a higher percentage of whites believe that Ferguson did NOT ?raise?important racial questions, than those who felt it did.?80 percent of blacks believe that it?has raised these questions. This shows a clear racial divide in the perceptions of this entire situation. This is not very shocking but important to be noted nonetheless. While this may not illustrate prejudice, rather just a lack of understanding and racial differences, another recent study is more concerning.
A study from Stanford University suggests that whites are more supportive of harsher criminal policies and sentencing if they?believe?that a higher proportion of blacks are in the justice system. In other words, when given data showing more blacks were criminals, whites supported policies like stop-and-frisk, at a higher rate. When they believed that less blacks were criminals, they were less likely to support harsh policies like stop-and-frisk. What does this mean? Well, the more number of blacks in the criminal justice system, the harsher policies that should be in place. I guess these should only be implemented when the unfortunate beneficiaries are people of color.
These are all recent findings. Of course, America was founded on the concept of white supremacy. The above studies are only indicative of a pattern of black and brown oppression and “other-ness.” People of color’s experiences are seen as foreign and as our belief in “color-blindness” has increased due in part to President Obama’s election and re-election, our struggles with racism are seen as exaggerated. But those of us living in the real world have understood that racism still exists.
The “doll test” was first established in the 1940’s by Dr. Kenneth Clark and Dr. Mamie Clark. Their findings while upsetting, were not that shocking considering the time period. They found that most black children would rather play with the white doll when presented with a choice between that one and a doll that strikes a bigger resemblance to themselves, the black doll. The white doll has consistently received higher marks even with these young, innocent children, in the basic ideas of beauty, niceness, friendliness, etc. ?Similar studies have been repeated to show that with all of our talk of progress, the inferiority complex is manifesting itself in our most precious young angels. A recent study, decades after the first “doll test,” was conducted by Good Morning America. Almost half of the black children interviewed felt that the white doll was prettier.??Another, more simple example of devaluing black people, is from a Wal-Mart in Louisiana. Two barbie dolls were displayed, yet the white one was kept at its original price of $5.93 and and black one was marked lower at $3. Now, this may seem like a trivial example, but this is only another example of the pattern of seeing blacks as “lesser than.”
Now I come to the donors of Officer Wilson. Let me preface by enlightening the ignorant on the practice of lynchings. Blacks were lynched, consistently, up until about the 1960s. This despicable behavior was not just a method of murder, but a way of celebration. Whites would come OUT to watch these public executions; it instilled a sense of joy in them. The killers also lynched blacks publicly as a way of social control. Leaving their bodies, often burned and/or dismembered, hanging for public view, was a means to instill fear into other blacks. ?And obviously the white perpetrators were not punished for their murderous actions. Now, I am not equating today’s racial problems with the overt brutality of public lynchings, but similarities can be seen. Michael Brown, according to witnesses, was left in the streets, dead and bleeding out, for at least four hours. Not only is this an example of black body degradation, as he was treated (in my view) as basic roadkill, this was traumatizing to the entire community who stood their and saw a teenager lifeless on the street. No ambulance came. He wasn’t even covered until awhile after he had been gunned down.
Now let’s look exactly at what some donors of Officer Wilson have said. When donating, the site, GoFundMe, ?allows contributors to leave comments of support.
Let’s dissect some of the worst of the rehtoric. One person says:
“…he did a great job removing this unnecessary thing from the public.”
Unnecessary? This comment is despicable. Plain and simple. And to the donor, you know who you are, you are a disgrace. Regardless of what may have preceded Michael Brown’s killing, he was a human. He was 18. He was someone’s son. Someone’s brother. To label him as “unnecessary” reminds me of the old United States racist language, where “coloreds” were 3/5’s of a person. Although it seems to this guy, that we aren’t even people at all.
Another donor said:
“I thank all police, you are the Thin Blue Line” protecting normal Americans from aggressive and primitive savages. “
This language is truly reminiscent of 1800’s-style racism. Blacks have long been compared to monkeys and apes as a way of making them seem primitive, less-developed than their white counterparts. ?Old “coon caricatures” and minstrels exhibited this hyperbolic and untrue view of the black “species.” Why was Michael Brown a primitive savage? Because he stole cigarillos? How many sanctimonious people now condemning Brown, have done something bad or even illegal in their lifetime? Did they deserve six bullets including two to the head? Would this appalling donor call James Holmes a “primitive savage?” As I remember, he shot over 80 people and is a mass killer and yet is still alive, in jail, awaiting a trial.
“All self respecting whites have a moral responsibility to support our growing number of martyrs to the failed experiment called diversity.”
Who’s diversity? Was it “diversity” gone wrong when whites came to this place and murdered the Natives, enslaved Africans, raped women, gave infections to children, and destroyed entire populations? Or what would this donor call that? ?Self-respecting whites? Self-respect must mean killer-enthusiasts to this psychopath.
These comments from Wilson’s donors are just a few examples of how racism still exists and is actually less subtle than we are often lead to believe. Many are hesitant to describe the Brown killing, and other killings of black men (and women) as race-based. But we know this is not true. How can these people support this killer cop without it being racist? There has not been one mention of Officer Wilson actually needing funds. And I do support his right to a fair trial and due process, but it does not seem that people are even donating with this in mind. They are donating out of a deep-seeded prejudice, and even hatred, against blacks. Michael Brown was not a person to them. He was not a young teen and future college student. He was just another black body “thuggin” in the streets who needed to be taken out. If this does not help prove the ongoing racial problems we have to still overcome, than I do not know what does.
To see more of these comments, look below: