Skip to comments.Life Cycles of Inequity: A Colorlines Series on Black Men
Posted on 05/12/2014 7:40:57 PM PDT by 2ndDivisionVet
Its hard to imagine theres more to say about Trayvon Martins death, but I continue to wonder about his life.
Im still haunted by the few details that made it into public discussion, in particular the fact that hed recently been suspended from schoolan event black boys are three times as likely to experience as their white peers. George Zimmermans defense team attempted to use Trayvons suspension as a smear, to label him a thug. The funny thing is, if Trayvon had not been killed, thats precisely how it would have been used against him in life. Suspensions have been established as defining steps along the school-to-prison pipeline. At 17, Trayvons opportunities were already shrinking, inequity had begun closing in around him.
And so, in July 2013, I found myself uncharacteristically tongue-tied. Person after person asked for my reaction to the verdict in Zimmermans trial. Over and over, I avoided answering. My challenge wasnt a lack of thoughts; they just didnt fit into the narrow space in which we are allowed to consider the stretched lives of black men in America. I suspect a great many of us feel this way. We think about Trayvon Martin or Jordan Davis or Oscar Grantor, if were black, likely someone in our family who died early and needlesslyand we are paralyzed by the immense odds those men faced in the first place. We know that their deaths cannot truly be understood without first examining the context of their lives.
Throughout 2014, Colorlines will examine that context. This week, we launch Life Cycles of Inequity: A Series on Black Men.
Each month, we will publish a package of content focused on a life stage or event that for black men in the United States is uniquely confined by broad, societal inequities. We begin with high school boysTrayvons peersand we will conclude with the early mortality that takes too many of our fathers, uncles and partners in their middle ages. Well explore issues ranging from school discipline to fatherhood, from job markets to health care access. The video abovein which a group of teenagers speak with one another about confronting implicit biasoffers an introduction to the series. Tomorrow, well explore the forces driving the school-to-prison pipeline.
The series is deliberately broad, but we certainly wont cover the breadth of the black male experience. We wont even exhaust the range of inequities that impact our lives. Rather, weve focused our efforts primarily on places where existing data shows a profound relationship between poor outcomes and being a black man. In some stories well try to explain that relationship, in others well highlight efforts to end it. Overall, we hope simply to join a broader dialogue about the ways in which inequity shapes so many parts of life for black men.
Our stories will vary in both form and approach. Well have investigations, essays, dispatches and graphic featuresand opportunities to dialogue with you about it all. Each package will be anchored by a short film in which we hear directly from black men who are trying to build lives in spite of the inequities our reporting explores. Were honored to have award-winning documentary filmmaker André Robert Lee to direct the series.
André and I were honored to meet the eight young men in our opening video in Oakland earlier this year. They talked with each other about walking into classrooms and being pre-judged, about being trackedin ways both overt and subtleas problems. From the White House to family rooms around the country, Trayvon Martins murder has sparked renewed debates about how to interrupt this kind of bias. Well continue following and contributing to that discussion here at Colorlines. But throughout this series we also hope to remind everyone that were talking about human experiencesthat real people are trying their best to build lives amid this whirlwind. Humanity can be sorely lacking from politicial discussions involving race.
Finally, throughout the year well be inviting you into this discussion as well. Were particularly interested in hearing from other black men who have experienced the issues were covering. Join us on Facebook, Twitter or by chiming in to the comment section of the site. We hope to hear from you.
Its hard to imagine theres more to say about Trayvon Martins deathThats because any more is purely imaginary. Enough imaginary stuff has been said already, besides.
Hey! Thanks so much! I really appreciate the opprtunity! Well, to start, too many black boys grow up without fathers. And school and work just don't seem to be priorities in many black communities. What's up with that? And the rap music? That really seems to focus on turning women into nasty objects and men into thoughtless hormone machines. And the racism which is just absolutely rampant in the black community?? That has got to stop.
You clean up your culture a little, and I think you might be OK.
Always victims, always excuses
There are reasons why they are permanently ensconced at the bottom of the socio-economic barrel
Sometimes the obvious answer is the correct one.
Maybe it is the same reason black men are three times as likely to be in prison.
Maybe they are both three times as likely to be thugs.
Time to get over yourself, Kai.
He was found with stolen goods and burglary tools in his school backpack and that wasn’t even the main reason for his suspension.
Bullcrap kai. Trey's injuries (well, except for that last one) were self-induced. You never will get that personal responsibility thing, will you?
How many Black families
Did you ruin today?
Mission accomplished. He said he’d have ‘em voting Democrat for the next 200 years (by any means necessary).
an event black boys are three times as likely to experience as their white peers. George Zimmermans defense team attempted to use Trayvons suspension as a smear, to label him a thug.
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Maybe, by comparison, Black Boys are three times as likely to bring drugs into school.
You surely can’t say that the White Boys aren’t getting suspended.
His next column is going to be in defense of White Boys getting suspended for drawing a picture or eating a breakfast treat into the (supposed) shape of a Gun.
Or maybe he will write how White (Lets say AMERICAN) boys can’t wear T shirts with an image of the American Flag on it, lest they ‘upset’ the ‘foreigners LEGAL and/or ILLEGAL’
Or maybe he will write about a School System that allows certain peoples to skate through school, terrorizing those that WANT TO LEARN (doesn’t matter what ‘they’ are), let them speak their own language - fracturing sentences, not caring about spelling or pronunciation,
when these ‘geniuses’ get turned loose on the world, complain that they can’t spell, speak, dress for public, blaming (naturally) Whitey for putting him down and only allowing IDIOTS to teach in the ‘inner city schools’.
I am sure that this gentleman has a lot to say, BUT he damn sure will not be ‘sharing’ it with us.
I ‘like’ the Black Washington Post reporter(Keith Ellison) that went to Africa a few of years back and upon returning he virtually kissed the ground and thanked the day that his ancestors were transported HERE and THANKED his ancestors for sticking it out so he didn’t have to undergo what the present day Africans are going through.
Keith B. Richburg wrote that book (Out Of America: A Black Man Confronts Africa). Keith Ellison is the moonbat Islamicist Congressman from Minnesota.
And we won't even begin to address the range of iniquities that impact our lives.
If Kai Wright feels so strongly about it, why doesn't he take his cardigan wearing self and move his whole family into Compton, or Detroit or Camden, etc?
Wonder how much compassion “Race Forward: The Center for Racial Justice Innovation” has ever shown to Asians who were brought to the US after war destroyed their country?
Mr. Wright is as different from Travon and that “black culture” as I am different from a “hillbilly culture”.
His life story: Thug. Doper. Punk.
Ahh, I guess it's a way to scratch out a living when universities are graduating so many worthless writers.
Yes. And Obamacare seals the deal forever.
Why to foreign-born blacks do so much better than American-born blacks, Kai?
Mr. Wright is as different from Travon and that black culture as I am different from a hillbilly culture
Ahh, I guess it's a way to scratch out a living when universities are graduating so many worthless writers.
(I guess my error above shows I'm one of them.)
Plantation slavery: Worst. Idea. Ever.
This guy looks like an African American Alfred E. Newman. He’s even got the space between his teeth.
“He was found with stolen goods and burglary tools in his school backpack . . ..”
The Miami-Dade School District had its own in-house police dept., and the relevant administrators/officers decided that student offenses that could by law be deemed felonies would be dealt with administratively in-house, and not be referred to municipal police officials.
The school officials chose to deal with Trayvon’s two offenses (I believe he also had drugs or drug paraphernalia in his backpack) by suspending him, whereupon his father and mother, who resided in that district, sent him to Sanford to live with Dad’s girl friend.
maybe killing them off was the best way to get democrat votes out of them?
When they damn America and then find that they have damned themselves too, they shouldn’t be very surprised!
Drinking "Lean" and robbing people's houses will tend to have that effect, Kai.
Keith Ellison is the moonbat Islamicist Congressman from Minnesota.
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Of course you are correct.
I even ‘looked it up’....saw the name Keith on one of the blurbs, the name ellison came to mind, I clicked to ‘verify’ and had Post in my query so apparently a mention etc...
When I typed it in I wasn’t sure BUT...since I had ‘looked it up’.....
NO EXCUSES, just a plausible explanation....
True dat rockrr. So at the tender age of 17 our little ‘’Willy Loman’’ here (Trayvon) is all washed up .No hope,no chance , in the greatest country on earth no sunshine on the horizon of life.Mmmm. ‘’ I cain’t get nothing from nobody cuz dey cain’t get everything from nobody to give to me ‘cuz it’s all whitey’s fault anyway ‘cuz it’s raciss’. Boy, talk about somebody dead from the neck up. This author I mean. How come the ‘’inequity’s’’of life didn’t stop him? Not to sound too harsh here or quais-racist but deserved what he got. Instead he thought a better plan for his life would to sit on his ass , steal , beat people up and break into houses. Again, I don’t mean to be insensitive here but the tragic irony in all of this, given his short, violently criminal life it ran him over bit his butt. Instant karma is a bi!tch.
trayvon WAS a thug. end of discussion.
Not one word about the collapse of the black family, and the corresponding moral collapse in the black community.
Which leads slightly the collapse of the family in the culture at large and the collapse of morality in the broader society.
Poverty and crime each have a direct tie to broken and shattered families, and to substance abuse, and those two are themselves closely related. These are moral issues and while they can be treated by social institutions, they can never be solved by anything other than a moral revival. The country as a whole is desperately in need of it and the black community even more so.
You think you’re seeing a representative sample from Africa ?
Africans who make it here are from the elite or exceptionally talented and educated. ergo, Obama’s dad.
You live in a dusty village in Africa (or SE Asia) you ain’t going to make it through immigration and the self-sufficiency requirements.
What’s the point of displaying the author’s appearance? Why spoil the mystery?
If you're a white businessman or woman, are you going to hire somebody of whatever color with no education, a criminal record, and a thoroughly sh...y attitude? That's a great many young blacks. I mean, how many black people even believe people like Wright anymore? Is the level of self-delusion that high among black Americans?
So, why not forward that to him? After all he did invite you to give input. Posting here isn’t going to help a bit....I doubt anyone would substantively disagree w/ your points.
And to those that care, I am just a generation removed from living really rural.