Tuesday, July 30, 2013
Marissa Alexander vs. the KKK
Indeed, this is disturbing. I've been seeing posts about this issue all over the internet: Marissa Alexander: a black woman in Florida who fired 2 shots at her abusive husband, missing him, but received 20 years in prison based on the 10-20 life statute in Florida that says if someone is convicted of an aggravated assault in which they discharge a firearm, they must be sentenced to 20 years in prison, regardless of mitigating circumstances.
Marissa's defense attorneys argued her self-defense claim based on the "Stand Your Ground" law. This law was part of the defense argument for George Zimmerman, the killer of Trayvon Martin, but wasn't necessary in his self-defense claim. Zimmerman got off because the prosecution could not prove beyond a reasonable doubt that Zimmerman was not behaving in self-defense. Marissa was not standing her ground in the way that the Florida law would specify. She allegedly retreated from the scene to get a gun and then returned, as opposed to stood her ground WITH the gun and used reasonable force to defend herself. In contrast, Zimmerman could have used the Stand Your Ground law as a defense because he had a gun on him the entire time he was interacting with Trayvon and did not retreat. Unfortunately for Marissa, the prosecutor's argument was simply more valid for the case at hand and since Marissa was convicted of aggravated assault with a firearm, her sentence was based on the 10-20-Life statute. The jury deliberated for 12 minutes with the info they had and came to a guilty verdict. It's a technicality purely based on who's lawyer was better...and the fact that the victims in Marissa's case were still alive to testify...
The United States is racist. This is undoubtedly and conclusively factual. Of the racist places in the United Stateses, Florida is one of the most racist stateses. But the racism didn't start with these court cases. The racism was institutionalized and unchallenged in a way that mattered many hundreds of years ago. The rulings in these cases are just the logical result of exactly what was intended post slavery.
When blacks were "freed" from slavery, they left whites to start their own communities and were successful from about 1865-1877, a 12 year period known in America as "Reconstruction" which bled into the early 1900s. Blacks were serving in political offices, they had their own businesses, property, and were building wealth. The Civil War was messy and bloody and Republican Presidents Abraham Lincoln and Andrew Johnson were pussyfooting through the clean up; specifically, how they were going to deal with freed slaves (or Freedmen) who had no property, land, or enfranchisement (meaning they couldn't vote). I mean, it's not like white folks in the south were pleased with the results of the Civil War. They certainly weren't gonna just start giving land and other freebies to the property and retirement investment (aka, slaves) they just lost. So after the punkass Presidents were done fucking up, Ulysses S. Grant showed up. He supported the Radical Republicans of the south who wanted to get black folks enfranchised and away from them asap, ending the unrest and tension. Under Grant's leadership in support of the Radical Republicans, the Force Acts were implemented. The Force Acts were criminal codes which protected blacks’ right to vote, to hold office, to serve on juries, and receive equal protection of laws. The racist democratic white south said "game recognize game" so they started the Klan because there was no way they were gonna accept their former property having equal rights to them when they asses was poor and raggedy and black folks were starting schools and businesses and writing books about the talented 10th and started fraternities and sororities at Ivy League schools and founding Black Universities and all that shit. The Enforcement Acts were then implemented by the Republican government as a pushback against the Klan.
There was some back and forth between the Republicans (rich whites) who wanted blacks to have stuff and leave them the fuck alone and the Democrats (poor whites) who had to live near black folks but didn't want blacks to take over because those whites were ridiculous, poor, and uneducated...basically, haters. So in the fight between the American government and the Klan (which could also be extrapolated as the rich whites and the poor whites, or the republicans and the democrats, respectively), the Klan won. The Klan won because they were in the same proximity as the blacks and actually dealt with the everyday of the Civil War fallout. Taking matters into their own hands, they just started killing black people and burning down all their shit...and they weren't gonna stop until all the blacks were dead.
Recognizing this, the American government and Republican rich whites just said "fuck it" and threw in the towel. They couldn't win that fight because they weren't gonna kill other whites to protect blacks. White folks were tired of war so they relinquished the South to the Klan.
If you're anything like me, you might notice a key element that's missing: black people's involvement. Now, I'm not saying that blacks were just sitting around waiting for whites to decide what happened to them...I mean, it could've been that ex-slaves just didn't have the fight in them. I mean, Nat Turner died about 50 years earlier and in his revolt, way more black people died than white people, so per example, folks really had to decide if it was worth it at the time. It wasn't until the Black Panther Party started did blacks as a collective actually start FIGHTING again. That was like 150 years later...and it was primarily in California. Note: The Black Panthers of Civil Rights Movement fame did not start as a means to kill white people. It started as a means to feed and educate black children #message#newblackpantherparty
So fastforward to the Marissa Alexander vs. George Zimmerman argument: All the laws in place in the south today are laws that the Klan basically green lighted in 1877. If you expect those laws to be in favor of black people (especially black women), then you're out of your mind.
So what we see in 2013 is that a black woman shoots warning shots at her husband and gets 20 years in prison and a white dude shoots a black boy dead and walks free. This only seems crazy if you're in denial about the history of Amerikkka.
History. Because all this shit actually makes sense.
To learn more about how you can contribute to the campaign to free Marissa Alexander, visit www.justice4marissa.com. Scroll to the bottom of the page to sign the petition.