Of Jussie Smollett and BLM

Of Jussie Smollett and BLM
Jussie Smollett mugshot photo (Image: (Chicago Police Department)

Among other services to the community, the Jussie Smollett case teaches us more about Black Lives Matter, which is good.  During Smollett’s trial, BLM put out a statement using the case as a “hook” to argue for “abolition.”

To those who ask “abolition of what?” BLM offers this:

“Black Lives Matter will continue to work towards the abolition of police and every unjust system.”

So, to those who merely want to “defund the police,” BLM says get rid of all police everywhere and for all time.  Why they would do that and what they intend to replace officers with remain a mystery.  Relevant facts like the spike in violent crime that’s followed police defunding and Seattle’s disastrous experiment in allowing even a small part of the city to be entirely unpoliced go unmentioned.

BLM’s remarks on the Smollett case say a lot in a few words.

In our commitment to abolition, we can never believe police, especially the Chicago Police Department (CPD) over Jussie Smollett, a Black man who has been courageously present, visible, and vocal in the struggle for Black freedom.

The notion that a city with over 1,000 murders this year can sensibly “abolish” its police department is both barking madness and sweet music to the ears of thugs, thieves, murderers and drug dealers.  But where does BLM get the notion that, to convict Smollett, one must “believe police?”  Actually, all the jury had to do was accept the plain facts of the case.  Belief had nothing to do with it.

More tellingly though, BLM carefully elides the fact that the most damning evidence of Smollett’s guilt came from two black men to whom he paid $3,500 to “assault” him.  So, not only does BLM side with Smollett’s fiction over objective fact, its doing so can’t even be explained by the notion of racial solidarity.  The Osundairo brothers are 100% black, Smollett only half that.

Of course, BLM may argue that the two witnesses, by testifying on behalf of the prosecution, abetted the criminal justice system that they’ve vowed to abolish and that Smollett, by being “a black man who has been courageously present, visible and vocal in the struggle for black freedom,” becomes worthy of their support.  If so, blacks everywhere should take note:  being black is not what gets you the support of Black Lives Matter.  No, that only happens if you’re black and agree with BLM’s loony notions about remaking American society.  For Black Lives Matter, ideology trumps race.

Meanwhile, I was interested in what BLM means by “abolition,” so I consulted the “Imagining Abolition” tab on its Smollett page.  Alas, that says little about the questions “abolish what?” and “replace it with what?”  Beyond abolishing police and prisons, we’re left with three short videos that are mum on the first question and quite nutty on the second.

As to what would replace “every unjust system” following abolition, the Smollett page “answers” that, “We will continue to love and protect one another, and wrap our arms around those who do the work to usher in Black freedom and, by extension, freedom for everyone else.”  Me?  I’m all for love and protection, but still don’t see how either addresses the violent crime that so ravages poor black neighborhoods.  Meanwhile, the third video enters LaLa Land to stay.

In it, BLM co-founder Patrisse Cullors shows us her (I’m not making this up) “abolitionist pod” which is a moderate-sized geodesic dome festooned with a great many small canvas pockets, each containing a plant (and presumably, dirt).  Unsurprisingly, with little soil or sunlight, the plants aren’t very healthy.  Still, Cullors informs viewers that the pod contains 2,000 plants that are enough to feed “hundreds of people.”  Without an intervention from the Almighty, not a chance.  If the plants ever produce anything, it won’t be enough for one, much less “hundreds.”

Keep in mind that these videos are an official production of BLM, not someone’s home movie produced and written by their 8-year-old.  They’re really serious.

And really crazy.  In brief, BLM believes that firing all police and tearing down all jails and prisons is a sensible thing to do, and that love + “abolitionist pods” constitute a functional replacement.

This of course is childish nonsense, pure fantasy land.  But far more importantly, compare it with the critiques of race in America in the 60s by people like Eldridge Cleaver or Malcom X and you get an idea of how far the movement toward black self-sufficiency has fallen.  Those and many others would view BLM as simply the useful idiots of whites intent on retaining power.  After all they’d point out, is it just some weird coincidence that the black movement most lavishly funded by whites is the one that engages in such silly fantasies as abolishing police, jails and prisons and feeding the masses via “abolitionist pods?”

The upshot of the leftist narrative on race has been, since the late 60s, to thwart black uplift.  Rather than insisting on two-parent families, the Left lauds single motherhood and the BLM calls for replacing the family altogether.  Rather than insisting on quality education and high academic standards, the Left abandons standards and opposes charter schools that maintain them.  Rather than making black neighborhoods safer through increased police presence, the Left defunds the police and BLM wants them gone completely.  Rather than teaching American history in all its glory and horror, the Left demands a narrative of blacks eternally groaning under the jack boot of white racism.

By seizing control of the public discourse on race, the Left ensures that we’ll spend much time and energy over the coming years fighting fights that don’t need to be fought against ghosts that long ago ceased to bedevil Americans of whatever race.  That in turn will prevent us from doing what is well within our power to make this a happier, more prosperous, more harmonious and more egalitarian country.  And when the leftist narrative once again crashes, when leftist initiatives once again fail to produce the “equity” they claim to seek, we’ll be told to double down, to do more of what hasn’t worked and can’t.

Let no one be deceived, the leftist take on race is a road to nowhere and BLM wants to be our guide.

This originally appeared at The Word of Damocles.


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