iPolitic Global is a social issues blog 
and resource for community organizers

For those who don’t get it 


Dear Mr. Dickson thank you for your earnestly written letter explaining why you don’t understand why people in Jacksonville shut down I-95 and the Hart Bridge. I’m sure many people share your confusion so allow me to explain in no uncertain terms. Protestors in Jacksonville were, and are, acting in solidarity with people world wide against a system of racism and oppression of which police brutality is only a symptom. 

The same racism that existed in 1884 and 1964 exists today. The face of racism has changed and our acceptance of racism has changed but the facts still remain than Black, Brown, and poor people in this country fair far worse than Whites and the wealthy in every measure for quality of life.

We have been successful in ending legal discrimination and socially acceptable overt prejudice. What we have now is disparate impact or racism without racists, systems and culture by their nature continue despite the players or their intent unless they are disrupted, and Monday was that disruption.

That’s why ‪#‎shutitdown‬ was necessary. We are protesting in solidarity with those in Staten Island and Ferguson because the same system exists here. Ultimately what I think you fail to realize is the same thing people who opposed desegregation didn’t realize. Every single American is at risk when some people are allowed to be treated as second class citizens because the oppression that happens to us can happen to you. 

Lee Wollard, 57 years old, White, Masters degree, good upstanding citizen. Currently serving 20 years in a Florida prison for firing a warning shot to stop his 16 year old daughter’s abusive boyfriend during an attack. We want an end to injustice no matter its victims and we invite anybody who shares that goal to join with us. 

Javan Frinks


http://jacksonville.com/business/columnists/2014-12-10/story/terry-dickson-protesters-picky-which-lives-matter



Fear of Black Man 

   With the shooting of Mike Brown in Ferguson, Missouri America has been launched into its annual and generally fruitless handwringing about race issues. When Trayvon Martin and Jordan Davis were murdered a new chapter in this conversation was opened up to the public about "The talk". My mother gave me "The talk" that all Black boys get about how we have to be careful because we could lose our lives due to someone else's fear. I want to say something that no one else has said, it's hard work being America's nightmare. 

   Everyday I walk out of my front door in the back of my mind I have to wonder if I'm going to be killed for no good reason. Not too long ago I traveled to Mississippi for a funeral on one of those long haul round trips families make to pay respect. On the way back I was pulled over in a rental car and the information the officer needed was in the truck. I made sure to let the officer know every move I was making before I made it, called him sir in every response, and luckily I got nothing but a warning. But none of this really matters people are quick to say you should do this or that when encountering the police, or a White person, but the truth is Black men of all kinds have been shot for little or no reason regardless of how they were raised, how they were dressed, or where they were. Martin Luther King Jr. was shot on a balcony, Medgar Evers was shot in his drive way, Amadou Diallo was shot in his door way, Jordan Davis was shot in his friends car. All this talk about location, presentation, or biography covers the fact that Black men are seen as a threat.

  Have you ever stopped to think that maybe we're afraid? After all we are being shot, jailed, beaten, kicked out of schools, discriminated against, portrayed as thugs and criminals no matter how we live.  Its a lot to walk around with every day to know that a simple misunderstanding can escalate to a deadly incident in seconds. It is a burden to have to constantly regulate my walk, my tone, my response, my choice of places to go, to think that I may find myself jailed for an act of self defense. It is tiring to have to bare the burden of the nations fear, to constantly have to defend my existence and value as a person. 

    Right-wingers like to say things that boil down to "when someone tells you to do something you should do it." At what point are we going to stop allowing fear to be a reasonable excuse deadly force. I get on edge when I drive through a small town and see someone with a gun rack and a Confederate flag on their truck would I be justified in shooting them if they get rowdy with me?  

    Officer Wilson was fighting for his gun, which he got by the way, what did he have to fear? George Zimmerman was fighting for his life, after stalking down a teenager who was minding his business. Michael Dunn thought he saw a gun, maybe if he hadn't have been driving after drinking his vision would have been clearer. Remember Han Solo shot first, these men are not heroes or victims, they are at best bullies and at worst cowards. 

Building Towards Greatness

        This is a love letter to my city Jacksonville, Florida

         I've lived in Duval for 20 years now, my first memory is turning off St. Johns Bluff (there was no 9A or 295) and up Beach Blvd towards Jax Beach, there was little of nothing along this stretch of road then, and it seemed like it took forever to get where we were going. As long as I've lived here we have always talked about our city as one that hadn't met its potential

     

The opinions expressed here are my own and do not represent statements from any organization I am affiliated with - J. Frinks