Friday, May 29, 2009

A Photo Montage--White Men Are Oppressed and the New Haven 20 and Frank Ricci are Their Saviors!

Yes, speak truth to power!

Again, I am moved by the heroism of the New Haven 20 and their stance against this widespread racism against White men under the terror of Jim Crow 2.0. Both my conscience and heart are struck by this case. In fact, as a gesture of unity I am going to buy their t-shirts and hats. And I am also going to remove the picture of the Little Rock Nine that is in my office and replace it with a picture of the New Haven 20:

The power of both these images is profound:

Although there is a shared echo between them, I must admit that the New Haven 20 have a dignity in their actions and struggle that the Little Rock 9 cannot match:

Ultimately, there really is no comparison at all:

We respectable negroes will continue to stand together with the New Haven 20 in their most honorable struggle, as this is THE civil rights issue of our time.

Are you with us? What are you doing to support the struggle against the new Jim Crow that is oppressing our White brothers?


RiPPa said...

Lou Dobbs had me at "this is just wrong." Now I feel the need to become active in their struggle. This may sound stupid, but I'm willing to start extra fires and throw a few more cats in trees in New Haven. Hopefully my actions would help to show the incompetency of those Black firefighters. Yup, it's time for those oppressed 20 firefighters to stop riding at the back of the fire truck and actually get to drive every now and then.

By any means Neccessary

Al Froim Bay Shore said...

So the other day, I was thinking about Darfur, Rwanda, Serbia, and Israel. All these countries have a direct connection to genocide, the most recent being Darfur (and it still continues). Around the time of the ethnic cleansing in Serbia, I expected an outcry from Israel. As far as I remember, I heard none. With Rawanda and Darfur, the same thing. I assumed that because a country was founded out of its own genocidal tragedy it would take a lead role in denouncing genocide in spite of who does it and to whom it is done. My assumptions were proven wrong.

I am older, a bit more cynical, and mildly amused when I watch Black folks not only turn a blind eye to discriminatory governmental policies, but mock its victims.

Lady Zora, Chauncey DeVega, and Gordon Gartrelle said...

@Rippa--I think we should have a national negroes stay home and start a fire day. This would call attention to the New Haven 20 and their struggle. Good call!

@Al--Genocide and the New Haven 20 as victims Al-you are bating me! I mean that nicely. I am going to write something serious on this issue next week, but this satirical line is my way of highlighting the hypocrisy at work. One, are these white men "victims?" Two, why are these men and the Right so interested in justice and fighting discrimination all of a sudden? Where were they during all those moments where there was real evil and discrimination? Hmmmmm....they were either silent or calling folks like the Dr. King, the Little Rock Nine and others "trouble makers."


Al From Bay Shore said...

"Where were they during all those moments where there was real evil and discrimination?"

CD, I don't know where they were but neither do you. However, if we are to proceed along this line of questioning, then mainstream Black activists, and their ideology, need to be asked the following: Where were you, and where are you, when and while various forms of slavery persist not only in Northwest Africa (the so-called motherland) but in Mexico, the southwestern United States, and Chinatown, NYC? What's with the silence? And since we are asking questions of mainstream Black activism, I have another one: Why are Black people who are victimized by white people more valued than Black people who are victimized by other Black people? After all, Black on Black victimization occurs at a substantially higher rate than White on Black victimization. In taking on and mocking the New Haven firefighters not only did you open yourself to these questions. You also reinforced the stereotype that mainstream Black activism (an evolved Civil Rights ideology) has two fundamental elements: (1) blame whitey and (2) beg whitey.

Your critiques have absolutely nothing to do with seeking that which is just and fair. You even suggest that their access to fairness and justice should be determined by the political ideology of those who support their cause. You write the following:

"...why are these men and the Right so interested in justice and fighting discrimination all of a sudden?"

Should it matter if the Right comes to their aide? This is no different than white folks criticising the Million Man March because of its association with the Nation of Islam. For you, a person's access to what is right and just is based largely on what they believe. In other words, the validation of a person's natural rights is only guaranteed if they believe as you do. This isn't the first time the three of you have done this. Your procedure of "dicommendation" has, as of late, been targeted at Black people who dissent from your opinion. For you, Blackness and ideology are one in the same. Disagreement be damned. Right on brother!

Now, what were you saying about "hypocrisy"?.

Lady Zora, Chauncey DeVega, and Gordon Gartrelle said...

Al, Al, Al...

You bring me joy while I try to cook my lemon chicken. We are not "Black Activists" and if you check our essays we don't support the mainstream Civil Rights Agenda.

And framing this is a human rights issue is a stretch for me. Moreover, I think the question of where these conservative voices for "equality" and "justice" were during the CR movement is fair, and to boot these folks support white on black bigotry but want to cry foul and play the White victim card now--which is why they have zero credibility as voices for fairness or justice.

I agree with you on Black on Black violence...see my posts on ign't behavior and culture.

Question: why do you want to dirty yourself by supporting these Right wing demagogues instead of calling out their hypocrisy?


Al From Bay Shore said...

"...I think the question of where these conservative voices for "equality" and "justice" were during the CR movement is fair..."

Their hypocrisy doesn't change the the fact that what happened to these firefighters was wrong. Once again, you are saying that this issue does not warrant legitimacy because of the behaviors and beliefs of those who have come to their sides. I will agree with the idea that the support provided by the "right" is done more out of political advantage than a need to protest on behalf of the little guy but this brings another question: Are you saying that these firefighters were correct up until the moment the "right" sided with them?

And I think I am right in asking questions of you as well. After all, this is a Black blog that that has referenced MLK and the Little Rock 9 as a means of sarcastically mocking the firefighters through comparison. This is to say that one cause (that of MLK and the Little Rock 9) is a more legititmate claim of discrimination than the other (the New Haven 20). Here is the question: Isn't discrimination wrong regardless of who it happens to, where it happens, when it happens, and who joins in the protestations of said discrimination?

chaunceydevega said...

I believe that one can in fact rank oppressions. I know it is fashionable as a result of a lazy, center-left multiculturalism to argue otherwise. Al, can you honestly say that the grievance, offense, and "crime" against the New Haven 20 is even in the same universe as what happened to the Little Rock 9? Because if you say yes, you are siding with the worst reactionaries of the Right who have appropriated the narrative of the Civil Rights Movement in the most disingenuous way possible--i.e. to defend white privilege and white supremacy (which is what their boohooing really is about).

But yes, I think what happened with the firefighters is wrong in the sense that the black firefighters and their advocates should be ashamed that they failed the test and didn't step up. To pursue their argument against the test is embarrassing frankly.

Now, those are separate claims from my critique of how the Right as merchants of white racial animus are playing the victim.

I think this is a productive conversation--one that you should perhaps write a guest post/rebuttal about...I think it would be a great way to explore these issues.


RiPPa said...

From what I read on this case, the test was administered to about 112 firefighters. There were only 27 Black firefighters in the bunch who did not fail the test, but didn't score high high enough to warrant Lieutenant and Captain promotions. Having said all of that, I'd like to know how the other applicants who couldn't cut it as well feels about this case.

Al From Bay Shore said...

I wasn't comparing. I was only decrying this form of discrimination.

I hope your lemon chicken turned out fabulous. Enjoy the day.