There were three shootings overnight in Cincinnati. A teenager was gunned down during an altercation between several youths at a gas station. Another young man died after being shot in the mouth in Fay Apartments.
It happens every night and all the city can do is put up billboards asking folks who probably can't read cause they dropped out of school, to call a number to get some help.
The Mayor walks around with a bodyguard. A Black activist was recently gunned down outside City Hall after addressing Council one last time.
The republican wannabe governor and native Cincinnatian proudly touts his membership in the NRA while his people die around him and not a word on a plan to stop the killing or to get guns off the streets. He's more interested in making it harder for folks to vote or to keep gays and lesbians from violating the sanctity of his marriage.
Several years ago, I wrote the following words to the people of Cincinnati, published in the local newspaper in June, 2001. The letter came shortly after the April riots. I was more interested in what was being done about the 45 Black men who died between April and June of that year.
I can probably say it better and differently....but why? Nothing's changed since then except that there are more bodies...
"Well, I want to know where the hell is the outrage over the 45 young blacks who have been shot and/or killed in the past month since the April disturbances? No police were involved except as investigators. No white people were involved as perpetrators. All shooters and victims are black.
Why is it that we can so easily voice our outrage when we think we're being victimized by whites or the system, but remain curiously silent when we do it to ourselves, over and over and over again.
There are two things that are killing us outright as a community; black on black violence and AIDS, and we as a community have placed our heads firmly in the sand and have refused to face the problems.
White people are not our problem. Yes, some are racist and yes, some liberals are naive in thinking that throwing money or temporary jobs programs at the problem will make it go away.
Yes, our system, our government is inherently racist having been built by the master race for the master race on the backs of slaves, our ancestors.
But I don't see whites pulling guns and killing us. I don't see white boys standing at the corner of Reading Road and Hutchins selling dope across from the Town Center..........
I don't see white men infecting black women with the HIV/AIDS virus and living a life on the down low because they are afraid to be who they are and admit that they also sleep with men. This is not a sexual issue. For Black women it is a life and death issue....
Black on black violence must stop. Preying on our own community is the ultimate abomination. ..
Drug dealing is not a career move, just a quicker trip to the grave yard. Superfly was a movie, a myth, not reality, once caught up, you're caught up and dead, not caught up and eventually legit.
Our people fought and some died so we could go to the schools of our choice, yet we don't go or make our kids go. My fellow baby boomers, parenting is not a democracy, s/he who pays the bills rules. Bringing a kid into this world and not taking the time to make sure they are educated is a crime.
Sports is not the answer and not all rap is good rap. Just cause Pookie can rhyme don't mean he's the next Ja Rule. Our kids need a plan "B" and that being education just in case they can't be a star.
Malcolm said we must use "any means necessary" to achieve our goals and desires. Well, why don't we try helping ourselves for a change......................"jam 6/2001