Elie Mystal is tired of explaining #BlackLivesMatter to white people
Elie Mystal is tired of explaining #BlackLivesMatter to white people
Elie Mystal of Above the Law, a website that caters to elite urban lawyers, wrote this on Friday, after the Dallas shooting. He was not interested in explaining #BlackLivesMatter to white people:
Of course there were going to be people, almost exclusively white people, who blamed #BlackLivesMatter for the violence against police. Of course there were going to be former U.S. Congressmen [he’s referring to Joe Walsh, VG wrote about him here] who threatened to assassinate the President and protesters. Of course people who do not think black lives matter worth a damn were going to use this incident to try to discredit the movement.
This post is a good counter to all of that… if countering the racist agenda of Confederate America is what you are inclined to do today.
I’m not. I am not inclined to explain myself to white people today. I do no feel the need to create a false equivalency between the dangers that cops face from the general public as they do their jobs, and the dangers black people face, from the police, as they try to live their lives.
They are two different things. Cops are paid to put themselves in dangerous situations and handle themselves professionally and appropriately. Black people are citizens entitled to due process of laws.
This isn’t a race war. It’s state-sponsored terrorism against African-American communities pitted against the proliferation of firearms in the hands of too many people.
Explaining why #BlackLivesMatter is a call for social change while #BlueLivesMatter is a fig leaf for police oppression might be an argument that some white people need to hear today. But you’ll have to go to some other brother to get it.
Me, I’m just out here survivin’ y’all. And that is hard enough without having to figure out how to explain things in a way Rudolph Giuliani would understand.
Fuck Rudy. Fuck you if you agree with him. That’s my argument. Have a nice weekend.
Elie is well educated. He went to Harvard, for both undergrad and law school. He lives in New York City. He and his wife earn about $250,000 per year. He loves to make fun of lawyers that didn’t graduate from a Top 50 law school. He worked for “Big Law” for a while until he got burnt out. Luckily he was already married, so his wife picked up the slack when his income fell to zero. Convenient.
Elie is an educated man and runs in some fortunate circles, so it’s always surprising to realize how little these people know about the rest of us. But Elie is tired. Tired from trying to explain to the white Man how it is to be black. Tired of telling white people that Black Lives Matter is call for social change, that it’s not a call for a race war. Tired of trying to show white America their Confederate racist agenda, that white people continue to inexplicably deny exists. Tired of explaining how the police are really state-sponsored terrorists against black communities. It’s exhausting, isn’t it?
Poor Elie, with all his education, and his student loans, and his life up north. He doesn’t realize that other people are tired too. We are tired of trying to explain to him and people like him that we hear him just fine. We just aren’t buyin’ what he’s sellin.’
When you base your arguments on things proven to be lies like “Hand Up, Don’t Shoot,” the credibility of your premise goes down the toilet. If you aren’t credible, I am relieved from an obligation to take you seriously. When you double down on the falsehoods, elevate dangerous rhetoric, and physically threaten innocent people, I am morally obligated to reject your position. In fact, I more than reject your position, I get mad and I push back! Maybe that’s how you think you can get your message across, but most people aren’t interested in being intimidated into concession. Am I right?
Black Lives Matter and other groups like the New Panther Party can’t be honest though, because they don’t have the facts to back up their arguments (I believe their agenda is more about power than anything). I’m open to being challenged – on the facts. But what seems to be shown is that police-civilian fatalities are directly related to the number of contacts with police. Black communities have more contacts with police, and therefore will unsurprising have more negative encounters. This is simple math. It’s no secret that black communities have higher crime rates, which necessitate increased police intervention. Aside from that I’m not aware of anything – anything – that shows police act more roughly against blacks, or act in any way different than they do in any other high crime area. (Click here to see Washington Post’s interactive database on Fatal Force. You can isolate for different factors to see statistics.) So while too many black communities have unfortunate interactions with police, the solution lies in reducing crime. Let’s work on that, shall we? Follow Snoop Dogg’s lead.
The incidents that Black Lives Matter has taken up as anecdotal evidence for their cause, have mostly turned out to be grossly overblown, and almost all of them have involved some level of resistance from the civilian. What exactly is a police officer supposed to do in that situation? Do you have a solution for that? I do. Stop f’ing resisting. And nearly all of these incidents go away. As in GO AWAY – they DO NOT HAPPEN!
Another, even more fundamental reason why I resist this Black Lives Matter message, is very simple. My life experience tells me it is not true. I’m not talking about blacks’ perception of racism – they own whatever that is. I’m talking about my own views on people of other colors. I am not racist. I do not conduct myself in ways that should be perceived as racist. I go about my business and I treat everyone respectfully. Since this view is shared by every other white person I know, I unsurprisingly deny that racism is so prevalent as to be rampant or systemic. I’m not like that, the people I know aren’t like that, and so when I get smashed in the face with bullshit like “white privilege” and institutional racism (particularly in light of affirmative action and equal protection laws), I very expectedly take offense. Hey, BLM, do you get that? Your message is being rejected because it is unfair. And you claim to be all about justice. Shame on you.
One really troubling result of this ginned up unrest, is that it IS serving to turn people against one another. As I thought about these recent events, I grew more and more upset beyond the supreme sadness of unnecessary loss of life. I do not like these protests based on lies that feed a steady diet of division and hate. I do not like the unfounded racial allegations against police, and by extension me, because I’m white. I do not like being muted because my white opinion means nothing to these agitators. I also know my experience, and I hate that these race-baiters have made me question how my black friends and colleagues feel about me.
I hate how these rabble-rousers have interfered with my everyday interactions with black people that I don’t know. Do I say hello like I normally would without thinking, or do I keep my head down and not even attempt a greeting? When black people look at me, are they seething with hatred for me for no other reason than because I’m white? BLM you are sowing the seeds of racism, not rooting them out.
It occurred to me that Black Lives Matter is just like any other untethered-to-reality liberal cause. We have to remember that those shouting the loudest do not necessarily represent the whole group. I have consciously decided that I will not allow these people that peddle racial lies to make me hate. No matter how ugly they are, I will not fall into their trap. I will judge people on the content of their character, and not the color of their skin. So, Big Fail BLM. You do not speak for all black people, and I will not allow you to paint all white people with your vicious racist lies.
Just because Elie’s got a big megaphone over there at the elitist Above the Law, it doesn’t mean he’s the voice of black America. Far from it. He lives an uppercrust life. He hasn’t a clue about the rest of us – black or white. Now Elie, if you want to talk facts, in a calm manner, to seek out solutions, us white folks are all ears. We get it! You’re upset. When you stop acting like you want to pound us into submission, rather than achieve mutual understanding, we are here for you. If you want to keep telling us lies and discounting personal responsibility you’re going to continue to get the hand.