It’s Open Season on Black Bodies
By: Tyson Jackson
Ahmaud Arbery isn’t the first Black person to be hunted down and killed by white terrorists. We know about Trayvon because of the 911 call, as we know about Ahmaud because of the subsequent video. However, I know with my entire being that so many more Black people who have been found shot dead with no murder suspects, were killed by white supremacists.
Many convicted white terrorists have admitted to going “nigger hunting” such as the case with Deryl Paul Dedmon, John Aaron Rice, Dylan Wade Butler, and William Kirk Montgomery, who admittedly terrorized unsuspecting Black people on occasion before they killed James Craig Anderson by running him over with a pickup truck in Jackson, MS in 2012. Or, we can reference the blatant “Nigger Hunting License” that was handed out at the “Good Ol’ Boy Round-Up” held in 1995; an annual convention held since 1980. This event was attended by over 300 law enforcement officers which facilitated both local and federal officers, as reported in this NYT article.
None of this is new, nor is this exclusive to America. In 1966 a book entitled Nigger Hunting in London was written by British author, Joseph A. Hunte. It seems that this is something that a lot of white culture supports, and even more perverse, participates in. Make no mistake, when the Karens of the world call the cops on Black people, that’s also Nigger Hunting, as they know very well it’s likely we will at least be brutalized, or worse, killed. It was also the Karens that would elicit lynch mobs of barbaric white men to do their dirty work when their thirst for Black blood needed to be quenched.
As it continues to be debated, whether or not the apparent systemic conditions of inequity that plague Black communities are a result of cultural or structural barriers, it’s clear and evidential that white supremacy and it’s ugly cousin, racism, are purely a cultural phenomenon. After all, these conditions exist even in the absence of Black people. The depths of their ignorance and hate exist in places where Black people don’t live or ever want to go, but for some reason they still hate us.
Many (including the author of this article) believe this hate is born out of a jealousy of our God-given attributes, which I can somewhat empathize with. I mean, look at us. We Da Shit! I wouldn’t want to be anything other than a Black person despite all the persecution. However, my empathy isn’t a pass, nor is it dismissing their rancor. It is simply an acknowledgment of our gifts juxtaposed to their ineptitudes. I can imagine how seeing us, even if it’s just on TV, would make a small-minded racist envious, but that still doesn’t give cause to kill us. Nothing does.
Yet, in the year 2020 (maybe one of the worst years ever), we are forced to revisit the same deflating stories about Black people being murdered by white terrorists because of the color of our skin and nothing more. In 2020, after we had a Black president for eight years, the law and policy of this land still don’t offer protection for Black people, and for damn sure doesn’t provide any justice. We all knew that it would be a matter of time before white people would begin to white people again and hunt us down with impunity, as they have done in the past; history indeed repeats itself. We also knew that there would be nothing we could truly do to stop it as citizens of this country, as they have controlled our population growth to no more than 12-15%; the same mark we have been stifled by since reconstruction. This is nothing new and we are faced with the same option- fight or flight.
Choose your side Black people, the time is now, as it has been forever. Either we come together and fight back or we mass migrate to a new land. Doing nothing is not an option.