(FinalCall.com) – The District of Columbia police department and the mayor’s office have proclaimed victory after moving out of the city’s Trinidad neighborhood following six days of blanket police coverage and blockades that stopped cars from entering the community unless occupants had “legitimate” business in the area.
The Neighborhood Safety Zone barricades came down June 12 and whether area crimes statistics will remain on a decline is yet to be seen. Some residents applauded the lull in drug sales, violence and chaos, but many were skeptical about what would happen now that the police have pulled out. Many believe the violence and the peace breakers will simply return.
It is hard to witness the loss of life and the dangerous conditions that Blacks and Latinos struggle to survive in inner city neighborhoods across the country. Many areas, like the Trinidad neighborhood in D.C., often find streets unsafe, bullets flying and residents in legitimate fear for their lives. It is hard to hear about five, six, seven, eight lives lost in a single weekend and not be touched by the pleas of desperate people crying for relief, any relief, without thought of any possible consequences.
At the height of the crack cocaine epidemic in the 1980s, there were calls for the deployment of National Guardsmen and today some call those involved in crime and violence in Black neighborhoods urban terrorists, who need to face a heavy police or military response. That call was answered in the nation’s capital with the lockdown of a neighborhood, car searches and trampling of basic rights.
It appears as if resources–money, time, energy, intelligence–can only be found when violence and its related problems rise to embarrassingly high levels, media-reported levels, in Black and Brown neighborhoods. It also appears as if promises of help, increased opportunity, better services and more attention from political leaders follow tragedy, suffering and death. The political will, the social capital and the funding streams seem to be missing until the solution becomes more guns, bigger guns, more searches, more pat downs, more arrests and more incarceration.
There is bold talk of zero tolerance for crime and drugs, but no zero tolerance for poorly performing schools, service-starved neighborhoods, joblessness, social decline and high levels of apathy and despair. Little innovation is offered and few want to talk of focusing on root problems that breed the evils of drug trafficking, addiction and violence. The answer most often is reactionary, heavy-handed police tactics and never a genuine and long term commitment to building neighborhoods and the people in neighborhoods besieged by problems.
One of the reasons for the continued targeting of Blacks by law enforcement could be the roots of modern policing, which many say evolved out of pre-Civil War slave patrols. The emphasis of the patrols, which required a pass from a master for a slave to move about alone, was always the control and the confinement of the so-called Negro population. Many say modern policing patterns show things have changed very little.
Across the country legislation and tactics that target so-called gangs, injunctions that prohibit gang members from gathering, and aggressive action towards Black youth, in particular, and Black people in general, represent a state of mind and fear of the growing numbers of the children of America’s former slaves. Biblical and Qur’anic scripture talk about the mind of an ancient pharaoh, who feared the growing numbers of the children of Israel and decided to eliminate this perceived threat to his power and his society.
The Honorable Minister Louis Farrakhan has repeated the warnings of the Hon. Elijah Muhammad about the plotting of a modern pharaoh fearful of the spirit and potential power of Black youth and Black America. And, as Min. Farrakhan has warned, rampant Black on Black violence and the devastating impact of drugs on neighborhoods have opened the door to police crackdowns and tactics in the name of a war on drugs. The evil that we practice against one another and the pain that we cause one another opens the door for the enemy to step in and target all of us.
We need to be raised from where we are into a higher level of understanding of ourselves, the time and what must be done. Min. Farrakhan has shared from the teachings of the Hon. Elijah Muhammad that the Black man and woman of America are God’s choice today to build a new reality and to inherit power in the earth by God’s grace.
But before that can happen, we must be raised to a higher spiritual and intellectual level and be blessed to see the snares of the enemy. We must also see our divine potential and work to harness and develop the divine force that resides in each of us.
The teachings of the Honorable Elijah Muhammad and the Nation of Islam offer the knowledge needed to overcome a world hell-bent on the destruction of the Black man, woman and child. Getting acquainted with the divine self breathes life into the soul and the new life is reflected in a new activity that builds, instead of destroys and unites instead of divides.
Four-hundred years of oppression and deprivation have left Black America fractured and poisoned with the disease of self-hatred. How else could we fight and kill one another and spill the blood of innocents in fratricidal violence? It is time that we end our disunity and deadly assaults on one another. If we fail to heed divine guidance and divine warning, we may find ourselves at the mercy of a society that has never shown us mercy. Let us unite and rebuild our neighborhoods and our community.