Word that 14-year-old Endia Martin was dead from a gunshot, a shot allegedly fired by another 14-year-old girl, was very painful. She was laid to rest on May 5 in a service that attracted grieving mourners, adults and children and even Chicago Bulls basketball star Derrick Rose, a product of the Windy City.
The girl’s funeral was held at St. Andrew’s Temple in Chicago and hundreds attended with many donning colorful shirts in tribute to a girl whose death was linked to a Facebook beef, some alleged rivalry over an older male and shots police say were fired by a former friend. Besides the minor charged in the killing, additional charges are pending against a man police accuse of illegally buying a gun used in the murder, another man accused of illegally selling the gun, a 25-year-old uncle who media reports say rode a bus in his wheel chair to deliver the gun to the child and an aunt, 32, who was allegedly on the scene and unjammed the gun for the shooter after it failed on the first attempt to fire. Police have charged the aunt with mob action and obstruction of justice in the shooting. Police charged a 17-year-old for allegedly trying to hide the gun. His charges include felony aggravated unlawful use of a weapon, two counts of felony unlawful use of a weapon and a misdemeanor reckless damage charge.
The alleged shooter is a juvenile whose name has been withheld because of her age. But she has been identified as an honor student. “ ‘Bout to beat some a-‘ the girl tweeted about two hours before the fatal confrontation,” reported The Sydney Morning Herald Newspaper in Australia, showing the expansive reach of news about Black on Black murder.
“She also posted a photo on Facebook of herself sticking out her tongue and holding up her middle finger. The photo was captioned: ‘I Don’t Chase Em ‘ I RePlace ‘Em,” the newspaper reported.
“What would have been, under any other circumstance, probably a fistfight between 14-year-old girls because they were fighting over a boy turned into a murder. … You introduce a firearm and you have a murder,” said Chicago police Superintendent Garry McCarthy. He said the gun was stolen from a car.
A gun killed Endia Martin but a gun was not the cause of her death. The cause of her death was the deep darkness that looms over Black America and clouds heavy-laden with self-hatred, envy, jealousy and a deep-seated frustration born out of our centuries of oppression. It is the psychic trauma of slavery and the post-traumatic stress of living in a nation and world that devalues you, dehumanizes you, denies you and seeks to destroy you–even if the weapon used against you is your own self-hatred and ignorance.
There used to be a time when a thinking Black woman would “shoo” a daughter, a niece, a cousin into the house if trouble brewed over the affections of some nappy-headed boy. The woman would scold the young girl for being too hot in the pants and tell her no boy is worth fighting over. If a gaggle of youngsters gathered at the house for a fight, she would tell all of them “get from around here with that foolishness.”
In an extreme situation, if the bullying and the conflict would not go away, she might wrap the girl’s hair, put her in some pants and secure shirt and let the girl defend herself physically. Though not the best answer to the problem, the skirmish would last a little while, then the crowd would disperse and the girls involved would be told there would be no more fighting and conflict. The girls, 14-year-olds, may have even had a chance to come back together, become friends and as older girls or grown women laugh about the foolishness of youth.
But today with Black beefs and fights blasted all over websites and the Twitter-verse, there seems to be an insatiable appetite for Black-on-Black violence, the more graphic the better and best if captured via cellphone video. And what could be more graphic than a fatal bullet fired from a gun?
Darkness, gross darkness, covers adults who would encourage and facilitate fights–especially meaningless battles over a male who was over 21-years-old, according to a police detective.
Darkness, gross darkness, covers women who would facilitate street battles between young girls over men. So a male’s attention or affection is worth fighting and killing for? And how long will a 14-year-old girl hold a young male’s interest before he moves on to the next girl?
Ignorance, gross ignorance, covers people who perpetuate violence as the answer to problems and gunplay as the answer to every dispute–no matter how small.
The Holy Qur’an, the Muslim book of scripture, says, “And the blind and the seeing are not alike, nor those who believe and do good and the evildoers.” Who are the blind and who are the seeing?
The blind are the suffering masses of the people who think God is a mystery and who do not know the law of cause and effect, so their ability to perceive, reason and act is diminished. They think any act can result in any outcome. They are easily driven by emotion and self-hatred to acts of violence against one another, but not against their true oppressor.
Who are the seeing? The seeing are those who know the truth of God and truth of his presence and existence and spirit. They are those who have seen a great light and say that they submit to and worship the True and Living God.
But those who see are responsible for those who don’t see, to warn, to teach, to train, to console, to raise to a living level by Allah’s (God’s) permission. It is those who see, no matter what they call themselves, but especially all of us who carry the banner of the Nation of Islam and proudly declare ourselves to be sons of Muhammad and his minister, the Honorable Minister Louis Farrakhan, who must dispel darkness.
The condition of our community proves our people need the light of truth and self-love. We have a duty to bring that light. No matter what we have done and no matter what we are doing, it’s time to dispel this darkness at every opportunity.
It’s time that we commit wholly to doing the work of our father and refuse to stop until the darkness is eradicated. Darkness and light cannot exist in the same place. Isn’t it time we proved we have the light?