Justice for Freddie Gray?

It is deplorable that America’s African-American community has added a new martyr to its ranks. How many have had to die since the days of slavery in the colonial era and the subsequent abolition movement?

Nowadays racism is self-evident. Like burning embers, as intense as molten lava, on every street corner, the currents of racism in the United States continue to oppress, to denigrate and to kill black Americans. All dark skin is segregated, be it in the workplace, in restaurants, at the bus stop or in the park. In church, too. The xenophobia in this country is lethal.

The United States is still lagging way behind when it comes to human rights. You would have to have the skin of a rhinoceros and ice water in your veins to sign a decree pointing to Venezuela as a threat to the domestic security of the United States. When it comes to attacking growing nations, Obama knows how to wear the trousers all right. If only he would show the same alacrity when it comes to attacking the heart of the Ku Klux Klan, killers of his own people in the United States.

Offering only lukewarm rhetoric, Obama washes his hands of abuses against the black community. Every day, U.S. police officers humiliate, beat and murder black Americans before his very eyes. Disgrace to the black people, disgrace to the human race, opportunist for personal benefit. He has abandoned his own community. He has abandoned millions. The cries of his own people leave him cold; he is a black man in the pay of the absolutists. Though he fails to exercise his authority as president when the situation calls for it, when it comes to attacking developing nations he needs no encouragement.

The saddest, most shameful aspect of all this for black Americans is that their president fails to represent them in any way. More than that, he betrays them. What would Malcolm X, Rosa Parks, Martin Luther King, Jr. and Nelson Mandela say if they were alive today? In its hunger for wealth, the United States exterminates developing nations with its foreign policy. America boasts of being the great superpower, but back home, on its streets and in its neighborhoods, in its skyscrapers and in its sewers, human rights do not exist for those with black skin. In America there is neither equality, nor respect, nor the right to life. In America blacks are categorized as delinquent on the grounds of being black, and murdered with absolute impunity.

Young African-Americans have taken to the streets across the country in thousands-strong marches that the Ku Klux Klan media labels “disturbances.” Provoking the black community in order to give them a pretext for the beatings, police officers offload their hatred and impose their white superiority. Yes, because they believe themselves superior, proclaiming themselves an aristocratic dynasty on the basis of their Caucasian lineage.

The filing of criminal charges against the six police officers involved in the death of Freddie Gray came as a surprise. For a moment, the demonstrators thronging the streets exploded in jubilation with cries of “Justice for Freddie!” But it is only the beginning of a steep uphill struggle because the Klan is everywhere, its tentacles reaching into every corner of the system. And it will not allow its followers to be tried and imprisoned. This will be a swim against the current, reminiscent of the days of abolitionism: The scale is different, but the essence is the same. I wonder will the American people ever be able to unite, regardless of creed, race and color, in condemnation of the impunity, abuse and shamelessness of the Klan? White Americans have taken part in the demonstrations, but they are few in number, despite their majority status in the United States. Latinos are even scarcer among the demonstrators because the police take advantage of the protests to file charges and make mass deportations.

American police officers kill more undocumented Latinos than they do African Americans. Hundreds are killed by the border patrol along the U.S.-Mexican border. But this issue is never discussed in the media, nor reported in the world’s press, and their undocumented status renders these victims invisible. Their cases are closed and, though complaints may be made, they are never followed up. No crowds of demonstrators, whether black or white, take to the streets in protest. The life of an undocumented migrant is not worth the same as that of a black person. Put simply, it has no value. Not enough for a local news item, nor a demonstration, and certainly not enough to warrant justice.

The United States has neither the moral standing nor the integrity to speak of human rights. Obama, in his inability to act, has even less.

The question remains: Will justice be done for Freddie Gray? For one, at least, for one among many, among the thousands throughout history. How many martyrs must there be? Will the Ku Klux Klan ever be extinguished? Will the United States, the great superpower, ever be able to respect the human rights of its black citizens? When will it respect those of its undocumented immigrants?

The Freddie Gray case is making inroads toward achieving justice. Time will show whether it will be enough to inch us a little closer to the mighty walls of impunity that shield the Ku Klux Klan.

America must stop interfering in the affairs of developing nations and concern itself with the nonexistence of human rights within its own borders and with the absolutists who manipulate its domestic policy. The system has collapsed, demonstrating that capitalism is not the answer. Neither the path nor the mecca, it is the absolute destruction of humanity. But you might as well plow the sands as say that to the United States of America.

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