In Detroit last Wednesday, a policeman shot and killed a wanted 35-year-old black man when he responded violently to the officer’s attempt to arrest him. And on Saturday in Chicago, police killed a young black 19-year-old and a 55-year-old black woman: The father of the boy had called the police at 4 a.m. because his son was threatening him with a metal bat. When the police squad intervened they killed the boy, as well as the neighbor who answered the door — “accidentally,” according to the police report.
There are a further three deaths “that matter.” Because as the slogan for the well-promoted mass movement (which has White House support) says, “Black Lives Matter.” But only when they are African-Americans killed by police. Even better if the police agents are white, but it’s not compulsory. Anyway, the motto of condemnation is applied in a way that disregards the circumstances surrounding the death: It doesn’t matter if the victim had just committed a crime of some sort, if they resisted arrest with force, or if the policeman was acting out of self-defense according to the code of conduct. This is what happened in the case involving 18-year-old Michael Brown from Ferguson, Missouri, in which the white police officer who shot him was fully cleared by Obama’s Department of Justice. Despite all this, Brown has become BLM’s symbol.
The protagonists of the Detroit crime news item were an officer from Dearborn and an African-American called Kevin Matthews — 35 years old and schizophrenic. The [African-American] man’s mother told the Detroit Free Press: “They shot my son for nothing. He didn’t have no weapon [sic].” Investigators are trying to create a detailed reconstruction of what happened. But according to what has been said so far, the police officer was on patrol in the Tireman and Greenfield area and a man broke into a run as they approached. According to the police department’s news release, “The officer chased the subject and encountered him several houses away in Detroit, where a struggle ensued. Subsequently, the officer fired his department-issued weapon, striking the subject.” Police Chief James Craig and the head of Dearborn Police Ron Haddad added that the man was being sought out after committing a crime the day before and was wanted on a $2,500 misdemeanor warrant from Redford Township. Craig explained that the officer had seen a man he recognized, got out of the car and chased him on foot into a backyard where a struggle ensued. Shots were fired. Craig said the officer’s uniform was torn, his equipment and belt had been tampered with, and that he had suffered an injury. The investigation will clarify the officer’s responsibility and — if sent to court and found guilty — he will pay his dues.
The tragedy in Chicago is more complicated, with an added political element. Here too, an investigation will clarify what happened. It is rather unclear at the present time, but the police department in Obama’s city has already called the killing of the two victims an accident, and has apologized. Mayor Rahm Emanuel — Obama’s former Chief of Staff — is in the eye of the storm for having kept the video quiet for 13 months. It shows an unarmed 17-year-old black boy being murdered in cold blood as a white officer fires 16 shots. The officer was immediately sentenced for homicide, but the scandal within the scandal is that Emanuel was re-elected and managed to keep the horrifying video quiet before the vote — a video that might have ruined him. In the end, the courts forced the Democratic mayor to make the video public, under pressure from journalists who evoked the Freedom of Information Act. He now sits among the accused, and calls for his resignation have multiplied. The two individuals that fell victim to the police in the last week of the Christmas season are another two nails in his political coffin. The fact that the news reached him whilst he was on a 10-day family holiday in Cuba does not help matters.
Chicago has been a one-color city — Democrat for decades — and has the sad record of seeing more homicides than New York, despite having a population a fraction of the size. There is clearly a specific problem concerning how public order is managed — typical in large cities where no political change has taken place (Chicago, Baltimore and Detroit, for example). This paves the way for corruption. The ones that pay the price are normal people in the ghettos who become the “accidental” victims of improper policing.
The BLM movement is up in arms because Kevin Matthew in Detroit, and Bettie Jones (the 55-year-old) and Quintonio LeGrier (the 19-year-old) in Chicago, are additions to the list of black martyrs to what they call “State Police Racism.” It is a cynical, distortive movement that brings the worst justice possible to African-Americans themselves. The number of martyrs adopted by BLM is statistically irrelevant compared to the huge numbers of black people (and Hispanics) who die at the hands of other black people (or Hispanics) in the gangs that plague the ghettos of large cities — from Los Angeles to New York, from Chicago to Baltimore, from Detroit to Philadelphia. These unnamed casualties number in the thousands. Most are victims of criminal competition, but many are innocent adults and children killed in the crossfire or in street shootings.
Former Mayor Giuliani has stated that “93 percent of minority members in America are killed by blacks and Hispanics” in New York,* quoting FBI and local government data. Thanks to his experience as a “mayor-sheriff” who deployed police with a zero tolerance policy, Giuliani reduced the 2200 deaths a year that took place under his predecessor, Dinkins, to a quarter of that figure. With 93 percent of the total murder victims being black or Hispanic his iron-wrought law and order policy, therefore, saved thousands of minority lives. For him and for his successor Michael Bloomberg, who has continued his policies, truly “the lives of blacks mattered.” In real life, not just in a slogan.
* Editor’s Note: This quote, translated correctly, has been paraphrased. Giuliani’s original quote reads: “I find it very disappointing that you’re not discussing the fact that 93 percent of blacks in America are killed by other blacks.”