Thursday, December 13, 2012

From Black Moral Giants to Black Merchant Princes and Princesses

A few weeks ago, right before his election, The Honorable Illinois State Representative Derrick Smith was arrested for taking a seven-thousand dollar bribe in exchange, for a state grant to open a day-care- center in the impoverished district on the west side of Chicago that he represents.

Smith, was newly appointed to the seat by Cook County Committeemen  
( in a back room deal of musical chairs ) to fill a leadership void, left after The Honorable State Senator Ricky Hendon, - pre cursing The Honorable Congressman Jesse Jackson Jr’s "national depression saga"-, abruptly resigned due to "exhaustion" right before federal investigators arrested several of his legislative and campaign aids for bribery, whom are all singing to the Feds in exchange for leniency.  Cook County and State Democratic Party leaders privately and publicly asked Smith to resign. Upon his refusal, he was impeached. Already on the ballot for reelection, Smith continued to campaign and won in a landslide against both a white Republican who assumed the image of a Black construction worker on his campaign bill boards, and an insider lobbyist who didn't live in the district, yet was selected by the Democratic Party to run as an "independent" candidate. 

Two weeks ago,  The Honorable State Representative LaShawn Ford ( also representing the impoverished westside) was arrested for defrauding a bank out of half a million dollars. He also continues to serve. 

Four years ago then Congressmen Jackson posted these pictures on his congressional website 

Four weeks ago Congressman Jesse Jackson Jr. resigned from office, amid pending federal charges of campaign financial fraud, including buying his girlfriend a forty-thousand dollar Rolex watch. 

His wife, 7th Ward Chicago Alderperson Sandi Jackson is now under an ethical cloud after receiving hundreds of thousands of dollars as his campaign consultant based in D.C. She many not even live in her city as her children are enrolled in a D.C. School.

Current Congressional Candidate Reynolds 
Congressmen Jesse Jackson's former 2nd District Congressional Seat if infamous. The last Congressmen, Mel Reynolds ( a Harvard and Oxford Man) went to jail for sexually abusing a troubled fourteen year old. After Reynolds's was released from prison he went to work for the Rev. Jesse Jackson Sr who also helped engineer a pardon for Reynolds from then President Bill Clinton. Which means he no longer has to register as a child sex offender.

Mel Reynolds's is now a candidate for his former office running on a platform of personal "redemption" and to "finish the job he started"    

The Congressman before him, Gus Savage, lost the 2nd District seat after being censured by Congress for trying to force himself on a female Peace Corps worker in Zaire.

A April 28th Special Election has been set to fill the seat.

State Senator Donnie Trotter

The strongest candidate  is the powerful and long time State Senator Donnie Trotter who announced he was running last week then promptly got arrested on a felony gun charge.

The second strongest candidate, Alderman Anthony Beale represents one of the poorest and isolated districts on southside where only one out of ten residents even walks though the doors of a college, let alone graduates. Yet Alderman Beale arranged for his daughter a free four year state legislative scholarship from one of Illinois's more unsavory white state representatives, Bob Rita, who also employes Alderman Beale's wife's. The Alderman's wife, was also an employee of the secretary of state's office, until she resigned when it was revealed that she falsified her own time and milage sheets for a state vehicle she was allowed to keep at her home. She reimbursing the state16,000 dollars.   

Cornel West talks about Black people having always been the strongest moral force in America, starting with the Abolitionist Movement that then the Civil Rights Movement which in turned sparked the Women's, Latino, Indian, and the Anti War Movements.

These morals forces where lead by individuals like Harriet Tubman, Fredrick Douglas, Booker T. Washington, W.E.B DuBois, Martin King, Malcolm X,  Fanie Lou Hamer, etc., who transcended their mortal coil to reach the highest peaks, expanding and extending humanity that also forged a tradition of moral greatness and depth in the the foundation of America that is still admired through out the world.

But traditions die unless they are constantly reinvigorated and replenished. I think we are precariously  close to the death of this tradition. The Black community has transitioned, gone from creating Black moral giants to producing Black merchant princes and princesses who mostly inherit modern day political plantations of poor and working class Black people. These people  are more modern selfs than constituents,  to be traded and leveraged for political and material gain.

The merchant political class therefore does not empower, but continues a tradition of political and social stasis and controlled chaos in the Black community, that benefits as a poverty shock doctrine 

This condition thrives and grows stronger in combination with hyper and unfettered capitalism that creates mechanisms, characteristic of a supernova and a typhoon the sweeps from American industries which once created unparalleled American economic well being and success, and indiscriminately vacuums up and strips away every source of wealth, leaving nothing behind but devastation. The Military Industrial Complex was the first example of this. Then came the outsourcing of industries like the Steele industry, leaving urban wastelands like Gary Indiana, and Detroit, Michigan. 

Gary Indian 


Now mechanisms have been created directly targeting American citizens.  The Prison Industrial and Non Profit Industrial Complexes targets poor and working class Black people who resided in those very urban wastelands. And venture capital investment finance guised under the American banking system targets every body else except the One Percent and the rest of the small elite class who drives these mechanisms. Of course the Black community, which has always been the proverbial canaries in the coal mines, are the first and hardest hit.

But what is to be done?

Right now,  I'm reading,  a southern write, Carson McCuller's "The Heart Is A Lonely  Hunter".
In it are two deeply wounded and dispirited men. One, white  who works at a carnival and drinks heavily to ease his pain about American injustice and the inability of those most affected to respond in a meaningfully way.  The other is a formerly well mannered Black doctor who was just released, having been beaten and jailed for attempting to get recourse for his son's permanent disfigurement and mutilation at the hands of the authorities.  Both men discuss the deep issue of injustice and  "what can be done". The Black character , says "the only solution is for the people to know. Once they know the truth, they can be oppressed no longer."

Both characters agree upon the "knowing" but disagree violently and part company on "how to share the truth" with others.

I'm not done reading, but I find the story deeply compelling, especially in these times, when so many people know the truth, but will not share it in a meaningful way"


professor Griff said...

what U need to be writing is how that white woman is gonna win because these black men gonna divide the black community. She the enemy not them. All U do is making them all look bad is that the plan cause you workingg for her?

Invisible Man said...

Seriously Dawg? Seriously?. I make THEM look bad? I'm sure you remember that song from Public Enemy ( it was right before Professor Griff got booted from the Group) It was called "She Watch Channel Zero" Yo Sun, turn the TV off. Seriously. That district is dying and you selling wolf tickets. They divide the community. Not me. But tell me something Robin who's cape are you carrying so it don't touch the ground?