It is time to protest for Black on Black Crime

“16 shots, 17 years! 16 shots, 17 years!” After the video release of Laquan McDonald, being fatally gunned down by CPD officer Jason Van Dyke, Chicago citizens of  all races and ethnicities joined together and protested. People from various neighborhoods made sure that their voices were heard. From the Bronzeville neighborhood on Chicago’s Southside to downtown on Michigan Avenue, protesters demonstrated their rage and anger while trying to obtain justice for McDonald.

Throughout the United States, people protest in rage when a citizen, especially a person of color, is shot down by law enforcement. The killings of Trayvon Martin, Tamir Rice, Michael Brown, and Eric Garner are all prime examples. The victims of these cases had their lives ended by the hands of police officers. Cases like these bring national attention, but what people fail to realize is that homicides happen everyday, especially amongst the black community. Black on black crime is a major issue in cities within the country. As a matter of fact, black on black crime occurs at a higher rate than people of color being killed by police officers. With this being said, why don’t people protest and raise awareness about homicides that happen within black communities?

One could argue that the reason why police officers killing people of color are brought to national attention is because officers are expected to serve and protect the citizens within a community. Their job is to watch over them and ensure that no harm is done to them, yet they are the ones causing the harm.  

Many people ignore the black on black crime that happens within various communities. Negative stereotypes are held against African Americans, so people expect for blacks to act in violent manners. Since blacks are viewed as ignorant and violent, people feel as if crime amongst African Americans isn’t really important to address because it is expected of them. For decades, blacks have been killing each other off and very little has been done to address this issue.

People may care about the issue of black on black crime, but they rarely do anything about it. This is mainly because they are afraid to speak out against it. Many individuals feel as if they will be targeted if they do decide to act out against homicides that occur within black communities. The gang-bangers and the drug dealers who commit the homicides are not hesitant to retaliate against those who speak against it, and quite frankly, they will do anything to silence the voices of those who strongly oppose their evil practices.

Another reason why many people are hesitant to act out against black on black crime is because it isn’t directly happening to them. Whites, latinos, and even high class African Americans have no regard to the many homicides that occur within impoverished urban communities, populated by low class blacks, because they aren’t the ones that are being victimized. Since they aren’t undergoing the fear of having their lives taken due to gun violence, they tend to care less about the crime that goes on within black communities.   

The next cop shooting of a black man is more likely to make national headlines than a black man killing someone of his kind. Because people are too timid to speak out and protest against it. Not only that, but they fear losing their own lives. It’s not that people don’t care, they just have a lot to risk. People can agree that cops killing colored people enrage the nation. Shouldn’t black on black crime instill rage within citizens throughout the nation as well? There’s something we can do about the issue of exceeding crime rates within black communities. If we unify all people from all different races, we can address and overcome the issue of black on black crime. As a whole, a change can be made. We just have to obtain the willpower to make that change one step at a time.