Black-on-Black Violence? Congress, Media Not Interested

It is not just the media that deserves blame for such callous disregard for all that bloodshed. Politicians, too, twist themselves into all manner of intellectual contortions in attempting to minimize and even ignore the problem of crime in black communities. Many of the murders I mention above occurred in the congressional district represented by Maxine Waters, whose comments on the Trayvon Martin shooting have been characteristically foolish: “Why is it we have so many young black males that are being profiled and being killed?” she asked on CNN, blithely unaware of the incongruity in the question.

To Rep. Waters and her cohorts in the racial grievance industry, racial profiling is a greater threat to blacks in America than violent crime, this despite the stark numbers available for all to see. Her Los Angeles office is located near the intersection of 101st Street and Broadway, within two miles of which, according to the Los Angeles Times, there have been 236 homicides since January 1, 2007. In examining the map at the link, you’ll see that you can scarcely walk a single block in parts of that area without coming upon the scene of at least one murder. Wouldn’t the loved ones of those 236 people wish that some police officer had “profiled” the killers in the moments before the crimes occurred? Would Rep. Waters ask that the police in those neighborhoods be less proactive?

I was at some of those murder scenes. I was present in some cases when the parents of those victims came running to the sounds of sirens and police helicopters to learn that their worst fears had been realized, that it was their own son lying under a sheet on the sidewalk beyond all that yellow tape. I don’t remember Maxine Waters saying a word about any of them.

Joining Rep. Waters in that same CNN interview was Rep. Emanuel Cleaver, Democrat of Missouri and chairman of the Congressional Black Caucus. Soledad O’Brien raised the question of whether Al Sharpton and Jesse Jackson were exploiting the Trayvon Martin case while “missing the bigger issue of black-on-black crime.” Rep. Cleaver dismissed such talk:

The bigger issue is the low esteem in which black life is held, particularly black males. And so it doesn’t matter whether it’s black on black or brown or green or whatever, it means that there is hot a high level of appreciation for the life of a black male who is a human being.

If that is indeed the case, why is it that he and Rep. Waters and Al Sharpton and Jesse Jackson and all the lesser lights of the racial grievance industry are heard from only when a black is killed by a non-black?

According to a Jan. 2011 study (PDF) by the Violence Policy Center, Missouri leads the nation in the black homicide rate, with 39.9 per 100,000. (The study is based on 2008 figures. The overall national homicide rate that year was 5.4 per 100,000.) Yet if you peruse the press releases on Rep. Cleaver’s website, you’ll find plenty of references to various “green” projects and other such pork, but you won’t find a single word about crime.

Even if George Zimmerman is as guilty as his most vociferous accusers claim, his arrest and imprisonment won’t change this grim reality: According to the CDC, homicide is the fourth leading cause of death of black males in America. More than 90 percent of those deaths are at the hands of other black males. There is a political issue and a news story in those numbers, but it’s one you surely won’t hear much about.