Three yankee-English words come to mind to define the recent "incidents" that shocked USAmerica of the top and raised a virtuous "unanimous condemnation" from the front and backbenchers of the blackitude star system - the shooting of cops by black youths, in Dallas and then at Baton Rouge -: backlash, back-fire and/or blowback. Should we be surprised that young people who were taught the art of killing distant enemies should turn their weapons against the "blues", the unpunished killers of Blacks?
In both cases, the authors - who will never be judged because they were properly executed - of these acts of retaliation against negricidal police officers were veterans. The Dallas shooter was a veteran of Afghanistan, the Baton Rouge shooter a veteran of Iraq. War veterans, which is to say, that they learned how to kill fast, kill many and kill well. Which they did, as good snipers. Let us try for a moment to put ourselves in their place.
You are a young Black aged 18-19 years. You grew up in a vertical or horizontal ghetto, with your brothers and sisters of the same or different (but generally absent) fathers, with your single mother, who tried to support the family on odd jobs and dwindling social subsidies. You are a failed student. At 15 or 16 years old you sold a bit of hash, but you didn't want to get into heroin or crack. One outcome is therefore offered to you: to sign up! The Army and Navy await you! The dream, of course, is to enlist in the Marines or in the armoured forces - don't dream about air force, they want better than you - but once you have served your enlistment period of 5 years, the military promises to pay for your university education. Enticing, right?
Once engaged, you have to face a less than perfect reality. A year in Iraq or Afghanistan was enough to confuse you for life.
Five years later - or much less, because you were discharged from the army -, you are returned to civilian life with physical and/or psychological injuries and post-traumatic stress disorder. You are back in the ghetto. You learned to play sniper, to throw grenades, to aim and shoot with all kinds of weapons of war, in short, you are ready to kill at a distance. And the US army has not kept its promises. No subsidized university for you, under abstruse bureaucratic pretexts, which, quite frankly, escape you.
Returning to civilian life, driving from odd jobs to therapy sessions which don't help at all, like anyone else you stare at TVs, social networks, you talk with your neighbourhood buddies, at least those who are still alive and/or not in jail. Every day of the year, it is one and the same message: a young Black killed by cops, a black child killed by the cops, a older black man killed by cops, a black woman killed by the cops. It is a ceaseless litany, which never seems to end. You participate in a protest march or two, but you are disappointed by all these young people glued to their iPhone, who take selfies and do not really seem to be able to stop the massacre.
One night, after learning and following live the umpteenth negricide you make your decision. You will take action. You will propose to a couple of good friends, who went to Iraq or Afghanistan with you and do not live too far away, to join you. If they do not want to participate, at least they will keep their mouths closed and not betray you. You just need to equip yourself and plan your operation. As for weaponry, no problem, you know all the dealers of the district, simply place your order and negotiate a friend's rate. As for the plan, that's no problem either, you were taught that in the army: choosing the target, the attack angle, positioning, creepage, the fallback positions, and a plan B. You need to study the places you are going to attack, calculate times. In short, do it professionally. Finally you can use what you learned for something useful: send a clear and blunt message to negricidal cops - impunity is over!
All these preparations take you about ten days. The great day finally arrives. You take action. Not everything goes exactly as planned. And finally, a few hours after the launch of your operation, the cops besieging you send you a bomb disposal robot to kill you. Before dying, you think it will not have been for nothing and those who follow you will do better. Practice makes perfect, and it's fighting that makes the fighter. And you leave hoping that you will remembered forever and ever.
So let's engrave in the marble of our memories the names of these martyrs who gave their lives to demand the right to life:
Micah Xavier Johnson, 25, from Mesquite (Texas), Afghanistan veteran, killed in action in Dallas July 7, 2016
Gavin Eugene Long, 29, of Kansas City (Missouri), who changed his name to Cosmo Ausar Setepenra, of the sovereign Washitaw nation of Dugdahmoundyah, former Marine in Iraq, killed in action in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, July 17, 2016
PS: The details that appeared in the US media, after this article had been written, that Gavin Long did not come from a particularly underprivileged but rather a middle class background and had spent two years travelling Africa, from Ethiopia to Burkina Faso in search of his roots, does not change the substance of the background that I have tried to sketch. The fact is that the ghetto subculture is hegemonic over much of US youth, not just black, which makes it what could be called in yankee-English a superculture or supraculture.