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Anti-Blackness In Los Angeles: What’s the REAL lesson here?


A racial bloodbath has broken out in Los Angeles, and as usual — African-Americans are at the epicenter of it. Racism being the festering, spreading cancer that it is, everybody caught some of the disease and the toxic smoke that comes with it. Everybody found out what “the Blacks” have known for two centuries, if you don’t check racism, it spreads to the next victim (Indigenous people), and the next (Jewish people), and the next (Asian people), and the next, (Arab and East Indian People), and the next (LGBTQ+ people). Hell, even children.

Racism unchecked has no boundaries. The country is marred in a national discussion around immigration. Who you think they talking about? Latinx people, literally confirming the very fears that White nationalists have, that when they get here — they will try to take over. This is how we got here…blaming others for what you don’t have, or can’t get. We’re a society of anti-otherness.

Nury Martinez, in all her closet candor, came off like a real rabid, racist homophobe. She didn’t pull any punches, but nobody ever does when it comes to “the Blacks.” The more shocking revelation is she held her racist diatribe in the presence of people we thought were our friends.

Ron Herrera would have never become President of the County Federation of Labor without the Black labor vote. Gil Cedillo, who has been in Black and Brown coalitions since the 1990s (maybe before — but I remember him in the 90s), acts Black, talks Black, hangs with Black folk, and if you didn’t know better — could be mistaken for Afro-Latino — or he looks like the dark people Martinez mocked). She was talking about people that looked like him in the meeting. But he sat there, tee-heeing and laughing it up, then when it came out — all he had to say was, “It wasn’t me.” Yeah, but he didn’t stop it either.

Like in real life though, we all have those two-faced “friends” who either are not really friends or play both sides. Popular culture calls them, “Frienemies.” Either way, they’re dangers to you or the communities you represent.

Kevin DeLeon, whom I’ve never trusted (my spidey senses go off every time I see this dude), tried to diminish the effect of Black advocacy and protest as imaginary at best, and shallow at worst. The same advocacy that Latinos have replicated and advanced their causes and social standing with.

In what he called “The Wizard of Oz” effect, he said “the Blacks” sound like 250 people, but when you “pull back the curtain,” it’s only 25. Otherwise, we (the Blacks) are talking loud, saying nothing. Talk about a hater.

We came for ‘em. And we brought our real friends…the Cancel Culture is always waiting to pounce…this time, it’s justified. They made it too easy this time. Racist elected officials are never a good look.

Well, at City Hall, Tuesday looked more like 250 to me. That’s only because that’s how many the council chamber would hold (the rest were outside). However many there were, it was enough to run yo a** up outta there. And just think…he wanted to be “our” Mayor. He was the one that was delusional. Thought he could pull 25% of the vote, based on population parity, and pulled 7%. I call that, “Instant Karma,” a double dose for his delusional *ss. Two head bumps in one year.

Soooo, besides this being a case study on how to play yourself aka “how to get dragged in City Hall,” what’s the real lesson here?

The lessons are three; 1) Anti-Black racism is not new nor is it specific to Whites or Latinos, 2) Los Angeles never learns its race lessons. It would rather tolerate what Professor Derrick Bell called, “the permeance of racism” than change, and 3) Los Angeles needs to take across the board Anti-Racism training policy seriously.  It’s too easy to pretend “not to be racist.”

Anthony Asadullah Samad, Ph.D., is the executive director of the Mervyn Dymally African American Political & Economic Institute at CSUDH , a Non Partisan Think Tank studying the impact of public policy on African-Americans and the communities they live. He is the co-founder and host of the Urban Issues Forum and author of the upcoming book, “A Thousand Times NO To The Status Quo: Selected Counter Cultural Commentaries of A. Asadullah Samad” (1991-2014). He can be reached on social media (Facebook, Twitter and Instagram) at @DrAnthonySamad.

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