On “The FBI and their claims of ‘Black Identity Extremism.'”

I recently┬áread an article regarding an investigation involving the FBI and the black lives matter movement. Specifically, two members of the New Black Panther Party, a peaceful and non-violent organization, were accused of plotting to plant bombs and kill the Ferguson police chief and the county prosecutor. The event took place six months into Trumps’ administration. A court case took place and the defense claimed to not have plotted any such thing. Also, the evidence towards the defense seemed to be “fiction” and “irresponsible.” I won’t get into the rest of the details of the article but would like to discuss the implications of the whole event. The problem here seems to be that the ability for (peaceful)┬áprotesting is beginning to be challenged. As we discussed in class, there were different views back in the civil rights era as to how to deal with discrimination and racism. (I think) It is now commonly believed that peaceful protesting is a viable solution. However, if claims are made against these protesters, then how can there be the freedom to stand up for injustices? Even if the case against the two men turned out to be true, it is a deviation from the actual movement and can’t automatically be associated with it. “Black identity extremism” shouldn’t describe what organizations such as the NBBP and Black Lives Matter movement. Also, law enforcement can’t be the first ones to take action, of course, unless there is good evidence. This didn’t seem to be the case, and cases like these can either silence people more or create more violence. I can’t say anything about the innocence of this case, but I believe that assuming violence with peaceful movements does create problems.

One Reply to “On “The FBI and their claims of ‘Black Identity Extremism.'””

  1. I do agree with your last statement that assuming violence on individuals that are being peaceful only stifles any sort of progress. I often find the irony in situations when marginalized groups resort to any violent tactics though. Suddenly they’re painted as “radical evil extremist.” In the case of America, it is a country that was built on the foundation of bloodshed. We have “organizations”, something they’re conveniently labeled as, such as the Ku Klux Klan and White Supremacist groups that protest peacefully though their moral rules and regulations are the foundation of discrimination and violence. The FBI using the term “Black Identity Extremism” is merely a tactic used to paint people of color in a negative light. While I don’t agree individuals should partake in violence, there’s a multitude of white hate groups not being labeled as such. The silencing and labeling of Black groups as extremist is deeply rooted in a racial superiority/ inferiority complex coming from a place of privilege in this country. There is a bigger conversation to be had here of institutions such as the FBI and media outlets pushing a dangerous racially charged narrative to continue pushing discrimination to the forefront. Regardless of if the individuals in this case were innocent or not, they are still victims of a system consumed in racism.

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