“People who fly into a rage always make a bad landing.” – Will Rogers
On Newsmax TV’s “The Steve Malzberg Show,” Malzberg spoke with Malik Shabazz, the former national chairman of the New Black Panther Party and current national president of Black Lawyers for Justice.
Malzberg asked about a comment Shabazz made in which he called the rock and bottle throwing during the Baltimore riots “lightweight.”
“I called it ‘lightweight’ because it’s lightweight in compared [sic] to the spine of Freddie Gray being broken; it’s lightweight compared to Walter Scott being assassinated and shot in the back by America’s police force…nothing compared to the dead black bodies at the hands of law enforcement…
What we’re talking about is justice. What we’re talking about is getting more police officers indicted, more police officers behind bars—and you must admit, you really don’t want these cops to go to jail for killing us, do you?
…the police officers that are killing us are the real thugs.”
I’m confused by Malik Shabazz’s argument on multiple fronts. First, it’s clear to anyone with a semi-functional brain that throwing a bottle is a less aggressive act that shooting someone in the back as they run away. It’s a point that Shabazz didn’t need to make, but did so anyway. Shabazz made this point because he needs to justify broader acts of violence against police officers.
If we continue along that logical line—comparing the acts of a very small number of corrupt police officers to the acts of rioters in general—the rioters actions will always be perceived as “lightweight.” Cold-blooded murder is near the top of the heinous crimes list, so Shabazz’s motive behind making such a comparison can only be an attempt to justify what the rioters did—not matter what they did.
Shabazz is justifying violence by making false comparisons.
Second, Shabazz refers to “dead black bodies,” and uses the term “us,” obviously referencing black people specifically, rather than Americans in general. It seems to me that Shabazz only wants white cops behind bars. What happens when a black cop kills a white person, a white cop kills a white person, or a black cop kills a black person? Only three of the six officers charged with the death of Freddie Gray are white. Does Shabazz want only those three officers to go to prison? Furthermore, if all six officers were non-white, would Shabazz be as incensed?
If Shabazz is so distrustful of the police—refusing to believe that Michael Brown charged Officer Darren Wilson—surely he would also be distrustful of a black officer in a similar situation. If it’s an issue of powerful people oppressing less powerful people, all things should be equal.
However, I doubt Shabazz would be interested in prosecuting non-white police officers. Just a hunch.
Additionally, what is his opinion of those who murder police officers in cold blood? What is his opinion of Demetrius Blackwell shooting NYPD officer Brian Moore in the head? Are the murders of police officers always justified because of the system of oppression (a phrase I’ve heard many times)?
Without provocation, Brian Moore was executed. Is Demetrius Blackwell justified because of his race? Was he simply finding a way to express his anger regarding hundreds of years of black oppression?
Shabazz talks a lot about racial injustice, with specific focus on white police officers, but I wonder if he would be so inclined to push back against black officers. If riots are justified as a reaction to a system of oppression aimed at keeping black people down, what about the black police officers? What about the black leaders?
Where was the outrage when black officer Trevis Austin shot and killed white teen Gilbert Collar? A Google and YouTube search provided no text or video of Shabazz condemning the shooting.
Shabazz is quite selective in his hatred of police officers.
Shabazz doesn’t care about justice. What Shabazz wants is revenge for the past; he wants revenge for slavery and revenge for segregation. Shabazz wants to justify any and all behavior by thugs, and he does this by comparing their behavior to acts of rebellion against a powerful and deeply racist establishment. Shabazz elevates thuggery to grand beauty.
Malik Shabazz is a fear-monger, stirring racial tensions.
Perhaps he truly believes what he’s saying, or maybe he just gets off on the thrill of rage.