Let me state what’s important to African Americans on the gun issue.
White Americans who have invented the Black boogieman will never give up their guns that they feel will protect them from the American Black uprising, which has always been a myth, because all we have tried to do is stay alive in America.
I will say yes, it’s true, our people have always stood up against injustice. We’ve always fought for freedom, justice and equality. But White Americans are trying to change the issue to mental health. They’re trying to fight about assault weapons.
The African Americans who have suffered the most from gun violence in this country since the early 1960s have a different agenda. The weapon that has destroyed us as a people is called a semi-automatic pistol.
We need laws in place that keep licensed gun dealers and gun runners from selling guns illegally on the black market. The most popular handguns are the 9 millimeter, the .38 Super on a .45 frame, and the .45 military style, as well as others that we can get our hands on. The .380 pistol has 400 pounds of pressure on impact. The bullets from these weapons enter you in a small hole and exit the other side from a hole the size of a man’s hand, which means that most of the time you won’t survive the wound created.
Therefore, all of our political leaders all the way to Obama, all of our spiritual leaders all the way to the top of their denominations, the Urban League, the NAACP both locally and nationally, and all social organizations including so-called community leaders should fight for state and federal legislation requiring that all guns sold must be registered. Once that’s done, we must have tougher laws and sentencing with fines for all gun dealers who break that law.
Since they won’t speak for us, let’s stand up and speak for ourselves as the people who have lost the most in this issue. Let me share with you where we are with this issue across the country right now. An organization called the Violence Policy Center has documented the states where African Americans are most likely to die from gun violence.
The national average homicide rate for African Americans is 4.42 per 100,000; over 83 percent of these are killed with firearms. Compare this rate with the numbers below for the 10 states with the highest homicide rates for African Americans.
1. Missouri — 34.86 per 100,000 (91 percent of these killed by handguns)
2. Pennsylvania — 26.87 per 100,000
3. Michigan — 26.61 per 100,000
4. Nebraska — 25.58 per 100,000
5. Oklahoma — 25.45 per 100,000
6. Indiana — 23.89 per 100,00
7. Maine — 22.62 per 100,000
8. Louisiana — 22.61 per 100,000
9. Ohio — 19.25 per 100,000
10. California — 19.12 per 100,000
Illinois comes in 16th with a homicide rate for African Americans of 17.90 per 100,000, most of these deaths occurring in pockets of the South Side of Chicago.
Personally I’m ashamed and embarrassed and sorry and saddened at our hatred and violent behavior against each other. I’m making a special request to Ron Edwards, Mel Reeves and Booker Hodges: Please step up your knowledge and information on this issue to help protect and save the lives of our people.
Black history fact
Charlotte E. Ray was born January 13, 1850 in New York to her father, Charles Bennett Ray, pastor, abolitionist and editor of The Colored American, an anti-slavery newspaper. Charlotte went on to become a lawyer in 1872, graduating from Harvard Law School and passing the bar in that same year. The most prominent case she won was Galdley vs. Galdley, which was argued before the Supreme Court.
Let me say in closing that I love my Black people. I love us when we’re up and I love us when we’re down. I may not love all that we do, but I love my Black people. Look for me to have another real talk with you real soon.
Spike Moss welcomes reader responses to Uhuru_Solutions@yahoo.com.
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I have to go with Clint Eastwood. “[He has] a strict gun control policy. If there’s a gun around, I want to be in control of it.”