Where Is the Outrage over Black-on-Black Violence?

Leaders in the black community regularly speak out against the violence and challenges facing their community but are ignored. 

Since the shooting death of Treyvon Martin in late February, there have been outcries against racism and outcries against the outcries. Conservatives are quick to point out that although representing less than 13% of the population, blacks represent about half of all murder victims, usually at the hands of other blacks. The same folks (Juan Williams of former NPR and current Fox News fame is the most prominent example) are asking (here, here, here, here) where is the outrage over black on black violence?

As Ta-Nehisi Coates points out in the Atlantic:

This is an interesting question. It’s also one that Juan Williams, who’s been writing about race for almost three decades, should be able to answer. Moreover, Williams is an award-winning journalist. Should he not know the answer, it would suit him to do his job and find out.

The answer, it turns out, is everywhere and all the time. Coates provides a few examples from  Chicago in 2010New York last SeptemberNewark in 2009Pittsburgh last SeptemberSaginaw, Michigan in 2010Gary last month and Brooklyn, last Sunday.

Here’s a video of Rev. Al Sharpton urging the black community to look inward and take a greater level of responsibility. It’s hard to disagree with the Reverend’s words, which is probably why you’ll never see it in the national media.

Such protests and voices gain traction in the national media only when there is an element of black vs. white. The black community is fully aware of and active in addressing issues concerning black-on-black violence. At times, it may feel like a losing battle, but to say that there is no such outrage in the black community is absurd. Some folks are so eager to go out of their way to miss what is obvious.


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