WHAT YOU WANT TO SEE

Hey did anyone notice – or pause to consider, as it takes very little thought to figure out – what the real Message is in that "Mother scolds and smacks her son for participating in Baltimore riots" viral video? As America's white people celebrate their mental image of what black people should do (in this case, raise children who will Know Their Place) the woman stated, "That's my only son and at the end of the day I don't want him to be a Freddie Gray."

In other words, it's not Good Parenting finally on display from Those People. It's another black American trying to teach her son the lesson that in this country the police will kill a black male in this country for looking at them funny. It's a woman trying to teach her son the lesson that you can't stick your hand in an alligator's mouth, not someone who is worried about the alligator.

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35 thoughts on “WHAT YOU WANT TO SEE”

  • In nearly any other situation in this country the mother would be in trouble with child protective services.

    Surely the Gates people who want to reform education will want to study her technique. Studying poverty, despair and oppression will come later.

    I guess that if it's on TV it's only drama, not reality.

  • Exactly. I don't blame a mother for wanting to protect her son, but I want a society in which black people and white people are treated equally by the police and no one need fear a beating or worse unless they actually threaten an officer's safety. Isn't it weird how the same black men the police treat as if they had superhuman strength crumble so easily upon being shot, beaten, or choked? Just like normal people. ;-)

  • I'm also a bit mortified at all the self-congratulatory posting of "What THEY don't want you to see" when it's a bunch of black people sweeping the streets of Baltimore. Because, if this was an actual Federal Rebuilding Project (you know, "Shovel Ready",) it would go to the lowest bidder and they'd screw the government out of millions and fuck these people over even more. They might as well do it for free and bypass the middle-men.

  • My favorite aspect has been the lily-white, gated-community raised anchors using the phrase "upside his head" with the confidence of over-privileged First Semester students of Mandarin ordering in a Chinese restaurant. The racism runs deep, it does.

  • I'll get on the bandwagon when I see a video of a white mother bitch-slapping her cop son for harassing black people.

  • "… for looking at them funny." Once upon a time that was just an expression but now it's the crime for which Freddie Gray died.

  • I cannot believe the number of upper-middle-class white people who have shared that video on facebook. It's enough to make me swear off the fucking thing.

  • Skepticalist says:

    Every ten minutes my little part of the world is shown this comforting little video. I have time to hit the terlet now during broken news.

  • I was full of remarks about this but they have already been made. In the end white, middle-class folks are demanding a reassuring narrative about "thugs" vs. "community leaders" in which the cops are just comic opera villains and rage is a gandhi-esque metaphor. All pressure cookers explode if left too long – the fault is with the cook, not the water.

  • Emerson Dameron says:

    That mom didn't want to be a damned pundit. She's not Jason Whitlock or Bill Cosby spouting Booker T. Washington rhetoric at large. She wants her son to keep his head down because that's the only way he'll make it now. That's hardly uplifting news for anyone.

  • c u n d gulag says:

    I'm with all of you on this one.

    And now, thanks to the WaPo who reported on a new angle – that a fellow prisoner in the vehicle transporting Gray, said that he was trying to injure himself on the ride.

    It's BS, of course.
    Cops do this all of the time – find someone to help them in exchange for a lighter sentence. It's part of their "circling the wagons."

    But, of course, (DUMB)FUX "news" is running with this story, like it's the God's honest truth.

    And of course, the viewing geezer's will swear that it's the truth:
    Gray broke his own spine in the police van.

    Oy……

  • c u n d gulag says:

    Oy, poorly worded comment from me above.

    Note to self: Don't comment until you finish your coffee!

    But, it think you get my drift, don't you?

  • I agree with most of these comments. But I do fail to see the issue with the phrase "upside the head". My white mother used to use it all the time. I've heard people of all races use it. Maybe it started out as a uniquely black phrase, but it's been used by all kinds of people for at least a couple decades now.

  • Re: cops, riot starters, unity, & equality.

    Happy May Day eve fellow taco lovers and gin drinkers. Tomorrow I'm taking the day off of work to celebrate Labor Day – specifically the one that the United States refuses to recognize. While the rest of the world takes a day off to honor labor we'll keep driving our workforce on and will make up for it with a BBQ holiday in September to mark going back to school/debtors prison.

    In its place tomorrow is both Loyalty Day and Law Day in the US. Might as well call it sit-down-and-shut-up day.

  • @gulag, so; the police response is the Freddie Gray severed his own spine?!? For what reason, just to smear the lily-white reputation of the police? Unbelievable.

  • c u n d gulag says:

    Anonymouse,
    Yeah, it's unbelievable.

    Unless you're a (DUMB)FUX "news" viewer, or a Tush Limpballs listener.

  • Yeah, a friend of me asked me if I saw this video. I hadn't and didn't want to because I knew there was some context the media was missing. Thank you, Ed, for providing that context. Lordy, people do want to shape facts to fit their own narratives, don't they?

  • Drew is right; I've heard "upside the head" from white Southerners born in the 30s. I don't know if that makes it a regionalism, or an appropriation from black dialect, but it isn't something that has a racial coding. Although the anchors might not know that, like the Cleveland one who swore in her apology that she had NO idea that "jigaboo" was a pejorative, race-laden term.

  • mothra has it right: if you're not standing on the street witnessing events for yourself (perhaps taking video with your smartphone, which behavior can now land you in jail), you're pretty much at the mercy of what the media shows you, which is often incomplete and distorted. See, for instance, this bit about citizens lining up to protect POLICE (!) from angry protesters.

    http://qz.com/394232/photos-baltimore-citizens-protecting-police/

    This is not part of the standard narrative, nor is the presence of infiltrators (often police) among the protesters trying to invalidate legitimate protest by provoking the mob/mood until it turns violent.

  • Brutus, out here in the SF Bay Area, we have volunteers doing the infiltrating. Black Bloc/Revolutionary Communist Party goons come in from out of town (into Oakland), break windows and trash shops, then scarper back to where THEY live, congratulating themselves on being the vanguard.

  • Posted it elsewhere. Bears repeating:

    Forty-one shots
    Lena gets her son
    Ready for school
    “On these streets Charles,
    You got to understand the rules.
    “If the officer stops you
    You must always be polite.
    Tell me you’ll never ever run away
    Tell mama you’’ll keep your hands in sight.”

    Is it a gun,
    Is it a knife
    Is it a wallet
    It is your life.

    It ain’t no secret
    No secret my friend
    You can get killed living
    In your American skin.

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