Tuesday, November 4, 2014

Emmet Till and that viral New York catcall video

Emmet Till was a fourteen year old kid from Chicago who was visiting extended family in the hamlet of Money, Mississippi during the summer of 1955.

According to one version he wolf whistled at a 21 year old woman while buying candy in the store owned by the woman and her 24 year old husband. Another version of the story has the boy touching the woman's hand and asking her for a date.

The rest of the story,  in any case, was that the 14 year old had an eye gouged out, was shot in tbe head, tied down with weights including a 
cotton gin fan and dumped into the Talahatchee River. 

There ensued an open casket funeral :attended by thousands for the boy as well as a "Not guilty" verdict for his killers who went on to boast about their deed to "Look Magazine." All of this was one major factor in the births of both the Civil Rights Movement and the Black Power Movement.

 I was nine years old at that time and I have recollections of the uproar about the lynching.

"Defense of White Womanhood" and thereby "Defense of White Racial Purity" ( that "things be done" to assure that no white woman would give birth to any non white infant) were major themes of the trend that called itself "Conservative", "States Rights", "Southern Culture Preservation", to frank race hate- These were the themes of George Wallace, David Duke, Orville Faubus And Company.

Now that there is a viral video of numerous Black and Hispanic men flirting with an apparently white woman cries go up - "something must be done" about "sexual harassment" especially on the streets of gentrifying neighborhoods.( Look up my post about Camp Clearpool, Carmel New York 1957 too)

Not to say that unwanted sexual attention is pleasant or good, - with the untabooing of homosexuality even I as a taxi driver (lesser being) sometime endure this kind of stuff - but life goes on and no cop is called.

It's those calls to "Do something about* the problem that the video depicted that frightem me.

This whole uproar can result in an NYPD style "clean up" of gentrifying zones- in other words more Police State, more officially performed lynchings, more of what used to be called "Negro Removal" from newly fashionable neighborhoods.