Are only black men violent to women?

Ray Rice, running back for Baltimore Ravens

When social problems have been colorized or racialized for so long, it can be hard on the targeted group to address that problem without being thrown into the negative stereotype. Even though it must be confronted, the group fears of collective judgments. And so, very little is said and even less gets done about it.

Where am I going with this? Recently NFL’s Ray Rice, a running back for the Baltimore Ravens was fined and put on a two-game suspension for a domestic assault incident involving his wife, then-fiance Janay Palmer. Ray Rice a black male football player.

What he did was wrong, but it gets worse. ESPN’s “First Take” reporter Stephen A. Smith, also a black male, spoke on Rice’s defense stating that it was Palmer who provoked Rice which resulted in her getting beat up. Smith apologized, but it was insincere. And even though his ass is suspended as well, he and Rice did way more damage than many people think.

Black men in America are burdened with the stigma of being prone to violence. We see and hear about it all the time in news reports and in entertainment media. Somewhere at this moment, a black man assaulted, stabbed or murdered someone, and the local news is rushing to get the quick story.

Boxing legend Mike Tyson is known for his violent behavior in and out of the ring

However, there is an added spice to this recipe. Black men are also seen as brutes towards women, especially white women. More precisely, we are seen as animalistic savages yearning for some punany, and we don’t care how we get it. We simple want it by any means, including rape. The black male rapist is a popular stereotype in this country’s imagination.

In recent years, there is yet another variation of the violent black male, the kind that hates, beats up and murders women seemingly without reason. It has been rejuvenated since the infamous beating of pop singer Rihanna by rapper Chris Brown whose violent outbursts are treats for tabloid media outlets. Black male celebrities and athletes who beat up their girlfriends and wives are spotted under the radars of celebrity news and are given exclusive spotlights to the viewing public.

With the situation with Ray Rice and Stephen Smith making the rounds, a few men have spoke out against Rice’s “slap on the wrist”, the NFL’s nonchalant and supportive attitude and Smith’s jackassery. So far, most of the men are white males in the mainstrean like Keith Olbermann, Mitch Alborn, and Mike Lupica. And while it’s good there are men speaking out against domestic violence and the system that could care less, it’s disheartening to see that there haven’t been one brotha that said a word about this and how foul it is, or so it seems.

Damn! Are we the only ones really that messed up that we would beat up women? Are we the only ones that pathetic to think that somehow it’s cool and even funny when looking at numerous videos that highlight ratchetness? Are we the only cats who beat up women – especially black women?

You see, black people face a quandary. Violence has become classified as a “black problem” in the mainstream, and so many of us want to disprove that it’s our responsibility alone. Yet, we know we have the problem of violence in some of our communities, like everywhere else. So many of us have that fear of repercussions from the greater society that we try to keep our skeletons in our closet. But with the news being so heavily focused on black criminals, the closet has more than a few holes in it.

When it comes to how we treat black women, it’s especially wrong, but not limited to just us. If black men beat, rape or murder black women, most black folks don’t come to the aid of the victim. Instead, we do what the rest of society does, protect the males involved while ignoring and even condemning the women. We conclude that somehow, she was the cause of her own ass whooping, and in the end, we give the men a free pass because his reputation of being a “good guy” far exceeds his misogyny. No wonder why the domestic violence against black women is at the rate it is!

Do we seem to have this same cry for this problem whenever famous white men beat up their women? It doesn’t seem like it. There was nary a word made when Mel Gibson, Charlie Sheen and Robert Downy Jr, just to name a few, were caught in their brutal misogyny and charged for it. If this is a social problem, why does it only seem that way when a famous black man is the perpetrator?

The face of domestic violence – once again – has a black male’s face. I tell myself that this is a social issue and not a black issue. After all, white men are all but innocent of their cruel treatment of women. So, if there must be a conversation about violence against women that pundits want, lets talk and do something about it, and that goes for us black folks as well.

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29 thoughts on “Are only black men violent to women?

    1. The fact is black males have a propensity toward violence which is unmatched by all other groups. Toward black women, black men and toward whites. And the media doesn’t report on it like they should. They are under orders specifically not to report the race of the perpetrator of the crimes. However as the violence has increased, more and more law abiding citizens have armed themselves legally and those black people who are not amongst the violent group have left the ones who are and moved with those of us who are law abiding. We know the difference and contrary to popular belief from racist black people (not all blacks, just the racist ones), we don’t just all blacks the same, but we can spot the bad ones in about 3 seconds based on a number of factors including how they dress, behave, carry themselves, along with all of our natural senses.

      I grew up in the suburbs with no blacks. We had one black kid in my entire elementary school. Then I lived in NYC for 20 years and experienced everything, including living in the South Bronx and Jamaica Queens. I’ll tell you in about a minute which ones are trash usually and if I can’t and I’m off it’s because it’s a con man, which is a little different than a typical violent street trash loser. I also grew up after my father died at age 4 with a stepfather who beat me and abused me till I went on my own at age 15, so I don’t buy any of the bullshit of society didn’t help me or hold my hand and walk my black ass through the door into college and into a job. The truth is most of these violent felons or felons in training are that way because they want to be. They do the absolute minimum required to get by and as long as they can impress their friends on the street with a pair of sneakers and a bag of weed, a 40 oz of beer and and illegal weapon they’re happy.

      This comment is already too long so I’ll start to finish without even having scratched the surface. But I now live in a suburb where we have whites and hispanics and blacks living in peace with each other. When we get trash in the neighborhood we get rid of it. There are rentals and certain landlords will rent to anyone. We know right away by how the yard is taken care of and how people behave in the suburbs. If they can’t behave in our neighborhood, keep their yard up, keep things the way they’re supposed to be here then we call the city code compliance on them over and over and over until they move and if necessary we call the police on them as well. When there’s any hint of violence in the neighborhood such as a police report (we all get an automated call and cops live in our neighborhood as well) we get our guns and protect our homes and check the empty houses in the area as well as checking on the homes with elderly and disabled people. When people want to have a party they just do it. If they do it every day they need to move. But if it’s once in awhile like the rest of us we all look out for each other and support each other and let their guests park their overflow on our property.

      I guarantee none of these violent mouthy little pants sagging whore slapping crack slinging bass booming felons will come into my neighborhood looking for trouble and getting away with a damn thing except a free ride to NU (thats the free room we offer felons, in short we will call it the university).

      1. Mike,

        First off, it’s been documented that black males are no more violent than any other male. And it’s also documented that the media uses the stereotype of the “black brute” way more than you give it credit for. That image is plastered all over TV and movie screens and on the front pages of newspapers. Does that mean black men are more violent than other men. No. But is a bias within the media to project that image.

        Second, Looking at a way a black person dresses or carry themselves is the lowest form of deduction to tell whether he’s bad or not. It’s no different than judging someone by the color of their skin.

        Third, I find it ludicrous to assume that people want to be at the bottom of society. No one in their right mind want to be struggling forever. Everyone wants a chance to succeed or live comfortably. Does everyone get that chance? No. So, by the process of elimination, something’s not quite right.

        With all due respect, I really don’t care to hear about your NRA PSA. Thanks, but no thanks.

        Finally, I seriously doubt that you really are a black man as your “black ass” claimed to be. I could be wrong, and if I am, I apologize. But in all honesty, most of what I’ve read is nothing more than racist, conservative rhetoric.

      2. Mike Hunt,

        On the contrary, with crimes involving black men as the perpetrators, the mainspin media cannot wait to throw our names and identities out into the arena of knowledge, in fact they cannot get our names and identities out quick enough. Also this business of black men being excessively violent towards black women and white folks is also a crock of nonsense as it is commonly known that your modern day western black woman can be equally if not more aggressive than the black male and most of the violence that blacks commit is against each other and not against white people.

        The dresscode issue is also a load of rubbish, you forget that once upon a time we dressed in suits, ties and other smart dress and we were still getting lynched aswell as the police hosing us down with water and attacking us with their dogs.

        I do not see how black people can possibly be racist seeing as we do not have a system in place to enforce this so called “racism”. Racism is a system sir, what system do we have in place where we have the power to disenfranchise another nationality of people?

        As for those Whites and Hispanics living in peace with you, that so called “peace” is temporary. When their plates are empty they will look for the weakest link and that would be your blackside, all of this “we” talk, Whites and Hispanics are not your friends and they will soon show you their true colours in times of adversity and scarcity. If indeed you are black then I would strongly suggest that you do not forget this when you are “chilling in the neighbourhood”, because your so called “friendly neighbours” certainly won’t when desperate times are upon them.

  1. Well Said!! everything you said was on point. The way many black men treat black women is a DAMN SHAME!! it’s time to stop with the madness, our women deserve better then what they are getting from black men, we either get it right now or we as a people are DONE! for good.

    Our enemies are hoping we keep the ACTING FOOL going strong.

  2. Excellent points. In regards to Stephen A. Smith, I commented about this on another blog and the only thing i said was “I always knew Steven’s slick mouth would get him in trouble.” I did misspell Stephen’s name and i got a dragging from a commenter for my opinion. I think his mouth starts running before his brain catches up. Lots of people agree with him. Whoopi Goldberg defended him. I really need to listen to what he said. I know he apologized but it is too late the dame is done. The court of public opinion is going off the rails on this trending topic. Stephen kind of annoys me. I used to like him but some of his perspectives of which he is entitled to just get on my nerves. Some have even labeled him a coon. Some feel he was right and this is from black men and women. I have learned my lesson it’s “Stephen” not “Steven” I thought that was crazy for the spell check nazi to come for me. But this was a good post Brotha Wolf.

      1. Tariq Nasheed recently talked about the Stephen A. Smith deal and what he says actually happened and why Black people need to understand one of the rules of White supremacy and how it affects Black folks.

  3. I’ve come to the conclusion that most if not all cultures have specific misogyny in one way or another. It’s why I don’t live life by culture but by my own form of modernism, eat the best healthiest foods and practice living healthy through proper filtering of what works and what doesn’t work. Despite the fact that people judge by race or ethnicity, you got to live the way you want and not because you feel obliged based on your background….

  4. I agree with everything you said Brotha. Steelers quarterback Ben Rothelisberger was TWICE accused of rape but I don’t remember the media rushing to crucify him.

  5. As a woman of “color”, I just wanted to say that you for this wonderful and crucially important article about the domestic violence issue in this country (and elsewhere, of course)-it great to know that not everybody has been drinking the proverbial Kool-Aid of krazy-ness in this day and age!!

  6. Excellent commentary, Brothawolf! I agree with every word! Here is a video that is an example of Black male misogyny against Black females:

  7. Brothawolf,

    I see a HUGE problem with the premise of this post and it is mainly this:

    It does NOT matter whether other men (white/non-Black) beat women–the issue is the PATRIARCHAL value system that BOTH Black men and women hold with it being more oppressive and dangerous to the lives and well-being of Black women and girls and sometimes boys.

    Comparing this to what white men do or don’t do, or “how they slip under the radar” is counterproductive and is a deflection from the REAL problem which i mentioned already. It doesn’t matter to us–if white men want to kill white women (which they have been doing for centuries) that’s their doom, but let’s not get caught up in the “oh they lying on us” and forget about our OWN burning house. Which is the reason this was circulated from the get go. They know Black people are VERY emotional and will take the bait instead of doing the necessary internal work (both individually and collectively) to make sure our lives are productive. Once that begins to happen–what the white media says or does won’t have any power over our decisions.

    For the record, patriarchy does not benefit ANYONE in Black communities–not even Black men. This is not to say that a system of matriarchy should be adopted, but one of TWINLINEALISM (respecting both the Divine Feminine and the Divine Masculine).

    At this point, i really don’t care which of your posters or regular commentators have a “problem” with what i’m saying. Truth needs to be spoken. And besides that LOGIC and sound REASONING are my weapons of choice now.

    Peace.

    1. phoebeprunelle,

      I understand what you’re saying. But the fact is that if society is to solve this problem, society can’t scapegoat one group and feel that it’s doing a great service, especially if it happens everywhere. Is there a problem with domestic violence in black communities? No doubt. But we can’t see this as a problem only black communities face.

      1. Brothawolf, respectfully,

        “Society” (which is synonymous for Racist Woman and Racist Man), cannot be expected to turn around and do what is right. They are NEVER going to do that, and in fact, are beyond reproach.

        We cannot sit around, twittle our thumbs and hope for the cosmos to correct them. Forget it.

        In the meantime, better start fighting this thing with our minds–mentally and spiritually.

        All i want is for Black people to take back what is rightfully ours–the Universe.

        Peace

      2. I don’t think I said or implied that we wait till society to do something. Nor have I said that we wait until a miracle happens. I believe I did say that it was hypocritical for society to implicitly lay blame solely on black men for a subject that touches all groups. It’s not the same as saying that it doesn’t exist in our communities.

  8. It sounds a lot like a plea to me (and of course i could be wrong) but it just does.

    But more importantly, the violence against Black women can’t simply be talked about in it’s own sacred space. That’s what i’m observing as if to lessen its importance. Comparisons of Black gender relations to that of the privilege of white men is a fallacy. Sorry.

    1. I’m sorry that it seemed like I was trying to compare. I assure you that wasn’t my goal. But if that’s what you want to discuss as an article, please feel free to email me at any time.

    2. I think that Brotha was only pointing out the disparity with the double standards. If we are going to have a problem with domestic violence then ALL the men guilty need to be taken to task not just a selected few. Especially when it’s done to make the dominant race feel superior about themselves by thinking THEY aren’t as bad when that’s bullshit.

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