Jun 01, 2021 Editorial
Kaieteur News – There was a news article in the New York Post on May 29 captioned, “Mothers criticise BLM activists for profiting off their dead sons” which should make Guyanese vigorously nod their heads in agreement. Though what the mothers claimed came as a bit of a surprise to us, it is not so unusual, and that is because, we live with that here in Guyana, and in many of our most crucial places. We take with a closer look at what the mothers said.
According to the New York Post’s article, “Grief-stricken mothers who have accused Black Lives Matter of profiting from the deaths of their sons” criticised the group’s embattled co-founder, Patrisse Cullors, after she announced she was stepping down from the movement.”
“I don’t believe she is going anywhere,” which was what one grieving mother, Samaria Rice, shared. “It’s all a facade. She’s only saying that to get the heat off her right now.”
Another hurting Black American, Lisa Simpson, a Los Angeles-based mother whose son was slain by police in 2016, also blasted Cullors. “Now she doesn’t have to show her accountability. She can just take the money and run.” They didn’t even have the time and care to meet face to face with those who felt the pain the most, the mothers mourning their loss. “They are benefitting off the blood of our loved ones, and they won’t even talk to us,” said Rice, who has also blasted activists Shaun King and Tamika Mallory. Other American BLM groups have lent their voices to the chorus of critics, who have spoken out against what was called “a lack of transparency and accountability” by those who are seen as seizing the moment and BLM programme for personal gain.
The Black Lives Matter Global Network Foundation has come in for sharp denunciation, with its co-founder and executive director, Patrisse Cullors, the recipient of the heaviest barrage of condemnation. Among the contentions raging against her are lifestyle, choice of real-estate residence, and concerns about the group’s finances. As two mothers railed, some BLM activists are “raising money in our dead sons’ names and giving us nothing in return.” Despite raising millions under the BLM banner and for the BLM cause, some mothers have been forced to fend for themselves to bury their sons, the victims of police brutalities that climaxed in murder.
Police shootings for a toy gun suspected as the real thing. Police shootings with the dead shot in the back, while running away, among other such disturbing and enraging circumstances. But, as is almost always claimed by involved police officers, there was the fear of grave imminent personal danger. In these obviously questionable situations, undoubtedly criminally heinous and murderous ones, there is one person who feels those striking bullets more than anyone else. Those would be the mothers.
Mothers know the pain of rearing (despite the odds), the heartaches when things go wrong (through life’s limitations” or paths chosen (how they must cope), and the ache of being used and taken advantage of, by those who come forward to claim how much they care. As we at this paper think of the grimness of those mothers’ grief, we can empathise with them, because we, as Guyanese, also live with those betrayals in many levels of this society.
Our political leaders, in one group after another, appeal to their own and crow about how much they have the backs of the people, how much they are there for them, and how much they are looking out for them, while all the time, what they are doing is looking out for themselves. Just like those self-serving BLM activists. Similar to the dreadful examples of BLM activists, Guyanese leaders in the PPP, PNC, APNU+AFC, have disappointed and frustrated, and deceived, but all the while, doing well for themselves. And just like the Black mothers, who were left on their own, Guyanese mothers and fathers have had no one to turn to, but themselves.
Political leaders have been treacherous. Professionals have sold out, time and again. And civil society is all for itself. Like Black American mothers, many Indian and African and other Guyanese have lived with the anguish of hurt, the truths that their own have failed them, while lying to them.
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