The installation of Pres. Barack Hussein Obama was the white man’s last-ditch effort to prove to Blacks that all their civil-righting worked out in the end. They had hoped Blacks would not be able to tell the difference between an authentic Black self-sufficiency and a single symbolic negro manager holding a mid-level post within the architecture of white supremacy.
But Michael Brown changed everything. He was not a silver-tongued preacher-turned-politician, or a career leader pressing for new programs, subsidies, and entitlements. Seventeen-year-old Michael Brown was—just like all our boys—branded with a white bull’s eye on his back simply for being a Back male in America living under his government’s kill-all-boys edict. When Ferguson, Missouri, policeman Darren Wilson carried out that order, his white brethren’s response was pure textbook—deny, obfuscate, and placate, but refuse to indict their brother murderer. In fact, it was the only play in their 6,000-year-old playbook. It was Black people’s response to Michael Brown’s murder that sent shivers down white America’s spine. A cathartic protest was expected. But where the protests occurred finally showed a glimmer of economic maturity prophesied by none other than Dr. Martin Luther King.
This time, activists were driven by intelligence rather than emotion and descended upon the centers of white wealth to express their outrage. Protesters came by the thousands in response to a social-media-savvy crop of young leaders who forced their way between American business and its cash register and would not budge. Darren Wilson and his bosses in Ferguson never thought they had anything to do with Minnesota’s Mall of America 600 miles away, yet Black Lives Matter tied them together for all time. The consequence of state-sanctioned police violence against Blacks, BLM reasoned, will be irreparable harm to the revenue streams of Macy’s, Nordstrom, Best Buy, Target, and all other pillars of retail power. And in a twinkling of an eye the race game had changed in America. That 100-year civil rights deception was a buried relic of the past. Black Lives Matter taught us the same thing Jesus tried to teach us—that the power was in the hands of the merchants, not the politicians. Merchants pay the bills in America, and merchants buy and sell politicians like cheap whores to perform any official act for a few shekels.
The young Black activists had turned over the tables of the moneychangers in their retail temples, and the result was truly devastating. Six million holiday shoppers stayed home, and sales plummeted by 11% on that 4-day weekend alone. According to the National Retail Federation, that amounted to an estimated loss to retailers of $7 billion. And even though we are unable to name a single one of their leaders, this $7 billion sledgehammer catapulted Black Lives Matter into the leadership of Black America—the only group openly mentioned in today’s political discourse. After all, $7 billion is 85 times the budget of the NAACP and the National Urban League combined. The Mall of America admitted that their loss was “staggering” and colluded with the city attorney to prosecute Black Lives Matter for “restitution.”
The state’s attorney now says that six Baltimore police officers tortured and then murdered Freddie Gray in cold blood, much of his brutal treatment captured on iPhones. Blacks didn’t bother with the standard political theater of awaiting another election cycle to “make things right.” They connected these six peons to the vast economic empire they are hired to protect and serve. Consequently, nine Baltimore-bound conventions cancelled, four Orioles baseball home games were lost, the tourists stayed far away from the profitable Harbor shopping district, and 380 businesses were destroyed or temporarily closed down. This was the calculated economic devastation caused by Blacks fed up with the routine hate crimes of those who are sworn, purportedly, to serve and protect them. It is only when white people calculated their losses—now estimated to be $30.5 million—and the potential for more that the six cops became expendable.
Let us not be naive. Harvard lawyer Alan Dershowitz was correct this time—these six indictments were an anti-riot strategy, not a legitimate move toward justice. But even so, the powers that be were motivated solely by the wide-ranging effect the protest violence had on their treasuries. Judges and juries act out of similar social stimuli, and Blacks all over America are picking up what BLM is putting down.
Black students at the University of Missouri were sick of official inaction in the face of the daily racial insults and discriminations they faced. All their protest strategies over many months and even years had failed to achieve even a modicum of racial justice. That is when the football team, overrepresented as it is with Black players, pulled out their collective calculator and figured out the new penalty for white campus intransigence—about $35 million. That is the revenue they generate for the school. They did not need to call Jesse or Al or the Civil Liberties Union. They simply refused to regale whites with their athletic prowess while there was unfinished racial business at hand. At laser-like speed Mizzou’s white wall of indifference collapsed into rubble. A once aloof and unfriendly president was—within 36 hours of the players’ locker room edict—preaching love and unity from the Bible whilst being escorted off the campus. And on his way out he took the chancellor with him. So as a result of the Black students’ “football move,” Mizzou’s white community found new economic motivation to solve generational problems.
The Chicago Police Department has been understood to be the habitation of devils for nearly two centuries, but the advent of dash-cam video has finally provided undeniable confirmation. Last year, Officer Jason Van Dyke, acting out of pure hate, riddled 17-year-old Laquan McDonald with a flurry of bullets.
Blacks, again, saw the direct link right from the barrel of Officer Van Dyke’s service revolver and to the boardrooms of Chicago’s capitalist elite. They bypassed the precinct headquarters, or even the mayor’s office, on their way to shut down the so-called Magnificent Mile. On the most profitable day on the most “magnificent” shopping mile in America all the major stores took a major loss: Banana Republic, Ralph Lauren, Victoria’s Secret, Saks Fifth Avenue, Tiffany’s, Disney, Apple, and even Nike saw half of their expected sales. Heretofore, these stores apparently believed that they could be sustained by the patronage of Officer Van Dyke, his brethren, and his supporters, but Black Friday’s Magnificent Black Unity shutdown of Michigan Avenue put an unsustainable price tag of millions of dollars on the racist status quo.
Finally, Blacks are beginning to understand what the Jewish people have always boasted about: the adept use of their economic power to achieve justice for their people. The Anti-Defamation League of B’nai B’rith (ADL) once had a president who in 1926 wrote with evident pride:
“You need but look at the streets of the principal cities of the world on Jewish holidays, and you will at once see that trade is in mourning; the busy hum is hushed; everything is languid.”
This ability to put commerce to sleep by simply withdrawing from it is the great lesson that Dr. Martin Luther King sought to teach us: When we Blacks feel pain, he taught, “we must kind of redistribute the pain.” He advised that we should “Always anchor our external direct action with the power of economic withdrawal.” That anchor was dropped on Santa this Christmas season by The Honorable Minister Louis Farrakhan, who is carrying out Dr. King’s dream that we deploy our economic muscle in our own behalf. He says, “Up With Jesus, Down With Santa!” And as Black America withdraws from that insane marketing bonanza called Xmas, we are giving ourselves the best gift of all—a true awakening to our vast economic potential.