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Our Village Is Not Well (298 hits)

Our Village Is Not Well
Junious Ricardo Stanton

“Crime and criminal behavior regardless of temporal or cultural definition, occur not in a vacuum, but within a complex matrix of interpersonal, social, intergroup relations and other eco-psychological forces. Crime and criminality, their existential vicissitudes and emblematic meanings, can only be usefully and appropriately deciphered and pragmatically dealt with within the context of these forces. Crime and criminality are social phenomena and are reflective of the social system within which they occur.” Amos Wilson, Black on Black Violence The Psychodynamics of Black Self-Annihilation In Service of White Domination page 11-12.

We are witnessing/experiencing an escalation of internecine violence within our communities so much so, people are adapting to the psychic and emotional trauma, pain, suffering and loss in ways that are becoming normalized. Before you castigate me for saying this and say I am blaming the victim, let’s look at the definition of the words norm or normal. Psychologically a norm is defined as: “a representative standard or value for a given group, any pattern, standard or representative performance for a group. (Dictionary of Psychology page 306). In the field of Sociology a norm is defined as: “shared rules and expectation guiding behavior in a society or group, maintaining social order, defining cultural values, and shaping interactions. The four types of social norms are: folkways,mores, taboos and laws. https://www.simplypsychology.org/norms-and... Normal means that people within a particular group follow and conform to the values behavioral norms of their group.

By this reckoning violence and dysfunctional behaviors are the norm in many parts of our communities. Does this mean we are violent people by nature? Not necessarily, it means we have been conditioned, programmed and or induced to see violence as a value or acceptable behavior. As we grapple with the escalating violence perpetrated on all levels of our society we have to look for a cause a reason and work to remedy and rectify this deadly pattern.

I maintain America is a land of traumatized people. We have been programmed by the ruling class to believe this is a land of opportunity and for many it is/was. But at what cost? Many of the European colonists who came to these shores were fleeing trauma and social disruption in their homeland; religious persecution, political conflict, incessant wars and economic privation. Most were sent here to enrich the Pope’s, Western monarchs and the monopoly trading companies who sponsored their voyages and chartered their colonial establishments.

The European settlers were traumatized because they were totally unprepared for the climate, rigors and the struggles to survive so many died. The indigenous inhabitants were traumatized by the violence inflected upon them by the whites who blatantly disregarded their culture, intruded onto their physical spaces, expropriated their lands and disrespected their humanity. The Africans who were forcibly brought here had already been traumatized by the wars, their initial capture, kidnapping, bondage, the passage here and the brutality of enslavement. The process repeated itself with each successive wave of European immigrants, bonds persons, enslaved Africans and the indigenous people they displaced!

We have not healed from this collective devastation, yet we are programmed to celebrate as if none of these atrocities ever happened. Now there is a movement afoot to prevent even teaching and discussing it. To add insult to injury the socialization and indoctrination processes inflicted on our ancestors were designed to dehumanize them, make them/us feel inferior, subhuman and less than in every way possible. We have been subjected to generations of psychic trauma, physica and emotional abuse.

Once mechanization and heavy industry replaced human labor and agriculture as the nation’s economic mainstays, we were deemed unnecessary, unneeded and a liability. In fact during the War Between The States 1861-65 President Abraham Lincoln was planning to send people of African ancestry to either Africa, the Caribbean or South America. https://quod.lib.umich.edu/j/jala/2629860.... However his plan was thwarted by an assassin’s bullet. Since then America has been wrestling with the question, what to do with its formerly enslaved population and their descendants?

A racist ideology permeated US culture since colonial times and Afro-Americans always fought back against the lies and derogatory stereotypes perpetuated against us. The ebb and flow of multi- generational struggles throughout our sojourn here prompted the oppressors to double down on ways to eliminate us either through state sanctioned programs to physically decrease our numbers (genocide) or through menticide, destroying our minds with initiatives like forced sterilization, abortions, ecocide, COINTELPRO, incarceration and miseducation.

Part of their plan was to induce us to hate ourselves and trick us into engaging in self-negation. American culture is violent, violence is an accepted form of “entertainment” a cultural norm, in films, video games, TV, Social Media etc. Black people consume an inordinate amount of mass media and we’ve internalized the messages and values embedded within it without knowing how it impacts our psyches. This has become the norm. Media forms our worldview, shapes our desires and aspirations and determines our behavior. “In order for Blacks to assault, rape, rob and murder each other with notorious and self-destructive intensity, to be estranged from their own bodies and therefore subject them to all manner of health and physical carelessness, neglect and self-mediated abuse to them, to make them hosts to all manner of insatiably unhealthy appetites, they must internalize Eurocentric racist hostility towards themselves; internalize and claim as their own the European contempt for the color of their skin and the physiognomy of their bodies. These Blacks must take Eurocentric lies for truth and truth for lies and act accordingly. They must see their bodies as the cause of pain and as their enemy and consequently subject them them to disrespect and murderous mutilation. They will destroy others who are clothed in a body like their own for they must be the enemy too.” Amos Wilson, Black on Black Violence The Psychodynamics of Black Self-Annihilation In Service of White Domination page106.

Unless and until we grasp this reality and develop ways to counter this program of menticide, we will continue to witness and experience the maladaptive, self-destructive values and norms we see occurring in our neighborhoods daily. We have to be honest with ourselves and admit our village is not well and then begin the arduous work to heal ourselves.

Posted By: Junious Stanton
Thursday, April 11th 2024 at 1:43PM
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This is the type of history and backstory that many of us, and especially the last generation for Black people, need to know. Thank you for your words Mr. Junious Stanton as I learned a couple of things myself.
Wednesday, April 24th 2024 at 4:45PM
Gene Amadi Jakande
Thanks for taking the time to read and comment.
Saturday, April 27th 2024 at 11:35AM
Junious Stanton
The first thing that hit me in your article was the description of normal. Is it normal for the depress people to act out like people with no laws To go Themselves To gain their freedom?

Saturday, April 27th 2024 at 11:27PM
Dea. Ron Gray Sr.
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