Saturday, October 20, 2007

Michael Meyers Says Nooses Are No Big Deal

In a recent NPR interview Meyers says that Black folks should just let it go... that the recent rash of nooses is no big deal. According to Meyers, they could all be a practical joke for all we know. He also makes similar comments in a recent editorial.

No... I am not making this up. The head of a New York Civil Rights group (New York Civil Rights Coalition), says that the nooses are just a joke.

He seems to believe that these noose incidents are taking place in a vacuum... with no historical connection or no historical context attached. He seems to ignore Americas history of lynchings. He talks as if the hanging of nooses has no more meaning than random vandalism, such as a TP'd door or tree. It's just a practical joke as far as he's concerned.

He even had the nerve to say "We don't know why people are doing this" (referring to the hanging of a nooses).

Meyers is clearly either losing his mind, or he is having a serious bout of denial.
Now I am not one of these folks who is hysterical about this. I don't believe that the sky is falling. However, I am astute enough to recognize that there is a problem with race relations in this Country and that the noose incidents are- in many cases- a manifestation and representation of deep-seeded racial animosity and intolerance. And I recognize that more needs to be done in terms of improving relations, providing an education and a context to younger generations about lynchings & the significance of these symbols, and making sure that laws are changed and enforced so that those responsible for these kinds of incidents can be dealt with. Yet Michael Meyers, the leader of a Civil Rights organization, can't recognize this? He doesn't recognize that the hanging of a noose amounts to a threat.... and amounts to a hate crime (based on certain facts and the context of the specific incident)? He doesn't recognize that a noose is used as a symbol of terror, designed to intimidate and frighten? His comments were unbelievable. (Link to audio interview provided above).

I was disappointed that News and Notes did not bring on another guest with an opposing viewpoint who was equally as passionate as Meyers. But instead they allowed Meyers to ramble unchallenged. (Julianne Malveaux would have eaten him alive... although I often don't agree with her on a lot of her positions. She should have been on the program).

What exactly has to happen before Michael Meyers is convinced that these incidents are a serious matter? I guess Meyers is saying that the racists have to draw blood from their victims in order to be taken seriously. It's almost as if Meyers is encouraging racists to "get more serious" and to actually carry out their threats.


Related Links

Background On Lynchings

Without Sanctuary

More Background On Lynching

Duluth Lynchings

Lynching in Texas


Anonymous said...

A few years ago, a revival of interest in the music of Billie Holiday and her song, Strange Fruit, generated articles that drew attention to the lynch law era that predated the Civil Rights movement of the 1950s, but these articles appeared mostly in scholarly journals, which most American don’t read. Copycat noose-hangings are now occurring across the country because few Americans associated nooses with racist sentiments until the Jena High School incident created national headlines.

Nooses can be racist or not, depending on the context. The hangman noose has been a symbol of dread and foreboding since the middle ages. It's the card you don't want to draw from a pack of Tarot cards. Hangman nooses have been incorporated into Halloween displays for decades. (Halloween Magazine even post instructions for tying nooses on its website at A few years ago, a woman committed suicide by hanging herself from a tree in her front yard. Unfortunately, she chose Halloween eve to end her life. Her body dangled for days in full view of passerbys who thought it was part of the Halloween decorations. Today, she would be cut down and charged with a hate crime.

Are we to ban such classic western movies as Lonesome Dove, The Hanging Tree, and The Oxbow Incident simply because nooses play an important role in them. The hunt for nooses is turning into a witch hunt with often ludicrous results. The U.S. Army announced yesterday that it had ended its investigation into a noose-hanging incident at Anniston Army Depot. The noose turned out to have been a tie-day that had fallen from a truck delivering supplies to the depot.
The three Jena High School students who hung the nooses claim they did not realize that nooses have racist connotations. They claim they were merely replicating the famous lynching scene from Lonesome Dove, in which Texas Rangers string up with outlaws. This claim has been ridiculed by just about everyone, except those who actually investigated the incident. According to the Jena Times, state Welfare Supervisor Melinda Edwards said it might surprise everyone to learn that the three students did not have knowledge of black history in relation to that hanging of black citizens in the south during the civil rights movement.

“We discussed this in great detail with those students,” Edwards said. “They honestly had no knowledge of the history concerning nooses and black citizens. This may seem hard to believe for some people, but this is exactly what everyone on the committee determined.”

She also said that once the historical significance of the nooses was revealed to the students and how it was considered a tremendous insult to those of the black race, they showed great remorse. “When they were told about the historical relevance of the nooses and how others would interpret their actions, they really were very remorseful,” she said. “I can honestly say that these boys regretted tremendously ever hanging those nooses.”

rikyrah said...

Would he say that Jews should get over swastikas?

Do you think he'd have that kind of nerve?


I'm tired of these insane Black folk. They need to STFU.