By Arelya J. Mitchell, Publisher/Editor-in-Chief
The Mid-South Tribune and the Black Information Highway
I can’t let this go: This matter of one of America’s most venerable institutions on the Art of War threatening not to graduate 16 Black women cadets because they posed in a graduation class photo with clenched fists raised. The West Point elitist leadership viewed this pose as ‘political’ and allegedly pro-Black Lives Matter. I was especially incensed when I saw a description of the young ladies in the recent Time Magazine’s “Trending” column. That description read: “A graduation photo of 16 female African-American West Point cadets raising their fists in a racially charged salute was not in violation of the military restrictions on political expression, the U.S. Military Academy concluded after an investigation.” One must note in this “Trending” column the phrase “raising their fists in a racially charged salute” was printed in bold. “Racially charged?” Just let that part of the phraseology rest inside your brain. Why use the description ‘racially charged’? Exactly how was it racially charged? Oh, yes, of course, they were feminine black fists.
And they say there’s no bias in mainstream media?
And as for West Point’s ignorant leadership, we needn’t wonder why this nation has not won a war post-Vietnam or can even develop an exit strategy when it gets into war?
I was writing on this matter before it came down that the West Point elitists decided the young ‘American’ African American cadets would be allowed to graduate after some type of façade of an investigation. Time or any mainstream media never asked how this matter was investigated. Did they bring the young ladies into a room to feel their hair, bring in an Ebonics expert, water board them until they confessed that they only wanted to serve their country? Did they examine the ‘evidence’ against raised fists at sports events when fans raise theirs in victory?
But you see this ‘crap’ goes deeper and it mirrors the racism embedded in white fear, a condition which psychiatrists will not study. The psychiatry/psychology field is so busily exploring what it calls a Black Inferiority Complex, skipping over that white fear is essentially a White Inferiority Complex. This is the complex in which, systemically speaking, whites measure their self-worth against Black progress; thus, the reason why elitism rears its ugly bald head as in the case of West Point.
Elitism is racism in its rawest form. In its purest form. In its deadliest form.
Suspecting these young Black patriots is not about conservatism; it is not about liberalism but it is about the fact that African American cadets made it through the rigors of West Point academically and physically. And wow! Sixteen of them made it through, so the West Point elitists had to declare war on sixteen Black females. I am sure these elitists could not sleep at night because they had been frightened by these young women’s hair texture, skin tone, and most of all by their brain cells. But you can bet your bottom dollar that next year at this time there won’t be 16 Black Americans making it through because the West Point elitists will make sure this doesn’t happen again by any means necessary. (This attitude is one-step below their attitude of letting in too many non-pedigree poor whites from the Appalachian hills or thereof equivalent get in. Never mind if the person has brain cells or not… It is no longer about the best and brightest; it is about the whitest and wealthiest… but I digress).
Historically, West Point has treated its Black cadets like dirt when even one or two managed to get in and get through. Such as Col. Charles Young who is set to be honored in June. One of the most patriotic groups in America, the National Coalition of Black Veteran Organizations, has been trying to get Col. Young an honorary posthumous promotion practically since President Barack Obama became the Commander-in-Chief. Col. Young was the third African American to graduate from West Point. The White House had promised the call this venerable organization about their efforts to get this honor for an African American colonel who was not promoted to general because it meant white soldiers would have had to salute him. One can thank then Commander-in-Chief Woodrow Wilson for this stain in American history in spite of one of his most respected generals, Jack Pershing, pushing for Col. Young’s promotion. And, as one moves into the 21st Century, one sees that this West Point graduate and patriot is further snubbed in spite of Cong. Barbara Lee and Cong. Charles Rangel requesting from this president to promote the renowned Buffalo Soldier who gave his life for this nation.
Now here we are with West Point carrying forth its dangerous elitism on the heels of congressional legislation being moved to make it mandatory for women to sign up for military service, that is for them to be positioned to be called into war if needed. (Of course, with the elements of (a) poorly handling the war mess in the Middle East, (b) the fact that this nation is running out of boots to be put on the ground, (c) the guise of sending in U.S. military advisors, (d) the inhumanity of sending the same soldiers in for four or five tour duties, and (e) further screwing over them with the inhospitable veteran hospitals, it is only a matter of time before conscription will be reintroduced anyway…but I digress).
Of course, while all this “racially charged” mess was going on this Commander-in-Chief said absolutely nothing about how West Point was treating these young African American female cadets… though, he certainly had no problem defending Caitlyn Jenner who deceived two women.
All the while this ‘crap’ was going on with these young Black female patriots, even NOW or any other predominantly white female group did not come to these cadets’ defense. Yes, Harriet Tubman is set to be on the $20 dollar bill, but the echoes of Sojourner Truth’s ‘Ain’t I a Woman, Too?’ resonate in the stench of West Point, in the hypocrisy of West Point, in the archaic hierarchy of West Point, in the stupidity of West Point…
If these had been 16 white female cadets, there would have been no investigation; this gesture would not have been viewed as ‘political’ or in support of NOW. If these had been 16 Hispanic female cadets, there would have been no investigation; this gesture would not have been viewed as ‘political’ or in support of the Dreamers immigration movement. If these had been 16 Oriental-American female cadets, there would have been no investigation; this gesture would not have been viewed as ‘political’ or pro China or pro Japan. If these had been 16 Jewish female cadets, there would have been no investigation; this gesture would not have been viewed as ‘political’ or in support of Israel. Time magazine would not have printed in bold letters “racially charged”. It simply would have been viewed as triumphant gestures of women making it through an all boys network known as West Point.
But, of course, Black women are not viewed as females; they are threats to West Point wimps; therefore, they had to be investigated and further raped of their womanhood.
But what’s the point? It’s pointless to say that West Point itself should be investigated because what it did to these Black patriots was ‘political’ and in support of Jim Crow. Many Black Lives have been given to protect this nation in every war; many Black limbs have been maimed to protect this nation. Black blood has been spilt to protect this nation.
It is clear from how West Point continues to treat Black soldiers and Black women soldiers that my gesture as a girly girl civilian to West Point is a clenched fist which denotes ‘and up yours.’
Now, investigate that!
*The above is on the Editorial and Military lanes on The Mid-South Tribune and the Black Information Highway at http://www.blackinformationhighway.com . Welcome, Travelers!