Friday, October 9, 2015

Disguised Stay-Away Warning: News Coverage of Email to Capitol Police

20th Anniversary of The Million Man March

Written by Charlotte A. Williams

Many news sources reported on a fear-laden letter transmitted via e-mail to U.S. Capitol Police a month ago that predicted violence at this Saturday’s  20th Anniversary of the Million Man March, “Justice Or Else!” rally led by Minister Louis Farrakhan, leader of the Nation of  Islam. This writer was not surprised when she read and heard about it via online newspapers and news broadcasts, mind you, just three days before the rally. Was reporting on someone’s irrational and baseless fear a subliminal message that served as a disguised stay-away warning from the rally by media? The Capitol police chief distanced himself from the letter, saying he had not seen it nor had it been approved by him, according to news reports.

The same sources also said the writer of the letter is afraid that Farrakhan’s speech will incite violence. The fact is, Farrakhan has a standing record for bringing thousands, even a million people together without an incident of violence; so what is behind the irrational fear?

 What appears to be a phobia rooted in a false premise, the writer’s fears probably became heightened because Farrakhan is an influential African-American man who has the audacity to challenge the status quo - - and is powerful enough to gather a large flock to demand of government representatives - - to cease and desist from unequal and unfair practices that keep the majority socially and economically disadvantaged - - to the advantage of the social elite. This writer finds the e-mailed letter frightening because it implants fear and also suggests to susceptible police officers that they should adopt a ready-to-fight mindset while working at the rally, which of course could manifest, consciously or unconsciously, in overreacting to a misperceived threat.


Although the public has the right to know, reporting the story as if the e-mail were creditable may have subliminally signaled to fringe lunatics that they should show up to provoke a dust up. Some audiences may find that covering the e-mail story was nothing more than fear mongering and a veiled attempt at keeping people away from a large peaceful assembly, only to later report that Farrakhan no longer has the charisma to attract large audiences and that the event had a markedly low turnout.

 Reverend Martin Luther King, Jr. once said, “All we want to say to America is be true to what you said on paper.”  And that is what this rally is all about; making America accountable for promises it has not kept.  Justice! or else we’re gonna  trouble the economy until you practice what you’ve put in writing, in the U.S. Constitution, in treaties, etc. There's an old saying, "Practice what you preach." What is so wrong about demanding fairness and equal treatment?


Unlike the speech 20 years ago on reconciliation and atonement pitched to African-American men, Saturday’s rally will be inclusive to other marginalized groups. In addition to African Americans, Native Americans will be coming out of the shadows in droves to participate; they will lead the march in their native regalia, singing and dancing, a part of their religious rites. Women, Latinos and “poor whites,” will also be participating. So, what is there to fear?  a possible majority African-American audience, perhaps? Well, this writer will be pooh-poohing any hint at violence from a phobic like the letter writer or from the naysayers. In addition, this writer will also defy what appears to be a subliminal message to stay away.

Justice Or Else

Melody to Wade In The Water

 Justice or else,
Justice or else
do you hear us now?

Justice or else,
we’re gonna trouble the economy.
(fade) We’re gonna cripple the economy.

Charlotte A. Williams © 2015
#Million Man March,#10/10/15,,,,,,,,,,@WashingtonInformer,WashingtonTimes,,@TheWashingtonAfro

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