Baltimore activist tells it like it is
Telling the truth about the Black Lives Matter movement on Fox TV is not easy, to say the least, especially when the anchor is Sean Hannity, a notorious attack dog for the racist right-wing.
But a spokesperson for the Baltimore Peoples Power Assembly, Sharon Black, held her ground so well in a May 29 interview on Hannity’s program that he had to resort to the tactic of just talking over her as she responded to his questions. When that didn’t work, because she refused to shut up, he just cut her off.
However, the PPA representative said she had gotten out the message that the people of Baltimore, especially the Black youth, have every right to militantly oppose the murderous actions of the police.
Hannity asked her a loaded question that was supposed to leave her unable to answer, about the Baltimore police feeling “intimidated” and not making arrests because every time they drove into the community “30 to 50 people in hostile fashion were now surrounding them,” and that this had led to a crime wave.
Black replied clearly and firmly that if the police were in fact conducting a slowdown, “that was insubordination and negligence. …” Hannity broke in, “You want to fire them all?” She replied, “Yes, I do believe we should fire them. We need community control of police.”
Black told Hannity that his argument amounted to saying that “Either the people of Baltimore have to put up with racism and total police abuse, degradation in their daily lives, or else they have to put up with murders. This is a falsely manufactured thing. The system is structurally racist.”
Seeing that despite all his gross bullying, the PPA representative was still succeeding in getting her message across, Hannity abruptly said, “All right, I gotta go,” and cut her off in the middle of a sentence.
The Hannity program also attacked Stephanie Rawlings-Blake, the Black woman mayor of Baltimore, for holding a press conference in which she “seemed outraged and upset over the death of Freddie Grey.” Grey was the young Black man whose spinal cord was severed while in police custody, the last straw that led to the uprising against decades of police murders and racist oppression.
The Baltimore PPA on June 6 held an assembly at which many people from the community were free to speak their mind about the torments they have endured at the hands of the police without getting rudely cut off.