“They killing ni**as for J’s that’s death over designer”
J.Cole – Nobody’s Perfect
Last week the popular Air Jordan Retro 11’s more commonly known as the “Legend Blue’s” were released to widespread anticipation. There were innumerable people throughout the nation who took off of work in order to camp outside of their local mall a week in advance to increase their chances of purchasing the sought-after sneakers. When the sneakers were released to the public on December 20th, widespread anarchy ensued. Since their debut, there have been reports of thefts, assaults, and deaths in connection to these popular sneakers.
I must ask the black community, when will this reckless behavior cease? The first pair of Air Jordan Sneakers were released some three decades ago. Since the debut of the Jordan Brand, senseless violence over the sneakers and other Jordan Brand apparel have contributed to the deaths over 10 thousand people. Sadly, the vast majority of those who have met their demise in such a senseless way are persons of African American descent. There are many things a person should be willing to die or kill over: the welfare of one’s parents, grandparents, children, siblings, or spouse. No one should be willing to murder others and either the death penalty or a life sentence to secure a pair of Jordan sneakers.
With all of the current protests taking place throughout the country regarding police brutality that has displayed their opposition to the thought that “black lives matter”, the idiocy of a few individuals compromises those movements. How can we as a people simultaneously assert that black lives matter to the world and tolerate our own killing and maiming one another over trivial and inconsequential objects such as a 200 dollar pair of sneakers? How can we demand that outsiders value black lives while our own repeatedly display that they have absolutely no concern regarding the same. Quite frankly, if we do not value one another, we look like fools to outsiders when we demand that they respect black lives, while many of our own do not.
It is past time that the African American community does a better job of controlling their own. It is time we stop senselessly murdering one another over relative minutiae. It is time we learn to show more respect and love for our brothers and sisters. It is time we build up the Black collective instead of tearing it down with senseless black on black crime.