Thursday, April 25, 2013

The Black KKK

Imagine walking down a street in Chicago and seeing an African American man dressed in a Ku Klux Klan uniform. Sound crazy and contradictory, right? This is the fate of many people in Chicago walking past 13th and Filbert Street in February. Just from hearing about an African American man in a KKK uniform, you would think that he is absent-minded and blinded by white supremacy. However, this is not the case. By dressing in a Ku Klux Klan uniform, this man was advocating against black on black crimes.
The idea of dressing in a KKK uniform to symbolize black on black crimes sounds ludicrous. If you think about it, this idea makes sense. During Reconstruction, the Ku Klux Klan was a group of white men terrorizing, lynching, and killing African Americans to maintain control through fear. In a way, African Americans have taken over the role of the KKK by attempting to demonstrate masculinity by engaging in black on black crimes. According to the FBI in 2011, 7,000 African Americans were killed in black on black crimes. This is double the amount of African Americans killed by the KKK in 86 years.
When asked about why he was portraying this message to the African American community, Sixx King stated, “We are bringing awareness to the black hypocrisy, complacency and apathy in the African-American community.” King was not attempting to offend anyone. His main goal was to bring light to a serious matter. African Americans have transitioned from being killed by whites to killing each other.
I found King’s point of view interesting. Society portrays African Americans as violent human beings killing each other. In a way, African Americans are living up to this stereotype. What is the problem here? Is it a societal issue or an issue that African Americans have to resolve themselves? It is hard to say. A solution to this issue is necessary though.
King’s method of shedding light to this issue was successful in causing people to think about black on black crime. I can honestly say that I never thought about this issue in depth until reading this article. In the past, the Ku Klux Klan was feared by African Americans. Today, African Americans fear each other due to the mass amount of crime against each other. What is your reaction to this article? Do you think that black on black crime is an issue that should be discussed more in society? How can it possibly be solved? 


  1. My concern with this display against black on black crime is that our society has to accept that the Klan is a group of hate that used fear to further its methods. King might have thought that his message was to try to fear people from black on black crime, but unless you hear his side of the story it looks as if he has given up. If one were to simply drive by him in a KKK uniform I do not believe that they would get the intent and thusly I do not think that his method was very well thought out. This class showed us all levels of civil rights activist, and what they had in common from King is a clear understanding of what the goals were and developed adequate strategies to promote that method. Truly I believe that the idea of the Klan must only be used as a reminder of hate, and that the fear they used can never be recreated for a positive light.

  2. At first glance, a black man wearing a KKK uniform would not elicit the message that King is trying to portray. I think that this form of activism is particularly confusing and misleading, unless everybody who comes into contact with King in his uniform is well-informed, which is unlikely, if not impossible. However, black on black crime is definitely an issue that should be addressed, and in my opinion, goes unnoticed far too often.

    Like many cities with large black populations, much of that black population is often at a disadvantage to their white counterparts. They tend to live in poorer neighborhoods, have higher rates of unemployment, and have lower levels of education, as well as higher crime rates. This is because of the institutionalization of discrimination and inequality that still exists in America. Gang violence is definitely a problem in these communities, and the police do a poor job of patrolling and policing these communities as well. One of the main reasons that black crime continues to be such a problem (and a growing one, at that) is because of the way these communities function; kids grow up seeing the violence of their communities and that becomes their norm, so they are not fit to break the cycle. With more education, and perhaps a higher emphasis on acquiring a high level of education (i.e. better school zoning so that the inequality lessens) would be an effective way to teach the younger generations in these communities that violence is not the answer in solving conflicts.

    Black on black crime is definitely a growing and important issue in many urban areas of the United States. However, I don't think that King's approach was the most effective way to highlight this problem, as it is not a clear and direct link to the problem. The KKK is, in my opinion, a symbol of white supremacy, of white hatred and racism that cannot be translated to black-on-black crime.

  3. I agree with Molly. I think the sight of a KKK outfit in general is perplexing enough. The case even more so when you realize that a black man is wearing it. However, I wonder if there is not a better way to get his message across. There does seem to be an inordinate amount of black on black violence and it often seems condoned in society. As we mentioned earlier, hip hop often is a medium where black on black violence is radio friendly thing to talk about, but black on white violence is not. There should be better ways of addressing this issue, but maybe this is the most effective way as aof right now.