“Guns up! Shoot back!” As News2Share chronicles via a pair of Mississippi events, black pro-gun marchers exist in a no-coverage zone.
“If people aren’t going to do their job, then we’re here to do it for them,” said Nick Bezzel, of the Elmer Geronimo Pratt Pistol & Rifle Gun Club, after being told for the second time today that officials in Brookhaven, Mississippi wouldn’t meet with him and other armed black activists.
Bezzel was with a group of demonstrators, including Black Panthers, who were upset over a case involving a 24-year-old Federal Express driver named D’Monterrio Gibson. On January 24th earlier this year, Gibson was shot at by a man named Brandon Case and his father, Gregory Case, while attempting to make deliveries.
The two Cases were eventually charged with assault, but bonded out quickly. Gibson and the accompanying group wanted elevated charges, for instance attempted murder or a hate crime. Ford Fischer’s News2Share cameras captured the scenes of activists being told a planned meeting with a District Attorney was called off, and being thrown out of the area by the Brookhaven police chief just as they were leaving.
Two days later, a coalition of black pro-gun groups, including Black Panthers, the Black Riders Liberation Party, the aforementioned Elmer “Geronimo” Pratt Gun Club, Sisters of the Underground, the Huey P. Newton Gun Club, the Black Power Militia, the Black Power Coalition, and others, gathered on Juneteenth in Natchez, Mississippi at the site of the “Devil’s Punchbowl,” where some historians say up to 20,000 black people died during and after the Civil War.
News2Share captured those scenes as well, which included a collective signing of a “Declaration of the Regulated United Black Militia.” Some protesters brandished a placard with a “Declaration of Self-Determination by Black Peoples and Organizations,” while others replaced “Hands up, don’t shoot!” with a new chant: “Guns up! Shoot back!” Other chants included:
Black people in America ain’t taking it no more, is that right? That’s right!
We believe in an eye for an eye, a tooth for a tooth, a limb for a limb, and a life for a goddamn life!
These are different times… Guns up, shoot back! I said, goddamnit, black power!
As Ford narrated:
Despite the obvious newsworthiness of these several militias from around the country gathering to sign a “Declaration of the Regulated United Black Militia,” no other media covered the event.
There are a lot of taboos on commercial television, which for instance doesn’t like to show scenes of poverty (unless it’s being chased by police), rarely interviews non-voters, almost never does military contracting fraud stories, and seldom shows results on the ground of American military/drone strikes, even if they’ve already appeared on the airwaves of other countries.