Monday, December 24, 2007

AverageBro Rewind: The Jena 6 Chronicles

[It's the holidays, which probably means you guys aren't working, much less checking blogs. So, in the spirit of Christmas, is re-gifting some of the posts that took AB from an obscure office worker with a blog to an obscure office worker with an award winning blog in less than 6 months. Plus, you get added DVD Commentary!]

When the Jena Six story began gaining momentum around the blogosphere earlier this year, something about the whole thing just rubbed me the wrong way. While I certainly agreed that the sentence levied against the six young men was unfair (murder? c'mon.), something also said it was a little silly to have thousands marching for an incident so trivial in the grand scheme of things.

My AverageBro Blogs Live! From Jena, LA post was a ground breaker, because it amounted to a career best day of hits (2,500!) and also marked the first time my blog was being picked up by bigger sites. At the time, it also accounted for a record number of comments, and it also is when I coined the now much-copied phrase DriveBy Activism. If there's any single post that "put me on the map", this would be the one.

The next day, I followed up with Jena Six: The Day After, which in retrospect was a mistake. I made a rookie blogger faux pas by taking comments too personally and launched into a defensive "you don't know me" stance that probably undermined my point, as AverageSibling told me repeatedly. I guess I also realized that if I was going to keep lobbing criticism out there, I'd better be willing to take the hit. Lesson learned.

I still stand by everything said that day: Yes, Jena was indeed a travesty of justice, but so are the 8,000 black men killed each year, mostly by other brothers. While this is indeed protested, it's always on a small scale, and only temporary at best. And of course, the media doesn't cover these things.

But if the only way we can come together and rally is when white people commit a crime against blacks, while ignoring our own self-imposed ills, it's no wonder we stay losin'.

Peep the Jena Series:

AverageBro Blogs Live! From Jena, LA

Jena Six: The Day After

Those Jena Six Kids Are Starting To Get On My Last Damn Nerve

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