In On the Killing of Jordan Davis by Michael Dunn, Ta-Nehisi Coates confronts the injustice of simply being born an African American son:
Jordan Davis had a mother and a father. It did not save him. Trayvon Martin had a mother and a father. They could not save him. My son has a father and mother. We cannot protect him from our country, which is our aegis and our assailant. We cannot protect our children because racism in America is not merely a belief system but a heritage, and the inability of black parents to protect their children is an ancient tradition.
These words—”We cannot protect him from our country, which is our aegis and our assailant”—echo James Baldwin writing in 1966:
This is why those pious calls to “respect the law,” always to be heard from prominent citizens each time the ghetto explodes, are so obscene. The law…
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