Indict And Punish The Perpetrators Of COVID Mass Death

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Above photo: Black people wearing facemasks by Glen Ford, Black Agenda Report.

Not just Trump, but the whole US ruling class must pay for the mass Covid death toll among Blacks because only the ruling class has the power to systematically allocate life-death chances for whole populations over generations.

To limit the indictment to Donald Trump and his administration would be an insult to today’s dead and dying.”

The United States finds myriad ways of killing Black people – of negating the term “Black lives matter.” The novel or new, coronavirus is ending the lives of African Americans at a nationwide rate that is 2.6 times that of whites, 2.3 times the death toll among Asian Americans and 2.2. times that of Latinos, according to the APM Research Lab’s breakdown of mortality by race. Collectively Blacks have suffered 27 percent of all Covid-19 deaths in the United States, which would mean that 24, 930 of the 92, 333 total U.S. deaths from the virus as of this week, were African Americas, who make up only 13 percent of the population.

Researchers at Yale University and the University of Pittsburgh put the proportionate Black death toll considerably higher, with Blacks 3.5 times more likely to die than whites, and Latinos twice as likely to succumb to the virus. The actual ratios of death may never be known since, according to the Yale study, “almost half the states do not track the race and ethnicity of those who have died in the pandemic, and states that are tracking racial and ethnic data do not account for age differences among population groups.

The COVID Racial Data Tracker, a collaboration of The Atlantic’s COVID Tracking Project and The Antiracist Research & Policy Center, updates the toll by ethnicity on a daily basis, with about a three-day lag in reporting of deaths by state.

Researchers at Yale University and the University of Pittsburgh put the proportionate Black death toll considerably higher, with Blacks 3.5 times more likely to die than whites.”

If the Yale/Pittsburgh finding that Blacks are 3.5 times more like to die from Covid-19 than whites is correct, then Blacks make up considerably more than 27 percent of deaths. But, even at the lower rate, the carnage in Black America is horrific. If projections of 143,360 total U.S. deaths from coronavirus by August 4 hold true, that would result in a Black death toll of 38,707 – with no end in sight. By comparison, 1,008 people of all races were killed by police gunfire in 2019, according to the Washington Post tally.

What will be the Black political response to such gruesome numbers? Who will be made accountable for a slaughter that was pre-programmed by the very nature of a society birthed in genocide, slavery, and the glorification of conquest and plunder?

Just as infant mortality is the best measure of a society’s general health, so does the Covid-19 death toll indict the United States for systematically undermining the life chances of all of its constituent peoples (143,360 dead by August 4), and for the aggravated crime of setting a death trap for African Americans, every aspect of whose lives has been methodically weighted towards an early death. These are crimes that only the ruling class can commit because only the ruling class has the power to systematically allocate life-death chances for whole populations over generations.

“Who will be made accountable?”

The indictment must be initiated by Black America, the most deeply harmed victims of preventable mass death at the hands of a morally depraved white ruling class. The very nature of mass slaughter by Covid-19 demands that the entire system of political economy – of racial capitalism — in the United States be put on trial and that the humans that have profited from, bolstered and defended that murderous system is removed from power and punished.

To limit the indictment to Donald Trump and his administration would be an insult to today’s dead and dying and to all past victims of racial capitalism’s carnage around the world. Every Democrat that has joined with the Lords of Capital in preventing the United States from establishing a universal health care system, is guilty of depraved indifference to the lives of his and her constituents, as is virtually every member of the Republican Party, whose organizing principle is white supremacy, an ideology of mass murder. The U.S. electoral duopoly system has acted as a criminal enterprise, answering to an oligarchy of wealth, with both parties colluding to deny most of the population – and especially Black people – the right to healthy and safe lives and protection from contagious disease, as well as the closely related rights to meaningful and fairly compensated employment, adequate shelter from the elements, and an education that provides the people with the knowledge and skills to shape and contribute to, society.

“Every Democrat that has joined with the Lords of Capital in preventing the United States from establishing a universal health care system, is guilty.”

It takes a whole class of criminals to create the conditions to kill nearly one hundred thousand people – 27 percent of them Black — in just three months. However, politicians representing Black America, the most victimized constituency, are co-conspirators in the great crime, both by their collaboration with Democrats that have systematically weakened the U.S. social safety net (most notably, President Obama’s partially consummated Grand Bargain with Republicans), and by their management of Black population centers that have been methodically stripped of defenses against debilitating poverty and disease.

These Black auxiliaries to ruling class criminals put personal profit above the welfare of Black people and must be indicted along with their masters. The Black political class should have been our antibodies against the plagues of racial, political, and economic repression, but made common cause with the oppressor. The Black misleaders must be the first to be indicted, because they weaken our ability to resist the greater evils: the Lords of Capital.

The proof of their culpability lies in cemeteries all across Black America. People’s tribunals must convene to indict the perpetrators of mass death, including the Black collaborators in the lower ranks of capitalist crime. Why were Blacks seven times more likely to die of Covid-19 in Kansas City, than whites? What factors (crimes) made Missouri, Wisconsin and Washington D.C six times as lethal for Blacks as whites, and Michigan five times more deadly for Blacks? How is it that the Grim Reaper came for Black people three times more often than for whites in Arkansas, Illinois, Louisiana, New York, Oregon, and South Carolina? And what should be the penalty for locking up millions of human beings in virus-infested cages without provision for basic hygiene, much less protection from disease? Isn’t every Covid-19 death in prison — where captives are totally dependent on their captors – a case of murder?

The people must convene, learn the truth, and make their verdicts. The only fitting punishment is the overthrow of the criminal racial capitalist regime, whose crimes are multitudinous and manifest. I’ll be asking the organization I co-founded, the Black Is Back Coalition, to initiate Black Covid-19 tribunals in cities across the nation. Activists of all races should do the same.

BAR executive editor Glen Ford can be contacted at Glen.Ford@BlackAgendaReport.com.

  • 0040

    This year flu season has been mild by the last decades stats published repeatedly by different doctors and medical professionals from around the world on Off Guardians website.Perhaps discovering the truth about the Panic-demic should come first before punishment and or rewards are considered ?

  • kevinzeese

    You are now one of the few, a tiny minority, that does not believe this is a pandemic. And, it is having many more deaths than the seasonal flu. 100,000 deaths in the US since March — three months — while the flu is about 50,000. If the rate of deaths continues for a year COVID will be the third leading cause of death in the US, behind cancer and heart disease. Even if the deaths double to 200,000, which is quite possible this fall, it will be the third leading cause of deaths. How many deaths before you can change your tune and accept reality.

  • Trivial death numbers compared to how many you are killing with your criminally illegal lock down, not even comparable to the destruction you wield against all of us healthy normal people whose lives you have destroyed. You are one big time idiot.

  • 0040

    As I offered several times go to Off Guardian and read some of the opposing views of non American global health experts with all sorts of stats and links supplied . Your certainty speaks loud to ulterior motives on this issue. Not trusting government was a lesson I learned the hard way a long time ago. Nov. 1963 as I remember . Being part of a minority makes it less likely I’ll be trampled by the herd as it stampedes hither and yon under such luminaries as Bill Gates’ and various bribed WHO officialdom’s spurs.

  • Richard

    Why does everything these days have to be either a white “thing” or a black “thing”? Race has nothing to do with the virus except that different races are more susceptible than others, otherwise we all have the same “thing” in common, we could possibly die from this virus. This virus affects us all, each and every one of us, it does not care what color, religion, or anything else about you, it’s whole job is to spread and infect as many as possible in whatever time frame it has, that’s it. Our government knew in plenty of time to have taken proper precautions to protect our citizens, but they knew what would happen to production and everything else so they chose to gamble with the citizens lives and look the other way as the virus hit our shores and spread through our population unhindered.

    We “ALL” have the right & obligation to be mad as hell at our government for their “Greed Lust” that as of this moment has cost 98,220 Americans their lives and that anger directed to those responsible. This is a people in general “thing” (Americans,) so quit trying to turn everything into racism for once, we need a break from that BS. Americans all have a common foe and believe it or not it is not the people that live down the street or across town who are a different color as you it is your stinking government right down to your city counsel members who are your true enemies so start acting accordingly like true Americans would and that have.

  • SCM

    How bout inditing voters who throw away vote on two parties who give you crumbs instead of UHC and beds of preparedness just in case instead of nukes just in case? Fact is ppl are dumb as fuck and not serious ppl and deserve everything they get ( or don’t get)

  • Jeff

    I think that this is a very poor argument. There are plenty of harmful things that the U.S. government and society does to Black people without making a real stretch like this. Why not focus on cops shooting unarmed Black people? Or the fact that Black people have much higher poverty and incarceration rates than white people? Or that Black people are much more likely to have to live near pollution, like energy plants and highways? I don’t see anything racial about this pandemic or the response or lack thereof to it.

  • ThisOldMan

    Thanks Kevin, for stating the obvious for the willfully ignorant. For that audience I will offer a few additional simple related facts:
    (1) As shown by many other countries with stronger social safety nets, shutting down a large portion of an economy does not have to do anyone serious physical harm.
    (2) Shutdowns can be safely lifted by directing additional funds to universal testing, rigorous contact tracing, and all-expenses-paid quarantines of those who’ve been exposed.
    (3) Those who are against doing those things overlap extensively with those who refuse to wear masks in public, and they are even stupid enough to blame everyone else for the resulting problems.
    Now open your mouths and shit.

  • Bill Michel

    It’s clear that,at the very least, the Orange Man, and these Judges “overruling” public health-based shutdowns need to be criminally prosecuted for conspiracy-to-murder, manslaughter, etc.

  • 0040

    Shades of the old Salem Witch Trials , crops have failed a plague is loosed on us , someone must be punished , god needs a brutal blood sacrifice ?

  • 0040

    Sad to see Mr Ford whom I find knowledgeable most of the time on the covid panic bandwagon .The opportunity to milk a faux crisis for political advantage clearly outweighs truth with this uninformed article based in hysteria. Privatized Care-home older residents with preexisting health problems are the largest demographic being killed by this years flu virus in the US and Canada , as even a modicum of honest research would show. .