Editorial board member, The Wall Street Journal.
Jason Riley is a member of The Wall Street Journal Editorial Board. He joined the paper in 1994 as a copyreader on the national news desk in New York. He moved to the editorial page in 1995 as copyreader and later became a copy editor. In April 1996, he was named to the newly created position of editorial interactive editor and maintained the editorial and Leisure & Arts section of WSJ.com. He was named a senior editorial page writer in March 2000, and member of the Editorial Board in 2005.
Jason recently wrote this article. “This past weekend in Chicago, 26 people were shot, including a 16-year-old who died. Yet Al Sharpton is headed not to the Second City but to suburban St. Louis to protest the weekend shooting death of Michael Brown, who police say was killed while resisting arrest.
What happened in Chicago—black people shooting black people—is sadly routine and of secondary concern to civil rights industry operators like Mr. Sharpton, whose agenda is keeping the focus on whites and the supposedly racist “system.” The Chicago shootings don’t advance that agenda, so Mr. Sharpton is taking his talents to St. Louis, where he will put racial solidarity ahead of condemning bad behavior and pretend that our morgues are full of young black men due to miscreant police officers.
The reality is that blacks are 13% of the population and half of all homicide victims—90% of whom are killed by other blacks. The problem is not cops shooting blacks but blacks shooting each other. The problem is black criminality. According to police, this is what led to Brown’s demise, and it is what the nation has witnessed in response to the killing: Black people burning down their own neighborhoods, stealing sneakers and Snickers bars to protest the death of someone who is accused of resisting arrest.
How soon before Michael Brown’s name is immortalized in a rap lyric, even if it turns out that he was in the wrong, as the police are alleging? Today’s ghetto culture not only indulges criminal behavior but celebrates it. And so-called black leaders are much more interested in making excuses for this behavior than they are in denouncing it unequivocally. It was not always thus.
Here’s Martin Luther King quoted in Harper’s Magazine in 1961. “Do you know that Negroes are 10 percent of the population of St. Louis and are responsible for 58% of its crimes? We’ve got to face that. And we’ve got to do something about our moral standards,” he said. “We know that there are many things wrong in the white world, but there are many things wrong in the black world, too. We can’t keep on blaming the white man. There are things we must do for ourselves.”
Yes Jason is a black man raised in the getto and has experienced the “black youth” experience. It will be pretty hard for the left to denounce Jason and his realistic approach to black crime and the moral shortfalls of the black community. I wonder if any of you will try to call him “oreo” since there are no facts available to dispute his observations.