SECTION ONE

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COLUMN NINETY-SIX, SEPTEMBER 1, 2003
(Copyright 2003 The Blacklisted Journalist)

WHO KILLED OUR LITTLE SHANI?
OUR YOUNGEST CHILD, OUR BABY. . .WHO KILLED
AMINA & AMIRI BARAKA'S
LITTLE SHANI?


SHANI BARAKA


(Photo by Myles Aronowitz)

Who killed our youngest child, our baby?  Our little Shani. Every day of her thirty two years whenever I saw Shani Id say, even as late as last Sunday at Amina's mother's house, "Shani little!' Playing ball in the backyard, coming home from school, eating a sandwich in the kitchen or dressed up and ready to go to another demonstration or forum with her parents.  Same thing, "Shani little!" And she was very little.  But that never stopped nothing.  Not with Shani!

But don't get off the subject.  Who killed our little Shani?  Like that poem the terrorists in the Caucasian crib don't like, WHO?  I ask it again in the most humble way.  I ask it for her mother, my wife, Amina, for her brothers and sisters, her aunts and uncles, her nieces and nephews, for all the people who loved her, all the people who loved our little Shani. For her gay friends and the straight ones.  All us wanna know who killed our Shanii.  And some of us think we know.  But even more important tonight is Why? Why did something kill our little Shani?  As little as she was we know you didn't have to kill her.  Not if some big our bad macho man.  Like one killed her aunt, my sister, Kimako, back in 1983.  Is this some twenty year cycle of horror for our family?  For everybody, that every twenty years some wonderful and surprising woman gets murdered by some insecure ignorant homophobic Negro Punk (and not the heavy metal kind)!  Perhaps because we get women pregnant, and when the baby comes, will not marry them.  Maybe because we have left unknown numbers of fatherless children scattered across the planet.  Maybe we have married but betray our wives with Adultery.

So maybe we have more than a clue to Who killed our little Shani!  Why do we think that?  Because it was just such a Negro who couldn't stand non-passive self consciously Independent Black women.  Our little Shani was just such.  So was her special friend and companion, Ray Ray Holmes.  When you saw one you usually saw the other.  That's why they were found side by side when this Negro Frankenstein murdered them.  You know they didn't want to die, but even so, from the way it was described, you know Shani probably told the Negro something he didn't wanna hear.  So he shot her straight in the heart!  I guess he wanted her to be like him and have a hole where his heart should'a been!

And that's why Ray Ray had two bullets in her, because when he shot Shani Ray Ray, enraged, must have tried to rip the eyes out his head, so he shot her two times.  NO, Shani and Ray Ray loved life.  All yall know that.  They didn't want to die, but if they had to die, that's the way they wd have preferred it, side by side.  Like they were in real life!

That's the Who and the How, except about that Who, there's some deeper Smack than that!  This particular Homophobic Ignorant Negro, who from this point will be called HIN, was so backward he did not understand separation and divorce.

He was so backward his view was that women had no right to divorce, unless the man initiated it.  So he was actually an 18th century HIN.  He also believed that women had to do only what the man dictated and nothing else.  HIN hates most, aggressive intelligent black women who have some ideas on their own and openly express them, even in contradiction to HIN.

So that when Shani's sister Wanda wanted a divorce from this HIN, he refused to believe it really mattered.  What does a Black woman know?  She should have no say in the matter.  So HIN


Wanda filed 12 reports with Piscataway police---but she was only a 'nigger' woman


refused to leave even when he was made to. But he would not.  He returned by dirty threatening phones calls.  A great many women have that experience.  Sick men harassing them.  Wanda called the police.  HIN returned this time to burn Wanda's car.  She reported him again.  He would come back to climb on her roof.  Shoot holes in her pool, And in the most dangerous act prior to Shani and Ray Ray's murder, he put a gun to Wanda's head and told her he would kill her so he cd become famous!

Wanda filed 12 reports with the Piscataway police about this black woman-hating man.  Twelve reports.  She called them again and again.  But it was only some nigger woman.  What do they know?  We know there is a struggle for women's rights across the US, but we should also know that black women are triply oppressed by nationality (race), class and gender.  One of the ugliest examples of this, and this is something Fidel Castro read to us from a United Nations' report, is that in the history of the United States, there has never been a single White Man convicted of Raping a Black woman!  In the US there are many Negroes whose minds fit the perpetrator's description!

And this is the philosophy and attitude that is still predominant in the US.  The philosophy and attitude that characterize both the Piscataway Police Department and probably Most Police Departments in the nation.

(Our hope is that our new Police Director in Newark is working to correct this hideous aberration. (HIMCN).  Imagine the Police and the Murderer have the same Philosophy.  We know because the 12 reports to the police were mainly ignored.  Even when the HIMCN put a gun to Wanda's head, the Piscataway police ho hummed and did nothinged my daughter and RAY RAY to their graves.

The gob of spit that killed our little Shani motivated by the same philosophy did just the opposite, he murdered our little Shani and Ray Ray because they were Black, because they were women, because they were workers, because they did not live off stocks and bonds and other people's misery. But he also killed them, shot our little Shani and her companion Ray Ray, because he believed they were gay, he hated them because he thought they loved each other and this fake human with the mind of a nasty gob of spit on the floor felt that it was wrong for these two women to love each other, to want to be together rather than with him or with other men, black or white, like him.  So this homophobic male chauvinist Negro hated them even more for that.  For what he saw as a crime, being Gay, and rejecting his sorry Ignorant and very dangerous homophobic male chauvinist self.  I imagine, particularly when he burst into the house where the two sisters, Wanda and our little Shani lived.  And anybody who really knew Shani know exactly what Shani would have told him.  Straight up.  Right in his face.  Like she did to her brothers all those years she played round ball in our back yard and perfected her game.

Who killed our little Shani, a dangerous psychotic Negro murderer who was anti women anti anti-?black women, that's what we mean by Male Chauvinist.  Not just the word, but the most dangerous example of it, its not quite human personification.  What killed our little Shani?  What killed Newark Public Schools little Shani.  What killed the little Shani who was all city point guard at University High School, the little Shani at Johnson C. Smith University the Most Valuable Player and best Point Guard in the CIAA the little Shani who was an honorable mention member ofthe Eastman Kodak All-American Team. 1993 Co player of the year, who still graduated Magna cum Laude, with honor.  Both the Who and the What that killed our little Shani, are deadly chauvinist homophobic murderers.  As persons or philosophies.  And little Shani and Ray Ray's murders confirm this.

When the Piscataway police did nothing, they say they could not set the restraint order against the soon to be ignorant Negro murderer because they could not serve him the papers.  Which is like saying we couldn't catch the murderer because we couldn't catch the murderer.

"Well, what line of work are you in", says our little Shani's father with his jaws tight.  You can't be policemen!"

"Why didn't you do something when she filed those reports," says our little Shani's mother with tears leaping out of her eyes, both fists balled tight?

"I called you over and over, flied 12 reports, a restraining order and you did nothing?  So why are you here now?? screams the tortured now hysterical sister.  "My sister and Ray Ray already been murdered!"

Now this ugly thing is loose somewhere among us. " Vicious and dangerous with the stink of a dying punk.  Not only the actual ignorant negro homophobic male chauvinist black woman hating murderer, as a person, but as an idea, a philosophy, an ideology, roaming though so many minds, not merely the dangerous nut in the white house who despises most people, because most of the people in the world, as DuBois said, are colored people.  Who slanders and lies about and invades other peoples countries just like the sick Negro we gotta find and lock up did, who robs them destroys their houses and murders them . The sick thing in the Caucasian crib has excuses for his invasions and robbery and murderers just like this sick homophobic mail chauvinist negro we still got to catch and arrest, will have.  Excuses why one put up the confederate flag.  Why the Negro think it's all right!  That's national chauvinism or racism.  Why Jungle Jim opposes Equal Rights Amendment for women's equality in DC and Cheetah, his murderous Negro mascot carry it out with violence.  Why the reefer in the white house opposes Gay marriage and the killer roach we got on the run opposes it with murder.

Who killed our little Shani, What killed our little Shani."Our little Shani who just came back last week as head coach of the Newark track and field entry and guided our children to a perfect score and a gold medal.  Our little Shani who was assistant coach to Joanne Watson on the victorious Malcolm X Shabazz State Championship team?

Why would anything want to see our little Shani like this?  Shot straight in the heart by some hideous madman, mindless soulless heartless like a poison glob of spit on the floor?  Our little Shani adored and respected by her team mates, and now by the students at Vailsburg middle school where she teaches English and Science, and her own kind of thrilling discipline on the basketball court. For what reason, tell me Why, and Who would want our little Shani dead.  And her Closest soul mate murdered along side her.  Who and What and Why wd some evil thing want to slaughter our little Shani who was loved and admired and was a role model of intelligence, skill and discipline?

The epistrophe is a story about our little Shani , Newark's little Shani, which will tell you something about her charismatic personality of an understated pride, from skill and grace achieved by labor, the discipline and intelligence, of the athlete scholar, the sensitivity of self consciousness coupled with that Brick City self determination.  So one night at the end of the year when Shani was at University High, with a 22-2 record won the city and county and so got to play for the State Championship against Red Bank in Red Bank.  There were perhaps fifty of we black parents who went down to the game.  There were no Newark Public Officials with us.

We sat across the gym from maybe 750 to a thousand mostly white Red Bank parents, students and rooters.  In the last quarter the game was close and Shani was doing her stop and fake and spin and pass or shoot number.  She was the point and the shooter, at times; she had the whole thing in her little Shani hands.

Then Red Bank, called time, the coach's face had grown a little Red too. And off the bench comes a girl, at least two by three times Shani's size.This player's gig was to play left and right and middle tackle on our little Shani. And us fifty raised all the Bricks out our enraged Brick City Parent Mouths.  Our Little Shani's mother was coming out the stands screaming, "you hit my daughter again I'm gonna break your ... I guess it was neck!" So that didn't work, so when the whistle blew Red Bank had two new players on the court with striped shirts and whistles.  And every time our little Shani would do her spin and stop and dagger pass or twist and shoot number the stripes wd blow their racist whistles.  Everybody there should have dug what was happening.  Certainly we fifty did and kept up the screaming.

But the whole thing made Shani mad, so mad, that she started crying. weeping those big dangerous little Shani tears.  So in an instant she was back all the way at mid-court, and she started, play after play, running back & shooting threes from there, so far back they shd have been fours.  Bam.  Bam.  Bam Again, weeping and probably saying some little Shani "trash" talk (they call it now for the American TV audiences).Boom. Boom.  Boom, again.  And the whole place caught on fire.  Boom, she said from even further back, Boom, Boom again.  And we were right there, but them striped whistles cut our little Shani and all the rest of University down, so they could claim yet another empty racist victory.  You see our little Shani had known chauvinism for a long time.

A young lady, a one time team mate of Shani's, told me just about a day ago, that our little beautiful daughter, mostly very serious but, when she smiled it could light up any place, told her


Shani reminded both
Amina and Amiri of
Amiri's murdered sister, Kimako


often about her Aunt, my sister, Kimako, how she got murdered by some Ignorant Negro Male Chauvinist Homophobic maniac, who tried to rape her and enraged by Kimako's also being gay, took the knife she raised to try to defend herself from her hands and used it on her, stabbing again and again until she fell dead, so disfigured by that knife, my father fainted at the morgue, and had to have the coffin closed . Like Shani, Kimako was an artist, a dancer and an actress, she was black, small and like our little Shani, Gay.

Shan! reminded both my wife and me of my sister.  And Shani apparently had very deeply identified with Kimako, asking Amina many questions over the years about her.  The way she was murdered.  How I had felt about her being Gay.  But I never knew that she believed she would die the same way!  Murdered by a homophobic Negro maniac.  She said she thought about that all the time, and the last time Shani told the girl she thought such a thing would happen to her soon!

My God!  My God!  So when we talked to our Black Mayor and our Black Police Director, our Black Politicians, our prosecutors from Piscataway, our Black and White policemen.  We said, you gotta find this maniac now, right away.  You see those young people sitting up and down the street, on our stairs, in our house, calling every minute.  Well they and we and many, many people in this town want you to find this murderer now, today, in a minute.  Because if you don't these children will try to bring their own kind of justice.  Which might end their lives as well.

This is a mostly Black & Brown City.  A Black Mayor.  A Black Police Director.  Elected by the people of this city or appointed with great expectations from those people.  To them we say, it is your job, which you have sworn to us to carry out.  That is why I have told all these snarling young folks and growling not so young ones to try to be cool, though this thing has hacked us to the bone, has shot us, like Shan!, directly in our heart.  The heart of the people and city of Newark.  You must find this maniac very soon, that is your job, that's what you are paid by us what you were elected by us to do.

But if you do not do it, and do it soon, then people will get angry past angry.  And some of them, especially the young ones might also lose their lives to the same killer.  And if that happens, no one will have to campaign against you in the next election and you or, you will have campaigned against yourself!  If you let the murderer of our little Shani get away anarchy will break out in this Brick City of ours.  And you will be cursed and screamed at and finally pulled down! 

Because there is no way we, I mean the parents, brothers and sisters, nieces and nephews, cousins, friends, colleagues, teammates, students or the youth coached by our little Shani, whom the Mayor will posthumously designate as "A Newark Hero" for her stunning work and first as a Head Coach, of guiding our children to victory in San Francisco, just a couple of weeks ago at the International Youth Games.  No, we Will Not allow our little Shani to be murdered none of us in this city of our little Shani's birth, our own mostly working class, mostly Black & Brown City, We will not allow it!  And we will not allow you to permit it.  Not to our little Shani or to her heart's companion, Ray Ray.  Not anywhere!  Not Now.  Not Ever!  ##

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