American Justice

The American “Justice system” is a tiered one. The sentence you get for breaking the law depends not just on the nature of the crime or the manner or circumstances in which it is committed, but also on who the perpetrator is. If you happen to be African American, expect to be sentenced to the maximum length of prison term allowed or normally given for the crime in question. If you’re a Muslim, likewise, expect the book to be thrown at you, and if you happen to be both – black and Muslim – watch out. What do the believers say, God help you? And don’t expect showing remorse to make a dent in the severity of the punishment you get, either. You see, hatred is unmoved by such things as remorse or youth or environmental factors. Such things only work for the affluent white. They make bad mistakes, wrong decisions, error in judgement, etc., otherwise, are good, decent and respectable human beings who gave in to pressures of life and are victims of circumstances, unlike blacks and Muslims who are naturally violent and scary.

On 1 July, 2003, Abdul Shabazz, 54, and his son Musa Shabazz, 23, African American Muslim father and son – a bad combination – from Tallahassee, Florida, attempted to flee officer Perry who gave chase to their car. When they crashed their car, and were faced with the officer with his gun drawn, shooting ensued and Abdul shot Perry multiple times. And although Perry fully recovered and returned to work, both Shabazz’s were charged with first degree attempted murder which, if I understand the law correctly, means planning and attempting a premeditated murder. Not only was the charge clearly excessive since there was no plan or premeditation to commit murder, Abdul got the same sentence as one given for an actual successful premeditated first degree murder. But, wait, as TV infomercials would say: that’s not all. He got not one, not two, but three life sentences! His son who didn’t even do any shooting, got 20 years.

What made the sentence so harsh? One, they were black; two, they were Muslim; and three, the target of the shooting was a white police officer. If you tell me that the charge and the sentence handed down would have been the same had it been the other way around – that is, a white cop shooting a black Muslim who later recovers with the officer getting three life sentences and his junior partner who didn’t even do any shooting getting 20 years, I’ll say either you are completely ignorant about American “justice system” or you lie. Not only do cops routinely shoot and injure unarmed black and Latino teens, but they often kill them and they still get acquitted and serve no jail time, let alone three life sentences, especially when the subject isn’t even killed.


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