By Comrade Keirien, The Black Hammer Times Staff
The death disparities that black communities are facing during the COVID-19 pandemic reflect the societal and health inequalities that have existed well before the pandemic arose.
Systemic racism and state violence are tools of colonial oppression used by the united states; these tools are the cause of the disproportionate mortality rate in black communities.
In relation to the COVID-19 pandemic, it is often expressed that “blacks are more likely to die because they’re more likely to have underlying conditions.” This was also expressed by Dr. Fauci, the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious diseases during a white house briefing.
This is a scapegoat tactic to deflect the role of institutional and systemic violence in allocating resources and opportunities to Black communities in the united states.
According to data, nearly one-third of infections have affected blacks. Blacks only represent 13 percent of the u.s. population. Further, analysis show that nearly one-third of all those who have died from COVID-19 are Black.
Structural violence is the main culprit for the mortality disparity.
What are the structural conditions that are responsible for the racial death disparities?
Blacks are less likely to have healthcare access with hospitals farther away and inadequate pharmacies. Health problems in the Black community stem from the criminally inadequate resources in their communities.
Blacks are more likely to be considered essential workers. Thus, Black workers and their families are over-exposed to COVID-19. In this regard, quarantining is a class privilege and a white privilege.
Blacks are expendable objects of labor to the state. In New York City, the city with the highest infection rate, 70 percent of essential workers are people of color.
The criminally inadequate resources in Black communities force Blacks to serve the colonizer.
Their labor is not serving their communities but, instead is serving the colonizer’s communities.
Further, police harassment has a major impact on racial health disparities. Blacks have been stopped by the police for wearing masks. Wearing a mask is a health precaution, yet the police are using this as a tool to target Blacks.
Therefore, some Blacks are less likely to utilize personal protective equipment (PPE) to avoid further subjection to state violence.
However, while doing so Black people are also victims of state violence for not wearing masks. Video evidence has shown multiple pigs swarm and attack a Black man for not wearing PPE.
Africans in the u.s are dually prosecuted, the u.s. continues to subject Blacks to state violence as a means to force submission to the state. The u.s is not concerned with the public welfare of Blacks.
It is not in the interest, and never was in the interest, of the u.s to protect and help Black communities.
To blame the mortality rate of Blacks during this pandemic on this notion that the black community is more susceptible to COVID-19 due to underlying health conditions is to deny the intentional murder of Africans in the u.s.
On April 17th, Deborah Gatewood died from coronavirus. Deborah had two years left before retiring from a Detroit hospital. After multiple trips to the hospital she was told that is likely she had coronavirus yet, was not tested.
Kaila Corrothers, Deborah Gatewood’s daughter, stated “what bothers her most is that her mother was not treated well at the hospital where she worked for 31 years. She hopes that people do not get discouraged from seeking help the way her mother did after being turned away multiple times.” Deborah Gatewood (left) and daughter, Kaila Corrothers
The healthcare system only works to serve the health of the colonizers. The healthcare system’s resources itself is created through the exploitation of domestic colonized people and international colonized people.
Additionally racial bias in medical treatment and the racial empathy gap in perceived pain tolerance plays a major role in the death disparity. Black patients are spoken to rather than listened to.
These structural conditions are responsible for Blacks’ increased exposure, misdiagnosis, and death from the coronavirus.
The u.s is based upon colonialism. Inequality in community resources and the healthcare system are manifestations of colonialism that is responsible for the deaths of Blacks, not underlying conditions.
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The genocide of Blacks in the u.s will not end unless we destroy the structures which perpetuate it.