Monday, May 18, 2015

Beware the Bogeyman

When I moved from Brooklyn to Teaneck, the people in Teaneck kept telling me about "the Vikings" and warning me about the gang activity. Because I was a scrawny looking little girl with frizzy hair - people were pretty sure that I didn't know anything about gangs, because they didn't know much about Brooklyn. Adults were sure all the bad things were coming from this gang so I kept looking for the activity, the signs - they were still scared of a group that hadn't been active in their area for 20 years. 
So I find the current media treatment of the gang shoot out very odd in how minimized it's being and I see the silence of a WHOLE lot of people very critical of darker folk hurting store windows and cars. And here's the thing I'm old enough to think - Teaneck was about 48% black/ 48% Jewish - Is the reason I think middle class people are terrified of Biker Gangs and I'm surprised at the lack of reaction because unambiguously white middle class people are NOT afraid of biker gangs? 
Biker Gangs were a boogeyman in Teaneck, no one was worried about the crips/bloods style gangs which were real, but everyone had the sense to know they weren't part of Teaneck . . . 
I'm watching the silence on FB with 9 dead, police not breaking out military gear, HUNDREDS of Bikers traveling into the riot without blockades or helicopters or even riot gear that I've seen come out for two things - protests against police brutality and Occupy Wallstreet. 
9 people are dead. Not from protests. Guess white middle class folk really aren't scared of Biker Gangs. But I'm seeing pretty clearly why folk in Teaneck were.