Girls are ready — particularly Black girls.
For an apology. For regret. For some humility. Hell, for even a modicum of self-awareness.
However I’m not holding my breath for any of that.
On Friday, a jury convicted Tory Lanez, a Canadian rapper whose actual title is Daystar Peterson, of assault and gun expenses within the Hollywood Hills capturing of fellow rapper Megan Thee Stallion, whose actual title is Megan Pete.
The decision comes greater than two years after Stallion informed police that Lanez attacked her throughout an argument that began whereas driving in an SUV alongside Nichols Canyon Street. When she requested to get out, he shot at her toes — apparently shouting, “Dance, b—!”
The accidents had been so unhealthy that she wanted surgery to remove bullet fragments from her left heel.
The sufferer on this case has at all times been clear. And but, you wouldn’t know that from the misogynistic mess that dominated headlines and social media earlier than and in the course of the trial in Los Angeles County Superior Courtroom.
Certainly, in hopes of clearing Lanez’s title, protection attorneys tried to pin the capturing on one other Black lady, trotting out a lame, male-ego-affirming argument in regards to the two girls getting right into a struggle as a result of they had been interested in the identical man — their consumer.
Much more terrible was Lanez himself, who released a whole album — which wasn’t his hottest, however wasn’t a flop both — about how he was being framed for capturing Stallion and insinuating that she had lied about the entire ordeal.
“How the f— you get shot in your foot,” he rapped, “don’t hit no bones or tendons?”
And quite than push again, the response from the broader hip-hop group ranged from conspicuous silence to outright settlement. Simply final month, Drake rapped on his new music with 21 Savage: “This b— lie about getting shot however she nonetheless a stallion.”
That is precisely why #BelieveBlackWomen and #ProtectBlackWomen had been trending on Twitter after the decision. Stallion way back identified how neither tends to occur.
“I used to be not too long ago the sufferer of an act of violence by a person. After a celebration, I used to be shot twice as I walked away from him. We weren’t in a relationship. In truth, I used to be shocked that I ended up in that place,” she wrote in an op-ed for the New York Occasions in late 2020.
“My preliminary silence about what occurred was out of concern for myself and my buddies. Whilst a sufferer, I’ve been met with skepticism and judgment. The best way individuals have publicly questioned and debated whether or not I performed a job in my very own violent assault proves that my fears about discussing what occurred had been, sadly, warranted.”
On Friday, Los Angeles County Dist. Atty. George Gascón praised Stallion’s “unimaginable braveness” for testifying, regardless of “repeated and grotesque assaults” on her character.
“Girls, particularly Black girls, are afraid to report crimes like assault and sexual violence as a result of they’re too usually not believed,” he mentioned in an announcement, which alluded to the ladies who testified in opposition to rapist Harvey Weinstein. “This trial, for the second time this month highlighted the quite a few ways in which our society should do higher for ladies.”
Even in California, girls, significantly Black and queer girls, are among the many most weak. Based on the Public Coverage Institute of California, the feminine jail inhabitants has elevated six-fold since 1970 — twice as a lot because the male inhabitants.
And there’s a brief line between girls who’re incarcerated and ladies who’re victims.
Typically, Black girls find yourself behind bars due to some mixture of poverty, habit and being within the mistaken place on the mistaken time with the mistaken man.
So, I’ll remind you once more about Lanez’s attorneys’ craven technique to persuade the jury that Stallion’s former greatest good friend, Kelsey Harris, was actually the shooter.
That didn’t work, clearly. Lanez now faces greater than 20 years in jail.
However a conviction doesn’t essentially imply that Stallion will obtain the apologies she is due, a lot much less see a few of that regret, humility and self-awareness I discussed. The legion of influencers who have made endless excuses for Tory Lanez had been mighty quiet on Friday.
Apart from Lanez’s father. Within the minutes after the decision was learn and Superior Courtroom Decide David Herriford set a sentencing listening to for late January, he jumped up from his seat within the courtroom and began yelling at prosecutors.
“This depraved system!” he mentioned, my colleagues James Queally and Jonah Valdez reported. “You might be depraved! You already know precisely what you probably did!”
Exterior, after sheriff’s deputies had escorted him and different kin from the courtroom, Lanez’s father continued ranting, cursing the report label Roc Nation for supposedly rigging the trial and promising a comeuppance from on excessive.
“It’s not over! It’s NOT over,” he shouted. “God doesn’t lose!”
Or possibly this isn’t about God.
Perhaps Lanez is simply responsible. And possibly it’s time, as soon as and for all, that we imagine and defend Black girls.