The Big Payback: O.J. Simpson

When boxer Mike Tyson was convicted of raping Miss Black Rhode Island, Desiree Washington, in an Indianapolis hotel room, for which he served three years in prison, we threw him a parade upon his release.

When singer R. Kelly finally went to trial for 12 counts of child pornography, after a video of what really looked like him urinating on an underage girl surfaced online and in every hood across America, we stood in front of the courthouse with signs that read “free R. Kelly” and continued to flock to his concerts and buy his albums.

And even when football legend and actor O.J. Simpson was acquitted of murdering his ex-wife Nicole Brown Simpson, a white woman, and her friend Ronald Goldman in 1995, much to the ire of whites across America, there was a since of vindication not only for Simpson but for Black America. I remember hearing the shouts of praise, hallelujah, and glory to God coming from houses up and down the street as Black people came out of their homes and celebrated.

However, when the verdict came down this weekend, in record time I might add, that Simpson had been found guilty by an all white jury in Las Vegas, Nevada of robbery with a deadly weapon, burglary with a firearm, assault with a deadly weapon, first-degree kidnapping with use of a deadly weapon, coercion with use of a deadly weapon, conspiracy to commit robbery, conspiracy to commit kidnapping, and conspiracy to commit a crime…not a word from Black America.

Whether it’s admitted publicly or not, Black America is not found of Black men, especially sports athletes and celebrities, who choose to marry white women. To be fair, neither is white America, who has had a hatred for O.J. since his murder acquittal 13 years ago.

All that withstanding, Black America still stood by Simpson’s side throughout his murder trial, assuming he’d learned his lesson.

The lesson that dictates if your Black ass gets off for murdering a white woman once, you do not take your ass back out there and find yourself another white woman while turning your back on the people who had your back when no one else did.

Unfortunately, for O.J., his biggest mistake was choosing to abandon the community that stood by him in spite of his indiscretions.

As my Aunt so plainly put it, “he’s never been one of us. He’s always thought he was one of them.”

I think it’s clear that Black America is no longer in O.J.’s corner and once your ghetto pass is revoked, it’s almost impossible to get it back. Just ask country singer Cowboy Troy, who sung at this year’s Republican National Convention, Secretary of State Condoleeza Rice, Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas, commentator Armstrong Williams, and Bill and Hillary Clinton.

That’s why you can have grown women including Angieniki, Jerhonda, and friends, standing in front of a Chicago courthouse holding signs in support of a Black man who has a history of pedophilia like behavior with underage Black females, and yet nothing from those same women for a brotha who is on trial in a conservative mostly white county with a jury of all white people for crimes that are in my opinion far less egregious than pedophilia.

See R. Kelly, for what it’s worth and that isn’t much, never turned his back on Black America and in return, Black America reciprocated by overlooking the video showing someone that looks an awful lot like him urinating on an underage girl, his marriage to underage singer Aaliyah, allegations in Polk County Florida of 12 counts of possession of child pornography when authorities alleged to have found a digital camera containing 12 pictures of an underage female with three of them showing Kelly and her engaged in intercourse, a lawsuit filed by a Chicago woman who accused Kelly of going “half on a baby” and impregnating her when she was a teen-ager and forcing her to have an abortion, and most recently, as in this year, allegations from Kelly’s longtime publicist, Regina Daniels and her husband George that Kelly was having a secret affair with their college-age daughter, Maxine, right under their noses.

Throughout all of that, Kelly kept it real with Black America, never forgetting his roots.

Now had O.J. come out of his trial in 1995 with the attitude that he was in fact a Black man living in America and acted accordingly, I can’t say he wouldn’t have been found guilty, but chances are, “some Black leader” would have called for a march on Las Vegas by now and for a re-trial due to the fact that a Black man was convicted by an all white jury.

Instead, white America is celebrating from coast to coast because Simpson will quite possibly be going away to prison for life. Something they’ve wanted to happen for the past 13 years. But worst of all, Simpson is left without the support of Black America, who can be a force to be reckoned with when angered…just ask shock jock Don Imus and Black Congressional Members who choose to support Sen. Hillary Clinton over Sen. Barack Obama during the Presidential primary season.

It’s a known fact that troubled Black celebrities cannot afford to lose the support of Black America. And while that support isn’t always defensible, as in the cases of R. Kelly and Mike Tyson, it can make all the difference in times like these.

And if O.J. thinks he’s lonely now, wait until he meets his cellmates in a Nevada state prison, where some would argue the majority of that state’s Blacks are housed and where perhaps for the first time in his life, he will realize that he is a Black man living in America…albeit a bit too late.

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The Court of Public Opinion

  • Wonderlove

    I feel no sympathy for this negro.

  • Tina

    I really have no sympathy for OJ in this case or the killing of his wife’s case. I thought he was guilty and because Johnny C. gave such a strong rebuttle this is why he won that case but I always thought he killed Nicole. He beat her so killing was only the next thing and he did it. Now he wants to get off again? This is Nicole working from the grave and this time he will get time and some of her justice will be served. Oh, and lastly just because I’m black, OJ’s black does not make him not guilty.

  • Tiffany

    Well, no sympathy here. And I was pissed that R Kelly got off. OJ was likely guilty the 1st time but in a way I was happy he beat the system. This time he beat himself. He was stupid. You can’t defeat white america twice. It’s arrogant. And foolish. I knew he was going to be going to prison for SOMETHING after he wrote “If I Did It.” Oh yes, he spat in white America’s face with that one! They were sharpening their blades and tightening their ropes then.

  • Yohann Le Moigne

    Dear Mrs. Cannick,
    I read you article called “The big payback: O.J. Simpson” and I want to make some comments about it.
    First of all, I’ve got a problem with the distinction that you made between “Black” and “White America”…
    The only fact of marrying a white woman excludes a black man from “black America”? Does a black man married with a white woman betray his race or abandon his community? That’s what you say when you write “The lesson that dictates if your Black ass gets off for murdering a white woman once, you do not take your ass back out there and find yourself another white woman while turning your back on the people who had your back when no one else did.”
    Moreover you compare the support that people like R.Kelly received from the “black America” with the disregard of the black community for Simpson’s trial. You say that R. Kelly never turned his back to the community, that he never forgot hid roots: is it a joke? Making daft songs that glorify money (and that discredit the Hip-hop culture), video clips with naked bitches and luxury cars, do you really think that it’s the better way of representing the black America?
    You seem to pretend that any black man who has to face a trial must be defended by the community, whatever he is and whatever he did! But do you really think that every black men on earth are struggling for social justice and for the rights of the “black community”? What do you think of the African statesmen who came to power thanks to the Western Countries and who organize the looting of their own countries by these western countries? They’re black too! But do you really think that they act for the black people? As Frantz Fanon said, the white men who fought for independence with natives in Africa were blacker than every African statesmen who came to power after the decolonisation and who sold out to western capitalism.
    You make a distinction between good black men and traitor, but I think you don’t point the fingers at the real traitors. Yasser Arafat had a white christian wife. Did he betray the Palestinian cause? Of course not! R.Kelly might have a black wife, a black dog, a black Mercedes or anything else, HE IS A TRAITOR, just like all the mainstream rappers and singers and the new-riches, free-market supporters!
    Then, you talk about “white America” as if it was a homogeneous group. White America doesn’t exist, neither black America. I hope you know that there are more white poors than black poors in the US. The proportion of poor people might be bigger among the black community ( that’s scandalous and it must be fought!) but if you look at the numbers, there are more poor people in the white community than in every other community. So pretending that there is a rich racist white America opposed to a poor black America just doesn’t make sense.
    You also regret the fact that Simpson did things that resulted in the lack of support of black America, because having the support of such a numerous community could influence greatly the result of his trial. Is the simple fact of being black a sufficient pretext no to be fairly juged or to be supported by the whole black community whatever he did?
    Finally, you attack black people who supported Hillary Clinton instead of Barack Obama. What’s the problem with that? Every black men should vote for Obama just because he’s black? Do you really think he gives a fuck about the social condition of the black community? Does he propose a universal welfare? NO! He proposes nothing socially speaking! He’s “one of them” too! (I’ll give you that it would be better for the world that Obama be elected! But that’s not sufficient to be qualified of “progressive”!).
    I’ll finish by saying that, to me, there is no race distinction to do, but a class distinction!
    Excuse my English! It’s very hard to go into details in English when it’s not your native tongue. It’s possible that my comprehension of your text has been caused by a lack of mastery of english, I’d like you to explain to me what i misunderstood. I made you a friend request on internet.
    Kind regards from Paris, France,
    Yohann Le Moigne.

  • Hmmm. The picture you paint of Black America is one that depicts an obtuse, monolithic group with little or no regard for the facts. A group of people with a simple, blind adherence to race… moving and thinking like lemmings off of some cliff.

    In other words, a mass of idiots.

    The examples you site are disturbing. I remember the shot of the “Free R. Kelley” signs. I thought “What the f*ck?!”

    What have we become when we can ignore the abominable degradation of a young girl, one of our children, in favor of keeping the criminal out of jail simply because he is Black.
    A disgusting disregard for humanity…

    O.J. should have been locked-up long ago; if for nothing else, stupidity and arrogance. A lethal combination. That mixture has finally caught up with him. I could care less.

    R. Kelley should be in prison right now; face down and ass up in front of his 300lb cell mate who calls him “his sweet, little Kelley-Girl”.

    When all is said and done, we, like white folks, must learn to “get over” the color thing. Stupid is stupid, wrong is wrong, and Malcolm and Martin were sold out by someone just as black as they were.


  • jordonj

    My father is a judge and he was appalled by the conduct of Judge Ito in the first trial. I think that if Ito had been more focused on keeping the trial in the courtroom, and not in the media (not to mention covering his own ass), I think a guilty verdict would have been reached. I do believe that he got away with murder. I do not, however see this as “payback”, I see this as his getting caught committing another crime, and being punished for it.

    I am also outraged that R. Kelly was acquitted and I can’t say that Mike Tyson is a positive influence.