Black Man Wrongfully Jailed due to Covid in PEI

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“The first person to be jailed for Covid in Canada happens to be a Black man in PEI.

The Island might disagree on a lot,
But we agree that community is key to being an Islander.
Being good to your neighbour and all that small town jazz
And to overt racism, Islanders generally try to disasocciate with that.
Systemic and covert racism thrives here though.
That’s what keeps melanated people like me, wondering who will be next, when, under what circumstances.
In PEI, the police can’t exactly start shooting Black people,
That will fuck up tourism and the fake khumbaya sense of “togetherness”.
So court is where a lot of us go to die.
A different death.
Its amazing what a publication ban and biased media can hide.
Even we, the BIPOC community often don’t know what is happening in white majority Island systems,
especially justice.

PEI is a racist province.
We should all know this by now.
People are “nice,” maybe even too nice to address the racism.
They would rather ignore it. Pretend its not here even when its glaringly obvious.
What often happens in most cases of local racism is we get harmed but we’re not usually getting fucked over so we suck it up and find other ways to deal with it.

Until NOW.

Javan, A Black man is in prison for covid.
The first person to be imprisoned due to covid in Canada.
He never committed a crime.
This is a public health issue instead of a criminal issue.
He is being punished for being Black and being in a mental health crisis during a pandemic.
Are we not exempt from mental health struggles?
Even during a pandemic?

Can we also acknowledge how hard it is to be Black in north America right now?
If every Black person had a mental breakdown at some point in the last 500yrs it would be justified.
In 2020, It should almost be expected.
Instead we are criminalized.

Javan was thrown in jail in July.
He is still there.
A month and some later.

Do you see the absurdity?????

He has charges in 2 counties,
SIX charges including threatening an officer.
It’s in the Supreme Court.
He has barely spoken to anyone on the outside since.
He didn’t commit any crime.
He followed the quarantine rules.
He was arrested on the final day of his quarantine.
He went out for air.
He said he was going to die if he went back in the hotel room.
That’s not someone you take to prison.
If we’re the society we say we are, he should have gotten the mental health support he needed.

But he is Black.

The justice system is bent on ruining his life.
6 charges might not be six bullets through his back
But they are six shots at his future.
If this does not ruin his future,
It will severely impact it.
Is this what we are doing now PEI?

His name was wrongfully published.
He has the right to privacy bc this is a health matter.
There is more respect/privacy when sharing STI information with an ex than what he was given by Island courts.
Many of you, some in this group, crucified that kid.
Sent him death threats.
Screen shots never forget.
Islanders said some vile shit, that even I can’t unsee.
Now Imagine him. At 22. In jail.
Knowing on the outside, white people are threatening to kill him.
Threatening to kill his friends.
Sending images of apes.
This is present day PEI not the Antebellum south in 1850.
This sort of racism happens here too!
This is our reality!

Island media “forgot” to mention he was Black bc that would draw too much attention in the wake of BLM
But the news went national & international without ever mentioning his race to protect racist systems.
His privacy was never protected as it should have been and now his name is everywhere.
For this, I will never forgive PEI media.
Fuck the guardian.

Eventually everyone went about their business and left a young man to rot under the most oppressive system in Canada.
But some curious cats went looking
And there it was.
White PEI doesn’t care for Black lives, unless for profit.
Again, we’re not discussing the deep south but the gentle Island.

It’s not always a racist neighbour we should be concerned about,
Its the police, the justice system, the prison staff and even your public health officer refusing to speak out on such a grave injustice.
If this wasn’t a series of racist acts, one of the aforementioned professionals would have intervened. Called it what it is.

Wrong.

It’s wrong for anyone to be treated this way for covid,
But its sadly no surprise its happening to an innocent Black man.
The severity of his punishment is due to his being Black.
Period.
This is why we continue to scream Black Lives Matter.
Because our lives clearly don’t matter.

We don’t always have to get shot to be killed.
There are many ways to skin a cat.

Here’s some irony
See ,If I was a 22 yr old international student during a pandemic, I would want to go home even though that wasn’t my best option.
You know what else we’re not allowed to do during a pandemic??
GO HOME!!!!
And that could drive me mad.

I’m Bipolar AF, catch me when I’m manic and there’s no reasoning.
I’ve been in Javan’s shoes, including jail, the only thing is I grew up here so deportation was not an option.

The courts are giving Javan 2 options
Plead guilty or go home.
With a long list of charges.
The way visas work, he likely won’t be able to travel outside of his country for a long, long time.
Island racism will go as far as impacting international law.

Finally,
We can all see how wrong this is.
And if you can’t then you’re the racists the Island needs to address.

Tell me this,
Where does Island “goodness” stop?
When dealing with Black people?
At come from aways?
At a 22yr old struggling to make sense of the fuckery that is 2020?

Many of you are responsible for what just happened to this kid.
The least you can do is start to do right.
The karma that is coming for you assholes that sent death threats though.
Nkt.

Since PEI seems to really care about tourism,
Lets keep it 100 while we’re at it.
In 2020, no one wants to travel to a place where Black folks are asking for their lives to matter and not being heard.
People don’t wanna vacation somewhere polarized.
Ahem USA.
Racism will never work in the Islands favour.
But Anti- Racism will.

So,
PEI, Don’t let a different pandemic ruin the Island.
DO THE RIGHT THING.
BE ANTI-RACIST.”

#FreeJavan

 

!!!!!!!!!!!! ASKS !!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Javan to be released
Charges to be dropped

How to get these asks:

- Write letters to Justice minister Bloyce Thompson and deputy minister.
- Call your MLA
- Call your MP
- Call sleepy hollow ask for Scott McCade(prison CO)
- #freeJavan on social media
- Flood the #discovercharlottetown tag with Free Javan and other Island tourism hashtags.
- Mobilize. We will ask you to show up for his court dates.

“Black lives matter even more so when they try to make us believe they don’t.”

Post by Tarichia King Kendi on Facebook