Creshuna Miles

I have a hard time believing a person named Creshuna Miles – who rocks a hairstyle that gives you Wiz Khalifa, the early years – doesn’t know about bias – notably those related to race. That’s not a diss to Creshuna; merely a reminder than if no other group on Earth knows what it’s like to be prejudged based on the superficial, it is Black folks. So, like the parents of Jordan Davis, I initially found it a bit disingenuous for her to dismiss the role race played in the shooting death of Davis at the hands of Michael Dunn, aka the person who keeps euphemisms like “thug music” in his arsenal (along with more dangerous weaponry).

As previously reported, when asked about those who feel race played a key role in Davis’ death, Creshuna argued, “I never once thought about, ‘Oh, this was a black kid, this was a white guy.’ Because that was – that wasn’t the case.” She went on to say those who feel otherwise ought to “knowledge themselves on the law.” God bless her or whatever, but the phrase “knowledge themselves” speaks volumes.

In response to the interview, Jordan Davis’ father, Ron Davis said, “I don’t think she’s being genuine. For her as an African-American female to go into this case, with this type of evidence, with this type of rage, with [Dunn] saying ‘thug music,’ how can you as a juror not think this is about race?”

Davis’ mother, Lucia McBath, added, “I think she didn’t want it to be about race. I think she really hoped that that was not an element of it. But it’s always been an element of what happened in our case.”

Both handled the matter with gracious as humanly possible. Personally, I’m not sure how well I would handle a Black person dismissing the role racism played in my child’s murder. Not to mention describing the killer as a “nice person.”

Still, no matter how frustrating watching any Black person go out of their way to dodge racism even when it appears so aggressively, I do feel sorry for Creshuna Miles. And all of us really.

I could feign rage. I could be venomous. I could go ad hominem. None of that would reach Crushuna, though.

Sadly, she is a victim of conditioning. After I got over my initial anger, I rewatched the interview and drew a different conclusion: Way to go, white people. You’re winning the race to make the persecuted feel guilty for calling out the white hood in plain sight.

We have been conditioned to think that talking about race is problematic even if racism goes upside our heads, kicks us in the back of the leg, or in some cases, shoots one of us in the head. Of course, there are those who refuse to ignore racism – particularly in the media (hello, Melissa Harris-Perry, big sister, brilliant and gorgeous one) – but even then, the majority is quick to counter that with another Black face willing to shout “LA LA LA LA, NO RACISM HERE, IT’S SO YOUR FAULT, NEGROES” for a come up and cash out. I mean, Creshuna was interviewed on CNN, home of Don “Pull Up Your Pants, and Hey, So Many Of Y’all Do Look Alike” Lemon.

So as disheartening as it was to hear Creshuna sound so “post-racial,” we have to recognize that her line of thinking and the manner in which it was presented was white supremacy at work. She’ll get her Negro wake up call in due time, but until then, we have to remind each other that we when it comes to talking about racism, we shouldn’t worry about inconveniencing other people as it us being constantly inconvenienced by it.

Michael Arceneaux is from the land of Beyoncé, but now lives in the city of Master Splinters. Follow him at @youngsinick.

  • Kam

    Yeah when I rewatched the interview again I thought something’s not right. She looks uncomfortable and is saying all the “right” things, though it looks like she doesn’t really believe what she is saying.

  • IntellBlackman

    This is not surprising. Educated, intelligent blacks are systematically excluded from jury pools. Someone like Creshuna Miles is easily swayed by a white majority. In Philadelphia it was revealed that a former District Attorney held a regular, secret class teaching new Assistant DAs how to exclude blacks from juries. They don’t want us on juries at all, but the days of all white juries are over. The next best thing is to have ignorant, indigent black folks who are incapable of deductive reasoning. White defendants routinely get a majority white jury. In this case I believe 8 of the 12 jurors were white. When’s the last time you’ve seen a black defendant get 8 black jurors? Never! We’re lucky if we get two or three at the most.

    One of the few exceptions to this was the infamous case of Ted Bundy. He was convicted and sentenced to death by a jury comprised of eight blacks. That’s why he was executed. (Usually) We are easily able to see through the bullsh*t.

    From a defense standpoint, they want jurors who are able to empathize with the defendant. When a white juror sees Michael Dunn, the don’t see a murderer. They see their uncle, their father, their brother, their neighbor, their co-worker, etc. It’s hard for them to see this person (who reminds them of a loved one) as a killer. This is just one reason the legal system is stacked against us from the start.

  • RJ

    My thoughts exactly. Well done Michael.

  • starr

    I didn’t even bother watching the interview when i saw it show up on my various news feed.

  • noirluv45

    I agree with every point Michael made. So many of the young Blacks (older too) are clueless. I recall Richard Sherman saying he was surprised by the racial taunts he received after he put Michael Crabtree on blast. I was surprised that HE was surprised.

    She either believes the nonsense she spewed or she’s “playing it safe.” Perhaps she’s thinking that what she says may affect the retrial. I can’t call it, but I hope, if she believes what she said, that she gets a wake up call.

  • Yes, I’m That Leah

    My Gosh! What planet is she living on? I suggest she gets back to planet black!

    And Jordan’s parents don’t need to waste any more time trying to “reach” this waste of a juror…

  • MimiLuvs…

    “… So many of the young Blacks (older too) are clueless…”

    I’ve noticed this with the younger generation (well, the ones that I know); with the “Me Generation”.
    But, I’ve noticed that these kids are from “the talented tenth” upbringings, they were raised in environments where they were the “one of five black kids” and the topic of racism wasn’t explained extensively.

  • Courtney H.

    Excellent commentary, Michael! I also agree with the other comments given. These are great points that have been made.

  • Terri

    Oops, I accidentally reported your comment, sorry about that. But I think this girl beleives what she is saying. I think she thinks it makes her seem MORE intelligent or, “not like the rest of them” by saying it has nothing to do with race. She may not seem like her thought process is that nuanced but I think she shares the belief with a lot of our “less enlightened” brothers and sisters that racism doesn’t exist any more because they don’t lynch us, or because we can share public bathrooms with whites. She honestly beleives that because she and no one else in the deliberation room said aloud or in their heads, “This guy is white and I hate black people, so the choice is obvious! We vote in the favor of Dunn!” that means race had nothing to do with it. She doesn’t understand the concept of internalized racism, probably because the subject has never been presented to her in a way that she can understand, but the possibility of that being involved with this case is not even on her mental radar.

  • mEE

    this is definitely something I’ve noticed about the younger generation. I’m 27 and my younger brother is 24. raised in the same household. same parents. same education. I would think he’d have even more sensitive to racism than I am because he’s a Black male…but nope. he won’t come straight out and say something is not racist but he always wants to say, “well maybe they mean it this way” or “I don’t know if that’s REALLY considered racism”. it makes me want to scream.

    I used to think it was a personality thing but then I realized all his friends and almost all my younger cousins are the same way. they really think we’re the racists for acknowledging that there is in fact racism.

    the greatest trick the devil ever pulled…

  • WhatIThink

    She is right. This isn’t about race, it is about murder.
    A man pulled a gun on some teens sitting in a truck who played their music too loud.

    And so, seeing as they were unarmed, how is it not murder?

    That is the only question I want to ask this woman. Did she or did she not think this man was guilty of murder?

    This isn’t a hate crime trial and therefore, she is actually quite correct, Mr Dunn is not on trial for a hate crime. He is on trial for murder.

  • 1989

    When I was younger I thought about things in the same way Creshuna does now; I had no real understanding of how pervasive and, really, insidious racism is in today’s world. I bought into the whole “Kumbayah” view of society b/c that’s what I was spoon-fed by media and in school and no one talked to me about it. It’s only now that we (my friends and I) are in our early to mid twenties that the blinders are off and we see things for how they really are.

  • noirluv45

    MimiLuvs, yes, I have noticed that as well. Many of these kids were raised in all-White areas and they had many White friends, so they see things from that perspective instead of a world perspective.

    That is so true about their parents not explaining racism to them. Many of the parents live in a “Kumbayah” world too, and are in major denial. They do their children no favors.

  • The Other Jess

    Thank you for thinking WhatIThink and not going with the mob mentality on this case. It’s a murder case plain and simple. There are plenty of racial cases, like with Trayvon martin. This, however, is not one of them. Jordan Davis case = Adrian Broadway case.

    What does a white murderer who shoots into a car of teens have in common with a black murderer who shoots into a car of teens? They’re both murderers of black youth and could care less about black children.

  • Yes, I’m That Leah

    Oh, My teenage daughter is the same way! If I point something out as being racist, or talk about how messed up it was for me growing up in the 70′s and 80′s…my daughter will roll her eyes and say “Ma. You at it again? Like, ughh really. You need to calm down. For real”. She looks at me as if I’m some kind of insect that needs the Raid treatment.

    My daughter forgets that I’m also carrying around my mother’s pain, and her mother’s pain. Also, my dad’s pain.

    I agree Mee! And it’s also not cool for young black people to acknowledge racism…because it makes them think of that “old depressing Civil Rights stuff”!

  • WhatIThink

    Don’t misunderstand what I am saying. My point is that even if we buy her argument about “race”, did she or did she not feel this gentleman was guilty of murder and why?
    If she is saying that she didn’t convict the man of murder BECAUSE this case isn’t about race then she is contradicting herself. Her argument is that you shouldn’t convict this man based on “race” but on the evidence. Fine. Based on all the evidence I have heard, there is no reason this man shouldn’t be guilty of at least manslaughter or 2nd degree murder.

    That is the only question we should be asking jurors in a case like this I would think.

  • lil ray

    Just the same mess that Cosby said about the Trayvon Martin case.

  • AJ

    Hmm What if we started training blacks to lie during jury selection? If we know anything we know that white people would just jump at the chance to put a black face on top of their oppression (case in point). Could there even be a law against that?

  • vintage3000

    “Mr Dunn is not on trial for a hate crime.”

    When was the last time you saw a white person refer to another white as “thug”?

  • vintage3000

    I wonder what Creshuna thinks Dunn was referring to when he said “thug music”.

    I used to think younger Blacks like Creshuna should be required to look at civil rights era footage of Whites physically attacking our ancestors, or lynching photos with mobs of smiling White men, women and children pointing at a roasted Black body. Now I think that’s a mistake, for all the reasons everyone has noted here. These younger generations need to see current news stories of white college students in blackface and holding up watermelons, or discuss why they think adult White republicans have distributed offensive emails about our president, then claim they had no idea this was racism. Or even just go on numerous youtube videos where the word nigger is being used frequently, and not as a term of endearment. Or why so many White people support Zimmerman, and honor him as their hero.

    There is no excuse for so many Black people to be this damn clueless about what is happening in this country, Creshuna needs to be ashamed for allowing herself to be the whitefolks proxy for this verdict.

  • Tony

    uhhhhh, 27 and 24 is the same generation.

  • vintage3000

    I was thinking that, too. Since they do everything in their power to keep us off a jury, we should be able to try our damnedest to get on one, esp. for high profile tragedies like this.

  • geenababe

    I agree with this article and like I said before this post racial/color blindness will hurt black people because we will be giving 100 percent (all of us) while other groups give maybe 80 at the most. Sadly I feel a lot of younger blacks (not all) are starting to ignore racism and inherited some of the vocabulary that racist use. I have seen black people say “race card”. I have seen black people write long paragraph about how black people are doing “reverse racism”. I have seen so many times black people actually say black people are more racist than whites. It’s sad to say the least. These people will be quickly befriend any white person and see nothing wrong when they post something racist on their social media page. Just think about some of the articles on here about racist posting racist things on their pages, how many of them do you think had a black friend on their friend’s list?

  • geenababe

    I remember when there was a big trial in our city and not if any blacks were chosen. The local news did a little report and they said that most times black on juries tend to vote guilty when it’s a black defendant. I don’t know if I believe that.

    The only time I really see a lot of black people on juries is when I am watching Law and Order.

  • geenababe

    I agree same thing with my younger sister.

  • waddell parks

    As frustrating as is was to watch and hear Creshuna Miles, juror #8 state that race was not a factor I could not blame her for her naivete. To me it just demonstrated how we as people have failed to educate our young people about our struggle and how this generation finds shame it acknowledging it. The bigger issue is the great knowledge gap between Black youth and their history. Just look at House Wives of Atlanta, one of the shows stars thought the Underground Railroad was a real train, Nicki Minaj’s miss use of Malcolm X’s iconic photo. We give too much coverage to Beyonce and Jay Z for doing nothing and not enough to to the real heroes of our community, who died fighting for the rights that we still have to fight for today. So, don’t blame Creshuna Miles for her ignorance. My heart goes out to Davis family.

  • stef

    going by what the written instructions were to her as a juror is what she did. I dont know if she was the only black juror, but what if she is and she was vocal juror that expressed this was all about race even though the prosecutors did not.

    she could have actually did more harm than any good. she could have caused a complete mistrial. she was asked to do a job as a fair and impartial juror she did her job.

    If you have a problem with race not being brought up bring it up with the state prosecutors no her

  • Courtney H.

    @ Waddell:

    I agree. I was at another blog this weekend, and several commenters were saying that we shouldn’t attack Crashuna Miles, but the prosecution who f*cked up this case, as well as the Trayvon Martin case. It is Whites who are the ones in charge of the “just his” system, not Blacks. We should be attacking racism and white supremacy, not fellow Blacks.

  • mim

    When I initially watched the video, I was surprised/enraged- words really could not describe how I felt. I waited for bloggers to pick up on this story and hear their point of view. All I can say is that its a sad day in America to see what our youth have turned into. They all have been conditioned to believe that racism does not exist. Trust me! I know. They are conditioned to believe that we are the racist ones by thinking issues in america are racist. For instance, I almost 30 right now. I attended a predominantly white school from 3-18. We did have a few other blacks there. I can recall the white kids always doing the “black accent” on a daily basis (making fun of the blacks that did not speak “proper”. That was completely racist! But back then, we were conditioned to believe that it wasn’t but it truly was and I feel that being so few blacks there, we were scared to rise up. It takes one person to standup for what they truly believe in and Creshuna had the opportunity. I really like to hear how her family felt and their opinion of things. I checked her twitter and browsed her Facebook. She works at Mcdonalds and I am guessing did not attend college (not to say college kids don’t work at Mcdonalds).
    This is how white america keeps us at the bottom of the barrel- take fools like this and thrust them into the spotlight by getting them to say what they need them to say and disposing them afterwards. Unfortunately, for Creshauna, I can’t see anything good coming out of this. An interview with Pierce Morgan- nope. A college scholarship like the other black girl in Trayvon’s trial-nope. Nothing. Even the white people know this case was about race! Its sad because I believe she just wants acceptance by white society and by looking like a “Race card puller” she feels she won’t get it. I know people like this!

    As another commenter stated- her negroe card will hit her.

    I worked in the corporate america for 8 years and white folks blatantly say we throw the race card around about anything, but the issues that they allude to would not be an issue if that person was not black.

  • TheTruth

    It’s well-documented that most Blacks hate each other. That’s why the number one killer of Blacks, above high blood pressure and HIV, is other Blacks.

    Strangely enough, you don’t hear Black people lament about that fact nearly as much as they do when someone else of a different race pulls the trigger.

    I’m not saying racism doesn’t exist, but tacking it on to every interracial crime is bad form. When Blacks kill Whites or punch them out randomly (knock-out game anyone?) the Black community is conveniently silent, while Whites focus on the actual crime first. The knock-out game is clearly racially charged yet I have not once heard race brought up as an issue regarding the crimes committed on behalf of the victims. No doubt, the subject of race was avoided as not to upset the “community” from which the criminals were sprouted which is downright laughable.

    Every race on this planet has something about it that annoys me personally, which is why I just despise humans overall. But, since Blacks are in the spotlight yet again, I’ll have to say that the overt whining about racism is ridiculous and not getting you anywhere. Enough already.

  • geenababe

    Please get out of here with this bull. I never read so crap in my life.

  • Jenosaykwa

    “The Truth”, that’s a funny name for you condsidering what you’re saying.It’s also well documented by statistics that black on black crime is no more prevalent than white on white crime. It’s because blacks are more likely to live by other black people and whites are more likely to live by other whites therefore, when they commit a crime the victim is most likely going to be of their own race.

  • Amber

    Hello Troll…. I mean Truth. Not only is it just false that most black people hate eachother…look around you. This is a place of love. We may disagree on things but this site and millions of others are examples of our love for eachother and desire to support eachother. In fact, the “knockout game” you mentioned I actually first read about on this site….and we even talked about the dimensions of race involved! As did all of the other news coverage that I saw about it.

    I get that lots of people, black and white, have trouble grappling with the very real influence of racism in their everyday lives. In this case I do take offense because an innocent boy is dead. If everyone in this thread was murdered the first time they played loud music and mouthed off to an adult as a teenager no one would be alive to even talk about this issue.

    This was a crime against all Americans because it was a denial of simple, straight forward, justice.

  • Rossi Love

    With a name like Truth, you should research before you speak. There is no such thing as a knock out game. That was a media spin that has been apologised for. You need to understand terms. There is only one race on this planet. Human. You should comment that every time the victim is killed by a white person, don’t forget the police, it is never about race. The black society doesn’t have to say much when a member of the dominant society is killed by a black, because they are quickly apprehended and prosecuted to the full extent of the law. You will find this is not the case when the roles are reverse. I find it quite entertaining when members of the dominant society make there little slick comments and try to pretend there is not a grave injustice perpetrated against the black people in this country every day. I will leave you with this thought. Just because you say it is not racial, doesn’t mean that it isn’t! Oh, let me guess the members of the dominant society never lie. Let’s ask the Indians about that, or the 911 commisson report. Justice!

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