In just a few days, we will celebrate Martin Luther King Day, and his dream that one day children of all colors will hold hands in love and in the march for freedom. When will we ever reach that point? The recent news of the Karley Buckland incident shows how much more work we have to do on the issues of racism in Portland and the whole United States.
Karley Buckland, a white teenager. was recently beaten and injured by a couple of black teenagers as she boarded a Max train by the Clackamas mall. This is a sad story, but it is far more complicated than the media narrative of innocent little white kid beat up by gangster black thugs.
Portland is the most racist place in which I have ever lived (and I have lived all over the United States). Nobody questions this story, instead they make racist comment after racist comment on OregonLive and other online news sources. They say these black girls are “animals” who just starting beating on Karley Buckland without any provocation.
Really? How many times have you seen anyone just start walloping another person out of the blue, with no provocation? I have never seen this. But, you, Portland, go ahead and just keep sticking your heads in the sand. Keep calling this is a black “hate crime.” You don’t understand.
Karley Buckland and Middle School Politics
I can tell you what happened. It’s the same thing that happens every day in every American middle school and high school. Karley was a bully.
Karley Buckland probably never laid a hand on anyone, but she used her white privilege to look down on her minority classmates and enemies. She spread rumors and vicious lies about them, about their boyfriends, their love interests. Schools do precious little to stop this emotional bullying, especially when white kids do it to students of color.
The article states that Karley Buckland sings in the choir, plays sports, and is on student council. All of these activities require money. Also, her family seemed to have enough money to immediately hire a private lawyer. Money comes from privilege.
Karley Buckland obviously has access to resources which some of her classmates can only dream about. Certainly Rakeshia Burns (one of her black attackers) does not come from a family that can support sports and singing. She is probably fighting to barely survive, like most black people in Portland.
Of course, Rakeshia and her sisters should not have reacted in such violence, it is wrong to cause physical harm to another, and they are paying for it legally. But how many weeks, months, years, did Rakeshia have to listen to Karley Buckland, and all the other white Karleys and Karls of her school, flaunt white privilege and say nasty comments before Rakeshia snapped? What did Karley say to her that day on the Max that was the last straw?
Of course, we may never know the truth. Whoever took the video obviously edited it to make Karley Buckland look completely innocent. Where is the footage from the beginning of the fight? What was said before fists started flying? And who took that video? Was it one of Karley’s friends, hoping for their five minutes of fame as well?
Why did nobody intervene? And why is the Trimet footage conveniently damaged? One media report did state that the first Trimet officer who responded to the scene said that Karley instigated the fight. He later retracted his statement, probably under pressure.
Karley Buckland claims to not know the suspects, but it was her own classmates at Centennial Middle School that identified the suspects to police. Therefore, these were neighborhood kids, and almost certainly Karley’s classmates.
Karley is lying. Karley’s family is gun-ho on sending these black kids to jail, but in the end, the Bucklands will be ultimately responsible for destroying lives and furthering the cruel sting of racism in Portland