On the Death of Honestie Hodges:

How Much Longer Will We Allow This Murderous System to Steal the Precious Lives of Our Youth?

| revcom.us


From a Reader

On November 24, the New York Times reported the death of Honestie Hodges, a 14-year-old Black girl in Grand Rapids, Michigan. 

Honestie’s grandmother described her as “my beautiful, sassy, smart, loving granddaughter.” She said, “She could have been the vice-president one day or maybe the president. The world was open to her.” 

Honestie was a precious child, in that way like millions of others. But there is more to her story.

When Honestie was 11 years old, as she was leaving the house with her mom to go to the store, she was confronted by cops with their guns out screaming orders. Honestie’s mom shouted back, “She is 11 years old sir!” The cop told her to “stop yelling” and ordered Honestie to walk backwards to him with her hands up. As Honestie pleaded “no, no, no,” another cop yanked her arms behind her back and cuffed her.

Later Honestie said: “I have a question for the Grand Rapids police: If this happened to a white child, if her mother was screaming, ‘She’s 11,’ would you have handcuffed her and put her in the back of a police car?”

Honestie survived this encounter and was released—she was “luckier” than Tamir RiceAiyana Stanley-JonesNicholas Heyward Jr., or the many other Black children murdered by police.

But she did not survive this system; she did not survive the COVID-19 epidemic, which the fascist Trump/Pence regime has allowed—has actually encouragedto run rampant, knowing full well that in this country Black and Latino people are becoming infected and are dying at much higher rates than white people from this disease, due to the systemic racism in health care, in housing, and in the economy.

On November 9, her birthday, Honestie developed severe stomach pains. She was taken to the hospital, tested positive for COVID-19—and was sent home. By that evening she was back in the hospital, in intensive care. On November 14, she was placed on a ventilator and died not long after.

Her grandmother said she had been “healthy and happy” with no underlying condition. 

Except one—she was a Black girl born into this white supremacist, life-stealing system. 

How many more? How much longer?

Honestie Hodges (Photo: Family/GoFundMe)



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