*Full disclosure: I’m a snitch. Like, for real – if my freedom is ever on the line, and a confession would prevent me from going to jail, then somebody somewhere is getting snitched on. Period.
In fact, I might go the extra mile and start dropping names and birthdays of niggas who I saw breaking rules back in 3rd grade. That’s right – I’d have niggas calling me the “Rat King.”
But let me explain why – and which circumstances – I would tell on someone.
We all have that friend who can’t stay out of trouble. I can think of one of my boys in particular who calls me from jail every 3 – 6 months after he’s been arrested for doing some dumb shit.
I’ve known him my whole life, but that nigga would get snitched on with the quickness if he ever finds a way to implicate me in some of his bullshit.
Now, I’d be less inclined to snitch if the punishment was something light … like a couple days in jail for being willfully silent. But if a judge were to threaten me with a sentence longer than 5 days, then I’m singing like Whitney Houston at the Super Bowl. After my conversation with the police, that nigga would be charged with crimes he did 6 years ago … cause I’d spill all the tea.
With that said, I have a question for you – the reader – to ponder …
Where did the “no snitching” rule come from? Seriously, who’s responsible for it? Was it the Italians? The Chinese? Who?! And why do many of us continue to follow this rule?
I know one thing … where I’m from, good ol South Los Angeles, there’s a strict no snitching policy.
In fact, if I remember correctly, the late Nipsey Hussle called his murderer a snitch only moments before he was viciously gunned down … in front of his own fucking shop.
Clearly, the whole “no snitching “ thing is a really big deal in the black community. It’s a cardinal sin to reveal any wrongdoing that you see – even if it’ll help solve a crime or protect your freedom.
As I write these words, there are niggas serving LIFE sentences in prison because they refuse to expose the truth about something they saw. It’s the most backwards shit imaginable … and strangely, amidst all the lawbreaking fuckery that black men do, the one rule niggas follow requires them to stay quiet when other rules (or laws) are broken.
That’s beyond dumb.
If the no snitching rule applies to every situation, that means hundreds of crimes against women, children, old folk, and others have gone unsolved because niggas refuse to share what they know.
It means a nigga could’ve been watching from his car window, eating a sandwich, while OJ Simpson stabbed ol girl – cause we know he did it – but car guy can’t say anything because of the no snitching rule. It’s a far fetched scenario – but whatever. You get my point.
Who shot Biggie and Tupac? I’m certain plenty of niggas know the answer. But they ain’t said nothing in 25 years to avoid being called a snitch.
So what does all of this mean? Is there honor in refusing to provide details of a crime or misdeed if you witnessed it happen? Is snitching actually wrong? Does it make you a coward?
Or, if you’re questioned about a crime or someone’s fuckery, is sharing what you know the right thing to do if it’ll help solve the problem?
If you’re sensible, like me, then going to the police, or calling the authorities, should be automatic if you’ve witnessed a serious crime and can shed light on the details.
Then again, it’s probably fair to argue there are more senseless Negroes following this rule compared to the rest of us.
Still, in 2020, we should be getting rid of harmful traditions and practices that have only served to perpetuate dysfunction in our communities. Reducing this fuckery won’t be a simple task. It’ll require niggas to use wisdom common sense.
If you ask me, a good start would be for us to push pause on the snitching rule. It’s outdated, counterintuitive, and frankly, stupid.
Besides, whoever thought of the rule is probably dead anyway. Good riddance to both. Let’s do better.
The Black Hat is written by Southern California based Cory A. Haywood, a freelance writer and expert on Negro foolishness. Contact him via: [email protected] and/or visit his blog: www.enterthehat.com, or send him a message on Twitter: @coryahaywood