It’s difficult to know what to say in this post, maybe because it is so easy for a little white girl to say, “Black lives matter.” It’s easy but I am not black, heck, I don’t even live in the States. What right have I to say it? What can I say?
I do not know what it is to be black. I do not know what it is to be black in America. But I do know what it is to be human, and maybe some people have forgotten that.
In his book, Blood in My Eye, George Jackson said this:
“Freedom must then be interpreted a thousand separate ways, but it actually comes down to freedom for a few families and their friends—freedom to prey upon the world.”George Jackson
In sociology class this week, we are learning about stratification. What determines the hierarchies of society? One such determiner is race.
“After the killing is done, the ruling class goes on about the business of making profits as usual.”George Jackson
It is so easy to be one of the privileged. It is easy to pull an arbitrary trigger once or seven times or a hundred times, it is easy to for a sheriff to say they were past curfew, it’s easy for a little white girl in Africa to say black lives matter. It is easy to forget.
Revolution is aggressive, said George Jackson. Yes. The protesters in the streets and activists crying for change can attest to that. But revolution is also recognizing humanity. And we are all human. Said David Krieger,
“To be human is to recognise the cultural perspectives that bind us to a tribe, sect, religion, or nation, and to rise above them. […] It is to recognise good and evil, and to choose good. […] To be human is to be courageous. It is to choose the path of compassion, rather than the path of complacency. It is to break the silence, and to be an unrelenting advocate of human decency and dignity. It is to sacrifice for what is just.”David Krieger
It’s been 36 weeks since the beginning of the year. And police have killed at least one black man or woman every week of this year.
Dreasjon “Sean Dadon” Reed.
Four victims were never identified.
“That’s not a chip on my shoulder. That’s your foot on my neck.”Malcolm X
Maybe there are better things to forget. David Krieger said it:
“To be human is to break the ties of cultural conformity and groupthink, and to use one’s own mind. It is to recognise good and evil, and to choose good. It is to consider with the heart. It is to act with conscience.”David Krieger
Tomorrow, I will begin the next month of my seventeenth year. I will be officially supporting the Attention Deficit Disorder Association (ADDA) and unofficially supporting the Marianne Foundation. But I am not moving on, because I cannot. I cannot forget.
Fifty-seven years ago, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. made this speech:
“I am happy to join with you today in what will go down in history as the greatest demonstration for freedom in the history of our nation.
“Five score years ago, a great American, in whose symbolic shadow we stand today, signed the Emancipation Proclamation. […] But one hundred years later, the Negro still is not free.”Martin Luther King, Jr.
In response to Mahalia Jackson’s cry, “Tell them about the dream, Martin!” he continued:
“I say to you today, my friends, so even though we face the difficulties of today and tomorrow, I still have a dream. It is a dream deeply rooted in the American dream.
“I have a dream that one day this nation will rise up and live out the true meaning of its creed: ‘We hold these truths to be self-evident: that all men are created equal.’”Martin Luther King, Jr.
Finally, this from Ijeoma Oluo:
“The beauty of anti-racism is that you don’t have to pretend to be free of racism to be an anti-racist. Anti-racism is the commitment to fight racism wherever you find it, including in yourself. And it’s the only way forward.”Ijeoma Oluo