I watch the fires burning on TV afraid to go down to the hotspot. I watch the fires burning and I hear my fellow white suburbanites say, “That won’t solve anything. That’s exactly why the police say they’re criminals.”
I say, “That’s my old neighborhood. It’s full of good people! What you see burning, what you see lighting up the sky, is not the actions of criminals, but the burning of people’s hearts as they want to be known before they are killed for being who they are.” Physically, visually, you can see they are dark, therefore they are branded to be offered as a sacrifice when we need a diversion, a distraction, or feel fear.
You see the burning because you see people who need to express their rage. You say “use words” yet you take the words they use and manipulate them into “blue lives matter” or “all lives matter” diluting and washing away the unique and significant pain that is the black struggle in America. And let’s be clear, this is in America.
The burning is because taking a knee quietly, respectfully gets you blasted by team owners, businesses, regular “god-fearing” people and even the President of the United States. So, why not burn? Your peaceful actions are ridiculed.
You burn because you worked all day, trying to save lives, trying to keep Corona at bay and as you come home from work, you’re shot by those you work alongside. You were dark. That’s all they needed to know. You were in your own home. You were supposed to be safe. I’m white. That would not happen to me. You burn because you have dreams and desires just like everyone else, and you are shot for jogging. But, it’s kinda your own fault, you are black. Were black.
Yet, “They bring it on themselves.” “ They are not like us.” “ They don’t know how to behave.” “ We’re just different.”
Just stop it. Listen to how you sound. Listen to your real inner thoughts. A human being was murdered, then another, then another, then another and it’s not happening to you. You do not have to teach your little boys and girls to be better than others, more mindful, more aware knowing they could die for a traffic violation.
I know I have friends reading this who simply don’t believe there is any trouble here. They aren’t willing to let it in. They aren’t willing to be confident enough to have the compassion to say, “We are wrong.” Our society needs to be fixed. We need to listen, to understand and make the changes. “I need to make changes.”
Whenever you fight something you create resistance, which exacerbates the struggle and suffering. Let’s stop. It’s not the looters, it’s not the protesters, it’s us who need stop denying this is our problem. Our culture created this. We need to solve it.
We need to solve it.