Dear White People,
It is past time to have honest and uncomfortable conversations. I realize that you may not like it. I realize that you do not want to discuss it. But the fact is that people of color, black people in particular, live in a society that was not designed to benefit us. This land was taken from one group of my ancestors and physically built by another group of my ancestors. Never were we expected to flourish and to live in this country as citizens but as slaves and property of white people.
Slowly, we have won some rights. But even these rights were won through consistent resistance of the powers that insisted that we were not worthy of them. They were relinquished unwillingly and with resentment and malice. The name United States of America itself is contradictory because it is not united. There is an invisible well -known line drawn between the haves and the have nots; the white privileged and the black minority. This system built by white men is being held hostage by the privileged, primarily older white men who refuse to give up their power for the common good. Oppressing people of color and the poor makes them powerful. Stealing wealth and violating the human rights of black people gives them privilege. This ideal that if “you can’t be better than a nigger, than who can you be better than” resonates among the white privileged class and they hold it close and honor it.
The current uprising happening in America was inevitable. I agree completely with Charlamagne tha god (Co-Host of the syndicated radio talk show The Breakfast Club) when he says, “Until America does right by black people and atone for its original sin, which is slavery, nothing good is going to come of this nation”.
America is in denial when they say:
We have a little race problem, but not me.
There is no such thing as white privilege.
Everyone has equal protection under the law.
This is the land of opportunity.
I am not a racist.
These are lies and delusions.
I have many white people in my life. Some I love with my whole heart. And these past few days, I have witnessed either their true feelings about me and my people or their sheer ignorance of what my people live with every day.
Let’s start with the protests and riots for George Floyd.
On social media, I read a post from a dear friend who called the riots/protestors “idiots”. I was enraged. When I realized who wrote it, I was heartbroken. I tried to explain that the true protestors were there to protest against police brutality and the murder of George Floyd. I went on to say that there were a few people there for self and a few who were truly and righteously angry. I was met with comments like: There are black people out their destroying property too.
So what? Black people tried to peacefully protest by taking a knee during the National Anthem. That method of protest received a lot of backlash. In fact, so much backlash that a man lost his professional football job over it. Also, you cannot tell anyone how to resist a system that oppresses them. As my mother once told me, sometimes you have to get loud to get someone’s attention.
Now we have the attention of the world. I can see the beginnings of some people trying to make an actual change to this rigged system.
There were also comments on the post admonishing people for destroying property. Property? A man is dead. You can rebuild just the way cities were rebuilt after the riots following the murder of Dr. King and the beating of Rodney King. But you cannot bring the dead back to life!
I saw a meme posted that said Jesus solves the issue over whose live matters when he died on the cross for all lives 2000 years ago. True. He did die for all. And thank you Jesus that none of this bullshit we have to endure on earth will be in heaven. This is for those “Christians” who like to throw Jesus in the mix when they are called out for their bullshit. Jesus did not die for all in order for you to treat some as if they do not matter. He did not die so that you can see some of His children as property or less than human. He did not die so that you can mercilessly oppress, demean, and murder some of His people just because He made them to look differently than you. Jesus knows my life matters too. He knows that my children’s lives matter too. That is all we are saying when we chant #BlackLivesMatter!
White people. You are missing the point. I ask you to set your feelings aside and realize that this is not about you! BlackLivesMatter does not mean that no one else matters. It means that we MATTER comma TOO! Everyone in the world knows that white lives matter! The #Blacklivesmatter simply means what it says. I count too.
I realize that you do not understand. I know that your white privilege, whether you admit it exists or not, may cloud your vision. But image having to give your children an extra life lesson on how to live in America while black. Imagine having to give your children the heartbreaking lesson that the world will not treat them equally simply because their skin is dark. Imagine living in fear that your child may not come home after going out with his friends because a racist, privileged white cop may want to take his frustration out on him.
You don’t have to do that. That’s privilege. That is why we say our lives matter, too.
Grace and peace
Blessings and love