Racists and bigots do not look at me and see that I graduated from a magnet school with honors. They don’t know that I’ve been on the deans list for multiple semesters because of my good grades. They don’t see that I own my own business. They don’t see that I am heavily involved in my church. They only see my skin; how it is different from theirs.
Without knowing who I am, I could be considered a threat simply because people see my black skin as something to be afraid of. I'm pretty tired of seeing people who are my age and look like me being senselessly killed without justice being served. Black Lives Matter is not about telling every other race that their lives are less than, it’s about letting everyone else know that our lives are NOT less than. Of course I agree that all lives matter, but all are not being treated as such. Our actions need to line up with our words. Right now, saying that every person in America is treated equally would not be the truth. Headlines in the news will prove to you that America’s actions do not align with its speech. More still needs to be done for the phrase "all lives matter" to be true.
I love seeing people posting and educating themselves. It’s great that more attention is being put on the plight of black people. For us, it’s a pain that we’ve carried for a long time. And honestly, I've seen black people be killed for no reason so many times that it almost doesn't phase me when I see another hashtag. I'm no longer shocked. Which is extremely shocked and alarming. We don't need for caring about black lives to be a trend, we need change. We need for behaviors to change, for policies to change, for our negative experiences with people who are supposed to help us to change.
I think that even while I am a black person I have still experienced privileges that some other black people will never get the opportunity to. Due to systemic racism and things traditionally being rigged OUT of our favor, black people are usually given the shorter end of the stick and have to fight harder to be successful.
I consider my family to be very fortunate, my siblings and I have not had to deal with a lot of the struggles that other black people or even our parents have had to go through. We live in a very nice neighborhood (which happens to be mostly white), we grew up with both of our parents being present in our lives, we take family vacations to places outside of the country, we go to a VERY mixed race church, and I have never had to wonder where my next meal would come from. And yet, I still feel the hurt of racism.
Even when injustice is subtle, it still hurts.
I'm amazed at how long attention has been held on what our people have been facing. People are truly trying to understand and I am so grateful. I am excited to see things change for the better in our nation.
I've had a lot of thoughts sitting in drafts, so more words are to come.
Until next time,