Wake Up ( Op-Ed)

( Photo Credit: Lucas Jackson/Reuters)


This morning, I cried. Despite this being an exciting weekend of new beginnings in my personal life, I could not ignore the heaviness I feel that runs deep. Deeper than I even realized. It is a heaviness that extends far beyond me.

Justice for some is no justice at all. I think of the families that have lost their brothers, their sisters, their children to senseless violence and hate. But, the part that sticks out the most is seeing the lack of care and the devaluing of life, not just from the killers, but a society.

I am tired of the press conferences, rallies and marches. I am tired of seeing posters of yet another life taken and families trying to prove they mattered. Families grieving while trying to convince the systems of oppression that they were good people, that they did not deserve to die. I am tired of the cover-ups, the character assassination and the physical assassination of black people.

I am tired of the jokes and I am tired of the mockery of serve and protect that only applies to the police officers’ vow to serve and protect each other at all cost.

I am tired of a judicial system that governs on a set of different laws and order when it comes to black people and their families. I am tired of seeing the rage from a people who are hurting, silenced, ignored, brutalized, traumatized and used, but screams through destruction and burning, when the tears stop falling and the pain and anger has no voice.

Yes, I got things to do today. But, I understand how I am operating in a system that sees color and deals the cards accordingly. Despite my faith, my strength, the power in knowing I will and can overcome, I hurt and will not silence the pain that we as people are experiencing every time that bar is raised. Every time the finish line is moved a little further away. Every time our trauma is mocked and dismissed. Every time we are told to forgive and move on within a system that refuses to forgive, have mercy, move on or change.

I am tired of a silent church. I am tired of verbal politicians with silent actions. I am tired of separating God from our worldly experiences. We need Him and we need Him to show us how to fight, not just endure this Spirit of hate and division.

I cry because of that mother prepping for another funeral. I cry for that son who is memorialized on the same street blocks that his killers freely walk through during active duty. I cry for the fatherless children, the motherless children, who once recited “I am somebody” in school, only to be reminded that “you are a nigger’ outside of it.

I know we can’t change the heart of people. I know we can’t convince others to love us. But my God, we can remove the systems that facilitate those that hate and make those that choose to act on that hate accountable. We must strip away their power to brutalize. We must strip away the power to oppress.

I have seen far too much silence that speaks volumes. Silent actions are destructive. It is time to unify, even if you think you are unaffected. We are all affected when a community of people are oppressed, limited and discarded.

You may not have woken up with tears, like me today. But simply wakeup.


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