July 4th just passed. Independence day, where people celebrate independence from the “Tyrant and Great Oppressor” yet not all of America can really celebrate this “Holiday”. There is a sizable segment of America that is not free of fear. There is a sizable segment of America that remains shackled to bigoted prejudices. There is a sizable segment of America has the so called inalienable rights of “Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness” however, not independent of an asterisk*.
We are not the monsters that some make us out to be. We are not moving targets to be used for target practice. We are Mothers and Fathers, sons and daughters, brothers and sisters…
We are taught to never forget a portion of American history, yet told to “get over” other portions of it. Yet while we are told to get over it, others want to “Make America Great” again and return to some of the “fondness” from that era. Bringing back the original job of the Overseer or Officer as they are called now. It seems as if there are two seperate rules of conduct. For one segment of the population to maintain peace and for another ensure that they still are chained to fear.
I wonder what it would be like to wake up and actually feel safe when the police are around. I wonder what it would feel like to not get nervous when driving pass a police car on the highway. Checking the rearview mirror to see if they are going to pull out, and that sigh of relief when they still don’t after 5 seconds. I wonder what it would feel like to not have to be mindful of taking off your hoodie or hat when you walk in a store. Or adjusting the tone in which you speak so others feel more comfortable. Or making sure the car lights are on, windows are rolled down and hands are at 10 and 2 on the steering wheel when pulled over at night. Asking if you can reach for you wallet in your back pocket because you don’t want any “misunderstandings”. I wonder what it would be like to not have to worry about all the “Black Rules” that we are taught or having to teach them to kids if I have them. What it would be like as a parent to worry everytime my child leaves the house because no matter how well they follow these rules there always seems to be an exception.
Why when one of us are killed do we blame the the victim and always seem to say, “he must’ve did something”. Really? Like we could be sleep, Aiyana Stanley-Jones. Or have a taillight out, Philando Castile. How about reaching for your wallet, Amadou Diallo. We could be selling loose cigarettes, Eric Garner. Or selling CDs, Alton Sterling. We are automatically considered guilty and dangerous, with extreme violence being deemed as the only course of action. We are not the monsters that some make us out to be. We are not moving targets to be used for target practice. We are Mothers and Fathers, sons and daughters, brothers and sisters. We are your co-workers, your employees, and your managers. We are you mentors and mentees. We are your favorite athletes, comedians, and entertainers. We are your soldiers, doctors and firefighters. We are your President. Our wants are like yours; we want our inalienable rights that this country declared independence for. We want Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness. Is that too much to ask?
“Freedom is never voluntarily given by the oppressor; it must be demanded by the oppressed.”
–Martin Luther King Jr.
Be Safe, Be Free, Pursue your Greatness!
Jay The Motivator