Written by: T.M. Brunson
So I did it.
Last week, just before the girls went to bed and after I blogged about AllAboutBrownBoys/Men, I told them that I wanted to talk about racism and what’s going on in this country today. The five year old just sat and listened. The baby did what she does—be occupied with whatever keeps her attention.
Those other four...they blew my mind.
Didn’t all of this kind of stuff happen long ago? Isn’t this what Dr. King fought for? Why is it still happening? (tears welled up in her eyes)
I told the story of my first memory of racism. I was between 10-12 years old and I had a crush on a boy in my elementary school. Word got back to him and I heard he said he didn’t like me because I was BLACK. That was the last thing that I had expected to hear. Not pretty? I could deal with. Too young? Maybe. (He was in a different grade.) But black?
So how did that make you feel?
I told them the truth. I told them how it made me feel awful because I really liked that boy. And I was embarrassed. Even though he and I were almost the same complexion, I still wasn't light enough for him.
I couldn’t have lived back then. How did Nanna and Mimi do it?
That's all they knew. That's how they grew up. I told them I didn't feel like I could've lived back then either. I would've been angry all the time (if I knew then what I know now).
I told them the credit card story (from Pt1). They've never had to deal with anything like that.
That’s white privilege.
So their generation is talking about it. How else would they know this or know to ask all of these insightful questions?
Since then, I have heard them talk to each other about what's going on. Since then, I have been listening to other people speak out—the students where I work, the people I associated with in California, celebrities. Dave Chapelle gave a good example of experiencing the Northridge earthquake in 1994 and thinking, in those :35 that he was going to die.
For eight minutes and 46 seconds, this man was trapped on the ground with another man's knee on his neck. For eight minutes and 46 seconds, this man thought he was going to die. And he did.
And what about all of the other people before him who died? All of the people who died at the hands of another white man or because a white woman called the cops on them? What about them? What about their lives? What about justice? When a cop gets killed, all cops rally together because "one of their own" was murdered. So why are people up in arms when another black person is murdered, and we rally together because "one of our own" has been slaughtered, again?
We need justice. So we can have peace.
Question of the Day
How are you dealing with everything during this social climate? Feel free to post your feelings on AMI's FB page @allmommyissues.