Dear Blue Lives,
You solemnly swore that you would protect and serve our communities. Though nothing is as self-serving as taking the life of another; a mother, a brother, or a lover. Your badge of honor becomes extinct when you haul around a holster of false promises. Leaving us nothing except remnants of agony, excuses and searing gunpowder. Leaving us no choice but to reclaim our justice and for you to be held accountable for such murderous counts.
When will this fight for our Black lives cease to exist? We are sick and tired of being sick and tired! Our children are gradually turning into target practices before the age of ten and our young college students are enduring their “first degree” way before even graduating. If you catch my drift. Believe me when I say: There isn’t one audiologist in the world that could resolve these deafening predicaments. So instead, we take them to the streets. Our pride, our might, our fearlessness, our stigmas, our pain; splayed out for everyone to see and feel. You too shall bear witness to the fight for justice as we march in a stampede of power and victory. Your artillery is no match for our picket signs nor our voices. You shelter yourselves with ballistic shields, fearing that we’ll become ballistic. There is a substantial difference between you and I, however. We are the mediators while you premeditate. You chose to wear your color, while our color chose to wear us. You care more about the collateral instead of the emotional. This racial harvest that you’ve planted will soon reap.
We reside in a time where having expired plates can turn into a calamity (Daunte Wright, 20). Where soliciting tobacco can leave you in a chokehold (Eric Garner, 43). Where wearing a hoodie and holding a few snacks can get you fatally shot (Trayvon Martin, 17). Where having a mental episode can lead to a demise instead of seeking aid (Janisha Fonville, 20). Where eating ice cream inside of your own home and getting mistaken for being in someone else’s apartment can cause you to die (Botham Jean, 26). Where standing in your grandmother’s backyard and being falsely accused of having a weapon leads to a deadly uproar (Stephon Clark, 22). Where resting at home gets you shot through your window in front of your eight-year-old nephew (Atatiana Jefferson, 28). Where being accused of having a counterfeit twenty-dollar bill can get you a knee to the neck for exactly nine minutes and twenty-nine seconds after desperately pleading to breathe (George, Floyd, 46).
Those are just a few of the victims of police brutality. It’s not easy being Black in America. Despite the number of times we choose to code switch, change our apparel or even attend the most prestigious of schools, nothing will ever suffice. We’ll always be seen as a threat to those who find us threatening. However, don’t think for one second that we won’t stop fighting for what is right and just. Black Lives Matter isn’t just a movement, it’s an unwavering force! If that means marching towards the courthouses and demanding genuine change from government officials, then so be it. This is not the end of our story, but the beginning of yet another new chapter; one in which will better our storylines by rewriting and innovating new main characters.
Graphic by Juana Garcia