If you are like me, then your heart is heavy this week. Actually, my heart has been heavy for longer than just this week, as our country is being torn apart from the inside out. This has been an emotional, frightening, and depressing week. But in reality, hasn’t every week provided us with something that makes our heart hurt?
Two black men were shot and killed by police officers this week, and police officers in Dallas were killed in an alleged “revenge” style attack. There was death and destruction on our media networks streaming 24/7. How can you not be afraid when fear is being shoved at you from every direction, in every possible way? We have a broken system in this country, and it is on full display.
On one hand you have those who rant and rave about their Second Amendment rights, but I don’t hear them now, when black men are legally carrying guns. Why is it that a white person with a gun is a “patriot,” but a black person with a gun is a “thug,” or a Muslim with a gun is a “terrorist?” On the other hand you have the “All Lives Matter” folks. Just because you are saying that “Black Lives Matter” does not mean that you do not care for anyone else. It is saying that at this point in time, “black lives” are being targeted much more so than anyone else. The black community is suffering terribly right now, parents wondering if their children will be stopped and if so, will they survive a speeding ticket. Being the mother of a white male, I don’t have this terrible anxiety to live with; if you are born a white male in this country, you already have a leg up in this disastrous society. This is the chaos that we are currently living in, whether you want to admit it to yourself or not. I am so disgusted by the hate, the intolerance, and the prejudice in this country. We are becoming frighteningly like our enemies, those that we storm in and save from evil regimes, except now, we the people have become the evil ones.
As a mother, it breaks my heart to see my children frightened by current events. As someone who works with a large population of black children, it tears me apart when they ask me questions about what is going on in our country right now. Our children are watching. They are watching, and they are seeing a world filled with hate and self-righteousness. Our children will not grow up revering the police; they are growing up frightened of them.
What can we do? I ask myself this question on a daily basis. I don’t want anyone to fear the police; I don’t want the police to be fearful while they are at work. I have cried over how overwhelmed I am by the situation happening in the United States right now. We have politicians fueling the fire by spewing hateful rhetoric to anyone who will listen; we have media outlets shouting at us to be scared, that maybe someone “deserved” to be killed while during a police stop simply because they may have had a criminal past. When a white male raped a girl at Stanford, they put his ranked swim times in the paper. When a black man is murdered by police during a traffic stop or for selling CDs outside the gas station, they want a criminal history on them stat. It is nauseating.
I don’t know what to do, but I am going to try something. I am getting off of social media, I am going to try and love my neighbors, my community members, my fellow humans; and see if by sharing that love, spreading that light, we can’t see some sort of difference. I may not be able to tackle the huge root of this problem, but I can try and be kind, humble, and loving to all of those that I come into contact with, and I think that if we all try and do that, we would see some sort of change. Peace and love to you all during these trying times.