The unrest that the entire country is experiencing right now makes Black america tense, and for good reason. Any progress that activists and civil rights leaders have orchestrated on our behalf feels like 20 steps forward and 10,000 steps backward. For all of the strides that have been made for us to live fearlessly and without apology, we currently live in fear for the men in our lives. Our black men. Our kings. Our fathers, uncles, sons, cousins, God-sons and nephews. It is truly very saddening.
The recent deaths of Alton Sterling and Philando Castile has re-opened a corporate wound that never has the potential to fully heal. Their lives have been snuffed out by individuals who were operating under the guise of those that have taken an oath to serve and protect us. They are terrorists of the worst kind. Despite their heinous acts of open murder, they have been allowed to retreat to their homes, in some cases, on paid “administrative leave”. In other words, they get to take comfort in being free to wake up again with their families…a gift that the men that they killed will never experience again. Their mothers, wives and sisters of these men in blue can enjoy laughter and a good meal in the comfort of their homes. One more thing that the victims of their rogue behavior cannot experience ever again.
Will there be justice served? Wait. The better question is; has justice ever been served? Ponder that. The Sterling and Castile families join the grieving collective of the mourners who have preceded them over the injustice of our people. We ache for them all, while we hope to never personally experience their level of heartache.
This is not a new reality for us, but it is not a time to let fear cause us to become paralytic. Our stories are what will deliver the message. Don’t be silent.