Posted on Jan 1, 2016 | 1 comment
I wonder how it would feel if I had to sit my children down and explain to them that even though we live in the United States of America, a country founded on freedoms, that they are not afforded these freedoms.
That because their skin was not the same color as our founding fathers, because of the horrendous blot on our history that is slavery, and because of the deeply seated racism that to this day floats just below the surface (if we are lucky) they are not truly free citizens.
I wonder how it would feel to have to look into their sweet faces and explain the double standard that exists in this country today…in what will soon be 2016.
How do you tell your child that they are not safe to be free in their homeland and that they do not possess the same rights of their lighter skinned friends?
I wonder how it would feel to watch them leave to school, to practice, to church, to scouts, to work, or just outside to play and have no other choice other than to worry about what would be said to them: what insults would they have to endure, what slurs they have to pretend not to hear, what slights would they bear.
Or worse…to worry every single second they weren’t in my sight that they weren’t going to make it home because a neighbor mistook them for a “thug” or an officer “felt threatened” and shot my child.
I don’t have to have this conversation with my children. For no other reason than the color of their skin, I will never be subjected to this scenario.
But there are millions of my fellow citizens in these United States who have no other choice, who for the protection of the very lives of their children, must look into those sweet faces that they love with all their hearts and souls and explain that in a free country they are not really free.
I’m not fast on my feet and confrontation is not my strong suit, so I tend to keep my opinions mostly to myself. However, this situation has reached a point where I’m no longer afforded the luxury of standing in my white privilege hoping and praying that people will pull their heads out of the sand and realize that we are all in this together.
Really, we are all in this together.
So, as a person who believes in these United States and in the freedoms on which this country was founded, I will, in the most loving way I can, say something to you if I believe you are in any way violating the rights of a fellow human because of the color of their skin.
I am choosing to be okay if you are offended or angered by my questions or comments. I will no longer hide or bite my tongue.
We either stand together as one nation or we will fall apart. It’s that simple.