I’m pretty sure most of you are at least acutely aware of what has been going on with the protests all around the country/world in response to the recent not guilty verdicts from our beloved Grand Jury. I usually keep my opinions on these subjects either to myself or a few close friends/family members who I can have healthy, productive conversations with. Lately, however, I’ve been seeing a lot of posts and comments that have literally left me speechless. I’ve finally decided to dedicate one of my rambles to this touchy subject.
It’s crazy how much you think you know a person until sticky situations are presented. I’ve seen so many true colors over the past few weeks, it’s honestly disturbing. From the night that the Ferguson verdict was announced, to the night the verdict for Eric Garner was announced, up until even now, I have had to do a lot of cleaning up of my cell phone contacts as well as my friends lists and followers on social media. The amount of racism I witnessed was appalling and disgusting, from white AND black “friends”. I refuse to entertain it, so I deleted it. I think it’s safe to say that many who got the axe were not all that thrilled about it.
Sorry, not sorry.
This next sentence will ruffle a few feathers, but I think this is something that needs to be said. These issues that have been occurring transcend the issue of race. There. I said it. Let the criticism commence. I welcome it, because you–like me–have freedom of speech. I did the little bold within the italics to make sure those who have a slightly more difficult time with paying attention to what is really being said have a guide to what is key here. Please note that I didn’t say that race has nothing to do with it, I have just simply stated that the issue goes way beyond that. Now, moving on…
What happened to Mike Brown & Eric Garner was tragic. It was upsetting. Hell, I was mad my damn self, but not for the same reason that most others were. What upset me was the fact that a life was senselessly snuffed out by someone who is meant to protect, not destroy. I do not feel that either men deserved to die, no matter what reason law enforcement wants to feed us. In both cases, I personally don’t believe that self defense is a valid explanation. I didn’t except it then, I won’t accept it now as I write this.
What irks me, though, is the fact that this entire issue has been centered around race. From the moment the verdicts were given, the majority of headlines that I saw covering the stories made sure to highlight and point out that a BLACK man was killed by a WHITE officer. Every news article, every Facebook post, every headline on the news channels. Of course, naturally, there is an automatic uproar for justice, compensation, and even blood (yes… those comments came from the few that I had to delete for obvious reasons). It’s honestly upsetting to see how well we are being played.
The biggest problem here is that cops who are being paid to protect and serve are pretty much able to live ABOVE the law. No matter what color your skin is, a cop can kill you and call it justified. I know a lot of you don’t want to hear or accept that, but tell me this…
Isn’t it peculiar that you barely ever, if even at all, hear about a white cop unjustly killing a white person? Or a Spanish cop killing an Asian person? Or even a black cop killing a person of any race? Even our disabled citizens are at risk. Since we can’t be everywhere at all times to see what is going on in the world, we have to rely on the media to provide us with information. Most of this information is one-sided. The media builds and fuels the fires that we see happening around us.
We don’t hear about these things because then it would be hard to keep us distracted from what’s really going on. Our (in)justice system would rather keep the wool over our eyes so they can continue business as usual. In the past few days, I’ve been seeing and reading all of these different articles about brutality against people of all races. I’ve heard the argument that “it’s not the same thing”, but I find the contrary to be true. Police brutality is very REAL and all people are affected by it, whether it be directly or indirectly. Most people can’t see it this way because the media has already placed the race-card in the middle of the table as they play us all with it. The shooting of 12-year-old Tamir Rice has barely gotten any shine on the news at all! Let’s face it… Only a heartless bastard would agree with the shooting of an innocent child. We’d all rise together (regardless of color) in a heartbeat over this, so there is little to no coverage.
How awesome would it be for all of us to come together as one people to stand against the injustices we ALL face at the hands of police officers? We’d be unstoppable. Things would have to change. The system, once again, has outsmarted us, however, and has pitted us against one another. The potential power we could have as a unit falls away when we battle against each other over race.
When asked why I haven’t been outside with signs, or inside protesting along with everyone else, my answer is simple: We’re not focused on the same thing. I’m not going to act like I support the claim of racism for all of these situations. My stand is against police brutality. My stand is against the unspoken fact that an officer can kill me, my white friend, my black cousin, my Asian classmate, and my Spanish coworker with barely a slap on the wrist.
My stand is against the ignorance of those who shout against racism, but then turn around and say that they themselves are racist against white people. Hypocrisy is a deadly disease. My stand is against those who can read about someone of ANY color being unjustly killed, but turn their heads and say “Oh well” yet want everyone to sympathize with the black struggle. IT GOES BOTH WAYS! I will always and forever continue to counter the hastag #BlackLivesMatter with #AllLivesMatter until people wake up and see the bigger picture here.
I am so glad that my parents raised me to see people as people. Sure there will always be stereotypes. Sure racism still exists in society, but it’s all about your personal decisions. I decide to love my Caucasian, Indian, Spanish, Middle Eastern, African, etc friends all the same. I embrace our differences and enjoy the challenges of getting to know others. I make the personal decision to not allow the poison of racism to live through me. I look progressively to the future. As much as the media, the system, or whatever other power there is out there would like for me to hang on to past hurts and situations, I make the personal decision to rise ABOVE that and see the issues for what they really are….
But let me get back to sipping this bomb.dot.com tea though…