#BLM: Thoughts & Reflections on the Current Cry for Racial Justice

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A think piece from a black perspective.

Many questions have been going through my mind during this time. Does this senseless killing have purpose? Will the system ever be fixed? What does a fixed system even look like? I believe there is light in the midst of all of this but what will it take for it to be seen by everyone else? Is America finally coming to a reckoning? Is this wave of justice actually going to produce real change? These times have raised our collective consciousness where we can either be for the anthem Black Lives Matter or against it. Yet through this, I have hope.

As a black woman, I don’t have the luxury to live in a world that will tell me it loves me, tells me I’m beautiful, or tells me my worth. I receive these assurances from God and my people, my black brothers and sisters. Don’t get me wrong, I have amazing white friends, great friends, but at the end of the day their privilege will not always be checked. When those moments happen, I must be strong and press on for my own sanity.

So in my anguish comes one question: Do you want order, or do you want justice? Order creates a short-term fix with the knowledge that the unrest creeps below the surface at risk of awakening at any moment. Justice is a conscious choice, an action and commitment that releases control to the oppressed to rewrite their worth. We can no longer maintain the status quo. As we have seen in these last few weeks, it causes more harm each time. As I reflect on history, we see in moments of high racial tension that the oppressed move the needle enough for us to accept the facade of progress, that we are equal. We saw that in Reconstruction with the creation of Jim Crow. We saw it again with Civil Rights and the introduction of new housing laws that directly discriminated against black people, also known as redlining. As well as, in the 80s and 90s with the War on Drugs that led to mass incarceration. Today, one in three black men are either in prison, on probation or parole. What will the coming months and years look like? To my white friends I ask, are you ready to be actively Anti-Racist? Are you willing to take a close look at the privilege you carry daily? Once you do, are you willing to become an ally to promote the cause of equity, inclusion and justice for all people? If we want to see TRUE change is must be an effort by all of us to dismantle the powers that be so that we are people known for our equity and not by our willingness to oppress the vulnerable and disenfranchised.

As I said in the beginning, I’m hopeful. This is mainly because of the foundation of Christianity that has held me and millions of black people for centuries. Bible verses like “all things work together for good” or “greater is He that is in me” or “in this world you will have suffering but take heart, I have overcome the world” have given my soul the hope and comfort it needs to keep going. There have been many peaceful protests that I’ve seen and have been part of where people from every background have come together for the cause of black liberation. We all have our place in this movement: in the streets, at work, in our homes. We can choose what we will accept. We can end police brutality. We can choose to stand for justice by checking those small microaggressions that in the end cause so much harm to black communities each day. Choose to step out of your silence into allyship because without justice, there will never be any peace.

As I said in the beginning, I’m hopeful. This is mainly because of the foundation of Christianity that has held me and millions of black people for centuries. Bible verses like “all things work together for good”, “greater is He that is in me” or “in this world you will have suffering but take heart, I have overcome the world” have given my soul the hope and comfort it needs to keep going. There have been many peaceful protests that I’ve seen and have been part of where people from every background have come together for the cause of black liberation. We all have our place in this movement: in the streets, at work and in our homes. We can choose what we will accept. We can end police brutality. We can choose to stand for justice by checking those small microaggressions that in the end cause so much harm to black communities each day. Choose to step out of your silence into allyship because without justice, there will never be any peace.

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