Living the Story

 Lately, my news feed has been full of current events that resemble the trials and tribulations of the Civil Rights Era. It’s modern day America, August 14, 2014, and my news feeds have been flooded with the injustices of Mike Brown, Ezell Ford, and a homeless grandmother that was BEATEN in the face by an officer on the median of a highway, and yes she has name, Marlene Pinnock.

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I mean, REALLY!! Where the heck is everybody!?! Does your television not offer the channel that is showing videos of the atrocities that are happening right now? Is you Facebook, Twitter, Instagram not flooded with visuals of clouds bellowing tear gas being thrown at US citizens who are standing with their hands up? Do you not see oversized German Shepards with even larger teeth barring angered instinct to attack? Maybe if you could pause for minute, while you’re watching your favorite singer gyrate across a concert stage, and search Ferguson County on Youtube. Or do you think these videos are being manipulated by the recorder to portray that bad things are happening to people who probably deserve it.

cr2Michael's lifeless body stays on the ground as a grim reminder of the value of a Black life.

Never speak, never publish written words, never form an opinion when what you see is so horrible that you choke from your on breath. I try to swallow burning tears that threaten to drown me in the deepest sorrow that helpless hopelessness can conjure. Are you guys awake!!

I know, it’s so much easier to pretend it’s not happening. We don’t know the whole story, right? Maybe they deserved it, you know, black folk can get a little rowdy sometime! What lies are you poisoning your own self with? What ignorance should be CHOSEN over truth?

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I stopped writing during the coverage of Trayvon Martin’s forced sacrifice of his life to expose the injustices of a young black man. I purposefully strolled by any comment, post, tweet, or picture that invoked his name. Hesitantly, I watched the trial. And even that was forced into my consciousness, because everyone I was around was tuned in. I knew it would end unjustly. I tried to muster up any scrapings of hope, but doom hovered over every word that was spoken in his defense. I knew I shouldn’t have watched. I shouldn’t have participated in the blackening of my Facebook profile pic to support Justice for Trayvon Martin. See, I started out trying to avoid the case coverage, but my heart gravitated to it. And then I was left with a lump in my throat, a whole in my heart, crippling hurt, and an infestation of anger…… This is the way justice prevails.

Maybe my premonitions were from being jaded after being so sure that Troy Davis would at least be taken off death row. When the final answer was released that he would be executed, hurt ripped tears from my eyes as if he was my family; ‘cause really we’re all family. At least Mumia was taken off death row, but the good deed that was punished manifested in the discrediting of Mumia’s former attorney, Debo Adegbile, from being elected to head the Department of Justice Civil Rights Department. Mr. Adegbile was a part of the NAACP Legal Defense during the reinvestigation of Mumia’s case, and claimed a victory of getting Mr. Mumia off of death row. President Barack Obama nominated Adegbile to head the DOJ Civil Rights Department, what higher credibility than to be chosen by the President of the United States. So let’s break this down: An attorney, who was defending a case that someone’s civil rights were violated, was able (after numerous attempts by others) to have this man’s case resentenced to be removed from DEATH ROW, is denied the opportunity to head the Civil Rights Department. Mr. Mumia’s civil rights were grossly violated throughout his case, and Adegbile was able to prove the injustices, and was denied a very prominent position because of it. I’m truly sorry if I’m being repetitious, it’s just so incomprehensible.

Confronted with so many whirlwinds of emotions, that my mind defensively goes numb, as I write, I begin to feel like what is the point of writing. Will the eyes that glance over the words be able to translate them into the raw emotion I feel in regards to my people of color? Will they understand why I’ve cried, feared, and prayed for my younger brothers, my cousins, my nephews, my black men who I have met, will meet, and will never get the chance to know. My ladies, as well as, all my people of color we are NOT the minority. We are the majority, and it’s time that we take stock in the value of our lives.

In honor of all those whose lives have been taken, before their time, “Give Love. Seek Truth. Be Light.” In honor of the purpose each of us have been given to continue to live, “Give Love. Seek Truth. Be Light.” Be Empowered! Empower others! Sometimes freedom comes at a cost.

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