I started working this week, and I did not realize how hard it was going to be on my body. I am tired. Not just- a nap would be nice tired- but exhausted. It feels good, though. But there are bigger things going on.
Baltimore. I don’t even know where I stand anymore. I have friends who are vehemently against all the protests, and then I have friends who say that “revolution is the cure”. I will say this- blaming the victim, Mr Freddie Gray, for all that is happening is ridiculous. Seriously, the man is dead. This is in no way his fault. He might have been a career criminal, he might have hid his injuries, or even tried to hurt himself in custody. But he is dead. He did not start the riots. He did not tell the people rioting to burn down buildings and cars. Stop blaming him.
As far as everything else goes, I have to say that I do not agree with the hard core rioting. The burning of an innocent business, or the flipping of cars. But I get it. I get the anger and frustration. To be treated as less than, to be treated like a child who needs to be told when to leave, is heart breaking. I am not a minority. But that does not mean I do not understand. As much as I would like to say this is not a black or white thing- I don’t know that. Was he treated differently because of his skin color? Or because he was a known criminal? I have known people treated badly by the police- and they were white. But to simply put a stamp on the recent deaths as strictly a black and white issue, I don’t know that I can do that. You would have to ask the individual police officers. I will say this- I feel that racism is still a very vibrant issue in our society. It is on both sides. I have been treated very badly before, because of my skin color. That might sound bad coming from someone like me, but it is true. Simply because I did not share their skin color- they treated me like crap. I dreaded being with them at work, I was their subordinate. It felt so awful any time I needed them for something. They would curl their lips and sneer at me, as though I didn’t deserve the same breathing air as them. But that was one person, not the entire community. I can not imagine going through life feeling as though everyone is automatically painting you as a criminal, simply because of skin tone.
We need a change. Hopefully- all the violence dies down, so the message can get through. We demand a change.