What Is Happening?
I don’t understand.
It keeps happening.
And then when I think I’ve seen it all, it happens again. Then I think, ok this is going to be addressed properly and we’ve hit rock bottom. But we haven’t, because then it happens again. I’m having difficulty wrapping my mind around it and I really don’t understand.
I was of the impression, clearly mistakenly, that things were better. “We’ve come a long way”. “So many died to make things better, and now they are”. “This is what Lincoln had in mind and now it’s come to fruition.” “All men are created equal”. “We are not at all where we want to be, but we are much better than we were.” These were perhaps some of the thoughts unconsciously floating around for me and perhaps for you too.
I remember when Barack Obama ran for President. I thought he likely wouldn’t get voted in, because surely America won’t accept a Black man as our President. They weren’t ready, I thought. And I remember the night he won. I remember where I sat and what an amazing night it was. I remember the tears – my own included – running down the cheeks of Americans around the globe. Wow, this happened…he won!!! What a wonderful statement for our country. I was so happy to be wrong….we WERE ready. And then he won again…..oh my!! We democratically embraced this Black man as our leader. We really HAVE come such a long way. We are moving in a positive direction!
I was wrong. So, so wrong. This is really painful. So the tears flow again, different this time. Awful, hot tears of disappointment, of defeat, of loss and helplessness. How did we end up back here? We did move backwards, right?? What happened to our forward movement? Was there forward movement? Some would say no, Theresa, we didn’t move backward…..we hadn’t moved forward at all. I have to wonder and I may have to agree with this point of view, because generally forward movement is not reversed in such an abrupt, out-of-control fashion.
And we are clearly out of control.
Going back to my original question: What is happening? I truly don’t understand. And there is so much going on in our world right now. We are in the middle of a pandemic and each of us is fighting diligently in our own way in hopes of remaining safe so that we can emerge safely on the other side. Some of us have already lost loved ones, others (including me) have lost loved ones but “seemingly” to more random causes. The pandemic affects our lives and all the things we thought were normal.
Which simply brings me to the topic of the recent arrest – which ended in a man – a Black man – losing his life. There are so many questions. But the main question I’ll pose here is, why was there such a focused and intense arrest? What about the pandemic?? Aside from hearing that crime is down, In my state I could have sworn I heard that to maintain their own safety and the safety of their families, officers have been literally and figuratively standing back a bit with regards to non-violent crimes. There are reportedly less officers on the road; I hear of less people being pulled for tickets, less people being detained for such things as petty theft. I just thought that most people including officers were social distancing where possible. I’ve even heard that some Law Enforcement Agencies have been short staffed due to illnesses and other effects of the pandemic. (I guess not in this situation).
My other question, what if there had been no video?
I will end my rant here. This is so very heartbreaking. My heart hurts and I fight back tears as I write. I hurt not only for the Black men in my life: my own sons, my family, my friends, but I hurt for this Black man and his family; for the Black man who is now unsure that he’ll come home safely from a random jog; for the Black man who has to live with this sort of concern every day. I hurt for the officers who do the right thing but are now less trusted. I hurt for our country if this is what we’re now doing and what our future holds. I hurt for those of us who aren’t sure what we should feel or do next.
And finally, I pray. I pray that God help us all, and I pray that He touch the hearts of our leaders, providing guidance and direction as to what should be done to heal our country.
And I pray that they listen.
Just my side view.