What Would You Have Us Do?
I am someone who believes in fairness when possible which is most of the time. I am someone who believes in personal responsibility and accountability. The irony is I live in a world that does not believe, promote, or practice any of those values. We are more impressed with celebrity than education. We are seduced by lies like a mirage in the desert instead of science, research, and common scene. And as we continue to grow out of our adolescence in this country we continue to be confronted with an ugly past of violence, genocide, murder, greed and corruption. Our past is our present and will continue to be our future without systematic change that requires giving up something. I do not think you get without giving. But don’t be confused by what I am saying. As a black gay person I am not giving up anything else for a system and a country that has taken more than it has ever given and has created a psychology that makes me think I should be grateful for the scrapes and trash it provides. The black voice is by no means monolithic when it comes to issues of equality and oppression. You need look no further than the works of Booker T. Washington and W.E.B DuBois to see how both men viewed the black experience in America. And we will forever compare the socio-political approaches of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. & Malcolm X. I am not a scholar or activist of that caliber and I have more questions than answers. My ultimate question is what would you have the black/brown/red/yellow Americans of African descent do to secure equity, equality, fairness, justice, or just basic respect?
We serve in the community and you kill us in our homes
We join your military and you lynch us for wearing the uniform
We conform to your religious values and you kill us in a house of worship
We build our own economy and you come in to destroy it
We protest peacefully and you jail us
We riot and you kill us
We attempt to tell our own narratives and stories to show our history and you control the media and silence our voice
We use our platforms to raise awareness and you systematically remove us from that platform
We enter the system as community organizers, and elected officials and you sabotage our work
We have leaders emerge in the face of abuse and terror and you assassinate them
We ask for our rights and you ignore us
We demand our rights and you placate us
We earn our rights and you change the rules of the game
So I ask you what would you have black people do to earn their place in this country? What would you do?