Today is international Peace Day. A day set aside by the United Nations general assembly to advocate for world peace and non-violence.
I find it hard to proclaim peace on this day.
And I’m finding it harder and harder to preach peace, love, unity, and respect when all I feel is anger, hate, discord, and distain.
I feel betrayed by the same men and women I was taught as a kid to respect and revere. They will always protect and serve me and my safety, my parents taught me. But as an adult I have learned the truth. These same people who are paid as public servants to protect me and my family are just hired mercenaries ready and willing to kill innocent black people. These same men and women paid to protect and serve are cowards who carry badges and guns.
Moreover, I feel betrayed by the system designed to protect the guilty and fuck over the innocent and their grieving families.
The game is rigged and the system is fucked up. I will never, ever know what it is like to constantly look over my shoulder and fear that if that i am pulled over that I may be roughed up or killed because I am non-white.
I will never pretend to know such a horror.
And my name will never be put onto a list of dead innocent people.
The ongoing list of innocent people who are murdered by white cops continues to grow.
Philandro Castile was 32. Officer asked Castile for his license and registration. As Castile reached for his wallet, Castile said he had a gun and a conceal permit. Officer told Castile “Don’t move” and Castile complied by putting his hands up as instructed. The officer shot Castille 4 times in the arm while Castile’s 4 year old daughter in the back seat. Castile later died.
Alton Sterling was 37. Sterling was lying on his back on the ground being restrained by officers when offers shot Sterling twice.
And now Terence Crutcher. The 40-year-old walked ahead of officers with his hands up. His fingers were interlocked around his head. He leans against his vehicle with his hands still interlocked around his head. The officer fired killing Crutcher. His blood was running down the window of the vehicle, suggesting there was no way he could have tried to reach into his car as the police chief inferred.
So many names are on this list.
Philando Castile, 32 years of age. Falcon Heights, Minnesota.
Alton Sterling, 37 years of age. Baton Rouge, Louisiana.
Eric Garner, 42 years of age, New York City.
Michael Brown, 18 years old, Ferguson, Missouri.
And now Terence Crutcher, 40 years old. Tulsa, Oklahoma.
Too many names. The list of innocent, unarmed black people being killed by white police officers.
Last night I was sad. Sad that innocent black people are dying. Dying for no justifiable reason. Assassinated in cold blood for no justifiable reason.
But tonight I’m angry. Angry that police are getting away with murder. Angry that some view this as a justifiable non-compliance issue. Angry that I can’t do anything to stop these murders from ending.
I want to say grab your masks and take to the streets because no justice, no peace, and fuck the police. I want to scream and yell really loud and throw metaphoric rocks at the people who are responsible for these cowardly cold-blooded murders of innocent, law abiding citizens. And, because of this anger, at times I feel like I want to watch the whole world burn.
Then what do we do? How do we stop this shit from happening?
Do we sit around and let the whole world burn or put out the fire in order to come back another day and work twice as hard to put out a fire twice as bad? It is a paradox for which I have no discernible or constructive answer.
Even these honest feelings rage and disappointment come at an even higher risk. Violence, or the advocation of violence no matter how implicit or implied, only begets more violence. It is a zero-sum game. A counterproductive catch-22.
As so I continue to preach Peace, Love, Unity, and Respect.
I say that we should do all things out of love.
I talk about how our hope and faith can heal this world.
I proclaim non-violent civil disobedience.
But yet I’m angry.
So very fucking angry.
Today is International Peace Day. A day set aside by the United Nations general council to advocate for world peace and non-violence. I preach peace and love and unity and respect.
Last night I was sad.
But tonight I’m angry.
So very angry.
Really fucking pissed off.