Love Won’t Solve Our Problems if You Refuse to Act to Fight Injustice

My soul is tired, and I’m sure yours is too.

If you are a person of color, do yourself a favor and go into your Facebook settings and disable your auto play for your videos.

Do not share the latest videos. It’s not okay for your health.

I remember when that two-person TV crew was killed on live television. Do you remember what happened? They cut to the studio, and then after figuring out what happened, they refused to show the videos out of respect for the families.

With Black and brown folks, we are not offered the same level of respect. We tend to film these murders as evidence of what has happened to us. We turn them over to law enforcement to help with the investigation.

Normally, when evidence is turned over to help an investigation, law enforcement protects that information to not compromise the investigation. They don’t do the same thing for Black and brown bodies, which if you remember were once Black and brown people, because they know damn well they don’t plan on properly investigating the crime, so compromising an investigation is a non-issue. Then they turn over that evidence to the public, and do you know what happens? We’re forced to relive that trauma over and over again. It doesn’t seem to matter to some people what it does to our psyche or our children. We have never been treated equally.

This is not about being anti-police. This is not about being anti-white. This is not about being anti-authority or anti-neighbor. This is about the fact that everyone wants to talk about love and respectability politics, when neither seem to matter. If we wanted to promote more love, then we would stand up (or rather sit down) in the face of injustice. We would challenge the status quo and check in on our Black and brown friends, not hide behind the illusion that love is either enough or the solution: it starts with respect and not being selfish. It starts with empathy for another human being who does not appear to be like you on the outside.

And please stop with the respectability politics. Yes, there are bad people in the world, but if you can’t ask for car help, walk in a park, sit on your grandma’s couch, read a book, stand on a corner, sleep in bed, or go to church without the possibility of being shot and killed then what is it that we can do to stay alive? You can literally feed elementary school children, remember their food allergies, learn their names, and greet them each day with a smile and still get killed. Don’t talk to me about being a model citizen or an angel on earth. If that mattered to you at all, you would be screaming, protesting, and demanding justice at every turn.

If it really was about love, then you would know know that a strike against them is a strike against yourself. If it was really about love, then you would care for those babies, raise those children, advocate for those teenagers, and lift up those adults and help them get to a better place.

If it was really about love, then they wouldn’t be considered activists for demanding fresh and clean water. We wouldn’t be reserving fresh and healthy food for some segments of the populations. We wouldn’t be corraling off housing units for people who may not have a certain number of dollars in their pockets or a particular ethnicity. We wouldn’t be designing materials, buildings, and resources to be physically accessible to only able-bodied individuals. We wouldn’t be denying people the ability to worship in peace without getting gunned down or walk down the street without being set on fire.

If it was really about love, we wouldn’t be telling people who, what, where, when, why, and how they can protest. We’d be standing or sitting right next to them and lifting up our voices. If it was really about love, we’d be calling out racial, ethnic, disability, and religious microaggressions left and right. We would be respectful, even if we didn’t share the same opinion or experience.

When are you going to admit that this is really not about love or all of us, but your own ego?

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