On Assimilating: We Tried

It’s been a week and I can’t seem to get the smug indifference of Prosecutor McCulloch’s face out of my head. He summed up with his expression what so many white men have said with their words and actions, black lives don’t matter. He was very clear and even outlined for twenty minutes why that is. In that moment I stopped caring too but not about black lives but about making peace with people who hate me for no reason other than the blackness of my skin. I stopped caring about trying to explain to people whose hate is so ingrained and venomous that instead of pretending to be fair in the investigation of a murder they blatantly disregard everything that does not fit their narrative and another white man is free for killing a black boy.  I’m okay with that, now.

Maybe not okay but I’m done trying to fit into an America that calls my sons demons yet there are no pictures of my people hanging white people from a tree at a barbecue block party. We all have tried to fit into this America. They told us to talk and behave like them and we did because we thought we all wanted the same thing, a comfortable life. We went to school, graduated college, had our men put on suits, straightened our hair and participated in their politics. We fought for segregation and they told us to assimilate, assimilate, assimilate and we will have arrived. We did it not just for them but for us because we wanted to a part of the system because we are part of the world.

From both of us came a mixed African-American president and we thought that would make us included but he is the most disrespected president in history and I don’t need to have been alive for past presidencies to know that.They tell him daily he is not accepted while telling us its politics. They attack the First Lady for her bump and last week he Obama girls for being teenagers. They don’t like us, PERIOD. We did what they ask ut it does not matter because they only see what they want to see and our sons  will continue to be gunned down for walking down the street or playing with a toy gun under the very loose guise of law enforcement.

They told us to fight nonviolent so we overcame dogs, hoses, and the KKK. We thought we were getting respect but we never had it. The bar changes and moves every time we get closer to the carrot. So, yes I’m very tired of begging to be accepted. I’m very tired of trying to change someones POV of who I am and where I come from. I’m tired of explaining my basic need to exist. Black lives matter, our culture matters, our children matter, we all matter but we have to stop begging people to see that.

I’m not going to say I hate white people because I don’t and I probably never could but I’m done trying to pacify them. I figured out why the KKK still exist yet the Black Panthers were extinct decades ago. We sold ourselves out trying to fit in and look we where we are forty plus years after the Civil Rights Movement, still marching even though we’ve done all they ask to be considered human beings.

No doubt our lives are better, we are more successful but are we too compliant and too afraid to stir the pot too much? A lot of us are because we don’t know what that means or what we will have to give up to properly get the justice we seek. I was disgusted with a few family members who lined up to shop Black Friday thinking a television or Ipad is worth more than our protest.

I think a lot of us feel there is nothing we can do and we are looking for a bigger than life leader to tell us. One will come but the fire has to stay lit within us for us to even recognize one. Until then I will stay angry and stay focused because although I don’t care what they think of me anymore I do care that they have the power to keep killing our children and that is what will change. It will change.

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