So, I know I was not the only one who was fuming about what all went down or I should say, is going down in Ferguson. I also know that I am not the only one who has noticed that like every other story out there about police brutality and racism in general, there has been a decrease in the coverage of the case and resulting situations occurring in Ferguson. So, I wanted to bring this back to the lime light just to remind us that it still is out there and it still is a major problem.
People of color are being killed at an alarming rate, and a large majority of it stems from racism. I’ve heard a lot of people sum up the story of Ferguson as “a huge riot” or “black people acting crazy again.” It hurts my heart to hear people (yes, this includes people of color too) devalue the hard work and effort that so many journalist and people, in general, are working to receive justice for. The media and mainstream society wants you and I to believe that all we do is act crazy and aggressive, thus meaning we deserve this kind of treatment because we need to stay in our place right? Here’s five words for you: Wake Up, and Stay Woke. No one should be able to take away something so easily, you may not be paying attention, but surely someone is. No one can do anything to you that you do not allow them to do. So, when you let one speck of dust go untouched, every other dust particle comes running behind that one. Which leads me to my next point, stop procrastinating.
For some reason, humans are not very pro-active…at all. We react to what has happened and forget to plan for what can happen. This form of action plan is exactly what nips us in the butt in the long run. We cannot suddenly come out of the shadows to drag whoever crosses the line, we can alleviate the need to “go after someone” by setting the standard from the beginning. Saying loud and clear, “Here is where you stand with me. Saying or doing _______ is not ok and will not be tolerated.” I think a lot of the confusion comes from pure ignorance, being afraid to ask, or just not knowing to ask, and people running with their own pre-determined assumptions. If you lay all of your cards on the table, there is no need for guessing later down the road because you already know what it is.
To put the cherry on top of this disheveled sundae, I’m saying that if you have something to say then come with and come with it hard. Don’t let the story and reality of Ferguson fade out. Don’t let the rawness of the problem with the NYPD fade out. And most of all, do not let your voice fade out. Never “just shut up about it.”