Sooo, it’s my second time posting this week. I’m shook. I went from taking a really long break from writing to focus on school to all of the sudden getting back on here all of the time. My reason is that I’ve seen a lot of stuff on social media the past couple of days, and I thought I’d share my perspective of the situations at hand. Don’t worry, this won’t be an in-your-face, lengthy shaming about how horrible life has been for my people over the past couple of weeks (even though it has). This will more so be about my opinion on how people have dealt with events this past week, the law passed in honor of Breonna Taylor, and how we can show empathy towards all parties involved in this situation.
So I had this fear looming over my head a couple of days ago about the movement taking place. Everyone was so eager to participate in the #blackouttuesday seen on social media where individuals would post a black square to protest the injustices shown to African Americans, specifically George Floyd and Breonna Taylor. I loved seeing everyone unite to fight this battle against hatred that has been taking place for hundreds of years now. I found myself concerned, however, that the same ones who were posting these black squares would forget about us in the long run, and that all of the importance surrounding the death of two innocents souls would be forgotten and utterly meaningless days from now. We see this happen a lot with cancel culture, too. Someone does something that everyone considers wrong or crude, and all of the sudden they’re trending on twitter. #Cancelled. When it comes down to it though, the people who were said to be “cancelled” end up coming back, giving some half-hearted apology, and getting back a considerable amount of fans and followers. So yeah, I felt a bit unsure.
It turns out, though, that my suspicions were very wrong. People everywhere have shown out and really proven that they know what it takes to make right what’s been made wrong. People are still posting bits about historical monuments, as well as the history of many successful African Americans who have flown under the radar for so long. It’s amazing to learn about people that even I didn’t know existed. These people deserve to be talked about and heard just as much as Martin Luther King Jr. and Rosa Parks. So I guess what I’m trying to say is thank you. Thank you to everyone who hasn’t stopped posting and has kept the conversation going. Not just because it’s “cool” and “hip” to do right now, but because you actually care. It means something, and you are a part of what is going to change the future into hopefully a more peaceful one.
As many of you may now, a law was passed this week in honor of the dear young lady whose life was taken on March 13, 2020. Her name was Breonna Taylor. She was shot and killed by two police officers who claimed that they were searching the house “as part of a narcotics investigation” (Get your d*** story straight’: What we know about Louisville woman Breonna Taylor’s death). The plot twist is, as you may have expected, Breonna and her boyfriend, who was also in the house at the time, were not in possession of any drugs at all. It was such a tragic story to hear about. Breonna “was kind heart working and honest” and “had made plans to succeed” (Get your d*** story straight). Even worse, the officers responsible for this shooting were charged and set free after being on house arrest for only less than a month. Why am I saying all of this? It’s important to know the back story before you hear the more cheery update about this case. This by no means wipes removes scars put into place from Breonna’s death, but it does ensure that unjustified behavior like this will be punished if ever this were to happen again. God forbid.
This week, Breonna’s Law was created in Louisville, Kentucky which forbids police from coming into a house with a warrant and no knock. Thus the name, a “no-knock” warrant. This was a huge step of victory for not just the family of Breonna Taylor, but African Americans in Kentucky. It has not become an official law yet, but Mayor Greg Fischer “vowed that he would “sign the ban into law as soon as it hits his desk” (Get your d*** story straight). It it such a blessing to know that finally this issue is being taken seriously, and I pray that we would remember the other lives that were taken in a similar way. Let us not forget those who came before them. I cannot imagine losing a family member and having their case not be seen by anyone, only to have someone who died afterward receive justice. Let’s keep trying to learn about the history of the other African Americans so that maybe someday, they can also be heard.
The last thing I wanted to brief touch on is the way that we are treating all parties in this situation. There is no doubt that one party is the main focus, and are truly the victims. Riots and protests are still occurring every single day that include not just African Americans, but other races. With that being said, I personally think it’s too far to say that police officers are now obsolete. As someone who grew up in the military, I suppose I have a personal bias in saying this, but I feel like it needs to be said. There are still some amazing police officers out there that are doing things the right way. Many of them have even spoken up about the way they feel about what has transpired.
The ones that have their hands clean are willing to admit that there is a problem with corruptions amongst some of their peers, but they refuse to denounce their position because of them. I agree with this whole-heartedly. Just the other day, I had friendly encounter with a man in law enforcement. He treated me with respect and even was kind despite these difficult times. It came off as genuine, not forced. There are many other officers like that who don’t deserve to be punished for the sins of their “brothers”. Ferguson police in the state of Missouri “[knelt] for over nine minutes in solidarity” to remember the tragic loss of another life almost 6 years ago, Michael Brown (Police officers kneel in solidarity). This is not the picture that of police officers that has been painted in our heads for the past several weeks. After that, the protesting ceased, ending with many going home and even with some police officers joining the side of the protestors. My point in saying all of this is that yes, some of the tactics used to stop protestors have been wrong. Rubber bullets are way too harsh. But we must not forget to see both sides of the situation. It is only then that we can have true empathy, which leads to peace among all individuals.
So yeah, I hope that that shed some light on some other issues we can be focusing on. I’m someone who likes to see everyone happy, which can sometimes portray my unrealistic, illogical side that hopes for humanity to skip off into the sunset together. But I really believe that if we put a consistent amount of effort into addressing these things, we can create a more cheerful environment for everyone to live in. This should be our goal as not just humans, but Christians. Romans 12:15 says, “Rejoice with those who rejoice, weep with those who weep.” This is what people can do for African Americans. 1 Peter 3:8 says, “Finally, all of you, have unity of mind, sympathy, brotherly love, a tender heart, and a humble mind.” This is what we can do to reconcile with police officers. It’s going to take some time, but I do believe that we can get there. Thank you all for taking the time to read this. I love you, and I hope you have a blessed rest of the week.
Let’s find a little more of this.
Costello, Darcy et. al. “‘Get your d*** story straight’: What we know about Louisville woman Breonna Taylor’s death”. May 14, 2020. Louisville Courier Journal. USAToday. https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/nation/2020/05/14/breonna-taylor-what-know-louisville-emt-killed-police/5189743002/
O’Kane, Caitlin. “Police officers kneel in solidarity with protesters in several U.S. cities”. June 1, 2020. CBSNews. https://www.cbsnews.com/news/protesters-police-kneel-solidarity-george-floyd/