My pen won’t move.
I wanted to write about things I’m learning at work, things I’m seeing at home, the recently renewed desire I have to further my skills in UI design, literally anything else.
But my pen would.
Whenever I sweep my hand to draw the first letter, I bump into a dead body. You’d be surprised how hard it is to sleep when you’re tired of things like this.
I didn’t even need to read the stories before I saw how they would be distorted or shut down completely:
- Black on black crime.
- Something about what MLK would have done.
- You don’t know the stresses police go through, how dare you.
- You only have a split second to make those decisions, so you can’t judge them.
- Can we not make this about race?
- Something about how BLM is awful for everyone.
- Something about how we should move past race so healing can begin.
- Something about a significantly less important thing like a celebrity marriage.
- Something about how white people trying to notice injustice are being sent death threats.
- Some insensitive headline from a major news outlet while lesser known outlets are attacking the heart of the issue.
- Something about Kaepernick was right or wrong or both.
It all becoming so normalized, I should just donate everything but my funeral clothes and remain in them. I fight my inner cynic tooth and nail, but find myself unable to win some days.
I wonder if there is a single new thing to say to anyone about this. No one is listening. We just want uninterrupted traffic and we want people to stand during an anthem made in a time when I was 60% of a person.
We want black people and other influential or popular figures to complain about all of this on their own time and not when we’re in the middle of enjoying ourselves. I wonder what it is like to be able to divest myself of an issue that is murdering people because I know it is impossible to be touched by it.
I wonder what it is like to trust the justice system. To know that, as imperfect as it is, it will likely come to the correct conclusion most of the time. To be able to rest in the fact that, when it comes to authority, I will not be judged by the color of my skin. That if I ever commit a crime – no matter how heinous – I will always be treated as a human; I will always be taken to jail alive, I will always get a trial, I will always be treated as a human by news media, I will always be spoken of in as positive a way as possible no matter the circumstances or my guilt, I will always be treated with dignity in every sphere.
I wonder what it’s like to be normal. To be treated as normal and naturally occurring. For no one to feel special for being decent to me. To not have people vying for accolades over simply apologizing for doing me harm and moving forward.
I wonder a lot and might wonder a lot more if I didn’t feel so incapable of experiencing the emotions that go with those musings. Because let’s be clear: I can’t bring this to work. I have a job to do and I must do that until I’m dead or until my immediate family dies because where I work, I’m surrounded by people untouched – sympathetic, but untouched – by this issue I think about upon waking, during lunch break, and apparently while I sleep.