There’s a lot going on…
The ugliness in Charlottesville has caught the attention of so many. The saddest part of this entire ordeal is that to many people of color, the occurrence of this event is not surprising, and the sentiments represented by it are nothing new or… unusual. People have been fighting against various elements of white supremacy in its many forms for decades– fighting when its not so comfortable to just voice your opposition and say, “I don’t support what has happened in Charlottesville.”
I also noted how easy it is to condemn someone with a swastika tattoo screaming about white heritage. Hateful. Disgusting. Racist. But what about your best friend that snaps about how black people need to get off their *behinds and get off welfare? And what about your parents who let you know that you better not bring a black person home as a mate? What about your aunts… uncles… friends…?
I mention this to say that I find it important to understand that the essence of “white supremacy” exists in more ways than flagrantly racist demonstrations accompanied by domestic terrorists:
It exists in a prison system that disproportionately houses black and brown bodies that commit the same “crimes” as their still-free white counterparts.
It exists in the reality that in a traffic stop, a black man could comply, lose his life, and not even see basic justice through the conviction of the perpetrator.
It is maintained by silent folks sitting on their privilege. Yikes.
It is the reality that being a white supremacist and rallying on a college campus is protected as a freedom, but simply being black is a risk.
The essence of white supremacy is not just angry bodies crowding a campus with tiki torches (of all things…)– it is also social attitudes and political strategy.
This past weekend, I had sighs. I had tears. I had worry. I had heartache.
Today, I have soul. I have courage. I have heart. I have faith.
Not necessarily that every aspect of this type of hatred will be eradicated. But that it will lose its charge.
My heart is still heavy, but still not defeated.
Grace and Peace.