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Black lives don’t matter

It’s what I’m starting to believe…

On the 5th of July, Alton Sterling was shot by two police officers over the mere suspicion of gun possession when he was already neutralised on the ground. Less than 24 hours later – the same amount of time we find so short to get everything done in a day – Philando Castile is stopped over a broken tail light before being shot four times before he could even reach for his ID papers.

Philando Castile and Alton Sterling, both victims of police brutality in July 2016.

And this is a daily occurence. As of July 2016, more than 500 people have died at the hands of a police officer. The very hands which are supposed to serve and protect them. Most of the victims were Black and it was the same last year, the year before and the years before that. How heartbreaking is this?

At a time where the Black Panthers are calling out for Black people to arm up again, how heartbreaking is this to see history repeating itself? To even think that despite everything, Black people are still not free of the fear of being killed at any given point in time?

Victims of police brutality since 1999.

Why does this matter to me, you’ll ask. I mean, I’m French, pretty much protected from all this and I don’t even live in the States. But you see, as a Black woman of Caribbean descent, I share too much history with Afro Americans to turn a blind eye on what has been going on for so long forever. If you think we’re not regarded as second class citizens in the country of the Human Rights, do not be fooled, because we are. 

Waking up to these two gruesome videos got me stewing up in a state of rage and despair I never knew I could feel before. Something so strong it could tear down a whole country.

My open-mindedness, my love for humanity, my desire for peace, my compassion and will to understand and forgive progressively melt down until the only thing left was pure hatred oozing out of me… a very distinct desire for blood and blind vengeance for centuries of alienation, mistreatments, physical and psychological torture, killings of people looking just like me, for the colour of their skin. 

If as a Black person, you say you’ve never felt it, you’re lying.

You’ve heard their names before. Tamir, Trayvon, Eric, Laquan, Michael, Rekia, Mya, Sandra, Alton, Philando and countless others. None of the police officers involved in their deaths has been convicted for their crime.

They all said they feared for their lives. But tell me, what can you fear so much to point at and shoot someone not resisting you, someone already pinned down to the ground, when you’re two or three crushing their back?

Tell me, what is so frightening about a Black body that you feel threatened as soon as they talk to you or look at you or even when they stand still in front of you?

What is so frightening about a human body, a human life – just like yours – that justifies four bullets in a man in front of a four-year-old in the backseat of a car?

Times and times again, police officers have proven their ability to de-escalate violence when white shooters, mass-murderers are involved… while tackling and shooting at point-blank range six bullets in a man’s chest before even trying to speak or understand the situation.

How aren’t we human enough to deserve to breathe one more day?

How is this right when a gorilla in a zoo sparks more outrage and draws more sympathy than Black blood spilt in the streets of their own cities?

Oh please, today spare me your false rhetoric on Black on Black crime. Spare me your theories about the culture of violence in Black communities. The system we live in has been rigged since day one. There is not a day we haven’t been fighting oppression, white supremacy and systemic racism in countries that have built their fortune on lashed Black backs.

Police brutality finds its origins in the slave codes that ruled Black lives from the day they were shipped to America. Our bodies were properties, livestock, furniture… never human. It only changed for us to be strange fruits swinging in the breeze.

What is it about Black skin that is so scary that we have to be subdued at all costs? Did we ever wage a war against you? I thought we simply asked for equality, for a chance to work fairly, have a home, a family; to be able to live — without a target on our backs.

When will you admit it is a problem since no one wants to be treated as a Black person in America.

Black people have grown tired to ask politely. They marched, demonstrated, peacefully protested, lifted their arms, raised their voices. And yet, Black lives still don’t matter.

Yesterday, five police officers were killed in Dallas on the sidelines of a peaceful protest against police brutality. I wonder though… how many more dead Black bodies are we about to find strewing the streets of America to pay for those deaths?


    1. I like to think there is always a chance for better tomorrows, but sometimes it’s hard not to feel completely desperate…

      1. Desperation will just snuff life out of you. To be truthful if the Conservatives can let go of racial prejudices (which The Democrats perpetrate too) they’ll be better all around for black people.. There’s no hope. Laws won’t change a thing.. I remember how black people agreed to allow LGBTQ issues to cloud real racial issues. A gullible attempt to look good to the gays(mostly whites??) it’s just disheartening the way black people really do not want to change things for themselves. And really that’s a fact

      2. Obviously Dems perpetrate racial prejudice too. But it’s easy to say if Conservatives could let go of their prejudice things would be better. I don’t honestly even think being a racist is a matter of political views. Most of the times, I find that the people claiming they’re not racists the loudest are the most dangerous ones… rightly because they can’t see it. You’re right when you say laws will not change things but at least they structure the society we live in and in the long run are supposed to help.
        I wouldn’t say Black ppl don’t want to change things… but change needs to come from all parties involved, which include White ppl and other ethnicities. What is lacking is a real will to educate ourselves.
        I’m not sur I see why the LGBTQ community is an issue here. It’s way more complicated than a mere attempt to please anyone, so I wouldn’t go there.
        Hopefully, we’ll see change… because humanity always thrives despite everything else.

      3. Humanity always thrives in appearances. I off handedly remarked about LGBTQ. Not my problem. There’s no end to human misery

  1. Wow, I honestly don’t have anything more to add to what you just pointed out. I agree with you and it’s saddening how towards the end, I feel it coming, that it may get worse.

    1. If no action is taken, it will worsen, no doubt about that. Thank you for your comment. Don’t hesitate to share and spread awareness at your own scale. There is no small action 🙂

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