It's been a while since I last blogged but even then, I was addressing the amount of privilege in our society, especially among friends of mine who fail to garner compassion for lives of color. They insist on victim blaming and claiming ´Murica has no flaws. Well ...
These last few days I’ve been posting a lot of comments on my social media pages regarding the recent murders of black lives by law enforcement. I’ve been tagged in many posts, been sent numerous private messages and texts and received a few phone calls. All but one attacked my position on the recent events including the murdering of Dallas Police Officers.
They went a little something like this … “Have you lost your balls? “Now you’re siding with liberal pussies?” “What happened to the rock solid leader I knew in the Army?” “Did you forget what country you fought for?” “You’ve been in combat. Do you really not get how fucking hard it is for cops out there?” Then there was that one video [that got sent to me 6 times … in a private messages I might add] circulating the internet showing cops shooting Anglos at a much higher rate than POC (People of Color). Yes, one video.
I want to make something clear for the those of you who think that the peanut butter and jelly can’t go on the same side of the sandwich … It’s possible to support two causes!
I support the #BlackLivesMatter movement. Period. But that doesn’t mean I want police officers murdered either, because I support them too. Let me be clear, the good ones. The ones who are out there checking their bias everyday. The ones who take the time to get to know the communities they work in. My position on #BLM doesn't mean other lives don't. It just means that right now the lives of POC are being subjected to these types of incidents at a higher rate than anyone else and so for me, yes, that matters.
Also for another point of clarity … #BlackLivesMatter aren’t exclusively saying that no other lives matter either you pompous dipshits.
I’m gonna let you in on a little secret the rest of the civilized world knows. Looking at society through a polarized lens does not allow the human heart to have compassion for the struggle that lies between those lines. So when you think that you have to be this or that, it’s ok to be both.
One message tried to argue that white people living in poverty have it just as bad as people of color in general. This from a person who I’ve never once seen post or advocate those poor whites … ever. My response, “I’m not white, you are. If you advocate for them, I’d support you.” But one thing I didn’t have time to explain was that regardless of what rung of the socioeconomic ladder that demographic finds themselves on …THEY’RE STILL WHITE!!! By that fact they’re still able to enjoy a certain amount of privilege that comes with being white. Period.
Look, I get that law enforcement is a tough line of work. But it was a choice. Having colored skin isn’t. Police officers are human beings however, when they subscribe to that uniform, certain morals and values accompany it. They’re held to a higher standard and are expected to conduct themselves with a certain amount of professionalism than an everyday citizen; just like our military. I know what’s it’s like to just have been shot at and have to maintain control over my emotions when engaging the general public while looking for the trigger person.
Here’s part of the problem … A lot of cops have a “God” complex. Instead of humbling themselves and understanding the struggle they over react and abuse their authority then, end up escalating situations beyond the point they needed, furthering the violence and bad relationships between the community they’re supposed to serve and themselves.
But here’s something White America may not realize … People of Color always have to be cautious with our reaction to hostility so we don’t prove stereotypes true. White people don't have to worry about that. So when there’s an issue with systemic prejudice [because that’s a real thing] we’re expected to act all cordial like and conform? Chale homie.
Think of the armed stand-off in Colorado and how that was handled … AND THEY TOOK GOVERNMENT LAND! Think of the Bundy Ranch situation and how those on people were treated by law-enforcement. The double standard being enforced in Communities of Color needs to stop!
If you think the activism happening today won't change anything tomorrow, you're right; for now. Change didn't happen overnight after civil rights movement. We’re still fighting the same racial mechanisms today that they were fighting then, those mechanisms just look different. It takes generations for change to take place but it starts right now with you reading this blog.
Here’s what’s funny about all this … all my “friends” who sent me these messaged/videos/calls claim to care about humanity but fall short of doing the one thing that would demonstrate their sincerity.
Not one asked what they can do to be an ally. No one offered an ear to get insight to a world they’ve not encountered. They were all fast to judge my position without taking a moment to understand why. All they knew is my views contradicted theirs and it was enough. Hiding behind private messages because chances are, they’re afraid of what others may think of their view. Humanity is naturally good. Society manipulates it, WE FUCK IT UP.
So much for my right to freedom of speech I guess.
Born in San Anto, raised by the barrio, educated by both.