In this era of mass communication via social media, skype, facetime, texting, email and other forms of online communication and technology people have immediate access to personal, local, national and international news. Far too often we are shown images and videos of assaults, violent attacks and police brutality. Without question Black on Black crime must be mentioned, acknowledged and addressed. However, the focus of this blog post is on those nationally known incidents that were unquestionably racially targeted by Whites against Blacks; and in many cases by White police officers. The RECENT incidents have been many including: Travyon Martin, Sanford, Florida; Eric Garner, Staten Island New York; Michael Brown, Ferguson; Missouri, Tamir Rice, Cleveland, Ohio; Sandra Bland, Waller County, Texas; and the female student assaulted by the school officer in South Carolina....and the list goes on and on...
These modern day "lynchings" are reminiscent of a sad, painful and horrific time in our past as Blacks in America- when lynchings were the unofficial law of the land in some areas. In the majority of cases then and now the White perpetrator walks free. Today is a reminder that as much as things change they have unfortunately remained the same! In 2015 we may have a Black president, many educated and professional Blacks in high positions, and Black multi-millionaire athletes and entertainers. Yet, the masses of Black people are still struggling for their daily survival during this recession or borderline depression.
These vicious incidents that are shown repeatedly on the news and online permeate our mind and psyche and linger in our subconscious mind. As an educator I am concerned about the damage these incidents and images are having on our minds. Black boys and men and NOW Black girls and women know they are targets, and many live in fear. We pray that it won't happen to us, our families, loved ones and people in our sphere. We grieve with parents who bury their loved ones, weep for the racial injustices that permeate our country, and anger over the vicious assaults. We now recognize the risk in the US of DWB-Driving While Black, SWB-Sitting While Black and in reality LWB-Living While Black. In an effort to understand the collective experiences of diverse views - I ask you my readers to respond to one question:
What impact does race have on your daily life?