While I am embarrassed to not know of my Black history Juneteenth, I am also angry, that my school system failed me when I was coming up in my time of the 40ties, and 50ties with that part of history.
I am a 78 year old Black woman. I do not remember in my schooling having any studies, or stories on the Juneteenth part of history. I am very disappointed in this awareness. I have always thought in my time of schooling, as a far better school system than the kids of today; no matter how much technology has afforded them more access to information.
First, slavery has not been abolished in my understanding. However, it has been abolished in how slavery was carried out in those yesteryears times.In the meaning of slavery by the Merrimack-Webster Dictionary, slavery is still very much alive and active. It is dressed in modern attires. Quite subtle, yet blatant. It is cleverly hidden through seedy laws, pernicious attitudes, and actions.
Second, how can we say slavery has ended, when slavery is synonymous with racism. And racism is very much alive and kicking. If George Floyd, and many other Black men, being murders by our law-keepers, had not been caught on camera, racism, and slavery, would not be getting the attention it is getting today and the deluge of protesting all over the world. So I truly do not see slavery and or racism ever gone away. It is still here. It has been given life too. Life does not die. However, live does.
The Black Lives Matter, I believe in strongly, but I have a problem with that slogan from my own Black people. I believe Humans Lives Matter, and in that Black Lives Do Matter. To those policemen that took George Floyd’s lived, I believe, did not see George Floyd as a human being. However, they did see him as a Black man, who was of no significance to humanity.
(I use the word live, instead of life in my writing, because, in the lived is not necessarily life. But in the life, is always live. I believe George Floyd, have life now and he lives on in all those he left behind here on earth. Mainly His daughter. We where promise, ” life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.” This was not afforded to the Black man and Native American.)
When I see many of my brothers and sisters out there protesting with raised fist, with all of the vim and vigor, they can muster, I wonder how many really understand the magnitude of what they are saying and how many truly mean what they are chanting? When I see all of the rage and anger towards the policemen, and the destruction of property, I wonder how many truly understand and believe why they are out there protesting?
I looked out over the crowd, and wonder, how many of my Black people will go back to their communities, and have the same mindset, to raid and pillage their neighbor's homes and property without any caring thought to the Black Lives Matter meaning. How many will murder and kill, their fellow Black brothers and sisters, without any caring thought to Black Lives Matter meaning? How many will sell drugs to their fellow Black brothers and sisters so to bring them down and then step over them? Clearly no Black Lives Matter there. How many will spread malicious lies, degrading gossip about their fellow Black brothers and sisters, with no thought to Black Lives Matter? And jealousy runs rampant amongst us. I could go on with much more, but you get the picture. So, in all of these examples and more, we are showing Black Lives Do Not Matter amongst the very ones it should matter.
I’ve come to realize, the most racist group in America, are the Black/African Americans. Why? Because we were taught, trained and condition, to do so. To be racist towards our own here in America. House niggers, field niggers. Blacks, here in America, are just as prejudice towards their own, as they were condition and trained to be, and do. And, through the brainwashing and control, during the trip to America, and after landing here on American soil, In most cases, subtle, but quite blatant, racist lives well today.
We can not take a clean cloth and clean water, and wash up a dirty surface, without that dirt tainting the clean cloth and water.
How can we tell or even demand another race of people that Black Lives Matter, when we exhibit Black Lives Do Not Matter, in how we treat one another. This whole idea, is a ”Mindset” that has to change. It began with me!!! It began with recognizing and speaking about it in a sincere and honest way. I look at myself and as the question, am I racist? The answer is yes, I am. How can I not be, when I am faced with it every day of my life as a Black woman. It began as each person look deep into one’s soul as who, what, they truly feel about self and their neighbors.
We point our fingers at the other, but missed that very same finger is pointing back at self and we are the other as well. Are we misusing the Black Lives Matter nefariously and perniciously, so to further a selfish-his self, (’I’)-gain?
As far as the police issue. I too am not to keen with policemen. I too have had direct personal run-ins with policemen, and our corrupt penal system. And, I do have residual effects leftover from my horrendous experiences, still today. Thank God my lived was not taken in those events. I am in agreement with overhauling of our systematic racist, corrupted police and legal system. But I am not for disbanding our police department totally. If that should happen, it is just as dangerous, as the systematic racism itself. I believe worse. The anarchy will run rampant for sure. This goes back to our own, who do harm to our own, feeling they are giving cart blanc for open season and free-range.
We exhibit Black Lives Do Not Matter, in how we treat one another. This whole thing is a ”Mindset” that has to change. It began with me!!! It began with recognizing and speaking about it in a sincere and honest way. I look at myself and as the question, am I racist? The answer is yes, I am. How can I not be, when I am faced with it every day of my life as a Black woman. It began as each person look deep into their soul as who, what, they truly feel and believe about self and their neighbors.
We must first have a conversation amongst ourselves about our selves. We need to examine ourselves. We need to examine the hurt we have perpetrated on ourselves. We have to seek our God, our Mohammad, our whatever religious or Spiritual belief we have. We have to love our self. For if we can not love our self first, we can not love others. If we can not forgive our self first, we can not forgive others. If we do not allow others to live in peace, others will not allow us to live in peace. For, ”We is Me.” And, in me, are we.
How do I talk to my grandchildren about racism and slavery, who are mixed with White, American Indian, Irish, German, and of course Black blood? How do I talk to them, in my frustrated anger, at times, when I am treated unjustly by our racist system, as they also will be. Again, we are all one.