Month: September 2014
Last year, the nation was fixed to their television screens as George Zimmerman was on trial for the murder of Treyvon Martin. When he was acquitted there were marches all across the country. Men and women holding up signs that read “No justice, no peace” and other various messages. I was a part of the march that happened in Houston, Tx.
Another summer has passed and the great America did not disappoint. Within two weeks, three black men and one black teen were killed by police officers. 3 of the 4 were unarmed and the other was holding a BB gun in the toy aisle of Wal-Mart. None of the officers have been arrested. This is very similar to the story that captivated a nation last summer.
The death of Eric Garner was the first incident of the summer to get national attention. However, not all of that attention was positive. I am not speaking of the habitual racists that can’t seem to help but to blame the black man for his own murder. No, I am speaking of the black women who have blogged and voiced that they will no longer be marching on behalf of the black man until they begin marching for us.
I understand the frustration. When Renisha McBride was killed on the front porch of a white man most black men were silent. When they weren’t silent they were blaming her for her own demise. I mean, being drunk is a good enough reason to be executed, right? However, when the shoe is on the other foot we, black women, come out in droves to stand with our men and against a system that sees no value in them. Yet, we seem to have stand on the front lines alone when it is one of our women that has been victimized.
So, yes, I completely understand the anger. However, I do not agree with the sentiment. I can not agree. You see, I will always march. I will always use my voice and whatever else I have to stand against the injustices that our black boys and men face. I have five brothers who would defend me until the end of time. I have nine nephews, some of which I helped raise. I have uncles and cousins. I have a father. Most importantly, I have a four-year old son. I can only pray that nothing happens to them, but in the event that it does I would hope that the world would stand for them.
I cannot separate myself. I cannot say that I am only loyal to women and not be loyal to the mothers of these males. We seem to forget about them. We forget that these men and boys have families. We forget that someone is grieving over these dead bodies. We forget that it is one of us that will be burying the body of her son/brother/husband.
As I look into the big, brown eyes of my son I cannot fathom abandoning our men and boys. Instead, I can raise him to value black women just as much as we value black men. And I don’t know if black men will ever show up for us in the way we have for them. I just know that as long as I continue to birth black men I have a duty to stand by them.