Home Hot Topics An Open Letter to Those Who Say, “Stay peaceful.”

An Open Letter to Those Who Say, “Stay peaceful.”

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While you were sleeping, a single white gunman opened fire on innocent people in one of the United States’ oldest African American churches, Emanuel AME church. Often referred to as “Mother Emanuel”, the congregation was established in 1816. What many thought would be a typical Wednesday night bible study, somehow was transformed into a horrific event where 9 lives were lost.

I have questions. Since when are people not able to gather in a place of worship, without fear of dying? Why must we be afraid to go to the store, or swimming, or to church? Why do we have to be afraid to sit in our own living rooms in fear that someone will kick in the door and shoot us for no reason?

Since the news broke late last night, social media has been in an uproar, and rightfully so. We are tired. Tired of living in fear of being mistreated by law enforcement, and tired of having to defend our right to live. When I say “we”, I’m speaking about black people. Yes, black lives matter, and too many times, we are encouraged to be politically correct, including everyone.  I’m not trying to hear “all lives matter” today, because today, it’s about nine black innocent lives that were taken because one person, who happened to be white and felt blacks rape his women, and are taking his country, and was pro-apartheid,  felt justified in doing so. See, there’s this generation of people that insist on staying peaceful, and prayerful. They believe that this will solve all of our problems because it has worked out for us this far, and the Lord will make a way. Then there is the generation that insists on making things happen, protesting, having sit- ins, and making a little noise. This is the group that still lives by the mantra, “by any means necessary.”

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When the mayor of Charleston gets on TV and says that he “thinks this might be a hate crime” and others say this gunman is mentally ill; When you have people such as Walter Scott who was pulled over for a busted headlight get shot in the back and killed unjustly; when you have police officers pulling guns on children without just cause– what do you do? How do you wake up every day feeling like your life matters? From the day we are born, our mothers tell us that we are special, and have purpose. We are told we can be anything we want to be. We are taught to dream big, and go in the direction of our dreams. However, they say otherwise. They say live in fear. They say we aren’t worth an indictment or worth a trial. They our lives don’t matter. They say that we can’t gather at a swimming pool and enjoy family and friends. They say we can no longer go to church and worship together in peace and feel safe.

Having brown skin puts an automatic target on our backs. I can’t be peaceful anymore. I can’t act as if nothing is going on when everyday there’s a new story about one of our own being mistreated or killed. We have every right to be angry. I’m pissed. For everyone who is making excuses for what is happening in this country, I ask you to have several seats and take a look around. Be for real, none of these events are happening by chance. It’s open season for killing black people. How long and how many lives have to be lost before something is done about it?

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Charleston is just another example of the direction that this country is moving in. Things aren’t getting better they are getting worse. There are people who obviously feel threatened by a specific group of people and I can’t understand why. Black culture is one of the most replicated and mimicked cultures that exists. You can ask Rachel about that one.  Braids aren’t new, bantu knots aren’t new, twerking isn’t new and neither are oversized butts. Our culture and our lives are rich with history. History that dates back to before slavery that have taught us that we are someone and that our lives do matter. Everybody wants to be “like us”, but nobody want to actually “be us.” How does that even work? From our music to our dancing, to our language–we created that. We are a brilliant group of people that has a purpose and has a place in this country just as much as anyone else. Our tenacity and perseverance are the only things that have allowed us to continue to move forward as a powerful people, and that doesn’t stop today.

So I pose this question: How do we peacefully exist in a place where we are reminded every single day that we aren’t wanted? What is the solution?

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Keita is a Houston based blogger with a bunch of opinions and much more to say, check her out on twitter @keitathejedi or at www.keitawheats.com

 

 

Comment(6)

  1. First off, I want to thank you for writing this.

    I know enough to know that there is no simple solution to all of this. However, I do wonder why any black people continue to live in a place that (literally at every turn) is telling you that they want you there to experience their hatred for you. My admittedly elementary solution:

    Leave.

    Leave them to an oasis of their kind. Don’t pay into their tax base. Don’t stay and fight for acceptance. Indifference is awesome. Learn it. If the police shoot an unarmed child with no prosecution: leave. If the schools are segregating education: leave.

    No voting. (In an established no win situation)

    No protesting.

    No effing old negro spirituals.

    Just Leave. For those who ask where to go; I say that I don’t know. I do know this. Some city would love to capitalize on an increasing tax base with the knowledge of why we exited the previous location and that black people will do again if you step out of line.

    P.S. if you or your black child goes to USCarolina, seriously,
    kill yourself and take Dawn Staley with you.

    1. This is great advice, especially for those who do not have resources to leave. Good luck to those who just have to deal with it.

      What did Dawn Staley do to you?

      1. News flash, nobody HAS to deal with it. This is where personal responsibility comes in. You do not allow yourself or your family to stay in a place where the very flag and confederate soldier named streets threaten your existence. Whatever happened to “by any means necessary”?

        I’m not dismissive of people in financial hardships. However, this is America. If you allow your child to grow up in the same uber-oppressive SC, which we know has physical and
        mental consequences then you have failed as a black person. Do what you have to do and LEAVE.

        As for Ms. Staley, she backed the flying of the confederate
        flag on the university’s logo just so that her school could host an NCAA tournament game. Look it up. Eff her!

  2. Could the problem be, post the assassination of King no one has continued the fight for civil rights? There has been this state of living, ignoring, and justifying bad behavior. There are so many blacks who buy into the stereotypical black behavior but somehow exclude themselves and select others which is BS! Never even blinks an eye before berating one another even if it is a stranger. Each person is an individual, black or white. I’ve personally heard one too many times how “different” I am, as if I’m not the norm (from both blacks and whites). I am quick to protest that I am the norm.

    I am American, and have no plans to move. I personally feel it’s irresponsible to insight absolutely nothing. This message is incomplete and the ignorant and super weak need specifics. There’s nothing wrong with protesting, the problem is NO ONE wants to LEAD! No one wants to sign up for that job. Just as no one wants to seriously discuss race in this country, but anger is the easier thing to discuss. Smh! If we aren’t mature enough to handle valid dialogue the BS continues…

    We stopped accepting the notion of the village and followed the path of fellow Americans with ill regards to how that would affect the masses. Selfishness exploded on everyone. We’re so quick to point out others without regarding ourselves, and that is more BS! We know there are “F’d” up people on this planet. Can we really change them?

    I think we should promote more beautiful thoughts to one another and show encouragement and truthfully be supportive. Small action projects larger action….one person, or small group at a time can make change and not just talk about change. If you’re not at your best, or making a true effort to become better through actions, not words, then shut up!

  3. Oh and as for having a blck president. I read on a meme on FB or somewhere something to the effect of, “we’re always brought in to clean up whte folks messes that we didn’t create in the first place. Just my opinion, but that’s how I feel about them allowing Obama that win. After the sucky job Bush did the brought him in to clean it up.
    Plus they may have figured, now they can blame one of their own for everything that’s screwed up.
    Based on what I read and heard, they blocked much of the Presidents proposals, and idea’s to help the lower and middle class. Whatever couldn’t be legally blocked was held up for as long as possible. For instance the health insurance laws. From what I recall in his initial proposal the purpose of making the affordable healthcare Act a requirement was meant to help people, not make them pay more money. Yet Congress put loopholes in the Act, in order to get some type of compensation from it. NOTHING is free in this country. It’s run like a Corporation. Everything done has to make a profit of some sort. The government gets it’s profit through taxes. So I wasn’t surprised that part of the Affordable Health Care Act is that you will have to pay fees in the form of taxes, if for any reason you don’t get health insurance.

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