Why do you think that the names of Pauli Murray, a gender queer woman, and Claudette Colvin, a teenage mother, are not taught to us alongside the name of Rosa Parks, even though all three were civilly disobedient in the same way?
In what ways might respectability politics have influenced your idea of which Black lives matter and which ones don’t?
As theologian James Cone states in The Cross and the Lynching Tree, “Without concrete signs of divine presence in the lives of the poor, the gospel becomes simply an opiate; rather than liberating the powerless from humiliation and suffering, the gospel becomes a drug that helps them adjust to this world by looking for “pie in the sky.”
Whatever our religious or personal beliefs, it seems clear that hope is active and that the goal of freedom requires the work of love.
Each time a new name comes across my news feed because a black person has been killed by people who have been hired to “protect and serve,” my body and heart return to an all too familiar weariness reserved for this unique blend of personal and corporate grief. The grief passed down through generations and shared across the diaspora. The grief that fervently hopes blackness won’t be blamed for the death of us all.
I don’t know that I’ve ever before seen such a poignant examination of just how short-lived black childhood truly is in this country. Even today, well into their adult lives, there are people who stubbornly refuse to believe that the now-exonerated individuals who were jailed as a result of this case, had nothing to do with the crime that took place that night in 1989.
When I came home from work today, I quickly prepared the remarks below to share at a special (virtual) meeting of the City Council this evening. I share my words here so that should I be quoted or referenced, the entirety of my message will be here, published on my own platform, in its entirety….
As for me and my house, I am the only person who can vote. I have young children and an immigrant husband. My vote represents us all. Your vote represents more people than just you as well
Browder didn’t take his own life any more than his mother died as a result of heart trouble; rather, our country’s inefficient judicial system killed this young man and by extension his mother as well.
For the past month and a half, I have shared podcast suggestions, movies, TV episodes, and books. Today, I want to point you not toward sources of information to take in, but toward points of action.
I originally wrote this piece four years ago and published it on my former blog here. Since today is the anniversary of this tragedy, I brushed it off and polished it a bit to share again today. “Every man’s island, Jean Louise, every man’s watchman, is his conscience. There is no such thing as a…