Watching the evening news on May 26th was exhausting. The U.S. was nearing 100,000 dead from the coronavirus and black people are dying at two to three times the rate of their population, George Floyd was murdered by four police officers, a woman in New York called the police on a black man because he asked her to leash her dog, and a black man on America’s Got Talent spent four decades in prison for a crime he didn’t commit. That was all in one 30-minute news program.
This is America. Black people dying left and right, police brutality, everyday discrimination, injustice in the criminal justice system—this is the reality for black Americans. America is sick. Ahmaud Arbery, Breonna Taylor, and George Floyd are all victims of a larger disease. The venom of racism still runs through our veins and is still a part of the beating heart of this country. We will never be able to treat this sickness until we properly acknowledge the extent of this disease.
What will finally cause us to take seriously the search for a cure? Trayvon Martin wasn’t enough. Tamir Rice wasn’t enough. Eric Garner wasn’t enough. When will we finally say “Enough.” Convictions are not enough. If we want justice for Ahmaud Arbery, Breonna Taylor, and George Floyd, America needs to change. Justice can only be found through change.
Rest in Power Ahmaud Arbery, Breonna Taylor, George Floyd, and all of the names that you represent.
We are in a crisis. It’s ok to ask for help.