As the debate rages on the extent of equity and social justice for all, two perspectives are emerging. On the one hand, the traditional school of thought represents people who believe that things are going well and that the system operates well based on their conception of equity and social justice for all. These traditionalists assert that our system is fair and that it works as it is supposed to do. They further claim that the system’s operation aligns with the founding fathers’ statements in the 1776 Declaration of Independence. “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that their Creator endows them with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.”
Perhaps the past Century will not be known for the World Wars, for the atom bomb, for the rapid growth of scientific technology leading to IT, nor for even the Holocaust and a new awareness of crimes against humanity. In the long eye of history, perhaps the past Century will be known for fatherlessness. As such it will also be known for “Atyahiány”, Our Father’s absence, a most bitter and embittering fatherlessness: For Hitler was fatherless, Stalin was fatherless, Sceuicescu, the tyrant of Romania, was a bastard, Sadam Hussein of Iraq had no father, the ruler of Libya, Khadaffi was fatherless, Castro was a bastard.
Foremost Happy Juneteenth to Everyone!
On January 1, 1863, the Emancipation Proclamation was the judiciary treaty signed by President Abraham Lincoln which was the country’s official acknowledgment to abolish slavery.
But did it?
Many of us were taught in school the importance of dates:
*1492, Columbus sailed the ocean blue
*1920 Women’s right to fight, suffrage allowing women voting
*1969, Moon landing, “One giant leap for mankind”
*2009, America’s first president of color, Pres. Barack Obama
*1863, the ending of slavery, right?
Am in being picky about a date? Darn right!
Although the Civil War ended in April 1865 when Confederate Gen. Robert E. Lee surrendered at Appomattox, Virginia, enslaved people in Texas didn’t learn about their freedom until June 19, 1865.
About 2.5 years after Lincoln signed the Emancipation Proclamation, it was Maj. Gen. Gordon Granger of the Union army who finally arrived in Galveston and issued General Order No. 3 that secured the Union army’s authority over Texas.
The last city in the United States to be informed of the ending of slavery was in a small town called Galveston, TX, in 1865!
How could this have occurred?
The same way we have the losses of the lives of Mr. George Floyd, Mr. Eric Garner, Mr. Rayshard Brooks, and hundreds more! The same way we have yet to properly prosecute those who fail to protect.
People who could help stood by and did or said nothing.
Juneteenth celebrates human freedom. Slave owners in 1865, knowingly broke the law-keeping their slaves in bondage through the Fall of 1865 to capitalize on more free labor.
**What if the minimum wage was increased to $100 / hour but for 2.5 years you were paid at your current rate?
**What if a mysterious stranger paid your rent for the next 2.5 years and your landlord forgets or chooses not to tell you?
**What if your mortgage or car note were paid off and your lender kept taking your monthly payments for almost the next three years?
Get the point?
In “Lone Star Pasts” Susan Merritt reported:
“Lots of Negroes were killed after freedom…bushwhacked, shot down while they were trying to get a way. You could see lots of Negroes hanging from trees.”
Freedom is not an African-American right. Freedom is a human right. Juneteenth is more than slaves being freed. It is recognition of a system’s acknowledgment about how immoral, unjust, and unethical the ideology that people could own other people was wrong.
Juneteenth (annually June 19), is to be celebrated by everyone.
Relationship Status: It’s Complicated
Racism is real; it has always been on display even if some continue to deny its existence. Our society has accepted, allowed, sanctioned, and even encouraged discrimination and violence against Black people for over four hundred years. When we see or hear people chant Black Lives Matter, they are essentially saying that sanctioned or unsanctioned, covert or overt racism, continued discrimination, conscious or unconscious and violence against Black people must come to an end. These people who have seen and experienced racial inequality in all aspects of their lives in a society where the discriminatory practice is embedded within federal, state, and local communities recognize how profoundly their lives have been affected on a daily basis and in some cases, lives that have been lost. Continue reading White Allyship and Racism – by Joseph Nwoye, Sabah Holmes, Margie Crowe
As I hold you in my arms
Your gentle tiny undulating body
Wrapped in comfort
I pray that you recognize
That your melanin I gave you is a gift and not a curse
So young yet society has already lied to you
Because they are jealous
Oh so jealous of your many shades of brown
ever changing hues that match the seasons
Jealous of the versatility of your curls and texture
That on a hot summer day your rows of corn keep you cool
Jealous of your curves that make any designer grab their sketch book
your full figure the inspiration for fall fashion
Jealous of your cooking, the deep ingrained recipes that let loose from your soul
Spices and seasonings that keep you warm in winter
Jealous of your ageless skin, those genes that you will thank me for later
When you look like you are still in the spring of life
I pray that you learn young to love yourself
So that you may live a full life embracing the gifts from your mother
Image credit: Girl of color by Alexandr Ivanov (Pixabay)
Is this the beginning of a revolution that finally addresses racism honestly?
Part 2: The Present and A Way Forward
The continuum of violence against African Americans and the Black Community
What has happened in the past is not different from what continues to happen today because racism is generational. Racists who have committed crimes use all the tools of systems of privilege built in their favor to avoid being held accountable. In doubtful circumstances, lawyers have changed venues for trial to predominantly White communities where their White accomplice juries can unconsciously and consciously exercise bias.
Is this the beginning of a revolution that finally addresses racism honestly?
Part 1: Understanding Our Shared History
When people say, “enough is enough!”, Do we really understand why? Why is it that we consistently deny the traumatic experience of racism that pains African Americans every single day? Why do we vote for leaders who effectively support policies and practices that are racist or discriminatory? What propelled so many Americans of all ethnicities including White, African Americans, Asian American, European American, Hispanic Americans to come together despite the Covid-19 pandemic to protest on the streets? Why do African Americans continue to endure racist and discriminatory practices generation after generation? These are some of the questions we ponder here given the recent events and the Black Lives Matter movement that has taken the world by storm even as a pandemic rages, propelling people to deprioritize their personal safety in order to stand up against racism and a history of subjugation and discrimination.
I am not happy when I read some of your posts and ask who are these people? Have they always felt this way about me and my people? Some of us are minimizing what happened and trying to justify police officers brutal attacks. However, this particular policeman had no concern for another human being’s life as we all watched his face that lacked any emotions. Yes, there are good and bad people period but this is not about that it is about watching a black man die before the WORLD’s eyes by the hands of corrupt police officers.
This is being done on a regular basis like it is open hunting season on black males. Some of us want to bring up George Floyd’s past to once again minimize what happened as I have stated before if he was butt naked running through the streets, screaming he did not deserve to die like that. Some of us want to question the looting and rioting. Believe it, a lot of that has been agitated by people who infiltrated in the peaceful protest with one agenda to make it chaotic.
Allyship is an inclusion and diversity strategy through which individuals with privilege support members of underrepresented groups in positive ways. Implementation of allyship strategies in work environments is increasing. There are many opportunities to use this strategy beyond the workplace, particularly in person social networking and media activities, to combat hatred toward underrepresented groups.
Hate, as a noun, is a passionate dislike, disgust, hostility or learned moral resentment of someone or something. As a verb, hate is to feel intense dislike, resentment, or hostility toward someone or something. Hatred is a demonstration of these feelings. Typically, hatred toward a group or class does not begin with extreme behaviors; instead, there is an incremental escalation which begins with less severe activities.
Foremost, my heart goes out to the family, friends, and supporters of Mr. George Floyd. As a professional communication coach, it can be challenging to remain poised when you are emotional over seeing such an egregious act of what we were victimized to witness.
How is it that the world saw Mr. Floyd have his life extracted and we as viewers are also victims?
The answer is accountability. We all saw the video. Former Police Officer Dereck Chauvin, age 44, mercilessly kept his knee in Mr. Floyd’s neck for almost nine minutes. Although Mr. Floyd desperately pleaded for his life and although civilians videotaped and did their best to inform Former Office Chauvin of Mr. Floyd’s depleting condition, those pleas were unrequited by Chauvin.
What is accountability? According to Dictionary.com, “the fact or condition of being responsible”.