My thoughts are rambling today, no cohesion. Too many things are happening in the U.S. today for me to be able to zero in on one thing. It does seem though, that we’re headed in a direction. Where that will lead however, is anyone’s guess. We have the Covid virus. We have Trumps, Make America Great Again campaign. We have racism and the fight against racism with Black Lives Matter. We have the Confederate flag issue and the statues and memorials issue. We have police violence against People Of Color. We have the gun violence issue. Things are heating up here.
Here’s a thing I have learned in my years on this planet. People don’t like change. Introduce a change into a society, or a work place or school, and people lose their minds. They don’t want change, they like things they way they are. Change is disruptive. It’s not comfortable and people like being comfortable. PEOPLE LIKE BEING COMFORTABLE. Wearing a mask to the grocery store in uncomfortable. Social distancing is uncomfortable. Talking about racism is uncomfortable. People will avoid discomfort because well, it’s uncomfortable.
I hear people say, “Why do people have to be out protesting?” Protests are disruptive. They’re uncomfortable. Why do they want to change things? If they don’t like it here they can leave. I’ve heard it. You’ve heard it. They conveniently forget or maybe never realized that this country was born out of protest, born out of a desire for change. They also forget that this country was born out of stealing the land and killing and subjugating those who it was stolen from. But that was the past and we’re not like that anymore. Why should we have to apologize for what happened hundreds of years ago? Why do you have to bring these things up when we so carefully buried them in the past?
The wrongs of the past and of the present, are still wrong regardless of where and when they happened. A society that was built on racism and bigotry is a society that is not healthy. A society that has gun violence and police violence against People Of Color affects everyone, not just the targeted. A president who attacks his so called “enemies” is a president who could just as easily attack you is he chooses. Police who target People Of Color could just as easily target you. Injustice for some of us is injustice for all of us. The problem here is that not everyone sees all of us as all of us. We are divided by race in the U.S. Us and them. White people and Black people. When the police commit crimes against Black people, the White people don’t have to worry about it. And I’m not dumping on police here. I assume that most police are law abiding.
People are hurting. People are starting to let it be known. People are demanding change. As a white person, I have never experienced direct racism, or violence from police. That doesn’t mean that it’s not a problem because I see all of us as all of us. If I look away from the problems that we have today, I become part of that problem. How long before I am the target? Or my family? George Floyd should not have died that day. Regardless of his race or ethnicity or religious belief or anything else. He should not have died at the hands of the police. What happened to him could happen to me. Or you. How long before it does? These things need to be addressed.
People say the protests and riots after the George Floyd killing were wrong. Why couldn’t they protest peacefully? Well that’s been tried. Colin Kaepernick tried that. He was called a “Son of a Bitch” by our president and he lost his job along with a salary of millions. Protesting peacefully didn’t work. So they tried something else that finally got people’s attention. I don’t condone violence. But when you’ve tried it their way and were shot down for it (sometimes literally) what choice do you have. Violent protest is a natural progression.
Change is coming. Whether you want it or not, change is going to happen. It will happen peacefully or violently, but it will happen. And hopefully the changes that happen will be better for our society. Because it is “OUR” society. All races, all ethnicity’s, all religions, all sexual identities. We are individual and we are one. If we can see it that way, we can make a better world.