Just a couple of days ago, I wrote about writing things down during these Covid/coronavirus/quarantine times and how I was motivated by the #1000WordsofSummer program. And right after I wrote those words and sent the blog post, it felt like the bad news that’s permeated the United States all of a sudden took an even nastier turn. All at once, it felt like everything changed, and writing about anything other than current events became ridiculously trivial.
But the thing is, even though the news is now full of images of violence and uproar, the real problem is that nothing has changed. Oh, certainly the lives of the loved ones of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Ahmaud Arbery changed immeasurably, very quickly.
But the grief here is that what happened to these people is not new. In the United States, it’s been happening since even before we were the United States. For more than 400 years, we have decided that one group of people is worth less than another group of people, and that view of reality has driven our society ever since. We live in a culture that devalues the personhood of many of its own citizens, all because of the color of their skin. A culture that, yes, needs to be reminded that Black lives do matter.
Yep, we are seeing that this is a time to change, but that’s not new either. It’s been time to change for a long time.
I don’t have words for the sadness I feel for what’s happening, for what’s been happening. I know I’m not alone; it seems like people are fumbling around trying to find some words that help.
I don’t have those words. As I read back over this post, I see a lot of “I feel,” and “it seems like.” Which is another way of admitting that I just don’t know.
I’m going to sit with not knowing for awhile and instead try to listen. And remember to be as kind as I can while we all figure this stuff out.
Wherever there is a human being, there is an opportunity for a kindness.Lucius Annaeus Seneca