“Racism is man’s gravest threat to man-the maximum of hatred for a minimum of reason.”
-Abraham Joshua Heschel
Like the title stated, I won’t apologize for being Black! To be honest, I don’t understand why my skin color offends so many people. Can you explain it? The only thing I seem to understand fully is I’m Black, and some people hate me for it. Last time I checked, if you cut me, I bleed just like everyone else. Last time I checked, I have to die one day, just like everyone else. So please…I’m begging you…why am I so hated for the way I look?
Growing up in school, I learned a lot about the horrors of slavery. My parents even told stories of some of the things they even went through. I have also heard stories from my elders. It was hard to believe that things did happen the way they were told. It’s also hard to believe all of the things that are taking place right now. I am literally witnessing my history book from school come alive, and it’s sad. I’ve read about the Ku Klux Klan, and White supremacy, but it’s a different feeling when it is happening right in front of you.
My dad stated, “One of the defining features of real love is kindness.” I don’t see love or kindness right now in our world. Racism, hatred, and violence are what have taken over. Although it isn’t new, and these traits have always existed, it is still sad to witness. Our world could be so much better united, yet we keep filtering racism and hatred. Its senseless and innocent lives are being affected due to foolishness.
One thing I’ve learned is that racism and hatred is a learned behavior. It’s taught! I look at little children all the time and they just melt my heart. Their innocence is what makes me happy. I saw two kids playing one day. One kid was White and the other kid was Black. They just played with each other and laughed, and just had a good time. They didn’t know about skin color. They didn’t know about slavery. They didn’t know about the tension that has taken form across the world. They didn’t know about the senseless killings. They didn’t have a care in the world. After I went on about my day, I couldn’t help but wonder what would happen to these kids, as they got older. What will happen to them when they learn about the truth of our past? What will they think of each other then? Will they still be friends, or will they fall into the evils of society?
To the racist individuals, I will never apologize for my skin color. I will never be ashamed of who I am, and what God created me to be. However, there are a few things that I am sorry for. I am sorry that people feel as if this is the way our world should be. I am sorry for the people we have lost because of nonsense. I am sorry that we may never see peace and unity in this lifetime, and I am sorry for the innocent kids that have to grow up and witness what should be behind us. For that, I am sorry.
I pray for the individuals who were affected by the horrific act of violence in Virginia, and my prayers and thoughts are with the family of the young lady who lost her life. If I could only talk to those who have gone before us. I wonder what Martin Luther King Jr., Rosa Parks, Malcom X, and all of those who fought so hard for unity and peace…what would they say?
I want kids one day, but I often wonder why? Especially if they have to grow up in a world like this. What we do now, and what is occurring now will be read years after we are gone. Is this what we want to leave our kids, grandkids, great grandkids, and etc.? The present is listening and witnessing everything that is taking place, but the future will be reading. America, is this really what you want to tell our future?
“I refuse to accept the view that mankind is so tragically bound to the starless midnight of racism and war that the bright daybreak of peace and brotherhood can never become a reality… I believe that unarmed truth and unconditional love will have the final word.”
-Martin Luther King Jr.
By: Chelsea Davis-Bibb, M.Ed.