The video was circulating on instagram but I couldn’t watch it. George Floyd was murdered by a villain named Derek Chauvin. Chauvin sunk his knee into George’s neck, due to a racial profiling incident that George was using counterfeit money at a corner store. It seemed like the more George gasped that he couldn’t breathe, the deeper the predator sunk his knee into George’s neck. There were 4 other officer’s on the scene. These were the assistants of the murder. They made a wall around the scene of the crime. 8 minutes later Chauvin got off of George’s neck. 2 minutes later George’s life was gone.
George was a football and basketball athlete in high school. He was a father, brother and grandfather. He was a bouncer at the Conga Latin Bistro where his murderer also worked. He was an advocate against gun violence, god-fearing and known as a man who loved people.
I didn’t even get to mourn George’s death properly when I heard about another police brutality incident in Toronto, not too far from where I live. The police had pushed Regis Korchinski-Paquet off of a balcony at a High Park apartment building. She was having a seizure, her mother called the police for help to calm her down and she ended up dead.
Just last week, we heard about Armaud Arbery getting lynched while on a jog, a few days later a white women falsely accused a black man of trying to assault her in Central Park, George being murdered with the assistance of 4 police officers and Regis being pushed off of a balcony.
Where is the accountability for taking black lives?
These incidents made me feel as a black person, I just wasn’t doing enough. I have been educating myself on black history for the past 5 years because I refused to believe that all the negative and horrible things, I heard about blackness could be true. But I’m just not involved on a community level nor am I educated on police brutality and how to fix it.
These police brutality incidents have embarked rage on black people all over the world. Black people are commonly labeled as #angry. But nobody stops to think why are we mad. We loose our father’s, mother’s, sister’s, brothers and the world wants to shove it under the rug. We are constantly made to look like “thugs” by people who refuse to unlearn racist ideologies that have been in affect for the past 400 years. We hear that “we choose to be slaves” and “being stuck is our own fault” when nobody considers the slaves that tried to fight back, and the years we were rejected from opportunities because of the colour of our skin.
Our feelings are constantly invalidated by oppressors. Sadly enough, this isn’t a relationship that we can just leave. We’re forced to live in a world that no matter where we go, there will be racial bias against us.
Black children are bullied for not having their father’s in their homes and being raised by single mothers, blaming the children for choices their parents make. What about the children who’s parents are killed by the police or get pulled into the prison system which is modern day slavery? George had a son and a 6-year-old daughter that he will never get to see again. His life was cut short by villain’s who believe they had a right to treat black lives as if they are worthless.
As much as there are many people advocating for black lives, I noticed some of my favourite influencers continued to post about lifestyle and ignore police brutality. Some of them even got called out by their followers and they decided to not take responsibility for their actions and gaslight their followers. They told them how they didn’t want to just use another hashtag but ignored the fact that, they have a platform to inform their followers on where to donate, sign petitions or offer other ways to support. Worse yet, these influencer’s were black women. Maybe they didn’t feel the same rage as everyone else because they are married to white men.
A positive to what is going on is to see the amount of allies on social media. It’s awesome to realize even though there are oppressors, we still have people who care about the lives of black people and will make a stand against racism. Some of my favourite brands used their platforms to educate their followers on ways to support. Nudestix put out many swipe up links in their instagram story for donations and petitions to sign. They even created a scholarship called Beauty Be the Change for POC in oppressed and marginalized communities and a fund for POC content creators and makeup artists. Sephora’s CEO wrote a statement that they support black lives. They said and I quote; “Our stores can always be repaired and reopened. Your safety is our most important priority. We will continue to monitor the situation and will ensure employees in any impacted stores will be paid and receive benefits as planned, as well as access to counseling and support resources. “
A lot of people called out for allyship saying they want non-black people to offer their support. Some were upset that people decided to stay silent during everything that’s going on. I do believe that allyship is very important but I think genuine allyship is what is needed. We need the people who aren’t just bandwagoner’s to this movement. We need the people who genuinely love black people, to speak up for us because their voices can sometimes get further than our own. Don’t get me wrong, I think it’s very disappointing when you have people who fetishize black people and culture for their own selfish gain, not speak out about these injustices. But I guess it’s about learning that these people are leaches to the culture and it’s time to disassociate from them. We have to start being more particular on who we allow to the cookout, not just the people who claim they “love black men”, “want a mixed baby” and “can twerk”.
The so called president of the United States has been the worst at this time. He called protestor’s thugs, wanted to instill a curfew and bring the military out to control protestors basically instilling martial law and he got the police to violently move protestors so he could get a photo op. I never like talking about Trump because I never have anything nice to say about him. He has no regard for people which is sad considering that’s a major part of the president’s job. Instead of creating a compromise, he went into hiding. He’s made things worse with his ignorant statements and bringing in the military. He’s ignored the fact that a lot of the people ruining businesses are white people who are taking advantage of protests and the police.
If you think I’m an angry black women, that’s fine. I’ll continue to be an angry black woman until my brother’s leave the house, and my mother doesn’t have to worry about where they are and if they’re safe, for the fear that they could be in danger by people who feel like their lives are less than others.
SN: President Obama has provided some very useful information at this time. He’s shared how who we vote for affects the criminal justice system and provided an article about how important it is for the police to de-escalate interactions with protestors.