My heart is full with so much sadness. As an African American psychologist, as an american citizen, as a human being with a heart, we must show compassion and sympathy for families traumatized by violence.
Watch this video (see the video at the end of the post but please read on first) if you want to hear the contrasting viewpoint of the ABC news interview with Officer Wilson. I will discuss my reaction to Office Wilson in another post but want to honor the loss of the family first. Michael Brown’s mother, Mrs. Leslie McSpadden reports that no official from Ferguson has directly expressed their grief directly to her family.
Black pain is not treated, nor accorded the same respect and empathy as White pain and grief. I am sending out my direct condolences to this family. I know this comes so far away, and I am not an official–but I hear you and hold you with open loving arms as you mourn this tragic loss.
I agree that the media can not hold the family accountable for the riots, and some of the discussion needs to be directly with the Governor of Missouri. I admire this family and their leadership, fortitude, and their willingness to speak as they deal with the loss of their son.
Even in our pain, great existential historical pain and daily life pain, coping with racism, hostility, and devaluation, we as Black people as well as other people of color have to fight for our humanity to be recognized. I am so proud to be an African American. In the face of such hatred, discontent, and discouragement, we raise our voices for freedom.
We hold on to the faith and hopes of our enslaved ancestors. We did not make this unjust system but we will continue to work on making it just.
I will not spend a dime on Black Friday, and please don’t ask me what I plan to do after that, because I don’t know.
What I do know is that the police brutality and use of excessive force must stop and cease in communities of color. Every police officer needs to go through diversity training at regular intervals. The 1000 plus other police departments that show higher rates of black racial profiling, according to the USA Today study, should be addressed, one by one. I do know that we need to continue having conversations about what it feels like to live in a racist society.
I do know that love will triumph over evil, and will hold onto this belief until I move from this world over into the next.