I was fresh off of the weekend with my Delta Sigma Theta Sorors.
Feeling empowered to be a Black person, a Woman and a Delta. As I was working with Homeless Veterans, helping them to receive social services that they desperately need (and deserve) - then the news erupted.
It Started with Tiki Torches
I had seen snippets of the late night, tiki-torch session on the news circling the church of those who would be opposing them the next day. In Charlottesville, Virginia on the campus of UVA there is a statue of Robert E. Lee, confederate General. The statutes have been coming down all over the US. The Alt-Right and white nationalists had planned to protest this removal. There was also a movement of clergy and Black Lives Matter members and other people who support equality for all in America meeting at a local church to discuss their own protest to the protest. In the still of the night, spewing hate filled rhetoric, those Alt-right protesters intended to intimidate those Anti Neo Nazi protesters. They did not.
Then There was the Challenger
The protests angry white men versus damn near everybody else ensued the next day. A white woman and protester of racism, Heather Heyer, was killed and many more were injured by a domestic terrorist, James Alex Fields, Jr. Fields is a 20 year old man from Ohio. He ran in a Dodge Challenger into a group of American’s who were protesting. It was astonishing to watch as we had only ever seen anything like this in foreign terrorism. It was now present right here at home. In Trumps America.
I am Angry and Afraid
I have always been about my Blackness, but I have never been anti anybody else. I possess a healthy curiosity of people of different cultures and I am always hungry to know more about the world. From religious beliefs to foods to beauty treatments, I am fascinated by how God made ALL of us. I love what is different about us and also what is the same.
In the two years between the campaign and now living in Trumps America I have become less open to getting to know different people-especially white people. In fact, with the exception of the white people that I already know am very leery of them now, much more than ever before. I am no longer trusting their assistance or friendship. I am asking myself internally, “Are they part of the silent majority? Are they protesting? Did they vote for Trump?” It has made my open heart very closed, it has made my curious spirit less interested and the most painful part is that it has made me afraid. I now feel an unnatural FEAR of white people, especially white men.
This is the ugliest time that I have ever lived in as an American. Police brutality against people of color is at an all time high, the deportation of people who have lived as good, tax-paying Americans, the rise of the KKK and Neo-Nazism. The anger that these Alt-Right angry men (and women) have taken on has transferred to me. I feel anxious when the police turn their lights on, when a large white man is walking to his car at the same time that I am or when I contemplate going to an Alt-Right protest because I know that I might get bashed with a bat-in Berkeley.
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Whenever I see a white man driving a truck or wearing Southern style clothes or even those who have a mullet (I am ashamed of my new ignorance)...I think to myself, "He is trying to make America great again." I know that #MAGA means removing me and my Blackness. The sick feeling that I get when I see a home with an American flag flying out front is almost as bad as I feel when I see a confederate flag.
I desire to go back. Rewind to a time before a reality tv star became the Republican Presidential nominee and then the President. I want my happy heart to replace my stone one, I want my multi-cultural curiosity to replace my closed-minded and fearful thoughts. I want to turn on my television and not see Nazi’s from America. I desire to not be Angry and Afraid.
What will we do as a Nation to regain our innocence and happiness back? Or can we not unsee the hate that we are living inside of?
Did you know that this is only PART FOUR of a 30 Part Capsule? Be sure and read ALL pieces of Color, Curls, Curves & Class! CLICK HERE!