As I watched the murder of a retired police captain, my heart broke, and my tears fell. As I watched the murder of George Floyd (alleged in a court of law, appears to be clear in my opinion), my heart broke, and I cried.
Both men black. Both killed by evil that I cannot fathom. Wait. I can.
Evil comes in all colors and in many ways. As a child tortured and abused for the power and sadistic pleasure by a previously convicted sexual abuser, I know evil well.
You say I am privileged because of my skin color. Did you walk into your home sick to your stomach, lock yourself in a cold bath for hours, play dolls with your little sister until age 15, just to hide from the sexual prowler you were forced to live with. Did you feel the disgusting hands of evil touch you in the dark of night? How many nights did you lie paralyzed and out of your own body, then cry until dawn? Did you take cover in your first apartment as evil knocked on the door for hours? Did you scream alone and never have another human help you?
George Floyd did. Countless others did. I remain physically alive, though part of me died at an early age. Those lives are gone, and a few are thrust into a spotlight for the sake of a cause we all agree with.
I will not expose my grandkids to unpredictable protesting that leads to horrific riots. If they weren’t here, I’d march with you. I would slam my hand down on the corrupt heart of evil, while looking it in the face, and commanding it be gone. I stand with you to walk down a street without fear, to succeed without shame of leaving some piece of your history behind. I made that move for myself. You take a piece with you, but you break free.
Your life matters my friend. I will go down with you to defend your right to live free!
But you won’t let me.
You are hell bent on maintaining your distance and calling me privileged-a once single mom living in poverty, ridiculed and shamed for being who I was- a drain on society (even if it was for a short period of time). I was not worth respect, love, or even an explanation into why I did what I did, and how I became the bottom of the society they hated. A small group of men took one man’s breath. A society of selfishness takes the dignity, purpose, hope, and will from many of all colors, every single day. In stripping the broken of their self worth, they strip life until the one taking the final breath is the broken themselves.
You feel abused and held back, stomped on and oppressed. You are lost in a generational system of let down and forgotten.
You see every other face as guilty, without ever seeing another soul as an allie and friend. You assume we all hate, when you look at us and hate. You rallied for a President expecting change, and here you are under another President, still expecting change.
You want opportunity and success, and to live a normal life without fear or assumptions.
I didn’t live normal for years. I feared walking to my car, because some days he was there. The face of evil haunted me like it haunts you. But you won’t accept that into your privilege agenda.
A cop kills them, he hunted me from age five on.
“This has nothing to do with white privilege.” I hear you saying it in my head. “Go away, white lady. Shut the hell up.”
Where do you read privilege in my story? Because my oppressor wasn’t a cop, it doesn’t apply? His abuse spans decades and generations my friends. No one took up for me or any other child or young lady after. He is free, while we remain a prisoner in different ways. That, too, is oppression.
Yet, you refuse to acknowledge the repetitive abuse of power we endured as something that brings us together. You refuse my support, and ridicule my help.
I will not apologize. I refuse your label of privilege. From a displaced child rose an outstanding citizen of humanity. I fought back, I won with grace and dignity, perseverance and hope. From the projects on Colfax Avenue, to a beautiful property and a few acres of peace, I rose. With echoes of failure in my ear, mostly sung by me, and looks of disgust around my reflection, I rose.
I did not fear arrest, prison, bullets-but I feared abuse, rape, and his truth that I wasn’t worthy of life, love, or breath. You live it daily, I did too, until I rose.
You want a friend to believe in you? I am here. You want to take a moment to see another story than your’s, I’m here. We can qualify the narrative that power, greed, and brutality exists among those in positions of trust. We can come together for the greater purpose-that Jesus Christ is the way to true freedom from any oppression of man. As one heart changes, so will the next, and the next.
I concluded years ago, my oppressor will never apologize. I don’t want to hear it anyhow, I would struggle to believe him. However, I chose to forgive, for myself and well being. There came a day I understood the only one holding me captive from all the wrong done, was me.
I am sorry for what you’ve gone through or feared, but I didn’t do it, and I will not allow myself to carry guilt for something I didn’t do, create or generate. We are born one color or another by genetics. We are taught respect, integrity, equality, care, compassion, sacrifice, and love. Some more than others. We are never to old to learn. Whether about racial issues or the plight of the sexually abused, we learn. History can’t be changed, but the future can be written different, better.
My fight was alone. You have many, including me.
Stay strong. Forgive and live. Never let anything chain you down. Breathe for every life lost to abuse of power in one form or another.