Today I am tired.
Today I am conflicted.
Today I am afraid.
Above all, I am tired.
…I am tired of living in fear
…I am tired of being profiled when I shop
…I am tired of seeing people with melanin being killed needlessly
But above all else…
…I am tired of having to educate non melanin people about how I am not a threat to their way of life
…I am tired of having to educate people who refuse to learn on their own about their inherent racist tendencies
Let me just give you a recent example from my personal life:
I was just doing a play with a local community theater where I live. I was cast in a role mainly due to the fact that I was the only person with enough melanin in my skin to do the role. When we got to staging the scene I was in, another member of the cast says “We need to work with him on his part, he doesn’t sound black enough.”
Let me repeat the last bit for you: “He doesn’t sound black enough.”
There are so many ways that this statement is offensive, but let me explain to you why this statement makes me tired.
It is now 2017. There is no longer any reasonable reason that statements such as these should be a greater part of anyone’s vocabulary.
And yet, what constitutes being black, white, asian or any particular ethnicity? If you are going by outdated stereotypes that you grew up with then you need to check in with yourself and educate yourself.
Let me get to the heart of the matter: When I wake up, I am black
When I go to work, I am black
When I go to the bathroom, I am black
When I get home at night, I am black
Being black is not something that I just put on when it is convenient to me. Nor is it something which is simple actions based on something which you see on television, movies, or in public life.
Being black is a whole culture, filled with its ups and downs.
But I am tired of having to explain this to people
You would be too if you were in my position.
We have to do better people. We all have our own biases, prejudices, what have you that we all need to work on overcoming, myself included.
I mean, what example are we showing our children if we continue things as we have always done.
Join with me to do better.
Minor but Not Marginalized