Dear white friends…

Black lives STILL matter!!!!

If you are a white parent that has white children and/or white nieces or nephews that are teens or pre-teens (and are mature enough for this talk)… you need to talk to them TODAY about being allies to the black community.  ESPECIALLY if the school district they attend is not diverse. Every black person I know is having this same talk, but in reverse to their children. Having this hard talk, that even if they aren’t doing ANYTHING wrong and are doing EVERYTHING right, things could still go bad.
I wrote the below post almost 3 years ago and racism is not only still relevant but still very present in our daily life. I don’t pretend to understand what it’s like to be black, but as a very empathetic person, I can understand, feel for and respect their pain, distrust, hurt, and overall just being tired of the shit.
I remember when BLM planned protests for racial inequality. I remember your posts. Your anger. I remember you saying “how are their lives so bad now” or “I’m poor, where’s my white privilege”.
I remember when some of the protestors took to the streets and looted businesses and set cars on fire. I remember when you said THEY were acting like animals. That’s when you protest, it’s never violent. I remember reading the racism oozing out of your posts. I remember you saying “well the cops feared for their lives and had to protect themselves” when videos showed otherwise.
I read your posts.
How soon you forget the things you posted. The articles you shared. I still remember how loud you were. Yet I stayed silent.
I have been avoiding reading the articles about what happened in Charlottesville. I scrolled past the live videos, the pictures, the posts. Until, last night. I can’t pretend this didn’t happen, because then I become part of the problem.
I can no longer stay silent.
I remember what you wrote and now I don’t see any anger or passion in your posts towards the alt-right. I see no similarities in what you’re posting now as opposed to the BLM protests. I see no anger. I see nothing.
You’re silent.
You’re so silent. You categorized black people based on some that went astray during peaceful protests. You lumped them all together. Every. Single. One. Yet now, I see posts and comments saying “We’re not all like that. You can’t lump me in with White Supremacists”. But that’s what you did and have done for years on end.
“Your Husband seems like a really nice guy.”
That’s a comment I get a lot. Marcellus is nice. He’s also a great Husband and loving Father. He’s also a very educated man. A Master’s Degree at that. Sure, it may seem harmless, but I forgot to mention that he’s Black (in case you didn’t know).
You guys don’t say that about my friends’ white Husbands. Is it because you’re surprised? Is it because you think black Husbands are supposed to be deadbeats? Or abusive? Or drug dealers? Guess what… “they’re not all like that.”
In 2017, I NEVER thought I would read about a white supremacy rally. I thought reading about those events in high school would stay a part of history and NOT repeat itself. The protest was over removing a statue that represented racism. Race inequality. A statue.
I see your posts now. There’s no outcry. You have no outpouring of sympathy for black people that were beat with posts and sticks at the rally like you did for the cops that shot unarmed black men.
No passion against the racist chants and signs at the rally. Yet I remember a lot of you being mad at ME and NOT being silent when I reminded you that our President said “Grab her by the pussy”. How is that possible. How can we be vigilant in one area and silent in the other? I remember how mad you were when Colin took that knee. I remember when you said that Obama and the media caused racism. Is that why the KKK held this rally. Because of Barack and CNN? Or is it because the alt-right see that their racial superiority views are being challenged and they can’t handle that?!
I remember your outcry. Now I see your silence and it is deafening. I will not be silent.
These white men that took the streets were never called thugs from the hood. The sad reality is that they are your best friend’s brother, your high school teachers, your boss at your new job.
To all of my Black family members and friends. I’m sorry. I will be loud for you. I will not stay silent.
It has to stop.
You have to have this talk with your kids today. If your child is lucky enough to have a diverse group of friends, you still need to have this talk. Because of the way things are going, there is a high chance your child will witness racism against someone black. Maybe at school by another classmate, maybe at a grocery store, maybe while bird watching. And how you REACT to those situations determines what your child thinks is appropriate.
I used to only worry about Marcellus when he left the house in T-shirt, basketball shorts, and Jordans. The stigma people have about black people and what they wear is disgusting. Now I worry when he leaves the house in a button-up shirt & dress pants to go talk to doctor’s because I KNOW someone will think he does not belong there strictly because he is black.
And for all the racist people reading this (because I know you will and now you wonder if I’m talking about you. I AM.) I’m over it and I don’t care who you are or how long I’ve known you. I see your posts. Your quick judgment to always say “well we didn’t see what happened before…” well guess what, you end up seeing what happened and it STILL DOES NOT justify 3 cops holding you down, while one has their knee on your neck for over 8 minutes.
You’re just racist. Simple as that and I hope your kids turn out better than you, for the sake of my family, friends, and every black person.
Article Author
Ashley Valentine-Stroud

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