Sunday, July 17, 2016

Fear not?

Reading through the Christian Bible, you will find a number of instances where people are going about their everyday activities, and suddenly and angel appears and says "Fear not." Really? Even another person appearing out of the middle of nowhere will startle you. An angel - a supernatural being, would seemingly create more fear. Calm down? No way!

Picture a man, driving with his young son, down a street and going about his everyday activities. Suddenly a police officer appears, and without any warning, shoots the man dead. The community leaders say "fear not," or another version of it. They appeal for calm. Really? A man shot to death in front of witnesses? That image will remain in their brains forever. Calm down? No way!

The amount of hate in the world seems to be rising by the minute. I'm particularly sad about the anti-Black, the anti-gay, the anti-poor, the anti-immigrant, the anti-trans, and the anti-women. (Oh and there are other groups that are hated too, but you get the idea). There seems to be very little collective will for social justice in this land of "liberty and justice for all." Oh yeah, folks will take to the streets and smash the shop windows of innocent businesspeople or beat up the first person that crosses their path, but what does that solve? First, we need to get rid of the hate. Seriously. What good is it? Folks, we created the problem. We criminalized black, brown, trans, and poor people. We looked down on others and said they weren't good enough. We were wrong though. Everyone has merit. We created the problem. We can fix the problem. We need to want to though and we need to do more than urge calm and tell people they have nothing to fear.

Video footage I saw of a man being shot to death, while being held down by a police officer, made me sick to my stomach. We need to hold EVERYONE accountable for murder, especially they ones who are supposedly protecting us from crime. Fear not? How can you not be scared after seeing something like that? Maybe I will be next. Maybe my boss or my friend or my sister will be shot, and left to die.

People hold up signs saying Black Lives Matter, but I want to see proof! If any lives matter we need to wake up and end the hate and discrimination. If you agree with me, pick up your phone and call your neighbors, friends, relatives, co-workers, and anyone who will listen to you, and urge positive action. Let me be clear about what I am saying here. Our legislators need to pass laws that treat people equally and our courts need to prosecute offenders - ALL offenders, vigorously and to the full extent of the law. We cannot allow any lawlessness. Everyone needs to be accountable. If your senator or congressperson or local leaders cannot or will not work for positive change, VOTE THEM OUT OF OFFICE.

Don't forget the Black men killed in so many different places just because of who they were.  Don't forget Orlando and the men and women killed in a gay club.  Don't forget the police officers killed in Dallas.  Don't forget all the instances of hate. The top left of my blog will serve as a constant reminder.  Nobody should have to live in fear!  Let's get going!  I'm shivering right now in San Francisco's Golden Gate Park, but I am warmed by the sight of so many folks working together here at AIDS Walk.  Isn't this how it should be?  This is our world, and it should not be filled with hate and fear. 

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