What. The. Actual. Fuck.
What is happening in this world? Do we not have enough terror in the universe? Is there not enough heartbreak?
All my social media feeds are flooded with hashtags telling me which lives matter most. Nobody can seem to agree. I hate watching the divide. I empathize with all sides.
I am a single, white female. I understand why other white people get upset when they are accused of being racists and privileged. But I also grew up in Southern California, and have been raised in a melting pot of people of varying shades and cultures.
I never saw a difference between us.
It never occurred to me to classify anybody by their color because it didn’t matter to me. What do I care what shade of porcelain / olive/ suntan/ mocha/ chocolate your epidermis is?
Are you nice? Are you gentle? Do you possess a heart of gold and excellent character? Can you make a mean cup of coffee? Spectacular. We’re friends.
I hear the resounding rage coming from the Black Lives Matter movement. I know I don’t understand the complexity and depth of that pain, but I stand with you because you are a person.
No. Maybe you didn’t. But how else will things change unless their collective voice is heard? Accept that maybe you don’t understand life from their point of view. Maybe have a conversation.
Now the shooting in Dallas has occurred, and police officers have lost their lives.
Now what happens?
Where does it stop?
We are in an election year with two people who remind me more of Hunger Games characters than actual politicians. We have to fix this problem amongst ourselves because my faith that they will take a real stand feels more like heartburn than confidence.
YOUR LIFE MATTERS.
I don’t give a good god damn what color you are, where you were born, how much education you have, who you choose to have consensual sex with, or which invisible sky god(s) you worship…
Everybody has been oppressed at some point in their life. Everybody knows the feeling of being invalidated, ignored, disrespected. Literally everybody.
Focus on that feeling. Embrace it. Remember it and all the weird little twinges of pain it caused you.
You know that involuntary, knee-jerk feeling you get when somebody insults your mother?
Now listen to the people who are shouting.
Black lives matter. Police lives matter. Gay lives matter.
We are all of us confused, rotting, organic organisms spinning on a shriveling blue planet in a universe so large it gives me anxiety to contemplate.
Listen to each other.
Love each other.
Give respect first. Lend your support when it is requested. Be tolerant. That means NOT blocking people from your life because they have different politics or values than you do.
Listen when somebody tries to educate you.
Pay attention. Be mindful. And above all: