I’m proud of the Parkland students, but where is the outrage for black children murdered?
I want to say right now that I am proud of the Parkland, Florida, students for fighting for gun control. Who wouldn’t be? They’re doing something monumental, and they deserve the support they’re getting.
But I know, if the shooting happened at a black school, way fewer people would care. It wouldn’t have gotten as much national attention. Most white people wouldn’t be outraged.
Black skin is expected to be stained with blood. It’s become the norm, and as support grows for the Florida students, the more stark the differences become to me. Yes, I’m angry. But I’m grieving. I’m grieving for the love and support black children will never get from white America. It’s as if simply having black skin means they deserve to experience the violence so many of them endure on a regular basis.
There’s something horribly wrong with that.
I don’t know what to even say. How can our black children still not matter? Gun violence in a white school sparks national outrage. Gun violence that plagues our inner cities and takes the lives of so many innocent black children gets little notice from white America. Where is their national protest?
I’m proud of those black students who walked out in solidarity with Parkland. It made my heart happy. At the same time, I felt devastated. Just like the Women’s March and Pantsuit Nation who continue to silence black women and coddle white women, gun violence only becomes an outrage when blood from white bodies is spilled.
Still, I am proud of the Parkland students. I’m even more proud of the black and brown students who walked out. Many have witnessed gun violence firsthand, and they’re making a stand. They live in communities where everyone has been touched by it. Yet they endure. They have no other choice. When a soldier comes back from war, he is praised for bravery. They find support. What about these children who live in war zones? Don’t they deserve something, too? At the very least, they should receive the same support as the Parkland students.
But they won’t ever get it. We know there are two Americas: a white one and a black one. And in the black one, our lives are expendable and our rights are debatable.
When will our lives matter?