I Don’t Write About Racism Because I Hate White People
It’s because I hate what is happening to Black people.
There seems to be a growing animosity amongst White people that is negated by the media’s drive to expose the atrocities that people of color are being subjected to — particularly by law enforcement.
The intensity was heightened in the summer of 2014. The deaths of Michael Brown and Eric Garner much like Alton Sterling and Philando Castile was a brutal awakening that exposed what was evidently an ongoing crisis.
The first time I was ever conscious of the systematic torture of Black men was back in 1999.
I was relatively new to New York City and just as I was getting used to the idea of calling it home — residents were struck by the alarming news bulletin about an African immigrant who had been shot and killed by White police officers outside his apartment in The Bronx.
Amadou Diallo was shot 41 times by these men who were not dressed in uniform. They happened upon him as he was returning home from dinner.
He looked the part. Isn’t that always the way the story goes?
He fit the description of a suspect on the loose. Once they identified themselves — he allegedly started to make a run for it.
And then he did what ended up being the worst mistake of his life. He reached for something.
A Black man reaching for anything when the cops are ready to strike is a death sentence.
So, he died in hail of bullets.
Afterwards — the investigation concluded that he was actually trying to get his wallet. He probably thought he could save his life by proving to the officers that he wasn’t their target.
But every person of color is a target. We are presumed guilty because that’s just how the law works.
Two years prior to Diallo’s murder — Abner Louima who was originally from Haiti was arrested in front of a nightclub in Brooklyn, NY.
Interceding in the fight between two women. Cops showed up and things got chaotic and Louima was carted off to the police station with charges that included “disorderly conduct” and “resisting arrest.”
One of the officers alleged that Louima had “sucker-punched” him.
That turned out to be a lie.
It was just an excuse and the perfect opportunity for antsy White cops to exert their power by acting out their sick twisted fantasies.
Not only was Louima beaten like a rabid dog — he was brutalized in a way that is beyond human comprehension.
The details still haunt my soul nearly twenty years later.
Officer Justin Volpe who is currently serving a 30-year prison sentence was the ringleader in an attack that left Louima with broken teeth, a damaged colon and bladder.
What do you call a person who stuffs a plunger up the ass of an already battered individual?
An asshole. A White asshole? A White cop on the loose?
How do we appropriately describe the mentality of White police officers who have zero regard for the dignity of Black folks?
How can we summarize the years of terrorism that Black America has endured at the hands of White men in power?
White men with badges — who deem it fit to shoot a man in his car while his girlfriend and her young daughter watch in horror.
What is the accurate explanation for how a Black woman heading to her first day of work — gets pulled over and dies three days later because she was donning the wrong color of skin?
This is why I write about racism.
It’s not an attack on the White community. I don’t harbor hatred or ill-will towards my White counterparts.
You can’t imagine what it’s like to be Black but I can imagine what it’s like to be White.
I had the freedom of knowing that I won’t be killed or harassed because of my ethnicity when I lived in Nigeria.
But, being American is a whole new ball game.
It’s a deadly disposition that is uniquely assigned to people who look like me.
No White person ever wants to comprehend the reality that we face the moment we release ourselves to the streets.
There is all this talk about how we are prone to criminal activity due to our primitive nature.
It’s so much better to regulate us as animals because it makes it easier to internalize the nightmare of our existence.
Black people are lazy fucks who refuse to take advantage of the freedom they garnered centuries ago.
The slave trade didn’t quite whip them into shape.
So racist cops need to work overtime to protect decent citizens from our uncivilized tendencies.
We are human beings. And we deserve respect.
If White people are able to charm their way out of a traffic ticket — then we should be given those privileges.
If my White colleague can get pulled over and politely processed without issue — I should be able to experience that privilege.
If my boyfriend is caught up in a fight that he was trying to diffuse — he should be allowed to make his case in the same manner that a White guy who works on Wall Street would.
This is not our reality.
That’s why I write what I write — when I write.
I’m a Black woman who is slotted for potential bullshit from renegade White cops. I have family members and friends who are up for the same treatment.
Slavery fucked us up.
Imagine the visual of your ancestors in chains — suffocating under the bowels of the ship headed to their blighted destiny.
We were never meant to overcome that disaster. Too many debts owed — not enough time.
We’ve earned the right to wile out until kingdom come.
And while we do — I will continue to write for my people.
It’s really for them — not for you.
But, you’re welcome to join us — whenever you feel the urge.