What Do White People Think When They See Black People Murdered on the Internet?
White people have the privilege of ignoring the videos; how do we get them to care?
My heart hurts. My brain hurts. It’s nothing but unfair.
Within the black community across the country, we’re seeing with time: you can try to avoid it, but there is no way to escape being black in American society. Clearly, it doesn’t matter if you’re poor or rich, uneducated or college graduated, mixed or full. If you’re black, you’re black, and you’re going to see it, if not in your day-to-day life then surely on your timeline.
As this continues to happen, I continue to see an increasing influx of people of color having their “wake up” moment, treating their Twitter feeds how James Baldwin treated his notebook. I can’t help but think of the raw, dark humor I often see on ‘black Twitter’ in particular:
“Have we tried capturing footage of police killing dogs on camera? Have we tried that approach to get white people to start caring?”
I see lots of colorful profile pictures making colorfully bold statements, but I continue to beg the question: how do my white friends feel about all this?
After all, they’re awfully silent.
What do white people think when they see someone, anyone, killed in a video?
And in particular, what do white people think when they see black people, week in and week out for years now, being murdered on the internet?
I can tell you how I feel, although with a little reflection and empathy, I’m sure you’d guess.
And let it be known that I am speaking from my own experience, and that my thoughts alone do not speak for the entire black community at large here.
I feel sick to my stomach, like I’m going to throw up. I feel dizzy, lightheaded, and groggy — an inability to focus on whatever task I have at hand at any given moment in time. Complementing the physical conditions, I also feel an overwhelming mixture of fear for my life…