I’ve been asked by several people of what are my thoughts on the horrific tragedy of Michael Brown in Ferguson, MO. As with most things, I don’t immediately jump to conclusions. I try my best to wait until I can process things and say something that will bring us closer to peace than further from it. Now that doesn’t mean that we don’t need to shake some things up a bit in order to get to peace. Because there are times when we should.
Here’s what I know for sure. I know that there’s a young man name Michael Brown, who will never realize his dreams here on earth any longer. I know there’s a mother and a father who are having to bury their young baby boy. I know there are some siblings who simply are wondering why in the midst of their pain. Now let me also share that the officer Darren Wilson also has a family. Whether you believe in his innocence or his guilt, that family’s life will never be the same. In a nut shell, two families will have to create for themselves a new norm. Life as they have once known it will never be the same. And this saddens me as a mother. My heart weeps.
I have yet, to really emerge myself into all of the media frenzy that’s been surrounding this case. I would prefer to spend my moments praying and coming up with ways in which we can stop this madness. As a mother of two incredible African American males, I know first hand the pain they’ve endured simply because of their skin color. I can remember being in Big Lots and my son was walking towards me from the other aisle. I was standing near a Caucasian woman and when she saw him coming towards her direction, she immediately jumped and let out sound of fright. I immediately said to her, “He’s with me and he’s harmless.” My son is 6’3” tall, handsome and he’s of a beautiful dark complexion. This lady didn’t see my son, who she saw was a tall black man walking in her direction, whom she’s been conditioned and programmed to be afraid of. I truly felt sorry for her because she missed an opportunity to exchange some pleasantries with a very intelligent, talented and gifted young man. He’s an Opera singer and most of the audiences he sings to, look just like her. But she will never know this because society has conditioned her to be afraid of him.
I want to share another true story that my “black son’ has had to endured. My other son was out with some friends having a good time when this Caucasian guy proceeded to pick a fight. My son, understanding what could happen, ignored the man. He also made a decision to leave and go home. That’s when he was followed by the bully. My son took out his cell phone and called the police. As he proceeded to leave, this man along with his friends put their hands on my son. In defending himself, my son began to beat the taste out of him. His friends were trying to pull my son off the man as the cops arrived. Guns were drawn by the cops and my son threw is hands in the air, trying to explain that he was defending himself. And get this…even the bully was trying to tell the cops that it wasn’t my son’s fault. The bully refused to press charges, but the police officers wanted to arrest my son anyway. Of course, they did not arrest the bully. I have always told my sons to follow directions of the law enforcement officers and don’t resist because this could cost them their lives. The police officers took my son in and let the white men go. Once they arrived at the station, they were surprised that my son had never been arrested, not even a traffic ticket. They found this hard to believe that a 33 year old black man had no record. This situation ended in a good way, but this is not always the case for most of our black sons.
I believe at the fundamental core of what is happening in our society is a lack of identity and love. I wish that I could say that one conversation could change it, but it can’t. I wish that I could say that one legislative law would change it, but it won’t. Not until we each take a good look within ourselves and truly admit the truth. The truth that we’ve been injured by a belief that we are some how separate. That we some who are not connected to each other and that we are somehow different from each other. The truth is, we are all connected to ONE Source. It’s our lack of identity, our lack of knowing who we really are, that has created this mess. And the real truth is…we’ve not told ourselves this truth. We haven’t had enough real talk. We haven’t told the truth to ourselves about ourselves.
I believe at the root of every injustice is a fundamental lack of identity and love. We are angry. Society is angry. This anger is not just in the streets of ghetto, this anger is in the White House, in our Congress, in the Churches, in our schools, our homes and most of all…in our hearts. And an angry generation will never create peace.
So what’s the answer? Love answers all. I know you maybe saying “what’s love got to do with it.” Love has everything to do with it. Love created this whole thing and it will take love to save it. I’m not talking about some off and on soft kind of love. I’m talking A Force so POWERFUL that it sustains this world. A Force so powerful that it turns embryos into babies, acorns into oak trees and causes the sun to rise every single day automatically. It’s time that we rise in our power. It’s time that we do it differently this time.
We’ve been injured. These injuries run deep and have now become infected. And that infection is called FEAR. We fear each other. It’s time to find the right antidote to fear and that is and always will be LOVE.
I don’t have another answer for you today. And I probably wont on tomorrow. But what I will say to you is this…. if you plan to march in a rally, I recommend before you do, that you do a heart check. Because if you do this in any other energy than love, you will recreate more of the same. If you want to speak out and challenge the laws at hand and I do recommend that you do so. I asked that you do a heart check first. If you plan to run for office, send out letters, write your law makers, all which are necessary, I ask that you do a heart check first.
What happened in Ferguson, MO, in Sanford, FL and all the cities of this country is because the hearts of humanity is ill. We had heart failure. Our external world are simply mirrors of our internal worlds. These tragedies represents a bigger story. One in which we’ve been afraid to talk about. But the infections of our hearts are now so bad that we are in need of some heart transplants. Psalms 51:10 says, “Create a pure heart in me, and renew a right attitude within me.” This my prayer.
We’ve got to begin to create a better world. And it starts with each of us looking within our own hearts. I can’t do a heart check if I’m angry. Yes, there’s much to be angry about. But I refuse to allow myself to be driven by it. I will prefer being driven by love. What would love do? That’s the real question.
It was LOVE that drove people like Nelson Mandela, Martin Luther King, Jr., Mahatma Gandhi, Mother Teresa and and Jesus to create change. It will take that same kind of love and determination to stop this craziness of violence once again. I know you’re angry and rightfully so. But when you’re done, we’ve still got work to do.
I’m speaking up for Love. There’s a way to turn this ship around, but it will take all of us to ask ourselves the hard, deeper questions. And once we do, we will find love somewhere in center of the answers. How do we move forward? I can’t tell you this, but I can tell you to at least start with Love. It seems to have a pretty solid foundation and it’s always a good starting point. I invite you to join me and others as we “Take the Vow to LOVE.” Let’s get to it.
From the Heart of a Black Mama of Black Sons in America.