Coronavirus Chronicles, political activism

Black Lives Matter

So much to say, and no adequate words to say it.

I keep putting off posting here, because it feels trivial to post my everyday life events in the scope of what is happening in my country and the world today. As a white middle class person, I have learned a lot about racism and listening, but it is confusing to hear the contradictory statements about giving space for African American voices but that white silence is consent. I’ve been trying to walk that thin line.

If it wasn’t for this damn virus, believe me, my husband and I would be at the protests. I wish that I was in DC right now. I feel bad about not participating. I would feel worse if I caught this virus and spread it further. In other words, I feel like shit. Everything is infuriating and terrifying and guilt-inducing and I feel like a turtle flipped on its back. Overwhelmed and helpless, and not at all sure if I can find a way back on my feet.

When it comes down to the choice, I think that the protests are doing fine without us, but an exponential rate of viral infection and the fact that between the two of us we check all the boxes for severe consequences if we catch it makes our decision clear. I’ve been obsessed with looking at the footage and tired of hearing sirens and fireworks (was that a gun shot?) within walking distance of my house. As a senior white woman in a safe middle class neighborhood I never have to worry about being abused by police. All of my police interactions have been good ones. Even the one in which I argued with a patrolman, even the one in which I was arrested, I was treated with respect. The only beefs I have ever had with police were about over-zealous parking enforcement. I am privileged and I know it.

I worry much more about the right-wing domestic terrorists and Boogaloos instigating and accelerating violence, and this city has seen murder from the KKK and Nazis before. It is also the home of the Greensboro Sit-Ins, a proud civil rights event in our history. The Woolworth’s building now houses the International Civil Rights Center and Museum, and given that one of its windows was broken in the riots the other night, I doubt that it was civil rights protesters who did the damage. This city has a very complicated civil rights heritage.

Anyway, my mental health is damaged enough that I don’t think that I need to say anything more except that All Lives won’t Matter until Black Lives Matter. That is what “All” means.

Back to the usual programming later.

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