I have not blogged in a long time due to being bogged down with all of the tragedies hitting the Black communities. Today, the straw broke the camel’s back when the first thing that greeted me this morning was that nine people were murdered in the Emanuel AME Church in Charleston South Carolina. My heart dropped to my feet. Not only are our young Black men being killed unnecessarily by the police throughout this country, now Black folks aren’t even safe in the church. I don’t understand and probably never will understand how Blacks folks are so HATED in this country. After all, if Americans knew the true history of this country, they will realize that Black Americans made many contributions to the building of this country as well as built this country; it was called slavery. Unfortunately, or fortunately, depending on how you look at it, many people in main stream society are still reaping the benefits. Perhaps, if the school system will allow students to learn the TRUE history of America, stereotypical beliefs will be expelled. I didn’t learn of the contributions that Black Americans made until I was in college. It made me angry as hell because I too believed that Black Americans’ history only consisted of being slaves. I never learned of the destruction that European Americans made to this country until, like I said previously, I was in college and I was in my middle twenties.
Now, I am not saying that European Americans are negative; just ill-informed. Case in point; I live in a predominately Jewish community but there are now many of us Black folks and people of color moving into the community. I never had a problem in the seven years I have lived here except for someone stealing my flowers (that’s another story). Now that Blacks folks and other people of color are moving into our community, it was proposed by the board of directors for the police to patrol our area. The reason? Now, don’t laugh but it is because people are allegedly speeding through our community. Now, mind you, I have only seen little old European ladies driving above the speed limit which was fifteen to twenty miles an hour. Now mind you, there were no increased break-ends or disturbances, just allegedly speeding. The police informed the board that in order to have the police patrol our complex, we would have to increase the speed limit to twenty-five miles per hour and increase the height of the stop signs. Huh? What is the purpose in that if the speed limit had to be increased? We also would lose our privacy status. Well, the speed limit was increased and the stop signs’ height was increased all because of fear. Why do other cultures think that Blacks folks can figure out the underplay for the overlay (or however that expression is). What is it about Black folks that brings fear when this country was built on violence and thievery? If anything, Black folks should be afraid but who wants to live like that?
I am a child of the fifties and sixties and have lived through pre-civil rights so I can do a comparison. Before Blacks gained their civil rights, their communities were striving. I didn’t read this from a book but have first hand knowledge that I have lived. American is so involved in terrorism in other countries that domestic violence and terrorism is overlooked in this country. I think the only time European Americans or mainstream society could truly emphasize with what Black Americans experience in this country on a daily basis was when 9/11 hit. Americans are sometimes so arrogant, they forget that we can be attacked too. I don’t like feeling that every time I go into a store that someone is watching or following me to see if I am going to steal something. My granddaughter is getting ready to drive to Atlanta with her boyfriend; now not only do I have to concerned about the drive but also fearful because this is a young Black couple driving down south and pray that no harm will come to them. Will there ever be peace? I wanted this blog to be about the experiences of Baby Boomers, not about racial issues but there are too many issues of racism that my people are experiencing. I believed at one time, that this country would protect me and assist me because I am an American. I don’t anymore but I usedtacould!
Peace until next time.
Dr. Lorraine Mayes-Buckley