Ace's View

Dedicated to minority issues, topics and everything in between

Trayvon, One Year (and a day) Later

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(shout to Mr. Davey D’s Hip-Hop Corner for inspiring the tone of this writing)

I don’t think there’s a way I can write this and not come off as anything but what I am, which is angry, yet resolute.

And maybe that’s a good thing.

See, I currently live in a town in Northwest Indiana that many people would consider your average Midwestern place to live.  Y’know, aside from the racism.

During the three and a half years I’ve been here, I’ve experienced several forms of racism.  From near fights with customers at work after being called “nigger”, to near fights in our local Wal-Mart with townspeople unaccustomed to seeing black people regularly, to the more subtle “oh, I didn’t know that was offensive” or “do you know how to do the (insert popular hip-hop dance of the moment here)? from my white co-workers. 

Don’t get me started on positions that I’ve been passed over for in favor of lesser qualified white candidates.  Probably worthy of it’s own entry.

And let me not forget the lawn jockey that still sits in the front yard of a house a few blocks from where I type this.  The only reason it’s not in pieces is because my wife has discouraged me from doing so at the risk of going to jail.

There are many more instances that I can name, but at the risk of showing my hand (which I fully intend to do in drastic fashion once we leave here), I’ll keep them under my belt for now.

What I will say is this: I wrote recently about how at the earliest age where they are able to comprehend such matters, my son(s) will know the full consequences of being a black man in America.  That no matter how tolerant the world may become, there will still be a select few who think that they are dangerous, no matter how good-natured or kind-hearted they may actually be.

People will still fear their skin, the way they dress, the way they talk, their mannerisms, their gait, their confidence, their intelligence.  No matter the level or quality of any of the above.

What I believe now is that a year (and now, a day, as this entry was delayed by internet problems) after the murder of Trayvon Martin in Florida, if anything has changed, it is what will be taught to my children going forward.

The things that white people fear in black men are things that will be instilled in my children and their children after them, because of his death.

My children will not be feared solely because of their apparel, but because they are mentally powerful beyond what society believed them to be capable of originally when they brought us to this country in chains and shackles.

It is why they will be aware and educated about firearms, just as the white children I see every week in the sporting section at Wal-Mart with their fathers gazing at hunting rifles and shotguns and learning about what ammunition goes where, are.

They will be taught that if we still live in a society where “stand your ground” is a law, and we reside in a state that has such a law, that it applies to them as well.  That if it is not possible to escape the danger, to neutralize or eliminate the threat.

It is why they will be taught self-worth and value and to be comfortable in their own skin, so when someone decides to call that confidence into question, whether it be as subtle as shortening or changing their name to make it easier for “them”, they will have no problem correcting the situation.

It is why they will know the names of those that played a role in their history–the ones taught in the walls of their classroom, and the ones that are omitted–because our heroes, martyrs and protagonists are of the utmost importance to knowing the road ahead of us as a people.

And the ever-growing list of names will include Trayvon Martin’s name.

If anything has changed, it is me.  And by this, the way my children will be raised has changed.

I hate that it had to be the loss of a 17-year old boy that inspired this change, but I am sure that it is for the better that it is happening.

And for this change, I am grateful.

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Written by aceviewblogger

February 27, 2013 at 9:32 pm

One Response

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  1. Gandhi said, “be the change you wish to see in the world.” I hate that we’ve lost so many children to senseless and random acts of violence, but am grateful for the giant that is awakened inside others to slay the stereotypes and negative propaganda that’s plagued our communities. It is important to instill in our children, especially our sons, values that will allow them to tackle the world with their heads lifted up. Long gone are the days of squinting or completely closing our eyes to the foolishness we encounter with individuals and races who feel superior or entitled. I will not turn the other cheek. I’ll be damned if I back down, and I do not want my sons to back down from it either. Feed their hungry minds and you can feed a nation.

    CDB

    March 7, 2013 at 7:09 am


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