If you want the struggle of minorities to be described in a manner that is eloquent, articulate, elaborate, comprehensive, appealing, concise, detailed, measured, or beautiful, there is no shortage of articles, research projects, art, videos, poetry, prose, non-fiction, historical fiction, music, biographies… they fill wide swaths in your local libraries and are listed in online directories, reading lists, school curricula and more.
If you have been exposed to the internet, and I’m sure you have, then all the words you want to hear and those you don’t as well have already been said. Every possible delivery system to describe the ways that inequity has hurt us before and right now, to this very moment today, has been laid out in no uncertain terms, unequivocally, and with certainty, for generations.
Those kind and gentle ways of asking not to be maimed and killed, mistreated and robbed, all the begging and pleading, have all been used til they are but tattered rags and still, there are some who ask us again to repeat it “nicely”… saying that our complaints are not worded kindly enough.
We’ve asked politely.
No one owes politeness to ABUSERS.
We will rail, and scream, and tear this system down. We will annihilate the traitors against humanity and we will show them that we were nice enough for long enough, but that never meant we were weak. We are that much stronger, that much more determined, and that much more committed because we have suffered at the hands of those who would dare to say that we should not turn back on them a tiny fraction of their transgressions in return.
I will not bow down to the sentiment that a still boat is peaceful.
“…peace is not merely the absence of tension, it is the presence of justice” (MLK Jr.) and we will not pretend that avoiding confrontation will resolve issues of such a massive scale.
Maybe this is some kind of manifesto or maybe it’s just letting off steam, but I have discovered that the intensity of my youth has never diminished and I am glad for that because this struggle is too important for me to sit by and watch, too huge to minimize or let slide, and I can’t in good conscience spend another minute nodding my head to keep a friend while I sit back and think to myself “they genuinely value some human beings less than others”.
So I won’t be nodding and smiling and agreeing as I did for some years past. Because to see people I wanted to like and be liked by say and mean these things turned me into a hateful, angry, bitter and unrepentant bulldog. It comes out when I experience the cognitive dissonance of people managing to rationalize inhumane behavior.
I despise the word “deserve” because I feel that no human is in a position to judge that for another. And if they did, we’d all fall short of what we should be.
This is as kind as I’ll ever be, but I’ve already been kind. More kind than an abuser ever deserves, because it is not for me to determine how deserving they are and because being kind is as much about our own humanity as that of the recipient of kindness.
That moral and ethical obligation for us to be kind and measured, reasonable and mature, if ever there was one, was long ago met many times over.
Next time, we may not be so nice, and if you don’t like it, then suck it up buttercup, cuz that’s what we are told in response to violations of human rights, and if you don’t see how amazingly horrifying that is, then perhaps your humanity has been so severely damaged that you might actually believe that those who abuse power and privilege are somehow trustworthy. That is the essence of how cancerous humans retain power and exercise it over others, which you enable through inaction and in so doing bankrupt the very parts of yourself that you value highest in life.
Don’t sell humanity short, we have it inside ourselves to see inequity for the wildly destructive force that it is, and we will find a way to stop it, be it kindly or otherwise.