The brutal murders of innocent souls, George Floyd, Ahmaud Arbery, Breonna Taylor, Tamir Rice, and countless others, prove to show how wrecked “our” America is.
White privilege has always been a tool for white or white passing individuals to get a head start in society, but now it is a matter of life or death. I am disturbed by the videos surfacing on Instagram, but they are necessary to bring awareness; crazy that we need video evidence of murder to join the fight. The fight for equality, for acceptance, for lives is essential now. We live in 2020 in America, a place where third world countries look up to, how do we still treat those who look different than ourselves any different? Black families do not deserve this. America is built on systematic racism: the oppressed do the work, but the oppressors get the credit. Inequality and oppression towards Black individuals have infected every aspect of their lives: healthcare, education, incarceration, and the right to live and feel safe.
From the first day we enter school we are forced to repeat “I pledge allegiance to the Flag of the United States of America, and to the Republic for which it stands, one Nation under God, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all.” To this day, I am not sure who “all” is. Does “all” refer to the people wearing MAGA hats? Does “all” refer to the men in blue?
Dr. Martin Luther King Jr said in his Letter from Birmingham Jail, “History is the long and tragic story of the fact that privileged groups seldom give up their privileges voluntarily. We know through painful experience that freedom is never voluntarily given by the oppressor; it must be demanded by the oppressed.” That is why the protests and riots that are occurring right now are important. Enough is enough.
The fight has been left to Black groups, but it should not be solely on them. Even if you think racism does not affect you, you should still join the fight. Solidarity, uniting with other groups for justice, is essential. As an Arab-American, I hope that my fellow brothers and sisters use their Arab privilege to support our Black brothers and sisters. Arab-Americans have appropriated Black vernacular and clothing to fit in, yet they are silent. Silence hurts the fight. Your silence means you support the opposite side. I beg my fellow Arabs, please use your position, your voice, and your power because Black lives matter.
Black people are put into this box when they are born, and they cannot leave the box. Then, they have children that replace them in the box. White people, all American people honestly, help build this box to be thicker and harder to get out of. Saying “not all cops are bad,” “not all white people hate Black people,” “all lives matter,” and “I don’t see color” does not help the situation. Undermining the fight will only further the gap to solidarity, respect, and change. Understand that when someone says “F*ck the police” they are attacking the crooked system that is anti-Black, anti-POC, and anti-poor. I read somewhere that as long as police exist, Black and indigenous groups of people will be continuously targeted.
The Constitution grants us our First Amendment right: free speech, assembly, petition, and press. I urge you, all of you, to use your voice and speak up. The system is f*cked up and has taken away too much from Black Americans. The system needs change, so please educate yourself and those around you, speak up, and join the fight. The future depends on it. Families depend on it.