Dear Black Family and Co-Conspirators,
I will admit to you that I was doing all I could to avoid letting the lynching of George Floyd register in my mind and spirit. I have not watched the video of his murder, nor do I plan to. I can’t. This is a situation we as a people know all too well, and all of the feelings and questions that come with it. The helplessness and the deep sadness, the rage and the fear. The fact, as has been observed by folks more astute than myself, that we can’t even mourn our most recent losses before there is a new name to add to our calls for justice. We can’t even process the implications of these universes ended before we are abused all over again. Every day. No matter who we are, what we are doing, how “well-behaved” and “orderly” we are, we are still reminded that our lives on this continent mean nothing to the power structure. We, who are able to look at each other and see human beings with names and families and histories, know this overarching fact. And for those who need to point out intra-community violence like it is somehow divorced from the state violence perpetuated on us, miss me with that today. As our ancestors lived with the knowledge that their family members, their lives, their work, their very peace could be taken from them at any time, so do we now. We are a remarkable people to be able to live with this and still retain our vibrancy and humanity in all of the ways we do.
Our campaign platform addresses the systemic changes that need to be made so that we take community control of the police, and remove from our communities people who have no clue who we are and see our very existence as threatening. I am thinking of our collective spirit right now. This has been another vicious week, and I know that many of us have friends who are in the streets with the Minneapolis Uprising. We are concerned for them and concerned for all of our folks trying to make space for one more heartbreak when we are still raw from the last one. And the one before that. I want to remind us to mourn. I want us to acknowledge our completely justified rage. I want us to hold those we love, where we can safely do so. And where we can’t, I want us to hold space for ourselves. Give ourselves kindness and space to grieve. Because our bodies hold this pain and that deserves acknowledgement. Family, our rage and grief and frustration are justified. And I want us to be reminded of our resilience. To look forward and imagine a world where our skin and cultures and all the things that make us who we are throughout the Diaspora are respected and cherished. We know that time is coming. Knowing that is what kept our ancestors going, that this season would pass. It will.
You have a right to your pain. You are right to be angry. I hope that you will be as gentle with yourselves as you are able, and I wanted you to know that you are seen. From my own tired spirit to y’all’s, I am sending love.
Until we free us.