Truth be told, I didn’t plan on my first blog post to be such a “heavy topic”. I thought it would’ve been a recipe, a satire piece on why the world doesn’t need an inside-out cat (Sphinx cat), 1000 words on how awesome the movie Mrs. Doubtfire is, or showing some of my favorite pictures I’ve taken of my incredible view at the airport I work at. But it’s not. Never have I felt more compelled to say something, in the wake of the two murders that have taken place in the last 24 hours (one in Baton Rouge, LA and Falcon Heights in my home state of Minnesota) even though it has all been said many times by people much more brilliant than I.
Dear apprehensive (white) people –
Please understand that it is okay to talk to minority people today about what happened. Understand that today you will get more sincerity (and also skepticism) about how we honestly feel about what happened than any other day. Understand that we WANT you to understand. We NEED you to understand. Understand that, in all actuality, we RELY on you to be our voice for the people of “your kind” because we know that you have a better chance at influencing your race more than we could ever. Understand that we sense your apprehension to voice your opinion or discuss the topic out of fear of confrontation. Understand that right now emotions are running high and there might be things that are said that you may not agree with. Understand that right now, WE don’t even understand “why”. Understand that right now, we can’t even comprehend opposition to our stance that this should NOT be happening. Understand that this isn’t a “call to action” against ALL police officers or even white people for that matter. Understand that yes, this is a race thing given that this does not happen in the same manner to those with fairer skin tones. Understand that this isn’t new, it’s just the accessibility and publicity of it is. Understand that a whole race feels undervalued and unprotected but is forced to watch millions of people stand up against a “terrorist group” such as Isis but to us, the “civil servants in blue and badge” have been OUR form of Isis. Understand that it’s hard to put faith into a justice system that has failed so many, especially when the system was given ample opportunities to actually do right and prove that it’s actually “for the people”. Understand that people need to respect existence, or they can expect resistance.
~ Julie Somerson