I have felt wronged when people called me names. I have even felt threatened because of the colour of my skin, my ancestry, my accent. But it is nothing compared to what others face.
Some of my friends cannot walk hand-in-hand because their love makes others feel uncomfortable. Those other people forget that you do not choose love. Love chooses you and it does so without warning or explanation. Even when you think that you’d be great together, even if you feel butterflies because someone looks “hot” there is no guarantee that you are with the one you are supposed to be.
True love goes deeper than being hot. It is about finding that one person who stays by your side no matter how tough it gets. The one you argue with but afterwards you do not want to leave. You are determined to resolve the issue together. That is the one real love points to. Not the hottest, not the most handsome, not the richest, but your fiercest ally in whose hands your heart and soul are safe.
Some of my friends are scared to drive alone, meet in crowds, always ask to be accompanied, and always ask friends to keep cell phones on until they text that they arrived home safe.
I do not know whether I could remain as composed as Diamond Reynolds. Maybe if ours was four years old I’d be. I just know that one time I screamed for help when I thought that the love of my life was slipping away from me.
Hearing my screams, everyone rushed to help. People started to call for folks with medical degrees, for the police, and an ambulance. But my love is white, blond, and has piercing blue eyes. I am not too dark but I am clearly mixed. However, my coffee tan is accepted. I know that no matter my tan, I always would have gotten help because my love is white. But what would have happened if we were both more than coffee tanned?
“There is nothing we can do” is one of the most awful thoughts and sentences you can think or speak now. You can be silent on the matter, you can be there if someone needs to talk or, you can be active. Yes, you can. You can look around in your circle of friends, colleagues, and neighbours. You can see who is affected by this and support them.
Maybe for a few days we can all respect other people’s pain. Maybe we can keep our opinions to yourselves. And yes, I can say this because I am not white. Do I have all the details in this case? No, but I do know that a simple traffic stop normally does not end with four bullets killing a young father.
My deepest sympathy to the families of Philando Castile & Diamond Reynolds with hugs for their little girl.