SOUND OFF: Baltimore

Honestly, my emotions and thoughts are everywhere. I am struggling internally to organize my thoughts and find ways to effectively express them. There are so many issues in regard to Baltimore, and not just there, but to the Black Lives Matter movement has a whole.  I’ve had internal debates with myself and external debates with coworkers after each highly publicized death of a black man that has led to protest and the inevitable looting that seems to follow. I will say that I have always and will continue to support the protests. Mobilizing a group of people to come together for a cause and demand change is not only right it is necessary. Nowhere in history, especially American history, has change ever come without disruption. America’s history is far from pretty, after all our revolution started with vandalization (Boston Tea Party anyone?). Riots, protests, looting, peaceful boycotts or rowdy riots do not eclipse the movement and reason for such actions. Black and brown bodies have been the victims of injustice and inequality for as long as America as existed, this fact cannot be ignored. As Tavis Smiley mentioned so effectively asked in an interview, “How many isolated incidents equal a pattern?” The constant death, hunting and mistreatment of my people is not rare, it is common place. Some are unable to see and other refuse to see this. Until then, protests and “riots” will occur.

I must stress that when looking at any issue it is imperative to take into account all factors as you cannot fully comprehend an issue without understanding the context from which it has derived. I plan to have a series covering the multifaceted aspects of inequality in our country because these issues are not black and white, but shades of grey. Simply put “There’s levels to this” and I hope to uncover each one.

Please share your thoughts and opinions on the matter. This is an open forum where I hope you can share your views and try to understand, explain or simply express your frustration.