“Please, I can’t breathe.”
This is America.
No, it’s not about freedom,
Quite the opposite.
It’s about class and privilege.
We’re put into boxes,
Divided by the colour our skin.
We are the dividers,
The masters of segregation.
An explicit bolder between the rich and the common folk.
The rich being imperceptible,
And miles away from reality.
The common folk,
Over the lives of the rich.
Profits made by the rich off of common folk,
The common folk too naive,
To understand the devilish scheme.
“The knees on my neck.”
When a flattering appearance overshadows a hideous soul,
That’s when you know,
You’ve uncovered the hidden code to privilege.
The conventionally beautiful create the definition of beauty,
And beauty becomes an unattainable standard,
Unachievable beauty produced by counterfeit beings.
Something you must meet in order to be desirable,
To be accepted,
To be beautiful.
“I can’t breathe officer.”
We’ve had enough,
Of your senseless propaganda,
Affirming to be a paradise of the free.
We’re tired of all your preaching,
About love between your people.
When all I can see is white bread,
Are you too foolish to accept,
That racism is unlawful,
Applying to everyone,
Of every race,
Even if you're a damn police officer?
Are you still going to regard it as something we can easily ignore?
How can we not learn from what’s been done in the past?
Why are we letting history repeat itself?
States it’s fast-forward,
Ahead of the game,
But it’s still a century behind.
Why is it so hard to free ourselves from bias?
Why have we normalized these biases we’ve been taught towards people different from us,
Instead of discovering where it originated?
“My stomach hurts.”
On the tips of our fingers,
We’re encompassed by racism.
We listen, enjoy, and relish the people that actively chant derogatory terms,
And racist jokes.
We continue to support online personas who spit nothing but dirt from their mouths.
We don’t stop to raise our voice when someone around us makes a racist remark,
Are you too afraid,
Of defending an innocent community?
Why do you lower your voice when your ears cannot lie about what you just heard?
Is it the fear of your own community that stops you from defending another?
“My neck hurts.”
A guiltless black child,
With a life of opportunity ahead of him,
Grows up amongst the grace of his family.
He is loved,
And fear never invaded that love.
He goes to school,
Encompassed by hundreds with a lack of melanin.
He’s different from them,
Though he’s a human being too.
The love he received from people begins to dwindle.
Once you’re an outsider in someone else’s home,
It doesn’t matter whether you’re a human or not,
The eyes fail to see beneath the skin.
They won’t stop to see your sorrows,
Or question why you came there,
But rather attack as if you’re an intruder.
Every day he finds it difficult to appreciate his coarse hair,
His coffee-brown eyes,
And his beautiful black skin.
His schoolmates fail to love him as his family did,
Their perpetual reminders,
Of his clashing differences every day.
Their physical aggression,
Is enough for an innocent black child to quit loving himself.
All his thoughts follow a stream of untouchable wishes.
You know a child has been broken,
When they want to change their brown eyes to blue.
A country that fought a war for racism,
Still has the rashness to ask whether racism is passable or not?
That innocent black child grows to be a man,
A loving man,
That despite his differences,
Carries on with life,
Because life goes beyond the skin.
His naked eyes had seen the alienation of this paradise land,
He knew the hidden truth,
But kept silent,
Because why believe a black man?
The world had cornered his community for centuries.
Fear of colour,
And of differences,
Was what drove people to make irrational decisions.
He was the innocent black child,
Who’d grown to be a dignified man.
But a world that holds hatred in their palm stronger than love fails to see the good in different.
If the world were colourblind,
There would be no such thing as racism.
But if the world were colourblind,
How would we learn to celebrate our differences?
Would we still fail to see human in every human if we were blinded by the colour of our skin?
What’s so terrifying,
So strikingly odd,
About people of colour,
With a bit of melanin in their skin?
What surges people of privilege,
Some white folks,
To kill us?
That black man didn’t want to die because of the bitterness of another human,
Nor did he want to see a white male destroy him,
With his desolate leg.
And you said this was okay?
How is it okay?
Arrest the man,
The voices of millions demand you arrest the man!
And put him in jail for a lifetime,
So he can learn to struggle for the price black people pay for a community’s unjust privilege.
This is the story of millions of immaculate black people.
How can a first world country called America,
Still have a third world dilemma of racism?
How inhumane could one be to watch another human die?
How beastly vile of a creature could you be to let the black man die when clearly black lives matter?
“Please let me stand.”
In every race,
And every religion,
There are bad people,
Just like there are good.
But when one bad human,
One bad individual’s action,
No matter how big or small,
Outweighs all the good of the world combined,
That’s when you know,
Is a stronger emotion than love.
“They’re going to kill me.”
How could you approve racism here?
How could you let the colour of your skin,
Something beyond a human’s control,
Be a crime?
We can’t stop talking about this,
Not until racism is cleared from our name,
Not until we’re labeled a paradise by not the government,
But the people.
And not until the innocent black child begins to love himself again.
We’ll continue these conversations,
Until one day,
Racism is deceased,
Instead of guiltless people of melanin.
Be kind in your words,
We are the manufacturers of racism,
We wrote our mistakes in a ballpoint pen,
And let’s erase it ourselves.
We may never diminish its mark,
But if we continue,
It will fade away.
A quick double-tap, click, and share on Instagram is not enough.
Better yourself as a person,
Discharge yourself from bias,
Straighten up from your bundled ball of fear,
And pointedly call the racist person out.
You won’t look stupid,
Strike these conversations as much as possible,
Save the innocent black child,
Make him feel loved again,
In this foreign land of despair.
He didn’t deserve to die,
Along with a million others.
They were just innocent,
They were humans.
Justice for George Floyd and all other victims of racism.