You might look at the title of this article and think, “What in the world?” but let me explain. Most citizens of the Black community are at a complete disadvantage. We have fewer resources for everything. We don’t even have the proper tools to educate our children in our schools. Don’t believe me? Come to my city, Chicago, and let me take you on a tour. Compared to the predominantly-white/suburban schools, we only have the basic necessities in our schools to educate black and brown babies.
I know you’re probably still thinking, “Again, what does the title have to do with all that?” Well, did you know that of 9,468 murder arrests, 53.5% of those were African-American males? Did you know that African-Americans are sixteen times more likely to be incarcerated for robbery than non-African-Americans? Or how about the fact that 58.5% of African-Americans are arrested for homicide whether they’re really guilty or not? Talk about discouraging.
But is it really far fetched, though? The way society deems us is untrustworthy, unreliable, lazy and a ton of other nouns that are used to describe us as people when, in fact, that’s not true. Just like with all ethnicities of people, there are a few bad apples out of the bunch. That doesn’t mean we’re all bad. Have you ever noticed that when an African-American, whether it be male or female, young or old, walks past a white woman, she clutches her purse a little harder?
Now imagine that… if it wasn’t already a pre-conceived notion set in stone in their minds and passed down by their own ancestors–year after year and generation after generation–we wouldn’t be looked at in this way. Just the other day I was having a conversation about this very topic to which the person replied to me, “Well a lot of them (Black people) are uneducated.” Them. Like they weren’t speaking to one of the very same people we were talking about. Then, realizing their blunder, they tried to backtrack and fix their mistake. No, ma’am. You can keep that BS to yourself.
The Black community is, in fact, very educated! So much so that we run businesses, schools, hold public offices, AND we actually give a d*mn about our own! That was shown in 2008 when Barack Obama was elected president. It gave hope to us as people that we can do anything we set our minds to. Our environments don’t determine who we are; we do. We can do whatever it is that we want. For the most part anyway.
A lot of times, when you watch the news you always see a crime being reported. More often than not, the suspect is a Black male in his early twenties. They always find the worst portrayal of him and villainize him. Before he’s even given the fair chance of innocent-until-proven guilty, he’s already been judged, unlike White Americans. Don’t believe me this time either? You can run a Google search on a number of things to support my theory. And don’t get me started on the African-American victims at the hands of White Americans.
Gregory Hill Jr.
I can keep going with the list, but you get what I’m saying. Run a search on any of those names and the first thing that will pop up is a supposed criminal record or an article on how they were all menaces to society. But, the same way you looked them up, you could look up White American men who were accused of alike crimes. The first thing you’ll read is that they’re a troubled kid suffering from mental illness, blah, blah, f*cking blah! So, they can villainize us, but when it’s them, they deserve the utmost respect? I think not!
So going back to the beginning of my article and why I chose the title that I did. I chose this topic and that title specifically because we are more than a hashtag! We are more than saying our name after we’re killed in the streets. We are more than what the news and media outlets portray us to be.
WE ARE IMPORTANT.
WE ARE MOTIVATED.
WE ARE EDUCATED.
WE WANT TO LIVE.
WE WILL FIGHT.
WE ARE NOT PRODUCTS OF OUR ENVIRONMENTS.
But, most importantly, WE ARE NOT OUR ANCESTORS! In a society where the Black community is looked down on more and more, that gives us more motivation than anything to want to knock them down a peg and prove them wrong. Will we still have a few bad apples? Of course. Do they account for the entire Black and Brown population? H*ll no! So, I end with this.
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