“How many people would be alive today, if all Americans were allowed to violently fight back against police, if and when the police are threatening their lives? If we were permitted to physically stop them, rather than just film them with cameras while they are killing us, would Philando Castile, or Alton Sterling, or any of the people we’ve lost, still be alive? In other words, what would it look like, if the police were even half as afraid of black people (and other people of color they target), as we are of them? I ask because I’m beginning to think that my people have been trained to negotiate with terrorists. There is a myth that we desperately need the understanding and empathy of whites in this country—that we must do our best to appeal to it, endlessly—to avoid what should be the relatively simple task of not being killed by police (I say relatively simple, because there are whole countries throughout the world that exist without daily police brutality and murder, also known as lynching). The general idea seems to be that if we cannot get white people to 1.) see that racism still exists and is thriving, and 2.) decide to join us in our fight against it, then we will fail to create an America where black lives matter. That’s an awful lot of work to do, considering blacks neither invented race or racism. We are being asked to not only survive these attacks, but also fight against them and convince those who’ve watched the same videos and who’ve seen the same statistics, that the problem they do not wish to see is real; that their America and their white privilege is literally killing us.”

Source: Shannon M. Houston, “And Why Shouldn’t Black America Revolt?” Paste. July 12, 2016. https://www.pastemagazine.com/articles/2016/07/and-why-shouldnt-black-america-revolt.html


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