Ahmaud Arbery should be the last straw. White vigilantes rode through a southern town attempting a citizen’s arrest of a black man who they suspected to be the still at large thief in their neighborhood. This young black man was simply jogging, as was his right. That I have to use that word infuriates me. His right.
Right to life. Daily I see those who identify themselves as Christians fighting for the right to life of unborn humans whom they have never met. I read their rants in social media. I see their faces wet with the hypocrisy of sanctimonious tears. I read their twisted interpretations of words written by men thousands of years since passed that they use to disguise their morbid fascinations cloaked in a trite slogan. Where is their outage for Ahmaud? Right to life.
My blood boils when I listen to disgusting and purposeful misinterpretations of Black Lives Matter, the only grassroots group that laments the stolen life of Ahmaud. The opposition always responds like the petulant, intellectually inferior, culturally appropriating, sophomoric lemmings that they are. Their lacking originality cloaked in facile echoes. All Lives Matter. Blue Lives Matter. Where are their chants for Ahmaud? Right to life?
The two men (father and son) who murdered, dare I say, executed Ahmaud having the temerity to justify their slaying because Ahmaud had the gall to not recognize their self appointed authority infuriates me. That these two men only got arrested today, THREE MONTHS after a cell phone video was released to the media, has me at the height of truculence. Right to life.
Even the preamble to our sacrosanct Constitution that the majority holds so dear states “life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness” and that “all men are created equal”. Do we have a right to life? Can we concentrate on the innocent blood crying from tens of thousands of graves of people whose only crime is that their generic code imparted too much melanin in their skin?
Ahmaud would have been 26 years old today. He was still in the spring of his journey. He had traveled only 25 times around the Sun when his future, his future children’s future, and his future grandchildren’s future was purloined by an assassin’s bullet. Right to life.
How long will we continue to hope that when we leave our homes that we will return unscaved? How long will we get pulled over by the police and hope that the officer isn’t having a bad day? When are we going to stop praying, and marching, and making signs, and turning left instead of right before we stand up as a collective and say enough? What is it going to take before we finally bind together in our common perilous futures that can be stolen in a fleeting moment of senseless violence by perpetrators who don’t even fear accountability?
Is this the last straw? Is this the moment when we realize that we must create a collective that recognizes and protects us? These brazen cowards are all the more emboldened by the ever more vicious and vitriolic bile that is spewed about us. This is a moment from which we must not shrink.
I know there are those who are reading this and thinking what about black on black crime. Sadder still is that there are black people thinking the same. Let me explain the difference and why your argument is scurrilous and ignorant at best.
There were two black men who murdered a black security officer at a Dollar Tree in Flint, MI. If you pay attention, the news always gives us these stories in pairs so we cannot deny the glaring distinction. The two black men in Michigan were also father and son. They murdered a black man in cold blood over the security guard simply enforcing the Michigan law to wear a mask in the store. Black on black crime. Right?
Do you know what these two murderers did? They fled. This father and son immediately realized what they did and they have been on the run ever since. They might have been caught by now, but there was no doubt in their minds that they had broken the law. The police searched for them immediately.
Do you know what the white father and son pair of murderers in Georgia did? They went home. The father, who was a former police officer, worked with the first two Districts Attorneys who refused to bring charges. In fact they are quoted in USAToday as saying, “It appears it was their intent to stop and hold this criminal suspect until law enforcement arrived,” Barnhill wrote. “Under Georgia law, that is perfectly legal.”
So the two white murderers went home with the blessing of local law enforcement. They didn’t have to get arrested, post bail, hire an attorney, appear before a judge, or any of the legal hurdles that you and I would have to go through. They went home. It wasn’t until a third District Attorney was appointed that charges were even filed THREE MONTHS LATER.
Ahmaud was expected to stop for two white men in Georgia in their pickup truck because they said that they believed that he was a suspected criminal. Based only on their say-so he was supposed to allow himself to be detained by two citizens in the deep South, and wait for the police to arrive. Doesn’t sound like life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness to me.
The names of black men and women murdered under suspiciously conspicuous circumstances is far too long to list here, but the list of unknown names is longer. This is not the time for forgiveness or conversations. This is a time for action. We have a fundamental right to defend ourselves. We demand justice. Is this the last straw?