I remember what I was taught.
I tried to call him out every time it came across my desk… I think we ALL did.
This Nation’s teeth were cut on racism like this… and there’s only ONE WAY we can ensure it stops.
STAND UP and SPEAK OUT.
We should be no more upset with people of Asian Descent for the spread of this virus, than we are with people of English Descent for the current spread of the predominant strain of COVID-19 in the United States.
Viruses do not discriminate.
I find these acts of violence against the Asian American and Pacific Islander communities abhorrent and everyone should SPEAK OUT when they see these acts happen. I wish only for PEACE, as their contributions are a wonderful and vital part of our story.
But… I cannot be SILENT. Nor should anyone else. We must LISTEN to what we’re being told, as well as what is being SAID.
There’s a difference between STORY and NARRATIVE… and sometimes the STORY is amplified by the obvious SILENCE of others.
… don’t look at ME like that!
SILENCE on the subject of Conspiracy Theories led to an armed insurrection on January 6th. What harm is done when we are denied FULL DISCLOSURE? What lessons can we learn from this moment that will teach us something about what went wrong in that young man’s life… so that we can ensure it will never happen again with someone else.
Yes, it’s uncomfortable. And yes it deals with harmful stereotypes, but it must be addressed. Openly. It’s a subject not everyone is familiar with, and it’s something that everyone needs to be aware of… knowledge leads to understanding.
Our SILENCE allows it to continue.
My ears perked up the moment I heard the word addiction. Now having gained the knowledge that comes from 12 years of sobriety… after so many lost at the bottom of a bottle… I have an extra bit of empathy for anyone who struggles with addiction. Because I did not know, I struggled… as it is for many people who cannot afford treatment or mental health services. Just like Prostate Cancer or Breast Cancer, addiction is a treatable disease of the MIND.
But I am NO FOOL…
This was no “bad day” as described by the Sheriff… this man’s future was decided the moment he gave up on LIFE, and became its enemy.
Why did that man choose those businesses. What was he expecting to find in those establishments? Was he looking for something he ASSUMED he would find, or was he CERTAIN he would find it. Yes, there is ONE common denominator between all these establishments…
… but it is not the ONLY ONE.
And once again we find ourselves at a crossroads of Fire & Fuel, where one broken aspect of our society ignites another… spreading beyond all social barriers and effecting everyone.
I remember how thoroughly the lessons penetrate our collective psyche around situations like these. Anyone my age has been well educated on what the definition of the word “is” is… and when we learn these lessons WRONG, we have to GO BACK and re-educate ourselves. We have to undo the damage that’s been done… because we have LEARNED.
Our definition of what is RIGHT and what is WRONG has evolved.
Our Laws need to reflect that.
This is how we ensure a proper path Forward.
SHAME on him if he’s using the excuse of addiction in an attempt to avoid responsibility for his actions, but shame on US if we do not LISTEN to what he is saying.
It all starts with how we perceive one another.
We believe in Equal Justice Under Law.
Do we PRACTICE what we PREACH.
I do not raise these issues to give cover for criminal behavior or detract from the apparent racism of these actions. I want to find the answers…
I want to do all I can to ensure it doesn’t happen again.