I am saddened by the recent mass shootings in California. My heart has such a heaviness. Oh, have we moved on already? Yes, most likely except Asian communities are still reeling in pain and fear.
And now Tyre Nichols, another young Black man is dead after a brutal beating and torture by police officers and I am struck with an all too familiar grief and pain as so many of us are.
And people are talking…
Mental health issues, gun violence, police brutality, police reform and on and on and on and yet I don’t hear conversation about the tie between the two.
I heard people say about the California shootings… “it can’t be a hate crime, the shooters were Asian.”
About Tyre Nichols death too… many people are saying… “this isn’t about racism, the officers were Black.”
And that’s where they are wrong.
The pressures of living our whole lives taught by, shaped by systemic racism both consciously and subconsciously, instills those in marginalized communities with internalized racism. Hating those who look like you. Dehumanization and anti-Blackness are strong in that message.
Living under the pressures of being seen through stereotypes like “the model minority”, meek and passive men for Asians creates a seething and self-loathing underneath all the other pressures of life.
Living our lives in white supremacy culture has contributed greatly to what we have seen this past week and yet…
We are not talking about root problems so systemic and endemic in the United States. We keep coming back to the same atrocities and we become numb because no one is looking deep enough at the wound to actually start to heal it.
Most people are dumbfounded, confused and numb, but some people know what I am talking about.
It’s too long and too deep to teach in a blog, but it needed to be said.
And it needs to be talked about!
For those who don’t know or want to know more about internalized and systemic racism, On The Matter of Race will be hosting our second summit on March 30 and 31st. Mark your calendars!
For white people who know they need to do something or do more when it comes to racism, we will be opening up interview spaces for our next On The Matter of Race Level 1 journey in a few weeks. Look for that announcement. Spaces go quickly!