For two weeks, following the death of one very well known African-American, a dark cloud was hung over Baltimore, Maryland, a populous and racially divided city in the Mid-Atlantic. Looting and burning of various buildings in the communities of the minorities that occupied them was rampant. Soon enough, National Guardsmen in riot gear were called to quell crowds and hush the uproar, forcefully. The year? 1968. The death? Martin Luther King Jr.
The year is now 2015 and the city of Baltimore faces another uphill battle. Sadly, it's nothing new.
It's been a couple of weeks of unrest. Authorities choosing not to rest to apparently protect the well-being of the city. Those coping with yet another killing of an innocent civilian choosing not to rest due to lack of closure because those same authorities are hypocritical about protecting the well-being of the city.
Maybe all it took was a rational decision by the police to avoid this all. There's the hypocrisy. The well-being of the city wouldn't be in question had the police humanely arrested Freddie Gray due to being a person of interest to officers.
People are sick and tired of being sick and tired, can't you agree? Sadly that famous quote is still synonymous to today's America.
I want to speak out to the citizens and the authorities of this city.
To hear the news of Gray's slaying was heartbreaking. I know it is hard to fathom why history keeps repeating itself in such a negative and mostly fatal fashion. The police have gone into full open season mode on whomever they see fit to bite the next bullet of brutality. Often times, their records stay clean as those affected are left to clean up the mess they left behind. That too ends up in tragedy. We often end up with a skewed view of the real problem that has not only had a profound affect on your city, but on many cities across the country. In response, rioting and looting became the cry for help and for answers.
Didn't it seem like the only way to garner attention? There has been countless occurrences of police brutality to fatality that has fallen by the wayside, which is even more tragic.
I do not condone rioting nor looting but while tearing down the city is often labeled as "not the answer", what is the answer? What will stop families from hurting? What will stop mothers and fathers from burying their sons and daughters and vice versa because of police brutality? What are our solutions; our options to helping to solve the problems the police are causing? Furthermore, how has most of the police force turned into modern-day Nicky "Mr. Untouchable" Barnes'?
Baltimore it's time for serous accountability and transparency. It's time for change.
I fear for my brothers, sisters and even myself. Police are slaying folks regardless of name but likely on skin color.
Whenever I learn the tragic stories of people such as Freddie, I ask myself "what do I do if I were to get stopped or tailed randomly by a policeman who sees me as a person of interest?"
Every death requires me to revise my mental checklist. I'm running out of options.
So how many deaths will it take until those in charge to get to the center of the issue at hand?
Seriously. This may never know.
To the family of Freddie Gray and the city of Baltimore, I pray with you. You are loved, cared for and your actions have sent shockwaves through this country.
I wish for a better America with you.