Here is a brief translation of what folk actually mean when they oppose our resistance:
1. “We need unity. You are causing division.”
Translation: Silence your dissent.
2. “You are overreacting. Things won’t be that bad.”
Translation: “My privilege isolates me from any known harm. Oh yeah, and silence your dissent.”
3. “Just pray for our leaders.”
Translation: “Silence your dissent.”
4. “You are not acting like an American.”
Translation: “I am conveniently forgetting that this nation was born in protest. I am also conveniently forgetting that I have been outspoken and protesting continuously for the last eight years because things are the way I want them now.”
“Oh, and silence your dissent.”
5. “You’re racist.”
Translation: “I am deflecting. I am a racist. Silence your dissent.”
6. “Jesus and Dr. King would not approve.”
Translation: “I prefer my Jesus and Dr. King nice and sanitized, without all that turning over tables and shutting cities down stuff. Silence your dissent.”
7. “People change. Give him a chance.”
Translation: “My cognitive dissonance won’t allow me to see what is actually taking place. I despise you for pointing out the inconsistencies between my beliefs and reality. Silence your dissent.”
8. “Shut up and stop your complaining!”
Translation: “I’m a mean and insensitive person. Silence your dissent.”
Friends, don’t silence your dissent.
Keep speaking up.
Keep standing up for justice.
“Freedom is never voluntarily given by the oppressor; it must be demanded by the oppressed.” - Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.