THE ANTI THINK PIECE
We in the court of public opinion find it necessary to strip those seeking justice of all humanity. Why is that?
Are we such terrible people that to pacify our own demons we point the finger at the victim in the situation because it's easier to say "they made me do it" or "they were asking for it" than "I need help" or even "I'm sorry"
A black child has to have a clean record before we acknowledge the value of their life and some still won't extend that courtesy.
A victim of domestic violence has to show their scars before we support them, and we still call them stupid for staying.
Why do we trade solidarity for dignity?
Why is doing the right thing because it's the right thing a foreign concept? We look for reasons for our poor judgment to be excused instead of accepting responsibility. Why do we remain objective on issues that are polarizing? Like saying violence is wrong no matter who is perpetrating it in a clear case of unprovoked domestic violence. Isn't that point irrelevant? Why will we waste 140 characters creating fictional scenarios where it's okay for a man to hit a woman when the debate was started by an unwarranted attack? Again, why do we blame the victim? Why is disrespect the buzzword in the domestic violence conversations and not self-defense? There appears to be a consensus that striking a woman is a matter of repercussions and not protection. Hitting a woman is excusable when she has challenged your manhood to the extent that she needs to be taught a lesson. Why is our perception of masculinity so skewed? Why is violence a reflex for so many to the extent that provocation is a just cause for assaulting someone? What provokes someone is subjective which is why it is never a valid reason. Yes, we all have bad days but we are also adults and should be expected to show a certain level of patience and decorum if we aren't able to remove ourselves from an escalating situation. Is that too much to ask? Knowing that one in every four women will experience domestic violence in their lifetime, it is not situational but more so a standard that is the culmination of financial leverage, social isolation, emotional manipulation and verbal abuse. Over 70% of domestic violence murders occur after the victim terminates the relationship. Why does love hurt more than hate?
Why is there a double standard when it comes to respectability politics? Judgement, harassment, disrespect and victimization when your pants are hanging low is the same when a skirt is too high, right? Why are women expected to adhere to the varying standards of someone other than themselves to gain cordiality? Is respect on a human level out of the question? Oh, but if we're "females" nothing distinguishes us from any other species. So what is the difference between a police officer harassing you due to your appearance as you walk down the street and you harassing a woman on the same corner because of the way she looks? As a student at Columbia carries her mattress everywhere she goes protesting the fact that her rapist hasn't been expelled we still ask a victim what she was wearing or question in her state of mind. Why is it that when women share their stories they're met with "that ain't me" or #NotAllMen? Why don't we have a platform to speak? Why are men quicker to regulate women and not themselves? Why isn't Daniel Holtzclaw a household name or a hashtag? Why is it never mentioned that Black women are the fastest growing prison population? Why don't our issues matter?
Why are we so insecure that when a black child is executed and left in the street to rot, we turn the lens on our own people mentioning mythical black-on-black crime to show that we're better than our own brothers and sisters? Why don't we respect the dead? Why do we idolize Malcolm X but vilify Detroit Red? Don't we all have the same potential? Or do we lack the humility to acknowledge the people, systems and blessing that allowed us to be presidents instead of pimps, lawyers over looters, successes and not tragedies. No one has gotten through life by themselves yet we ask people who literally have nothing why they don't achieve at the same rate of their peers who had a head start. We'll call out white privilege but we can't see how most of us with "educated" opinions are the sum total of opportunity and investment, even if it was one person, one chance or one kind word. But that realization would prompt us to give back and mentorship doesn't photograph as well on Instagram. Do black lives really matter universally or just to those closest to us? We can tell black children that their lives matter but until the powers that be recognize that in theory and action, it's just an opinion. Your brother matters until he is caught at the wrong place at the wrong time - outside. I matter until I knock on someone's door late at night seeking help. Why are we so quick to take the "high road" and who determines what that looks like? Is peace a two way street? So when we're charged with doing the "right" thing and publicly forgive, pardoning our killers before justice is had, isn't that amazingly convenient for them? Why are so many parents burying their children while we look for someone to pat us on the back?
Why do we ask more of celebrities than our own elected officials? Is Beyoncé too influential or is it that we are not willing to serve as role models so the youth will have someone else to look up to? We waited for famous faces to catch a flight to Ferguson when midterm elections are less than two months away and sooner than later candidates are going to be perched in our Black Baptist Churches looking for our vote after they refused to speak up on behalf of our brother, Michael Brown, Jr. Why do we criticize a democratic process that we don't participate in? By the year 2020 all millennials will be of voting age. If you don't like out state of government now would be a great time to start grooming yourself to run for office, the votes are there.
*deep sigh* none us us are immune from varying levels of self-righteousness especially since Twitter gave us a platform to share our opinions as though they are fact. We all project our insecurities onto others to some extent which is why self-reflection is always necessary.
So, think about it... Further than what problems you can identify but what compassionate solutions you can offer. We all have a purpose and it's much higher than pointing fingers, feeding our flaws and shifting the blame.