By Tori McKelvey / Cover Photo by Kaleb Carter, courtesy of Tori McKelvey (Gallery credits below)
You cannot expect a group of people to just deal with being dehumanized, constantly. The bubble will burst, and it has.
You walk by a car and hear the click of the lock when they catch sight of you. You get chased down and murdered for running in a nice neighborhood. Anything you hold in your hand is presumed to be a weapon, and you will be shot for it.
You get the cops called on you because you spoke to someone of another color. You can be assaulted by an adult as a kid and told you don't belong in a neighborhood pool.
People think less of you just at the sight of you. Your skin color defines you as less. That’s not your America. Why should it be theirs?
BUT… right now the people who have to fight for their right to partake in normal everyday activities are black people — that is the movement across the United States. The focus is not to say that no one else matters, but that life as a black person in America is not what it should be, and that needs to change.
Black people should be comfortable walking down the street unafraid that someone will be frightened of them, or use their badge to get away with a dehumanizing action.
Use your privilege.
People call these violent protests in Atlanta and Minneapolis barbaric, and be that as it may, what would you do if your people were constantly being murdered just because a police officer knows he can get away with it?
It may cross a line, but maybe the line should move. You cannot expect a group of people to just deal with being dehumanized, constantly. The bubble will burst, and it has.
Someone burnt the American flag in Atlanta during the protest. While I do not know the exact reason, I have a ballpark guess. They are no longer proud to be part of an America where black people are treated as less!
People may think the problem is getting worse, or that it only has only recently gotten worse. Wake up. It has been happening all along. The difference now is that recordings are receiving aggressive attention.
I do not want to be a part of an America where this is okay; where it is okay for anyone to be mistreated or killed because of the color of their skin.
Educate yourselves and others. Make it a conversation among your friends. Listen and try to understand. Record police events when you see injustice. Use your right to protest.
You do not have to be black to join the movement. Use your privilege. Help change minds and do not tolerate racism when you see it.
Photo Gallery: 1 by Payton Presley, 2-5 by Kaleb Carter, 6 by Jared Croituro, 7-12 by Sydney Bloeme, 13 by Taylor Philips, courtesy of Tori McKelvey