Wednesday, September 21, 2016


There are so many reasons not to write this post.  It's probably not wise to wade into the fray.  I am a white woman raising 3 white boys. I am privileged not just because of my skin color but because of where I live.  Things that I had nothing to do with.  Privileges I did not earn.  I don't know the worry of sending my boys into a world that seems stacked against them at every turn.

I'm also not a police officer.  For a short while Ryan thought he wanted to be a police officer.  I was scared out of my mind.  But I put on a smile and said, "Do what you think is best."  He applied and made it the interview stage before he realized he didn't really want to do it. It's a heavy burden to be a police officer.  I admire the work they do.  I don't have to go to work every day wondering if I'll make it home.

And yet...

There are African American boys I love dearly.  Boys trying to figure out how to become men in this world. A few of them trying to figure it out while having no male role model in the home.  Others have awesome fathers trying to figure out how to walk them through all this.  My heart aches for all my boys.  I wish I could just tell them "Do XY and Z and you'll be ok".  It's not that easy.

And I am an American.  I love our country.  I love the principles for which we stand. Justice for all. Freedom.  I'm worried about our country.  We don't have justice for all.  We have justice for the privileged.  We don't respect the freedoms of others.  We've gotten the idea into our collective psyche that freedom of speech means you can speak freely only when you agree with me.

Above all else, I am a Christian.  I am deeply pained to see other people say they are Christians then spew hate.  Or espouse politics wrapped in hate.  My heart aches.

A friend of mine, Georgia, said it best yesterday on twitter - "None of this will change until we learn to relate to each other differently"

We live in a fallen world. We are each sinners.  There is not one person on this earth who is better than me. I may not act that way all the time but it's true. There is not one person on earth who is better than you.  It's time we all started acting as if this is true.

We are called to love one another.  You can't love someone you are judging.  It just doesn't work. That's what prejudice is all about - pre judging someone before you know them.  We all have prejudices.  I'm prejudiced against people I perceive as lazy.  I don't get them.  Many times I'm not interested in getting them.  I just want them do to what they should be doing.  But that's not my call.  Who am I to say what they "should" be doing?  I certainly don't want someone telling me what I "should" be doing. I need to extend that same courtesy to them. The courtesy of getting out their business and not judging them.

I am left with many more questions than answers.  More heartbreak than salve.  So what can I tell my boys is this - get to know people before you decide you don't like them or that they are 'dangerous'.  Lead with love instead of suspicion.  For my African American boys - I see you. I see you working hard in this world. I love you.  Bend, don't break.  Don't give into the hate.  Keep working hard.  Keep loving.

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