For days now, the image of a black man, face on concrete, lying flat on his belly, with the knees of a white police officer pinned on his neck hasn’t left my mind.
The black man, someone’s father, someone’s brother, someone’s son died after this Minneapolis police officer knelt on his neck for about 8 minutes. Such a horrendous act!
Under the knee of the police officer, he cried “I can’t breathe!” yet the police officer stayed put on him. His name is George Floyd.
Since I came to America 6 years ago, I have heard several tales of police brutality against people who look just like me. People who look just like my husband. People of color have been killed many times by police officers simply because they are black. And this is a great evil.
Colored people aren’t free in the land of the free. It is a sad harsh reality we have to deal with.
But there is hope.
We can be anti-racist, calling the deadly virus of racism by its name and fighting it with every fiber of our beings.
So how can we help? How can you and I help to fight this virus of racism. Here are 7 ways we can be a part of the solution:
1. Seek To Understand
A lot of people do not really understand racism. And that’s understandable because if you’ve never been treated as inferior based on your race, you do not understand. But you can seek to understand by educating yourself.
2. Treat Every Human With Dignity and Respect
We humans, people of every language, every skin color, every ethnicity, all of us humans are worthy. Never ever treat another human being with less respect or superior respect than others based on where they come from.
All of us humans: black, brown, yellow, white, are all equally important and worthy. And all of our lives matter. And we must treat others as such.
3. Teach Your Children About the Realities of Racism
Teaching the younger generation is important. We must tell them the story of racism in America.
Tell them the story of great people like Rosa Parks and Dr. Martin Luther King who fought against the oppression of black people. We must teach our children, white and black that racism is real, it is a disease and they must fight it.
4. Speak Up
Whether it is in your neighborhood or on social media, do not stay silent about the evils of racism. Tell others it is wrong. Share messages that resonate with you. Do not stay silent.
One man, Dr. Martin Luther King made a whole lot of difference by speaking up against segregation and racism. Every single person can make a difference by speaking up.
5. Love And Do Not Hate
Hating one race because some people from that race treated people in your race as less than is not going to help anything. It is only going to create a vicious circle of hate.
Hate begets hate. Love begets love. We must learn to love our brothers and sisters from all races even if some person from another race doesn’t do the right thing.
6. Build Tables
So many times, we fear what we do not understand. If you fear people from another race, do not feed that fear. Instead, seek to know them more. Seek to be close to them.
Invite them to your table, sit down and have conversations with them. Building tables will lead to a better understanding and you will find that as humans, we all breathe the same, laugh the same, cry the same and bleed the same.
Then if my people who are called by my name will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, I will hear from heaven and will forgive their sins and restore their land.
2 Chronicles 7:14 (NLT quoted here) prescribes prayer as a solution for healing our land.
Our land is sick and needs healing. Let us call on God to bring love and peace to America.
May all of us God’s children dwell together in peace and unity. All of us brown people, black people, white people, colored people – we are all human.