It happens every time there is an unjust and inhumane shooting of an unarmed black person. There are many posts, tweets, and status updates that are committed to giving a 'balanced view'. This usually means admitting the racial inequities in America's criminal justice system. Then to balance the other end of the teeter totter it becomes necessary to also admit that there are problems in the black community- black on black crime, fatherlessness, poverty, etc... This plank then rests on calls for love, forgiveness or peace. Done and done.
While I understand the desire to be balanced, I need you to know that you won't get that here. This itty-bitty corner of the internet is going to be decidedly UNbalanced.
Why? Because I believe it is fine to say, "This is wrong. Unarmed black people should not loose their lives" and leave it right there. That is enough. These complete sentences in all their unbalanced glory can stand alone. This is a singular thought. It is a thought worthy of being wrestled with all by itself.
It is not that I am unwilling to talk about these other devastations that plague some communities of color. In fact, I welcome conversation about these realities. But you should know in advance that I don't relegate the conversation on race to shootings and incarceration rates. Racism is far to effective, conniving, and complete to define only these. So lets talk about poverty, but lets do so without forgetting about slavery, jim crow, redlining, white flight, contract sales, and the extraction of wealth from generations of hardworking people of color at the hands of government, courts, real estate agents and landlords. I'm willing to talk about fatherlessness, but not without also talking about joblessness, health disparities, incarceration rates, discriminatory sentencing, the effects of sentencing, the difficulties surrounding all things related to determining and jailing men for child support, and then I'd point to positive statistics on the presence of black men in their children's lives, despite all these difficulties. I won't go on here, but I hope I have made clear that these other issues dont magically fall outside the purview of racism, somehow pure and untouched- existing in some vacuum of black deficiency. No. They are all connected, reinforced time and again in a web of discriminatory practices that lead to hopelessness, fear, isolation and death.
So I will not be giving any balanced views over here. I believe firmly that to practice love is to disrupt the status quo which is masquerading as peace; and not only that, I will continue to call for repentance from this injustice, leaving forgiveness between the grieved and God.
I will continue to be UNbalanced until systemic racial disparities are no more. For as long as the system is unbalanced, I will be too.