My hibernation is over. It has been a few years since I have regularly engaged with this blog. Life got in the way…hurricanes, flooding, moves, more moves, disaster recovery, relationships and work changes distracted me from the privilege of sharing my experience and advice. And now I am busier than ever. My days often stretch into 12 to 15 hours of work with out me even realizing it because I am passionate about what I am doing, and I know I am making a difference.
So with all that going on in my personal and professional life, what is important enough to bring me back to this platform of giving advice and hoping to help others, in addition to my regular responsibilities?
Black Lives Matter
I am a Christian. I am not conservative. I am a believer that God has called us to love our neighbors. I was lucky enough to be raised as a military brat in several different multi-cultural environments, so a difference in skin color is exactly that, only a difference. It is not a divider, it is not a segregator, it is not a method of separation. I’ve always been around diversity, and never thought anything of it.
To me skin color has always been, very simply, a difference. One that God created in His infinite wisdom to show His glory and creativity in the differences of His creation.
It was not until about a decade ago that I realized this was not everyone’s experience. I worked with a dear friend who explained that while I might not see race as a divider it was very much a reality. She told me how her brother was pulled over for DWB or “Driving While Black”. If you have never heard of this, read this article. She explained the disproportionate amount of black and hispanic men imprisoned to white men imprisoned. If you don’t know, it is time to find out: Follow this link. She opened my eyes to redistricting, and how it is used to decrease voting power in African-American communities. You can read about it here.
You see, I was young, had grown up in a multi-cultural household because my mom is Puerto Rican and my dad is caucasian. Since the time of being a toddler, my friend circle had been of every shade of the rainbow. It was not until I met this beautiful, intelligent, vivacious, charismatic, informed, powerful woman that I truly saw the divide that so many people experience in their day to day life. I had been oblivious, even though I was working with and serving a predominately black population at that time. I was blind, but Kasey helped me to take the blinders off.
This movement is a cry for equality, for what is right and for what should be.
Imagine, you are standing up for your rights and time and time again history pushes you down and you are still not heard; what are you going to do? If you have said everything you can in every way you can, and you are not heard, what are you going to do?
You are going to change your voice. You are going to get louder. You are going to speak in a different tone. You are going to reach a point where you can not be ignored.
And that is what is happening now. People are making sure they are heard. There has been too much. Too much oppression, too much blood, too much pain. And now it is time for change and to listen to what is actually being said.
Enough is enough.
It is time to stand up.
It is really not enough that black lives matter, that is the minimum. But it is a starting place, a place to build equality and end systemic racism.
So do not sit quietly by during this time of standing up for the rights of your human family. Use your voice to stand in support and be an advocate for the way things should be, have to be.
If you cannot go to a protest, write letters, write emails, make phone calls. Leave signs of support. Read hidden histories, current facts and inform yourself.
And more than anything pray. Pray. Pray.