Amidst the prominent issues engraved in America, racism thrives as one of them. It is considered an opinion on others, yet a curse on African-Americans alike. The very thought of acknowledging racism is an important part of the battle. The battle that captivates African-Americans, as if they were seized by the neck again.
When given the question of a national conversation, one can only look beyond the plight. A national conversation consisting of conditions, or stipulations about a new rule. In a society, where views are not smudged with systemic racism, a national debate would be lively. Two sides would engage in a historic diplomacy and would change the nation forever. Black boys would be tried as boys again, and black women could persist as polite ladies.
Alas, this is not the case in America, and without change, it never will be. A conversation like so would require a majority of people who are willing to face complications. A majority of people who are not skewed by privilege, or egocentrism. A majority of men, and women, who do not advocate for Christianity, and then defend the Confederate flag. People who demand change. A race that is not entitled to anything, but new perspectives.
In 1952, when West Germany faced the metaphorical costs of the war, “very few Germans believed that Jews were entitled to anything,”(Coates). In fact, “only 5 percent of West Germans surveyed reported feeling guilty about the Holocaust, and only 29 percent believed that Jews were owed restitution from the German people.” (Coates). I fear the percentage is deeply lower in white people, in America.
When evidence of police brutality surface or the eyes of racism become too clear, white citizens blame it on our nonsense. On our pants being too low, or our heads being too thick. When Philando Castle was shot, white people noted the video, then looked for signs of resistance. Mortified they were until they found a loophole to excuse the injustices he “deserved.” Thoughts and prayers were sent to the officer, rather than to Castle’s daughter. It was his fault because he resisted orders.
Yet, as African-Americans saw otherwise, the change was only internal. When the case was presented to the courts, the officer was left acquitted, found non-guilty on all charges. Earl Gray, a lawyer for Officer Yanez, even stated that he was “still very shook up” after the verdict, but “extremely happy it’s over” (Smith). Even as a non-white person, the officer lost neither sleep nor morals over the case. The judge bid him adieu, and he continued to live his life. Though he took a life, he had only taken a black life, and that made the slightest difference in his conscience.
If we can’t expect non-white people in America to have remorse for black people, who do we run to? When murders are not enough to awaken a soul, or when we are seen as “brothas,” young thugs to be locked up, rather than “people with a purpose in life,” the thought of a national debate tickles us (Yankah). A conversation that would require a majority of reason, or a majority of thought. A conversation that would require white people to be sympathetic to something outside of college and job promotions. A diplomatic race that would verbally put black people, on the same podium as whites.
We, as black people, are more than willing to endorse a conversation that addresses injustice and murder. We have been ready, since 250 years ago. This is not our fight, for once, and this is not our stage. America will listen to a cause if it employs a white face. A pure embodiment of America. We are too busy being murdered, and spit on, to hope for this conversation. It is in their soft, and warm hands now.