AAA Leaders Speak Out on Racial Inequality

AAA+Leaders+Speak+Out+on+Racial+Inequality

Justin Haysbert & Ebenezer Aggrey, Class of 2020

 

 

“Racism is not a thing of the past or simply a throwaway political issue to be bandied about when convenient. It is a real and present danger that must be met head on. As members of the Church, we must stand for the more difficult right and just actions instead of the easy wrongs of indifference. We cannot turn a blind eye to these atrocities and yet still try to profess to respect every human life. We serve a God of love, mercy, and justice.”

From the Statement of U.S. Bishop Chairmen in Wake of Death of George Floyd and National Protests

 

On The Topic of Race In America And The Killing of George Floyd

 

By: Justin A. Haysbert, Class of 2020

 

Racism is a plague that has infected this country since its beginning. It’s an idea that was sowed in our land with the seeds of slavery. These seeds manifested by hate and fear have continued to corrupt the minds of our youth. The idea that one human may be superior to another should be a long-gone ideology. So why do these thoughts still linger in the minds of our law enforcement, peers, teachers, mothers, and fathers?

George Floyd’s death has sparked great unrest within our society. However, this unrest has existed in our country for centuries. Black people have only been considered human beings in this country for 157 years and have only held rights equal to white men for 56 years. Our country has been around for 244 years and it took 188 of those years to give equal rights to another human being. And what was the reason for this lack of equality? The pigmentation of one’s skin. It can only be explained as pure ignorance that a human’s worth could be based upon the color of their skin.

Those who are ignorant will remain ignorant until they choose to understand. Racism stems from a lack of understanding of another human being. I don’t think that George Floyd’s killers took a second to understand him. Their prejudice and ignorance blinded them from the recognition of life. George Floyd was a human just like you. He had hopes. He had dreams. He had a family. He had life. All of which were taken from him based on a whim that he could do harm because of the color of his skin.

The racist building blocks of this country continue to stand tall and seem to gleam even today. Systemic racism, hidden like a parasite within “the land of the free.” How can we be free if we cannot drive cars, take runs, or simply watch birds without the constant threat and fear of death? We still see modern-day lynchings occur while many people ignore that systemic racism is a real and present problem.   The person who recognizes the bad seed and does nothing about it is just as bad as the seed itself. Silence cannot bring about peace, only the voice can do that, and when the voice is not heard, violence ensues. George Floyd’s voice was not heard by the officer who knelt down on his neck and closed his throat, but his voice was heard by the world.

Over the past couple of months, we have seen demonstration after demonstration, and protest after protest for justice, but not only justice for Floyd; justice for Black Americans. People want change and silence cannot be tolerated any longer. We need reform and rebuilding within our country. We long for the hateful building blocks of America to be replaced by pillars of love. For only love can drive out hate. Only through understanding can we truly achieve peace and equality. Only then can we truly become “United.”

 

 

BLM Movement: The Generation Seeking Change

 

By: Ebenezer Aggrey, Class of 2020

 

On May 25th, after the death of George Floyd, the Black community decided to take a stand and say we’ve had enough of the oppression, racism, and brutality that America has shown minorities.

Many people cannot understand why Blacks are angry about one man dying, but it goes much deeper than that. We are angry because Blacks are being killed. We are experiencing inequality on a daily basis, and our voices are being ignored all because of the color of our skin. This country’s laws were made to benefit whites and failed to even recognize a Black man as fully human. We are not being treated equally and justly, but if we, as a nation, can come together and recognize the problem, we can make things better.

What I love about my generation is that people feel like they can take a stand and speak up about things such as racism and inequality. I have seen numerous supporters from both the Black and white communities of our generation, but there will always be those who just can’t accept us Blacks and what we are trying to say. I’m referring to those people that say, “All Lives Matter” when we Blacks preach “Black Lives Matter.” We know that all lives matter, but we’re focused on Black lives right now because that’s who needs our immediate help and attention  I feel like those who try to preach all lives matter are just trying to undermine us Blacks because they know what was truly meant by our statement. It has been explained numerous times, and they still want to be a part of the problem.

I would just like to say that racism is experienced everywhere, and it is not a thing a person of color such as myself can run away from. Minority students have experienced racism at Catholic High School, but instead of staying quiet about it, a group of students formed and decided to change things for the better. We decided to start an African American Affinity group and, when the administration heard our plans to start this club, they were very supportive and helpful with our idea. Students and faculty were very supportive, and you could tell that CHS did not want to be a part of the problem that we Blacks experience in society.

As I look at society, seeing people protest and fight for the equality of Blacks, I hope that this is not a phase or a trend for some people. I hope that those people involved are fighting for us for the right reasons. I also hope that we are heard and listened to and that our message becomes ingrained in everyone’s mind. The only way change can really occur is if we all let go of the stereotypes and prejudices that were developed in the past long ago and start seeing everyone as the brothers and sisters we all are to each other.