I really need people to stop sharing accurate accounts of brutality and violence in countries populated by people of color along with INCORRECT visuals and photos from other occurrences.
For me personally, it will not distract from the ACTUAL brutality happening to my people in the struggle across the globe, but to individuals who cannot see how we all lose when these atrocities go unnoticed and unchallenged, they will be QUICK to nullify any dialogue about state sanctioned, race based violence across the world because someone, somewhere wanted you to actually FEEL something when you read about this story and felt like the only way you would is if they connected it to the most gruesome visual they could find.
The same way I challenged the world to focus on the PROTESTERS in Missouri and not the LOOTERS I must ask that you now focus on the CONTENT of the news being passed around and not the unrelated PHOTOS being attached to them.
We also need to ask ourselves why people feel that the only way to illicit a response from the world about the atrocities in Nigeria is to attach graphic photos of charred remains and dismembered corpses to the stories about the men, women and children slaughtered in Africa.
Ask yourself why an entire nation turned blue when two cops were gunned down in cold blood in New York City but 2,000 lives don’t even warrant a blip on the radar of the American conscience.
Ask yourself why so many people on your timeline had an opinion on the #CharlieHebdo shooting that they were ready and willing to share but all was quiet on the Western front when the #NAACPBombing should have been a top story internationally.
I already know who’s going to like this post and comment. I already know who’s going to skim through it and think, ‘Tajh is on that preaching bullshit again!’ And keep scrolling. I know who’s going to try (and fail miserably) to derail the conversation or trivialize the point I’m making. And I know who agrees with me but is still uncomfortable discussing these things online and therefore keeps out of the conversation altogether.
It’s very important that each of us do some self reflection and make a conscious decision to positively effect the world we live in for ourselves, and others.
You may not feel like talking about these things on social media ‘changes anything’ and maybe you’re not the protesting ‘type’ but there are a million ways, big and small, to make a meaningful difference and help guide history and human consciousness in the right direction. The first step is awareness.
How self aware are you? How cognizant are you of the choices you make? Why is it you only PUBLICLY mourn certain individuals/ groups? Why is it you find yourself aggravated by certain viewpoints? Do you fact check information critically or go looking for information that will confirm your pre existing bias? Are you capable of perspective sharing? Do you even care to know the cold, hard truth?
Some of you may not. And I can’t change that. But those of you who realize the stakes of living a life of stoicism, complacency and apathy or feigned ignorance should be doing the absolute most to lift your voices and those of the people who’s struggles you are privy to.