The Past Sixty Years
Since 1962, I can vouch for the existence of a few outstanding black people. We have applauded the likes of Sammy Davis, Redd Foxx, Bill Cosby.
Loved the songs of Aretha Franklin, Tina Turner, Whoopie Goldberg, Diana Ross, Janet Jackson...
There were black people who made us laugh. Eddie Murphy, Richard Pryor. There were black singers who brought incredible joy to our hearts, Stevie Wonder.
The Previous Environment
I don't know a great deal about the environment of the black people before my birth.
I know that there was a lot of upheaval and changes that occurred. Without an encyclopedia, I cannot name all of the bad times.
Fair is Fair
History class was a hard one to learn. As I was given information to memorize, I noticed that my own family's history was not included. I was clearly living a life, but, according to the history book, there were only a few prominent citizens that were written on the important people's list.
My daughter took the class 29 years after I took the class. As I looked over her shoulder, I exclaimed out loud that she was using the same textbook that I had used.
She looked at me and made a sound. Pfffft. "It's not the same book, mom, they would have changed it by now!"
I explained myself... As I looked a her book, I insisted it was the same book, I told her I could prove it. The book I remembered had a picture of a woman in a white, flowing dress and she was in the sky above the wagons heading west. The picture was entitled "Manifest Destiny".
I remembered it was about half way through the book, so I opened my daughter's book in the middle, and, there she was, in my daughter's book. Same as I remembered.
We learned about the Pilgrims. their interactions with the Indians. The origination of Thanksgiving Dinner, the celebration of surviving the first years in this country.
We needed everyone's effort to pull through. Everyone had a job to do. Some people worked in the fields. Some people worked in the house cooking meals. Some worked cleaning the house. As they struggled westward, there were cars built, and more jobs. People worked in assembly plants. There were fights. People weren't satisfied.
There were outbursts. We came here to escape the control of Britain. As the years went by, more people came from other places. We became the "melting pot" of nations. People melted into a working group of people that just tried to fit in so they could survive, as had the initial bunch of people.
It's Not Fair
Some people came here to grasp what the others had worked to obtain. Unfortunately, they didn't want the struggle. They didn't want to be a melting unit. They just wanted to come here and get the successes that those who had lived before had achieved. But, without lifting a finger to help.
Theft and Crime from Jealous Wantings
Some turned to crime. There were rules to follow. There were people who wanted to do their own thing. So, those people bent the rules ever so slightly.
Crime is generally a bad thing. People want something. They decide to take said object by force. They sneak up and walk away with the object.
Sometimes they get caught in the act. Sometimes they are caught by law enforcement officials. They get told, "put the object down, step away from it, and nobody will get hurt!" Sometimes, that person will be obedient and put the object down. The person stops doing the bad act.
Depends on Who You Are
It used to be that the law enforcement people would make a deal with the criminal. They would tell them to "go home" and stop making trouble."
Generally, the person would be relieved by the deal and would go home to be a model citizen. Leading a good life, by good example. Informing others that the good way was a better way than the bad way.
Some Would Take Advamtage
If only people would choose to be a good model. However, it isn't always the case.
There are those, when offered the deal of being forgiven, would see the forgiveness as an opportunity. They "got away with" their bad deed the first time, so decided that they would try the act again. Pushing their luck with the police.
Well. Of course they would get caught again. Repeat offenders, we call them.
Some would expect to be set free, again. Some would not understand that what they were doing was unacceptable behavior.
Crime is Crime
If you break the rules, you get caught. It's called, getting busted. There is no real excuse for your behavior except that you are too obstinate to follow the rules of what is acceptable.
If you watch the news, there was a news flash of a repeat offender who was dealt with in that officer's own way. The officer knelt on the criminals neck and cut off his air supply. There seemed to be no remorse about it. The act was intentional. The criminal would not live to see another day of abusing his fellow citizens.
There have been other instances of repeat offenders getting shot to death by self appointed "vigilante" law enforcement officials.
Repeat Offenders are a Problem
This is where the argument comes in.
The cry is "black lives matter."
Yes. Black lives matter. The argument turns to other colors. Pink lives matter. Doesn't matter if your color is purple. Lives matter.
How to Solve the Problem.
The real question is not whether a certain color will get you treated differently.
The real question remains of how we proceed from here.
Can we get back to the old way?
The old way... Where you did something wrong, but were sorry and promise to go home and do better.
Can we all work on this today?