I am a caucasian mother of a son of color. My son jogs and may even “haul ass” through city and neighborhood streets alike. My son is an immigrant. My son is 24 and is currently working on the front lines as a grocery manager to provide support during this pandemic. Ahmaud Arbery’s tragic end could easily happen to my son.
I am filled with outrage and fear for the world where we believe justice can be served while still allowing for rules such as “stand your ground” and “open carry.” Not to mention state codes that allow a citizen to take matters into their own hands. Even the arrest of three men who viciously stalked, shot and killed Ahmaud Arbery is not enough. We need laws changed before we ever stand a chance at healing the prevalence of systemic racism.
Hearing of an alleged burglary and seeing a black man running down the street should never be grounds to assume he is a criminal and yet here we are again. How many times must these senseless crimes occur before we realize the horrific results of racism? If we cannot fix the inhumane hearts of racists we must demand change to the laws.
I want to encourage you to see this case through long after today’s outcry. Watch as the men with previous connections in law enforcement will use the law to exonerate their white privileged actions. Consider the Father/son duo’s lack of evidence as they loaded guns and themselves into their pickup, inviting their neighbor to follow. Look at the fact that young Arbery was not armed as he ran right into a trap while jogging in broad daylight on a Sunday afternoon. Then watch carefully as attorneys will spin Arbery’s attempt to defend himself as a show of force which lead to the shooters acting in self defense.
We cannot see racism, abuse of power, evil and injustice and not use our voices to speak up and it is not enough to assume the newly surfaced video will guarantee arrests. We must call, write, tweet and speak our outrage and our expectation. And we cannot stop.
Lastly, we must speak his name. Tell your children his story no matter how gruesome. Tell your aging parents and lament how little has changed since the days of Emmet Till. Tell your social media followers so everyone knows your heart and your position. We need to hold one another accountable to fight yet another murder of an innocent young black person.
Tonight I will be telling my black son just how sorry I am that he must face such a brutal and broken world. I will also remind him just how many in this world want #justiceforahmaud