Opinion: The Black Man, The Target
Childish Gambino said it best, "This Is AmeriKKKa”. This statement is just as relevant today as it was centuries ago. The American culture is supposed to be a culture of liberty, justice, power for all and most importantly freedom. But why is that not the case for the Black Man? With the recent events that have transpired in our country, it’s time that we sit back and take a look at how Black men have been perceived, labeled and sometimes ultimately murdered.
There is no absolute reason why Trayvon Martin, Eric Garner, George Floyd, Ahmaud Arbery and so many more should have been murdered. But have you sat back and really wondered why it happened in the first place? It happened because people see Black men as a threat. Either we’re being called out by so-called Karen, profiled by the police or chased by racists. In the beginning, we were transported by boat to become slaves in a country in which we are supposed to be free. They lined us up, chained us together on top of one another and let us die in the process. Just think of the feces, urine and vomit that we sat in for a long period of time. That inhuman behavior is just as prominent today. Then we move onto actual slavery. To be tortured and beaten for hours was the way whites saw to treat us. Not enough cotton-picking I guess. This is just an example of how treating us like we are lesser than seems to still be okay.
We made it! We are free! Thank you Abraham Lincoln. Not so fast Black man, Jim Crow is quickly on the way. From what we thought would make us equal Americans, it made us equally enslaved. Since that time, the Black man has had a target on his back for not being enough. They lynched us, killed us, stole from us, bombed our homes and our churches, and treated us as if we were less than human. That still happens today. It’s funny because they frame us as violent.
Don’t let the Black man walk in because they’ll get scared. Yes, the lynching has stopped but the killing hasn’t. The accusations have not stopped. The labeling has not stopped. Take a look into the Exonerated Central Park Five. Based on just being in the vicinity of the park, they were framed. Based on them being young Black boys, they were framed. Because they paint us to look like thugs, they were framed. George Floyd allegedly used a fake $10 bill and that justified a knee on his neck. Absolutely not! Trayvon Martin was simply walking home from the corner store as we all do, and he was killed for being a young Black boy who had a hoodie on. You see the picture here? Do you see the target? Just because we exist, we are a threat. Black men can’t even have nice things without it being a problem. To walk into a sky rise apartment building you live as a Black man and use the amenities regularly is a problem because they don’t think we belong there.
Black men and women are tired. Tired of not being treated like the melanin kings we are and tired of not getting the respect we deserve. This country was built on the backs of our ancestors, Black people. Men, it’s time to rise up and demand a change. It’s time to get involved in peaceful protesting. It’s time to get off the block and get on the poll lines. It’s time to give back to our community and show the world we mean business. It’s time to paint our own picture of power and greatness. It’s time to remove the target from our backs!