I was eleven years old when I realized that everyone wasn’t from Jamaica. This was true despite 5 years of American History and Catholic School Religious Studies. For me, biblical times, medieval ages, recounts of Native Americans, The Atlantic Salve Trade, and the Civil Rights Era were stories; Powerfully sad, stories. I couldn’t relate to them but I listened intently all the same. It never occurred to me that everyone didn’t go to Jamaica for Summers, or that Thanksgiving didn’t include curry goat and rice and peas.
Back then my overly simplistic and idealistic mind I wondered why “we” let those things happen. Why didn’t we just believe Jesus was the Son of God? Why didn’t we stop the pilgrims from treating the Indians poorly? Why was it so hard to just tell enslavers, “NO!” and punish them?
Three-plus decades later, I still feel compelled to ask the questions, despite knowing the whys.
Now via the undesired courtesy of social media I know more about the deeply held believes of people a cross section of America including those I consider friends and associates. They are slowly evolving into “them.” Do I educate or withdraw?
Now I know the power of prayer. Do I pray and carry-on as though all will be OK?
Now I have hash-tags and “Black-outs.” Do I rely on hash-tag activism and hope that people smarter than me find an answer?
Now I am the they, the them, the those people who should be doing something? What will I do?
Praying for, asking for, thinking of ways to DO SOMETHING.