#BlackLivesMatter: Are you kidding? Sit yo Black a$$ down!

First, my heart goes out to the officers, their families, and children for losing their lives in the line of duty.  It is my sincere hope that our leaders will step up, address these pressing issues and prevent more lives from being lost.

I have been following the #BlackLivesMatter movement.  I noticed how some Black people have issues understanding why #AllLivesMatter.  So I did some homework and read a lot before I wrote this.

Let me be very frank here.  #BlackLivesDontMatter.  I will share what I learned to help the rest of those delusional Black folks who seem to not get that #AllLivesMatter is what this is about.

First, Black Americans need to understand that someone years ago did us a favor.  The favor was to capture Blacks from the dangerous African jungle for our own safety.  Notice that there are different stories about how we were captured and if you tell anyone that we were captured, they will tell you no.

We are instead told that the African tribes were at war with each other and the winners sold losers.  Do you see how that becomes that focus of the conversation each time we try to discuss slavery?  There is some truth in that.

Here is the logical fallacy.  Back in the day, if Whites in Europe fought in a war with other Europeans and prisoners were captured, the prisoners of war became slaves.  I think this is okay.

What is not okay is that if Africans traveled to Europe, brought those prisoners of wars, and secretly captured others to bring back to Africa to enslaved then to do their dirty biddings, other wars, then it could lead to RACISM later when Whites feel oppressed.  If you are a Black person and you think this makes sense, I think you have gone and lost your mind.

Trying to make this argument sensible is an indication that you might have some serious mental health issues.  Trying to make that argument is why #BlackLivesDontMatter but instead, #AllLivesMatter.  Let’s continue with what I learned.

I also learned that #BlackLivesDontMatter from reading this article.  If we look at the images in this article, we see spectators.  Their lives matter is #ALLLivesMatter.  The only way to say #BlackLivesMatter is when the spectators are Black.

I mean, think about it. There are countless accounts of lynching and burning of Blacks for all sort of reasons.  Many of those reasons are the same reasons why many are rioting for justice.

Nevermind that.  Let me share something else I read.  This one is not to suggest that police lives don’t matter.  It is to share what I read that I found fascinating and to make sure that those that are ranting #BlackLiveMatter understanding that they have it all backward.

This article among others clearly indicates that what is happening, the way African Americans are treated by the police today and #BlackLivesMatter makes no sense.  If you read the article carefully, there is a lot of love towards Black slaves back in the day.  Do you notice how most of the articles talked about the police was established to protect #BlackLivesMatter folks?

So #BlackLivesMatter folks, you see where you got it all wrong?  There is a need for a divine intervention to help you #BlackLivesMatter folks.  The law is on your side and the police are here to make sure that you are heard, taken care of, and are safe.

You see, there have been others before you who behaved the same way, asked for justice and fairness, and guess what?  The police were there to make sure they were safe.  I was amazed to read those articles because they helped me get the true meaning of #AllLivesMatter.

The people in those images and articles are NOT the reasons why #BlackLivesMatter today.  That is in the past.  We cannot hold today’s individuals and groups accountable and responsible for those things that happened in the past.  Do you see why #AllLivesMatter?

A review of these historic images clearly shows that #AllLivesMatter because those being lynched and burned so not look like #BlackLivesMatter.  The images show that #AllLivesMatter and you protesters should be ashamed of yourselves.

Trying to get those that have benefited from all of those images to see what you see is like trying to turn a dog into a cat!  How could you even do that when you were not allowed to read and write?  Perhaps the lack of access to education is why #BlackLiveMatter folks don’t get it.

Don’t worry #BlackLiveMatter folks, you have access to education now and this is why #AllLivesMatter.  In addition to education, #BlackLivesMatter folks need to understand  the abundance of your economic wealth.  Please, stop whining about injustice and get to work  and live the life you have been living since the beginning of slavery.

I mean think about it.  Each and every one of you #BlackLivesMatter folks is obviously afforded the luxuries and spoils from slavery.  Why shouldn’t #AllLivesMatter?

It is time to enjoy the benefits.  It is time to stop the madness about injustice.  It is time to sit, yo, ass, down!

#AllLivesMatter because we are all equal.  We bleed red and some of us were unfortunate to be born with Black skin.   It is not the folks chanting #AllLivesMatter fault.

How could it be their fault when they were not there when it all happened?  How is that possible when they #AllLivesMatter folks did not benefit from everything I have been reading about some of the reason why #BlackLivesMatter should be addressed first?

You see, the folks from the #AllLivesMatter camp have no idea how Black women slaves were raped.  So in today’s rape culture, if you say #BlackWomensLivesMatter because of these hideous rape incidents, the #AllLivesMatter camp will cry foul and I can agree with them.  It is your foul mouth to remind the #AllLivesMatter camp that these are possible reasons why you believe we should focus on #BlackLivesMatter first.

Unacceptable of you!  How dare you #BlackLivesMatter folks compare the past with today? You see, rape culture today has nothing to do with the past.  There is no foundation whatsoever and I appreciate you #BlackLiveMatter folks if you join the #AllLivesMatter camp so we can all benefit from police protection and reduce rape culture.

I don’t think it will be okay to continue this way, put each other in harms way because we want to maintain an old status quo – unearned privilege.  I don’t believe that the #BlackLivesMatter camp should be called a terrorist group.  That terrorist label pales comparison to the articles I have shared.

I have no intention of telling anyone that we need to kill each other to do what is right by us.  Clearly, what is happening is affecting everyone.  Everyone is nervous, even some police officer are nervous.  To me, that is not the way to co-exist.

I have no intention of suggesting that we should retaliate against the police.  Being an officer is dangerous and hard work and I respect the men and women in that profession.  I have several  close friends who are officers and I am worried about their lives, their families, and kids.

What I suggest is that we look at the impact of history to understand that #BlackLivesMatter is not some elite exclusive club that excludes #AllLivesMatter or the police.  I have a reason to believe that the #BlackLivesMatter camp is trying to point out that some of these on-going mistreatments, injustice, and blatant display of the past in 2016 is shameful and must change.

I took a lot of time to research and read to try to understand.  I am sure some people will disagree with my point of view.  I think that’s okay.  I hope we can look at this objectively, admit to some of our subtle discriminatory ways, and put an end to profiling Black Americans.

According to the constitution, “all men are created equal.” Even that document is fraught with skepticism and questions about if it included Black Americans and recently the LGBTQA.  Are we all equal in today’s society?

Do we all have access to economic power?  This is one area that #BlackLivesMatter wants to address and change.  Have we been treated the same way within the legal system?  This is another area that #BlackLivesMatter wants to address and change.  Was the police established to treat Blacks in the same way as Whites?  I think this is another area that #BlackLivesMatter wants to address in light of recent shootings.

I am not asking Whites to feel guilty.  I am not asking for anything other than to face a truth about who we are, and how we got here.  The information, historical, don’t lie.  Ignoring our history may only lead us to repeat the same mistakes.

If we individually and collectively allow that to happen, then #AllLivesDontMatter.

It is time to begin healing and it has to start with addressing #BlackLivesMatter first, which doesn’t mean #AllLivesDontMatter.

Because embedded in the #BlackLivesMatter message is have open and honest conversations about rape culture, police brutality culture, White privilege, and a culture of fear of simply being a Black HUMAN BEING.  I have a reason to believe that most of us know this to be a truth and I challenge all of us to step up and be a part of the solution.

Saying nothing is more dangerous as we saw in the images of those bystanders while Blacks were lynched and burned as we are shot on television.

Please, stop the killings.

 

 

 

 

Nyle DiMarco: Congratulations and thank you

Heartfelt congratulations to you and Peta for winning this season’s Dancing with the Stars! You did it, both of you! All your hard word and persistence paid off in the end. This is why I believe many of us are happy for and inspired by you.

Congratulations to the DWTS show, the judges, ABC, and network leadership for making it possible to unite the world. I will get into the part of sending powerful messages to the world later in this blog but I will say this: I believe that ALL of you, together, sent powerful messages to the world.

First, I want to address a few things I am seeing that concerns me. Keep in mind that this is only my views on them and I’m not here to speak for anyone else but for myself. I am not here to tell anyone what is good or bad for them. I want to share my story with you and the world in hopes that we can find ways to create accessible pathways for other Deaf and Hard of Hearing individuals and the hearing families with Deaf or Hard of Hearing members.

I am inspired by you.

I am a Hard of Hearing man and I’ve been one since birth with jaundice. My hearing is residual, it means I cannot hear high-pitched sounds. Even with low-pitched sounds, I still need to read lips to understand what a person is saying. As I get older, I am losing some of that residual hearing. That is to be expected as one gets older.

Before I learned American Sign Language (ASL), I thought I was the only person on this planet with a hearing problem. This is because I grew up in Ghana, West Africa. While growing up, I was alone in my world of thoughts — mostly thoughts of fear, negativity, and defeat. I thank my father who worked so hard to bring our family to America.

When I attended high school here in the US of A, I sat in the front in the class and MISSED 99% of what was taught by the teachers. I came home frustrated to family members who did not sign.

My family made sure that I had access to everything. In fact, my family worked hard to make sure that I had everything I needed to succeed as a child and the fact that I was hard of hearing did not stop me from achieving my dreams. That included the opportunity to graduate from high school and go to college at the National Technical Institute for the Deaf (NTID), a college of the Rochester Institute of Technology (RIT) in Rochester, New York.

In high school, I did not have a sign language interpreter. It would have been useless because I did not know ASL at that time. I did not have access to many things except for my textbooks and my dad made sure that I read and stayed on top of my studies.

In addition to working hard in high school, I was picked on and bullied on very often by other kids because I did not hear them and they misinterpreted that as my ignoring them. I have residual hearing and if someone calls me behind my head, I can’t hear them and I need to face them to see what they are saying.

When I arrived at NTID, I met other Deaf and Hard of Hearing individuals like me. I was like, “Wait a minute, there are others? You mean there are others who don’t have some residual hearing? They are Deaf? Really? How can that be? I am not ALONE?

OOM! A culture shock! A major one for me, I tell you. Imagine how many children in the world like me.

What it meant for me? The journey of learning about myself, the meaning of being a hard of hearing man, and how special that is as opposed to all of those negative thoughts I had growing up had begun. For the first time in my life, I felt a sense of belonging, a sense of identity, and a sense of relief that I am NOT alone on this planet.

I was only 19 years old at that time, a freshman in college, and finally discovering myself. I felt like I was a kid again. I finally could be myself but I needed to communicate with the Deaf and Hard of Hearing students who used ASL. Alas, I did not know ASL.

For the first time in my life, I had a girlfriend who patiently taught me ASL. This was when I became aware of some “family syndromes.” Although I did not experience these with my own family, I wanted to share with the parents who may have a deaf or hard of hearing child to make them aware of some of the psycho-emotional stressors:

1. The “I will tell you later” Syndrome
This is when the family is at the dinner table laughing and enjoying conversation. As a hard of hearing kid, my family made sure that we spoke clearly, one at a time, and made sure that I was included.
What I learned from my college experience was that some of my friends’ families failed to include them. Can you imagine the impact on the child who is deaf or hard of hearing?
2. The “It’s not important” Syndrome
 
Really? If it’s not important, why do the laughing and giggling look fun? Why not include the Deaf and Hard of Hearing child?
3. The “Why are you being difficult” Syndrome
This is when a Deaf and Hard of Hearing child expresses frustration of being left out of family things and the response is usually that the child is complaining and misbehaving badly.
There are many more syndromes but these are just some basic examples that come to mind. Why should any child experience these syndromes? Could we imagine growing up with these and the implications it has … specifically the psycho-emotional ones? Why should it be that way for any child? She and he are family!
I am sharing my story with you and the world because I want to reach out to parents of Deaf and Hard of Hearing children. I want to let them know about the possible psycho-emotional stresses a child with hearing loss will cope with. And to remind them that our kids are our future and we must never lose sight of that.

There have been some factions who have been deceiving parents of the notion that if a child is born deaf, they need to be taught to read lips, to be implanted, and have a hearing aid that will “fix” them and make them normal. Normal?

Thus begs the question: what is normal anyway? If normal is that hearing children have and get everything they want, why should Deaf or Hard of Hearing children be deprived of that because of their hearing loss?

My personal experience?
Even with residual hearing and a hearing aid, I still could not hear and make out words. Even with hours of speech therapy, I still miss some words and continue to struggle with some pronunciations. Lipreading is hard work and it drains me.

I encourage hearing folks to try a fifteen-minute experiment: plug your ears and order food at a restaurant by reading lips for that amount of time. Just for fun. Go ahead, give it a try.

Remember, I am not here to say that my experience and life is a “one-size fits” all experience. I am not here to tell parents what is best for their child. I am not here to advocate for one thing over another.

I am here to point out that ASL is one option among many and want to thank Nyle for putting that out there.  I am here to point out that each kid deserves to be a kid with access to communicate with their parents.  That builds connection, shows unconditional love and doesn’t cause all of the psychoemotional stressors, which could lead to other stressors later in life.

Each Deaf child is different and has his or her needs.  That is what is important that we treat each child as special.  That is the message I have for parents – our children are special in their own ways and we must ensure that their language and educational needs are met based on their learning styles.

You know what the greatest irony is? Hearing children are being taught ASL at an exponential rate. Go ahead, Google it. Yet Deaf and Hard of Hearing children are being told by misguided advocates that being taught ASL as a child will deprive them of language. What sort of an oxymoron is that? It is like saying that a child born in another country and must speak English first instead of their native language.

I am a parent. My daughter is hearing and she signs. She is bilingual. She is not delayed nor is behind in her language acquisition. I still remember one of her first signs, “daddy.” So cute and adorable.🙂

Sorry, I got a little distracted there.🙂

Parents, I ask you to ensure that your child gets what he or she needs to become a whole person. If it means learning ASL first, then why not? This is your decision and yours alone.

I don’t believe that the Nyle DiMarco Foundation is advocating one over another. It is advocating to ensure that the deaf and hard of hearing child gets what he or she needs to be a whole person.

I believe I am not alone when I repeat the Star Trek theme – you have boldly gone where no one wanted to go before.
I am inspired and I believe the rest of the world is inspired. The Mirrorball Trophy is not even the most important.
What is the most important is that now, parents are aware of options. Options on how to raise a Deaf and Hard of Hearing child. Forcing them or trying to force them to speak will cause them to experience language deprivation. That is what the Nyle DiMarco Foundation is about.

Thank you all for your bravery.  Thank you for creating an opportunity to have this dialogue about something so important – the child and his or her needs language development needs and several available options.

Congratulations again and again and again.  Well done, all of you and especially Nyle for standing tall amidst all the waves.  I am proud of you!

 

 

 

 

 

 

Open letter to Nyle Dimarco

Let’s take this weekend to root for Nyle by sharing this thank you note with everyone. Way to go Nyle!!!!

kramissah

Hello Nyle:

I hope this letter finds you doing well.  I have been meaning to send this to you for some time.  I was not sure how to frame my thoughts, which led me to put it off until now.  I have no specific reason to go public about this.  I just wanted to share something with you.

I am proud of you.  I am proud of your accomplishments. I am proud of what you are doing for the Deaf community.  I proud that you are a role model for many in our community.  I am so excited for you.  You have done what many of us only imagine or dream about but aren’t able to make it come true.

You are an epitome of the true meaning of hard work.  For that alone, I admire you.  My admiration is also because of your tenacity – the grip you have…

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Open letter to Nyle Dimarco

Hello Nyle:

I hope this letter finds you doing well.  I have been meaning to send this to you for some time.  I was not sure how to frame my thoughts, which led me to put it off until now.  I have no specific reason to go public about this.  I just wanted to share something with you.

I am proud of you.  I am proud of your accomplishments. I am proud of what you are doing for the Deaf community.  I proud that you are a role model for many in our community.  I am so excited for you.  You have done what many of us only imagine or dream about but aren’t able to make it come true.

You are an epitome of the true meaning of hard work.  For that alone, I admire you.  My admiration is also because of your tenacity – the grip you have on your personal dream to reach the stars and beyond and also the dream of educating the rest of the world about American Sign Language (ASL). I agree with you and your cause and stand ready to advocate for and with you.

You remind me of a lighthouse, that stands strong amidst all of mother nature’s wraths – strong nautical splashes, strong winds, snow, rain, hurricane and almost anything that comes at it.  No matter what controversy (a recent one that has me wondering what the world is coming to) is thrown your way, your head is up high and your smile, so bright, causes me to put my sunglasses on just to see.  This is the type of strength that every Deaf and CODA child need.  It is that beacon of hope that every child needs to see and you are showing that.

I know that I get strength from watching you.  I know that I am okay as a Hard of Hearing man.  I know that I can keep pursuing my dreams and that all I have to do is keep going, work hard, never give up, and smile no matter what.  I know now from watching you that the road ahead may not be easy, but I can keep going because you are doing it and setting an example.

One of my hearing friends texted me yesterday.  He asked me if I was following you on Dancing with the Stars (DWTS). Of course! We are all following you and watching how amazing you are.  We are all in awe and for me, I am full of goosebumps when I watch you bust a move (a great 80s song that Nico, your twin brother mixes with as a super DJ) on the dance floor.

Then when I see you behind the scene practices, I am like, wow! Nyle is working hard!  Then I am motivated to work even harder on my own dreams.  I am inspired.  I know many Deaf children are inspired.  I know that hearing children are inspired.

You see, like you, many of us Deaf and Hard of Hearing often question our abilities.  Because we are labeled DISabled.  The “DIS” part of the word can be discouraging.  It can make some of us feel worthless, less than human, and as if we can’t do anything just because we are Deaf and Hard of Hearing, or have a disABILITY.

It doesn’t help when some members of our society put a self-fulfilling prophecy (SFP) on us.  So strong is this phenomena that many of us could lose hope.  We basically accept that we are Deaf because some members of society call us DISABLED.  Those people and organizations will go to lengths to do whatever it takes to hold on to that false belief that we are broken and need to be fixed.

That can hurt.  The can really hurt.

But now I don’t feel hurt. I feel liberated. I feel like my body wants to crawl out of my skin, out of excitement when I watch you on DWTS.  I like many of the Deaf and other Hearing people look forward to Monday nights now – yup, the television won!🙂 Is it Monday yet?

I just want to let you know that you are my inspiration in the same way your twin, DJ Nico is my inspiration.  Both of you broke the barrier like when humans first broke the light speed barrier. For that, I want to say, thank you.

I want to say to you, I am proud of you. I want to say keep moving forward because we are all right behind you.  We will not be swayed by some false propaganda or the SFP that ASL is bad for us.  We will not settle and accept the “DIS” part of a word, disAbled, that is the golem effect of the SFP to influence us. No, we will not!

We shall overcome anything because what you are doing is telling us that we can. We can and we will!  We can’t wait for next Monday!

Thank you and your family for standing up for what is true and right.  Thank you for teaching the world out there that ASL is a beautiful language.  Thank you for leading the way and for going into the unknown territory.

Thank you, Nyle DimArco. Good luck on Monday! Nyleheadshot

I am color blind #Blacklivesmatter

I am color blind.  I can’t see the color of a person, close up or from afar.  I am incapable of telling what color a person is without my color blind goggles.  That is why it is nonsense to focus on #blacklivesmatter.

This is why #alllivesmatter.  That is why racism doesn’t exist.  That is why those who rant about #blacklivesmatter are simply crazy.  There is no foundation to this #blacklivesmatter whatsoever.

Why would anyone even come up with such nonsense?  Why would we even be having this conversation when I, a Black man, am color blind.  How can I, a color blind, Black man tell anyone, beautiful human beings that #blacklivesmatter? 

For example, I see or I think I see that the background of this window is white.  I know that for sure because I think my mind is playing tricks on me.  The trick is that the ink printing on this window is black.  Maybe my mind is playing tricks on me.

Let me get my backup color goggles. Shh, please don’t tell my kumbaya dance group that I kept it.  They told me to toss it out, but I kept it. 

I have no complaints about anything whatsoever because I can’t see my own color.  Most of my life to date, I have worked extra hard to get an education.  I have worked extra hard to make sure that I put food on my table and a roof over my head along with acquiring basic human needs.

That will never change because, in the color-blind world, there is an expectation that so long as I am in America, I have all the opportunities afforded those with White privilege in the color world. Mind you that the only way to understand the meaning of White privilege is to wear the color goggles.

The same rings true for racism.  Without the color goggles, one can not see racism or understand it.  To obtain a pair of color goggles, one must see a professional psychologist for testing because viewer discretion is advised.  Please take care to heed to this disclaimer, especially the psychologist part, which I believe is covered under the Affordable Care Act.

You see, I have never been discriminated against for any reason because of my color.  When I get pulled over for speeding, I get a ticket just like everyone else.  When I am driving down the street, almost home and get stopped, It has nothing, and I mean absolutely nothing to do with my skin color.

I mean who thinks about the color of any human being in this harmonious world where we are all getting along nicely?  Who even want to talk about #blacklivesmatter when each time you turn around we are all dancing in the streets and singing kumbaya like one big happy family?  Who would anyone even spew racism, injustice, and unfairness when all of us are rich, have access to wealth, and earthly abundance?

Oh, please don’t comment on this post with any bologna about me being crazy.  I only want to see comments from readers that agree with me 100% that #alllivesmatter.  I want my color blind friends to comment and give me support because I am color blind.

Anyone else commenting otherwise will not only be rebutting why #blacklivesmatter, but they will also be saying it’s true that #blacklivesmatter.

In my little color-blind world, the slave trade was not real because if it was real we would be having a different conversation – #alllivesmatter.  The conversation about slavery would not be guilt driven and would be a lot easier.  It would be easier because then we would acknowledge that slavery actually took place and everything that most of Black Americans are suffering is reflective of that.  Then, finally, #blacklivesmatter.

that would also mean an admission that #blacklivesmatter.  I don’t think admitting is a good idea when #alllivesmatter.  I think admission is a ludicrous concept in life because by admitting that we are not colorblind then #blacklivesmatter.

Right now, as a color-blind Black person, #alllivesmatter.  Of course, because it is defined in the United States Constitution.

Do you see color in the Constitution?  It is the most color blind document on the planet and I love it.  It gives me hope that as a color blind Black man, I got this.

I got this because #alllivesmatter.  I got this because when we say #blacklivesmatter, we are simply confusing issues.  Issues, historic in nature, that most of us were not even born to live and witness.  

Those issues for a color blind person like me usually get lost in the guilt translation.  The guilt translation is for those of us that see color because seeing color makes us uncomfortable.  When we get uncomfortable, we become defensive and shut down to any form of color related discussions, which inevitably leads to #Alllivesmatter.

Come on now, who wants to be told on a daily basis that their ancestors were slave owners?  Who wants to be reminded daily that being White is a privilege because their skin color is white?  Who wants to live among a people that continue to point out that a system, designed to remind them of their place, being White, superior to being Black or any other color is unfair and unjust?

Please take care to remember that us color blind folks have feelings too.  Try to remember that our feelings get hurt when we are reminded that during the dance of Kumbaya, My Lord – the harmony dance song.  While you are at it, don’t forget that we have White friends that believe because they have Black friends, #alllivesmatter.

I need help.  I have a serious color blind problem and I need help to see the errors of my ways.  I want to understand why #blacklivesmatter more than #alllivesmatter.  Where I live, we are all so happy with everything that I am afraid when one of my dance partner’s read this, they will be offended and I will have no one to tango with.

You see, aside from the kumbaya dances, we tango too.  That usually involves getting along every step of the process.  This is where I learned that at the end of the day, I am a color blind person because, during the tango I get everything in the same way that those with White privilege get.  That is how I came to the realization that I am color blind and tossed my color goggles (shh, I still have it).

That color goggles caused me a lot of pain.  It caused me to alienate several tango partners.  The reason is because they are color blind too and when I discussed what I saw with those expensive goggles, they felt guilty, offended, frustrated and blurted out – “but #alllivesmatter.”

They tried to tell me that they are White with privilege and color blind so #alllivesmatter.  When I pointed out that wasn’t true and that #blacklivesmatter, they asked me how I could call myself colorblind and see all that without my color goggles.  The following tango practice session, they brought me the color goggles to make sure I speak of White privilege next time and that what I wasn’t speaking gibberish. 

When I first tried it on.  I was so shocked that I almost, literally walked into a tree.  It was clear to me that all my life, my eyes has been playing tricks on me.

The trick as I finally figured was this, the first thing I saw with the color goggles was a person’s skin color.  When that happened a number of things began to happen in my mind for the first time.

When I saw the White person’s color, I thought she was hearing.  Then I went up to her and ask for her name.  She indicated that she was Deaf and uses American Sign Language (ASL).  To my credit, I know ASL so I conversed with her and learned more about #blacklivesmatter.  After my conversation, I left in shock. 

I was shocked because when I saw the White skin color, my mind told me that she was hearing.  Why would my mind send this message to me?  Where did it come from?  I began to ask a lot more questions about my eyes and why it was playing those tricks on me.

I decided to take off the color goggles and return to my comfort zone – color blind zone. Whew.  While in my zone, I asked more question about why anyone would put those color goggles on.  I mean think about it.

I put on something to learn something only to learn that most of my indoctrinations about people with White skin and people of color are not always true.  I realized that most of the stereotypes are false.  I learned that everything I knew and taught me wasn’t necessarily true and that I am the one person who has to decide to hate and love based on the color goggles.

Fascinated in my color blind world and my new learning opportunity, I wanted to try it. Ah, yes, the color goggles again so I did.

This time I wanted to try it in different locations.  I started with the television.  That was very overwhelming.

It was overwhelming because for the first time I saw my reflection from the television screen that my own skin color is Black.  With this, I went to look in the mirror in the bathroom with my new color goggles.  Even at this time, I did not make the connection to #blacklivesmatter.

Back to the television screen with my color goggles is when I saw movies from the 1900s about slavery, where Blacks were getting water hosed by all-White police, and other disturbing images.  At first, I jumped off my couch because it felt like looking inside binoculars.  Whoa.  Overwhelming.

It took some getting used to. I continued this journey.  Then there was a clip from the news media about a Black man who was shot and killed by a White police officer.  Then another one, where a White man with a gun waving it around in a form like doing a robot dance, and the all-White police only used pepper spray on him.

Then another one where a little Black boy with mental illness at a park was playing with a toy gun. As soon as the police vehicle pulled up, not even stopping, the officers, all-White shot him, unloading several rounds of ammunition, dead.  The boy was left there, dead, for a while before paramedics arrived.

Then another one, a Black man, a father, was choke held to death.  The officers at the scene were all White again.  Then there was something else happening at Baltimore.

The more I watched, the more images of Black men and women in terrible situations come up.  There were images of Black men, women, and children hanging from a try.  Why didn’t I see this before?

I saw images of Black men in large numbers in jail.  I saw images for the first time of Black children who were dead after a church was bombed.  I could not believe my eyes.

I saw so many images where Blacks were in unequal positions to Whites.  Most of them did not look like Blacks were deserving to be in those positions.  I don’t recall that from my history classes.

I wanted to have fun too; like a kid in a candy store, I played with the goggles.  I took it on and off to make sure I wasn’t still in Kansas.

Overwhelmed, confused as to why I had not seen all these before, I took off the color goggles to return to my comfort color blind world.  A place where I lived like a White person with all the privilege #alllivesmatter.  A place where the guilt noise was less.  

A place of fun, music, and dances of kumbaya and tango.  A place where my other color blind friends, whom I tried to see with the color goggles also appeared to look White, and often uncomfortable with the color discussion. I was happy being color blind and still am.

My happiness with being color blind is that my color conscious friends are uncomfortable when I tried to get them to try on the color goggles. One of them tried it and told the rest of them to watch out for me.  That one told me that if I want to continue making them feel guilty for being a White person, they will look for a new kumbaya and tango partner.

To be completely honest, I am not sure if I can afford to lose my place in the kumbaya happy world.  The world where color blind people like me live a stress-free lifestyle.  A place where color blind people are free of guilt, related or unrelated.

So I want to close by letting my color blind friends know to keep the color goggles off.  Keep it off because that is the only way to push #alllivesmatter.  Otherwise, the one best way to see #blacklivesmatter is to keep color goggles on, which makes no sense to me.

It makes no sense because if the color goggles are kept on, guilt will kick in, stress will come, high blood pressure will take hold, and most importantly, singing and dancing kumbaya will not be fun.  I don’t think we want that.  I definitely don’t want to offend anyone who doesn’t want to put on the color goggles because they might finally see why #blacklivesmatter.
I don’t want them to blame me for seeing #blacklivesmatter and I love dancing around the issue just like them; it’s Kumbaya, My Lord.

Dancing elephant image credit: http://www.dreamstime.com/royalty-free-stock-photo-baby-elephant-dancing-image16852215.

White privilege: How to use it to connect the world

kramissah

I have been thinking about this blog for some time.  I decided to put some of my thoughts down after I spoke with a dear friend.  For the purpose of this title and discussion, I will use White and Black to identify the races.

I ask that, you, the reader, expand your mind and thinking.  I believe when a person thinks beyond their comfortable sphere, one is able to appreciate diversity for its beauty.  Additionally, I believe when one takes an introspective journey to recognize his or her own privilege, one becomes transcended and one’s soul is cleansed.

What is White privilege? I did some research. Looked all over. Sounds corny, but honestly, I Googled what is White Privilege.  I strongly suggest that each reader do their own homework and if there is something I missed, please add so I can learn.

I thought this writer did an…

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